L. Arik Greenberg, B.A., M.A.T.S., M.A., Ph.D.
CAREER OBJECTIVES & PEDAGOGICAL PHILOSOPHY
- To inspire and encourage students of all ages to enjoy learning for its own sake and become socially responsible and compassionate people; to educate the whole person.
- To instill in students the rudiments of critical thinking.
- To combat ignorance, injustice, and prejudice, wherever these may be, employing love and compassion.
- To teach religious tolerance through awareness of the diversity of belief within early Christianity as well as in many other world religions.
- To assist young scholars of varying faith backgrounds to show compassion and tolerance towards those of other faiths; and assist them to come to a critical understanding of their own faiths, enabling them to make educated and voluntary faith decisions.
- To change the world through my pedagogy; to accomplish the seemingly impossible.
Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA
Ph.D. in Religion, New Testament and Early Christian Literature, 2005
Emphasis: Greco-Roman Religions and Culture, Late Second Temple Judaism, Gnosticism, Early Christian Martyrdom, Women in Early Christianity
Doctoral Dissertation: “’My Share of God’s Reward’ Exploring the Role of the Afterlife Within Early Christian Martyrdom”
Master of Arts in Religion, New Testament, 2002, interim degree during PhD program.
The Claremont School of Theology, Claremont, CA
Master of Arts in Theological Studies, New Testament, 1995
Emphasis: The Gospel of Thomas and Gnostic Christianity, The
Sayings Gospel Q, Social Formation within early Christian circles.
Masters thesis: “A Separate Son of Man”
Wesleyan University, Middletown, CT
B.A., with honors, Religion, 1993
Emphasis: History of Religions, Christian Origins, Buddhism
Honors Thesis: “Why Sayings? A Comparison of the Form of Two Ancient Religious Sayings Texts: The Gospel of Thomas and The Mumonkan As Enacted Over Against Narrative Genre”
TEACHING AND ADMINISTRATIVE EXPERIENCE
Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA
Lecturer in New Testament Theology (part-time), September, 2008 to date
Currently teaching Introduction to New Testament
Visiting Instructor of New Testament Theology (full-time), January, 2003 to August, 2005
Courses taught: “Introduction to the New Testament” (lower division), “The Four Gospels” (upper division). Developed and taught “Women in Early Christianity” (upper division).
Museum of the Ancient Roman Soldier (a project of the Legion Six Historical Foundation), Los Angeles, CA (MARSRomanMuseum.org)
Director/Curator, July, 2008 to date
Responsible for development, fundraising, and initial conservation of artifacts.
Instrumental in raising over $140,000 since 2008.
Legion Six Historical Foundation, Inc., Los Angeles, CA (LegionSix.org)
President, January, 2008 to February, 2010
Responsible for daily operations and development of the organization. Position held simultaneously with the directorship of its flagship project, MARS (see above). Resigned from presidency in order to focus more exclusively on that project.
Green International University, Los Angeles, CA (GreenIU.org)
Vice President, Fall, 2009 to date
In charge of academic and institutional development and operations; pre-accreditation candidacy.
Horizon Theological Institute, Los Angeles, CA (HorizonTheological.org)
Administrator, Professor of New Testament and Religion, Fall, 2007 to Spring, 2008
Courses taught: “Intro to New Testament”, “Women in Early Christianity”
Administration: Assisted in basic operation of opening school, developing curriculum and assisting with pre-accreditation process.
Shepherd University, Los Angeles, CA
Adjunct faculty in Theology (part-time), Fall, 2005 to Spring, 2008
Courses taught: “Paul’s Epistles to the Colossians and Philippians” (upper division), “Diverse Conceptions of the Afterlife in early Christian Martyrdom” (upper division), “Gnosticism Amid Varieties of Early Christianity” (intensive seminar), “Introduction to the New Testament (lower division), Pauline Theology (masters level), Four Gospels (lower division).
RESEARCH AND OTHER RELATED WORK EXPERIENCE
Barakat Gallery, Beverly Hills, CA
August, 2006 to November, 2006
Assisting one of the world’s foremost antiquities dealers in researching and cataloguing antiquities from the Greco-Roman era as well as other eras and cultures of the world.
Freeman and Sear, Santa Monica, CA
August, 2005 to August, 2006
Assisting one of the world’s foremost ancient numismatic and antiquities dealers in researching and cataloguing coins and antiquities from the Greco-Roman era.
Ancient Biblical Manuscript Center
Research Associate, Scholarly Services, Claremont, CA, September, 2001 to August, 2003
Serving as cataloguer and curator of microfilm collections, liaison between the ABMC Interlibrary Loan and patron/scholars. Responsible for special projects.
Research Associate, Mount Athos Manuscripts Digital Library, June, 2000 to October, 2000
Served as the in-house liaison to the Project Director, based in Europe. Was responsible for grant writing, funding research, correspondence with supporters and project participants, and academic research related to development of relevant public relations material.
The Claremont School of Theology
Teaching and Research Assistant for Dr. Burton Mack. (while enrolled at the Claremont School of Theology and later at the Claremont Graduate University), 1994-1996.
PRESENTATIONS, PUBLICATIONS, AND MEDIA APPEARANCES
Filmed Lecture Series
“Introduction to the New Testament” DVD lecture series, produced by Centerfire Productions. Forthcoming, June, 2010.
Webcasts / Podcasts
“ReligionMatters” with Dr. Arik Greenberg and Dr. James Findlay, produced by Centerfire Productions. Filming begins in May, 2010.
Interviewed for an upcoming documentary on Mary Magdalene and the Da Vinci Code, entitled “Myths and Legends,” produced by “Two of a Kind Productions.” Release date, forthcoming.
Public Lecture Series:
Mary and Joseph Retreat Center, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA (co-sponsored by Dawn Unity, an interfaith nonprofit organization).
Two semester lectures series (24 part) called “Diverse Beliefs in Early Christianity.” Fall, 2005 through Spring, 2006.
St. Peter’s By the Sea Presbyterian Church, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA.
Six part lecture series called “Diverse Beliefs in Early Christianity.” Fall, 2005.
St. Lawrence Martyr Roman Catholic Church, Redondo Beach, CA.
Five part lecture series called “He is Risen: Passion and Resurrection Accounts in the Gospels.” Spring, 2005.
Five part lecture series called “Jesus in the Gospels and Beyond,” same location, Spring, 2004. Average audience size: 150.
“My Share of God’s Reward” Exploring The Roles And Formulations Of The Afterlife In Early Christian Martyrdom New York: Peter Lang, 2009.
“A Critical Review of the Bishop Version 1.01 Newstead Lorica Segmentata in the Wake of a Prototype’s Creation,” Journal of Roman Military Equipment Studies, 12/13 (2001/2), 97-103. Published in 2005.
“Reconstructing the Newstead Lorica Segmentata... Again.” Journal of Roman Military Equipment Studies, 14 (2010 - forthcoming).
“The Philosopher’s Death — A Martyrdom? A Revised Definition of Martyrdom,” article submitted to various academic journals (awaiting review).
International Christian Evidence Conference
Houston Baptist University
Houston, Texas, June 13, 2009
Presentation: “Roman Guards at Jesus’ Tomb: The identity of Roman Soldiers in Judaea During the Time of Jesus”
The International Meetings of the Society of Biblical Literature, held at the Pontifical Gregorian University and the Pontifical Biblical Institute
Rome, Italy, July 11, 2001
Paper: “The Philosopher’s Death, A Martyrdom?”
The New Testament Seminar, The Claremont Graduate University.
Claremont, CA, December 13, 1999
Paper: “A Separate Son of Man”
HONORS, FELLOWSHIPS AND AWARDS
Jewish Community Scholarship, Jewish Vocational Services (Jewish Federation of Los Angeles), 2001-2, 2002-3
Tuition Fellowship, Faculty in Religion, Claremont Graduate University, 1995-1997
Presidential Award For Academic Excellence, Faculty in Academic Programs, The School of Theology at Claremont, 1995
Wiley Mather Tuition Fellowship, The School of Theology at Claremont, 1993-1995
Honors in Religious Studies, Honors College, Wesleyan University, 1993
Reading proficiency demonstrated in the following:
- Greek (Koine and Attic)
- Classical and Modern Hebrew
- Coptic (Sahidic, Akhmimic and Sub-Akhmimic dialects)
COURSES QUALIFIED TO TEACH
Introduction to the New Testament
The Four Gospels
Women in Early Christianity
Philippians and Colossians (Two Diverse Letters of the Pauline Corpus)
Diverse Conceptions of the Afterlife in early Christian Martyrdom
Late Second Temple Judaism
Introduction to World Religions
ACADEMIC SKILLS AND ACHIEVEMENTS
Intensive study of New Testament and early Christian literature, beginning with courses under Ron Cameron at Wesleyan, and continuing under Burton Mack, James Robinson, Greg Riley and James Sanders at Claremont. Completed a Master’s thesis in April, 1995, discussing the problem of the Son of Man in the various early Christian texts which mention this figure, and offering an alternative solution to the traditional approaches. Continued independent study and dissertation research under Dennis MacDonald at Claremont, researching the role and function of the afterlife in early Christian martyrdom accounts, against the backdrop of late Second Temple Judaism and the Greco-Roman philosophical schools. General knowledge of Old Testament / Hebrew Bible, having studied under Jeremy Zwelling at Wesleyan, Marvin Sweeney and James Sanders at Claremont. Continued study of intertestamental Judaism in its Hellenistic environment under the occasional guidance of Kristin De Troyer, as a member of my dissertation committee.
Completed an honors thesis, “Why Sayings?” A Comparison of the Form of Two Ancient Sayings Texts: The Gospel of Thomas and The Mumonkan as Enacted Over Against Narrative Genre, 1993. This thesis concentrated on the function of sayings texts over-against narrative texts, and utilized the Gospel of Thomas and the Zen Buddhist Mumonkan as two cross-cultural texts which embodied the non-narrative form of gnomologia.
Intensive study of various forms of Buddhism (traditional Asian as well as American sects), under Janice Willis and J.H. Stone II at Wesleyan. I also studied for two and a half weeks in 1993, with the Keum Kang Kyoung Chung Sect of Korean Buddhism in Pohang, Republic of Korea, on a scholarship from that organization.
I am a primary officer of an historical society, The Legion Six Historical Foundation, a non-profit educational charity that studies, educates and reenacts Roman military life. Firmly engrossed in experimental archaeology, the group works in conjunction with several notable classical archaeologists, toward the goal of studying and reconstructing the material culture of the Roman legionary life. In conjunction with my activities in this group, I wrote an article on the topic of a particular type of Roman armor whose construction is shrouded in mystery. The article was published in the Journal of Roman Military Equipment Studies, vol. 12/13. A follow-up article is forthcoming in volume 14 of the same journal. .
I have been researching the details of ancient Roman onomastics, and found it necessary to become educated in the field of Greek and Latin epigraphy. Having researched within these related sub-fields for the last year, my newfound skills have come to my assistance in my most recent endeavor, assisting one of the world’s foremost ancient numismatic dealers, Freeman and Sear (Santa Monica, CA), with the cataloguing and research of coins and antiquities for sales and auctions. I have had the opportunity to pursue publication from these endeavors as well, and a colleague and I are finishing an article on a recent hoard of Roman provincial coins minted under Hadrian. The religious significance of these coins should not be underestimated.
I am interested in the education of the whole human being, so that students will become responsible adults and assume responsibility for their actions, taking part in making the world a better place. Students should always remain critical of how their academic studies relate to the world and lead them to improve the world. Since, in my opinion, education is for the purpose of bringing us to a better understanding of ourselves and others, the academic study of religion should be focused on increasing religious tolerance among people of different faiths and for assisting students to gain a critical understanding of their own faiths, enabling them to make educated faith decisions based in empowerment and free-will, rather than coercion and ignorance. As such, it is important that students of all faith backgrounds be exposed to the academic study of religion and also the study of the history of early Christianity within its larger Greco-Roman and Hellenistic Jewish matrix. A complete understanding of Christianity within the modern world is impossible without understanding the earliest stages of the development of Christianity within its social and political world, the challenges it faced, the development of doctrines and the many diversified forms that it took and then struggled with. There is no greater benefit to a modern Christian or Jew than to educate oneself as much as possible in the cultural, literary, and socio-historical mindset of those who wrote the New Testament and contemporary Christian and Jewish literature. Only through these lenses can one hope to come even vaguely close to understanding the original intent and motives of such theological writers. By understanding the history and context of the theological decisions and concerns of those ancestors, readers today will be better able to make their own educated faith decisions, following the examples of great minds who have preceded us. I am particularly emphatic about conveying the notion that critical scholarship should not deter people from their faith, but help broaden one’s understanding of the divine at work within human life. With my methods, as such, the needs of students of faith are addressed by encouraging them to critically engage the history and texts of their own tradition while allowing them to make their own educated faith decisions, treating one’s spirituality as a private and sacred conversation between the individual and God (however one understands God). The needs of the secular student -- equally as important -- are also met, helping them to comprehend and respect Christianity within the larger scope of world history and to gain an appreciation for the various stages of its development.
My particular teaching interests lie within courses that reveal the diversity of belief within earliest Christian circles, the socio-cultural obstacles faced, the debates over doctrine, and the various solutions offered by these many varieties of Christianity. This diversity of belief within the nascent phases of what would ultimately become one of the world’s largest religions suggests to me a model for modern religious tolerance, based in acceptance of diversity within modern religious and philosophical milieux, as if to say, “if the greatest minds of early Christianity could not immediately agree, how can we be expected to?”
I am also particularly emphatic about the importance of the professor’s role within the learning environment. While a scholar’s research endeavors are important in contributing to the expansion of the overall knowledge in a given academic field, as well as demonstrating his or her competence as a scholar, it is the activity of pedagogy that must be the primary purpose of a professor. Without the act of passing knowledge along to open minds, a professor serves no purpose except for the narcissistic pursuit of acknowledgment.
My research interests are extremely widespread and varied. While I study Religion largely as a socio-cultural phenomenon, I recognize the importance of individual spiritual experience, as well as community experience, within the realm of social formation and the construction of communities of faith. Being interested in Comparative Religion as a scholarly endeavor, I also feel that the New Testament and early Christian literature should be studied as an appropriate part of the larger realm of human religious achievement and my research is very textually oriented, focusing on the socio-historical context (Sitz im Leben) and of the possible redaction history of any given text of Judeo-Christian milieu. Among my particular research interests, I am intrigued by Gnosticism and seek to understand it within the realm of Greco-Roman religions and philosophy as well as Second Temple Judaism, exploring the debate over the definition of Gnosticism and whether scholarship can rightly identify such a thing as “pre-Christian Gnosticism.” The answer to this question may be related to the existence of a Pre-Christian Son of Man tradition, another strong interest of mine, possibly evident in Q and in some of the literature found in the Nag Hammadi library. I am interested in Greco-Roman religions, literature, and history, as well as in the Noble Death traditions of Hellenistic thought and how these relate to the theological changes that take place within Hellenistic Judaism and Christianity, leading to a spawning of their own Noble Death / martyrdom traditions. I am therefore, very interested in the role of the afterlife within the early Christian martyrdoms during Roman persecutions. Additionally, I intend to research the origins of the concept of the Holy Spirit in Judaism and Christianity, investigating possible connections to the concept of genii of Roman deities. I have also developed and taught a course called “Women in Early Christianity,” which covers many forgotten topics related to women, femininity, and feminine aspects of the divine in early Christian literature. I am interested in contributing to the growing body of research on this important topic.