10 December 2019

Watch Now! Public Lectures with Prof Craig Keener

The Plausibility of Miracles in a Materialistic Age

Laidlaw College was delighted to host New Testament scholar and author, Professor Craig Keener, at our Henderson campus in September 2019. During that time, he gave a public lecture on “The Plausibility of Miracles in a Materialistic Age”. He noted that a common reason for sceptics doubting the historical authenticity of the gospels is the presence of miracles. While writing a commentary on the Gospel of Mark, of which one-third contains miracle stories, a planned footnote on miracles turned into his book, Miracles: The Credibility of the New Testament Accounts (2011).

In his public lecture, Professor Keener noted that most modern prejudice against biblical miracle reports depends on David Hume’s argument that uniform human experience leads us to never expecting miracles. Keener looked at the question of whether there are some credible eyewitnesses for miracles today, and gave story after story of historical and current day miracles – many hand in hand with ground breaking evangelism throughout the world.

With his dry sense of humour, and well-researched miracle accounts, it was a stimulating and inspiring lecture. Watch now…

Women in Ministry

Paul’s letters stand at the centre of the dispute over women’s role in church ministry, with each side of the dispute championing texts from the Apostle. How do we understand the text in 1 Corinthians 14 where Paul instructs women to be silent, or the 1 Timothy 2 passage where women are forbidden to teach or exercise authority over men? Are these texts addressing a specific cultural situation or should they be treated as universal prohibitions?

Craig Keener delved deeply into the world of Paul and wrestled with these thorny texts in his book Paul, Women and Wives: Marriage and Women's Ministry in the Letters of Paul (Hendrikson, 1992). In a public lecture at Laidlaw’s Henderson campus in September 2019 Professor Keener looked at the arguments for both sides of the question: ‘are women allowed to be in ministry?’, and the approaches various theologians and church traditions have taken throughout the centuries. 

He gave insights into the culture at the time Paul wrote his letters, and of the way false teachers were targeting women. He notes the importance of considering the original situation of Paul’s letters, and that Paul does affirm women’s ministry which helps us to see that Paul himself did not prohibit women from teaching the Bible always. 

It was an insightful lecture from a scholar steeped in the world of Paul – watch now.