The Office of External Relations at Duke Divinity School will sponsor a talk by Brent Strawn, professor of Old Testament at Duke Divinity School and professor of law at Duke University, on "The Greatest Story Never Told: Rethinking Scripture as the Poetry of God." In the talk, Strawn will discuss whether the Bible is best understood as a story or as something else such as poetry. He will consider the poetic aspects of Scripture, especially when considered as a whole.
Strawn’s research focuses on ancient Near Eastern iconography, Israelite religion, biblical law, the Psalms, poetry, and Old Testament theology. He joined the Duke Divinity School faculty in 2019 and has a secondary appointment at the Duke University School of Law. Before that, he taught at Asbury Theological Seminary for three years and then for 18 years at the Candler School of Theology at Emory University, where he was the William Ragsdale Cannon Distinguished Professor of Old Testament.
Strawn has published over 200 articles, chapters in books, contributions to reference works, and reviews. He is the author of What Is Stronger than a Lion? Leonine Image and Metaphor in the Hebrew Bible and the Ancient Near East (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2005), The Old Testament Is Dying: A Diagnosis and Recommended Treatment (Baker Academic, 2017), and The Old Testament: A Concise Introduction (Routledge, 2019). He has edited or coedited over 20 volumes, including The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Bible and Law (Oxford, 2015), which received the 2016 Dartmouth Medal from the American Library Association for most outstanding reference work. Strawn is an ordained elder in the North Georgia Conference of The United Methodist Church, and regularly speaks and preaches at churches across the country. He has appeared on CNN on matters ranging from Easter celebrations to Pope Francis to gun violence and served as both translator and member of the editorial board for The Common English Bible.