St. Olaf College 2018

Northfield, Minnesota

| with Dr. James Tabor, University of North Carolina at Charlotte and R. Steven Notley, Nyack College


The Biblical Archaeology Society invites you to join us this summer at our ever-popular St. Olaf program on the beautiful campus of St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota. Our featured speakers are Dr. James Tabor, Professor of Christian Origins and Ancient Judaism at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, and Dr. Steven Notley, Distinguished Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins at Nyack College in New York. These two dynamic presenters will be our scholars-in-residence for the week, and their 20-lecture program promises to be an exciting window into the latest research in the field of Biblical archaeology and research.

Join us as we host this exciting summer seminar in the beautiful and restorative setting of St. Olaf College. The campus boasts award-winning architecture nestled in a 350-acre woodland, set on a hilltop overlooking historic Northfield, Minnesota, a charming, two-college town with a welcoming community. St. Olaf College's picturesque campus is located just 35 miles south of St. Paul and Minneapolis in Northfield and offers the best of two worlds: the quiet charm of a rural community and the convenience and excitement of the nearby Twin Cities. A thriving and innovative community, Northfield is known for its historic downtown district along the scenic Cannon River. Accommodations at the college are comfortable, dormitory-style, air-conditioned rooms with two beds per room. Participants are also welcome to use other campus facilities.


To download a PDF version of the schedule, click here.


If paying by credit card, click here.

Problems with registration please call 1-800-221-4644 ext 216.

To pay off your balance, click here.

Seminar Price

Deposit at time of registration: $500
Cost per person (based on double occupancy – includes room and board): $1,499
Lecture-only (Does not include meals or final night banquet): $999
Single Supplement payment per person: $70
Balance of full payment due on or before June 5, 2018



St. Olaf College

The 350-acre wooded campus is located in Northfield, Minnesota, just 35 miles south of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Northfield offers the best of two worlds: The quiet charm of a rural community and the convenience and excitement of the nearby Twin Cities. A thriving and innovative community, Northfield is known for its historic downtown district along the scenic Cannon River. Accommodations at the college are comfortable, dormitory-style, air-conditioned rooms with two beds per room. Participants are also welcome to use other campus facilities.


Optional, On-Your-Own Field Trips

Thursday on the Square
On some Thursday evenings in the summer, you will find many folks gathered at Northfield’s Bridge Square, the heart of the city, for concerts and variety shows. Most stores stay open later, so you can shop in a comfortable, unhurried atmosphere.

The Northfield Historical Society Museum
408 Division Street
Mon.-Sat., 10-5; Sun., 1-4
This historical museum is home to Northfield's famous 1876 Jesse James bank raid site. The museum is unchanged and appears as it did that fateful September 9 when the James-Younger Gang attempted to rob it. In the museum’s Ted Scott Room, there are rotating exhibits on Northfield’s history, the surrounding area and the state. The museum store maintains an old-fashioned dry goods store atmosphere and offers souvenirs and books of local and regional interest. For more information, visit the Northfield Historical Society's Web site:


The Outlaw Trail Tour
Retrace the route the James-Younger Gang took as they rode through the Northfield area in 1876. The Northfield Convention and Visitors Bureau provides a self-guided tour brochure, available upon request from the Northfield Chamber of Commerce. Through the Chamber you can also reserve tour guide service for large groups. Just call them toll free: 1-800-658-2548 or visit their Web site at

Hotels Near St. Olaf Campus
Country Inn & Suites by Radison
300 South Highway 3,
Northfield, MN 55057
(507) 645-2286

AmericInn Lodge & Suites
1320 Bollenbacher Dr,
Northfield, MN 55057
(507) 645-7761

Americas Best Value Inn & Suites
1420 Riverview Dr,
Northfield, MN 55057
(507) 663-0371

Archer House River Inn
212 Division St S,
Northfield, MN 55057-5194


The St. Olaf program fee does not include transportation to and from the event. This information is provided as a courtesy and neither company is specifically endorsed by the Biblical Archaeology Society or St. Olaf College.

For those interested in arranging transportation to and from St. Olaf College, the following transportation services are available:
Office hours are from 9am-5pm Monday thru Friday

Metro Airport Express Bus Line Schedule to/from St. Olaf College Campus Pickup times at MSP:

Dept. 12:25pm – Arrive St. Olaf/Bruntrock Commons 1:10pm
Dept. 5:25pm – Arrive St. Olaf/Bruntrock Commons 6:10pm

Pickup St. Olaf
Dept. 10:13am – Arrive MSP 11:07am
Dept. 3:13pm – Arrive MSP 4:07pm

$15/one way – 45 minutes travel time

Metro Express Reservations Link: Make your reservation here.

Lecture Program

James Tabor’s Lectures

Seeing Through a Glass Darkly: Texts, Sites, and Artifacts

Dr. Tabor’s lecture program addresses the ways in which ancient texts, artifacts, archaeological sites, and geography work together to shed new light on our contemporary understanding of the Jewish/Roman world of Jesus and his earliest followers. Half the lectures focus on the “big ideas” that go into providing the social, religious, and cultural contexts of the Jesus movement; another half seek to rehabilitate our memory and understanding of forgotten characters who were marginalized in the dominant narrative of Christian Origins that triumphed in the early 2nd century C.E.

Lecture 1: The End of the World as We Know It: How Apocalypticism Thrived and Failed in the 1st Century C.E.

Lecture 2: Forgetting James: How and Why James the Brother of Jesus Faded from History

Lecture 3: Ideas of Death, Burial, and the Afterlife: How Jews, Christians, and Romans Agreed and Disagreed

Lecture 4: Losing Mary: How the Jewish Mother of Jesus Became the Virgin Mother of God

Lecture 5: How Jewish was the Galilee in the First Century C.E.?

Lecture 6: What Kind of a Jew Was Jesus?

Lecture 7: Christology in the Making: The Dynamics of late 2nd Temple Jewish Messianism

Lecture 8: Among Those Born of Women There Is None Greater Than John

Lecture 9: The Five Streams of Earliest Christianity: The Myth of Christian Origins

Lecture 10: Will the Real Paul Please Stand Up?

R. Steven Notley’s Lectures

Parables in the Teaching of Jesus and the Sages of Israel

Story parables are the most identifiable form of teaching associated with the historical Jesus. Indeed, his use of parables may indicate where he stood on the landscape of emerging Jewish thought, because outside of the Gospels, they are only to be found in rabbinic literature. In 2011, Professor Notley collaborated with Ze’ev Safrai (Bar Ilan University) to publish, for the first time in any language, a complete anthology of the earliest Jewish parables, Parables of the Sages (Carta Jerusalem). Although sometimes overlooked by New Testament scholarship, these story parables provide the literary, cultural, and theological context for the parables of Jesus. In this series of talks, Dr. Notley brings the weight of this collection onto our reading of the Gospel parables. These presentations explore the ways in which the message of Jesus voiced in the parables belongs to emerging Jewish thought in final decades of the Second Temple period.

Lecture 1: Introduction to the Study of Parables

Lecture 2: Galilean Spirituality in the First Century C.E.

Lecture 3: Divine Mercy within Emerging Judaism

Lecture 4: The Value of One

Lecture 5: Love for Israel and A Message of Hope

Lecture 6: Forgiveness and the Precept of ‘Measure for Measure’

Lecture 7: The Call to Give

Lecture 8: To Hear and To Do

Lecture 9: Preparation for the End

Lecture 10: Speaking Truth to Power


St. Olaf College, 1520 St. Olaf Ave., Northfield, MN 55057. To ensure your comfort, the Biblical Archaeology Society will have a full-time resident coordinator at St. Olaf College to care for group and individual needs.

All BAS lectures and discussion groups; dormitory accommodations for six nights; all meals prepared by Bon Appétit, a welcome reception and a special final night banquet.

Transportation to and from St. Olaf College, laundry and other items of a purely personal nature. Program begins with registration on Sunday, July 22 in the evening and ends after breakfast on Saturday, July 28.

If made up to two weeks prior to the start of the seminar: Refund of deposit less $100 per person for administrative costs.

On or prior to June 27: Refund of program cost, less $300.00

After June 28: Refund of program cost less $500.00


For more information contact:

Alicia Bregon
202-364-3300 ext 216
Biblical Archaeology Society
4710 41st Street, NW
Washington, DC 20016