It has been a long time since I last posted to my blog. My last post was on November 3, 2014. Since then I have received hundreds of emails from readers who are concerned about my well-being and who miss reading my posts.
Many situations have contributed to this long pause. Although one or two events alone cannot explain the reasons I have not posted to my blog, the accumulation of these events may provide a reason or a justification for not being active in posting.
I spent the fall quarter in 2014 working on a book project which I hope to complete by the end of this summer. This project will be the focus of my sabbatical work which will begin this spring quarter and will end at the end of the summer.
In addition to my work on this book project, I also wrote three articles that will be published later on this year. The first article “Cisterns in the Ancient Near East,” will be published this summer. The second article is a study on Isaiah 66:24 that will be published in a Festschrift for Edward Fudge, the author of The Fire That Consumes. The third article is an article on prayers in the books of Chronicles, Ezra, and Nehemiah. This article will be published later this year in a book on the theology of prayer in the Hebrew Bible.
The research required for the writing of these articles required much time. Thus, when this reading and writing were added to the work I do in preparation to teach my classes, time to write for the blog became very limited. Something had to give, and unfortunately, it was the time I needed to write my posts.
Two other situations caused me to stop blogging for a while. First, was my trip to Brazil to visit my family. One of my sons decided to take a trip around the world and he decided to spend a month in Brazil. Since he had never met my family, I decided to take my wife, my two other sons, and a granddaughter to meet my son in Brazil so that my sons could meet their relatives. It was wonderful to introduce my sons to my family. We had such a great time in Brazil that the whole family wants to go back again in three years.
The second situation also caused me to stop blogging. On top of everything I have listed above, last November I hurt my knee and that incident caused me to have a torn meniscus. I struggled with pain until recently. Finally, in February I had knee surgery. I am still in the process of recovering from surgery, but I have been back to the classroom. Now I am ready to return to my blog and begin again posting on a regular basis.
On Monday, March 9 I will begin blogging again on a regular basis. It will probably take me a few weeks to come back to normal, but my goal is to blog again on a regular basis and try to post daily as soon as possible.
I have no words to express my gratitude to you, the readers of my blog. I have received many emails and even a nice phone call from one of my readers asking me when I would be blogging again. My students have been asking the same thing. Other readers have approached me personally to express their concern for me and to tell me how much they miss my posts.
I have been teaching now for many years. I enjoy what I do as a teacher and I am blessed when my students come to me and say how much they appreciate my teaching. This is the motivation behind what I do in my blog. My goal is to teach the Old Testament to people who love God’s word and who want to learn more about what the Old Testament teaches.
Many of the posts I have written in my blog reflect class discussion and issues that my students raise in class. If you read my blog regularly, I can assure you that most of the posts that you read in my blog are topics that I have discussed in my classes with my students.
Northern Baptist Seminary is a great place to study God’s word. I am fortunate to have colleagues such as Scot McKnight and David Fitch who inspire me and challenge me to write and to be a better teacher. Our students are fortunate to study under these great scholars and godly men.
So, I am back, and it is great to be back. Thank you for your words of concern. I hope you will continue to develop your love and appreciation for the Old Testament as we continue together in this amazing journey of discovery.
Claude F. Mariottini
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary