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Dr. Carol Newsom to Give 2013 Smyth Lectures


Distinguished scholar Dr. Carol A. Newsom of the Candler School of Theology will present the Smyth Lectures at Columbia Theological Seminary on October 8-10, 2013. The series of three lectures is titled “The Moral Self in Ancient Israel and Early Judaism.” The lectures will be offered free to the public each day in the Harrington Center Chapel on the seminary campus located at 701 S. Columbia Drive, Decatur, GA. Details of lectures are as follows:

  • Tues., Oct. 8 at 7pm - “Only Bad, All the Time!" (Gen 6:5): Is There Something Wrong with Us?

  • Wed., Oct. 9 at 10am - "The Devil Made Me Do It" (Flip Wilson, 1970): Are Our Bad Desires not Ours at All?

  • Thurs., Oct. 10 at 10am - "Choose You This Day!" (Josh 24:15): But Why So Many Bad Choices?

As the Charles Howard Candler Professor of Old Testament, Dr. Newsom's current research focuses on the Dead Sea Scrolls, the wisdom tradition, the book of Daniel, and apocalyptic literature. In 2009, she received an honorary doctorate from the University of Copenhagen in recognition of the body of her academic work, most notably her scholarship in Old Testament theology and her innovative work transcribing, translating, and providing commentary on the Dead Sea Scrolls. She also received an honorary doctorate from Birmingham-Southern College in 2006.

Dr. Newsom has written seven books and scores of articles, book chapters, translations, encyclopedia articles, and reviews. She has received several prestigious research fellowships, including grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Henry Luce Foundation, and has won several awards for excellence in teaching and mentoring. A frequent lecturer, Dr. Newsom also sits on multiple editorial boards.  She recently served as president of the Society of Biblical Literature and is a senior fellow at Emory University's Center for the Study of Law and Religion.

The Smyth Lectures were established at Columbia Seminary in 1911 by the bequest of the Rev. Thomas Smyth, pastor of Second Presbyterian Church in Charleston, South Carolina. The aim was to establish “a course of lectures on the fundamental principles of the Christian faith.”  The Smyth Lectures are presented to the seminary community each year and are open to all ministers, lay people and members of the community who wish to attend.

Columbia Theological Seminary is committed to "educating imaginative, resilient leaders for God's changing world." As an educational institution of the Presbyterian Church (USA), Columbia is a community of theological inquiry and formation for ministry in the service of the Church of Jesus Christ. Columbia offers seven graduate degree programs and dozens of lifelong learning courses and events as a resource for church professionals and lay people. For more information, please visit

Michael Thompson
Director of Communications

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