N.T. Wright to Deliver the 2023 Abraham J. Malherbe Plenary Lecture

February 6, 2023

Over the course of several years N.T. Wright has been on the shortest of short lists to present a plenary lecture at the CSC.

I am very pleased to announce that we've finally secured N.T. Wright as the Abraham J. Malherbe plenary in the closing slot at the 2023 CSC!

Wright served as Bishop of Durham from 2003 to 2010 and then became research professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at St. Mary's College in the University of St Andrews in Scotland until 2019 when he became a senior research fellow at Wycliffe Hall at the University of Oxford.

He is a first-rate academic who writes with clarity for both professional guilds and popular audiences. One of the most important New Testament scholars of our day, Wright's work in theology, New Testament studies, and Pauline studies has created and nurtured fresh conversations and healthy debate.

Wright's The Resurrection of the Son of God, is considered a seminal work on the subject and his recently released Paul and the Faithfulness of God is hailed as his magnum opus. 

An irenic spirit, Wright's warm relationship with his theological "opponents" Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan blends personal kindness with strong and well-reasoned convictions. In these days of rancor and polarization, Wright is a refreshing character.

Wright speaks across the disciplines and engages the intersection of theology and the Christian life. He was among the first to publish serious theological reflection on the Coronavirus (God and the Pandemic) and in the early months of the pandemic he teamed with Francis Collins (CSC Alum and the NIH President) to advocate for a wise and healthy approach to the pandemic.

It's been a long wait for us to secure N.T. Wright. But, as the above brief sketch testifies, come June you will join me in saying, "Well worth it!"

I recently spent a couple of days at the Lanier Theological Library and Learning Center in Houston, Texas, working with exceptional individuals including our "point person," Dr. Janet Siefert. An Astro-biologist who has spent her career at Rice University (who studies matters like life on Mars), Dr. Siefert, with the entire staff at Lanier, bring joy and professionalism in their preparations for the CSC.

Construction of the new Learning Center is moving along nicely and we expect completion to coincide with the June 7 - 9, 2023 conference.

The Lanier Learning Center, with the world class Theological Library and beautiful Stone Chapel will provide a great venue to create and nurture an intellectual and Christian community that joins individuals and institutions to stimulate networks of scholarly dialogue and collaboration.

During the current season when Lipscomb has served as the CSC's primary host, we visited Pepperdine in 2011, ACU in 2015, and LCU in 2019. We look forward to Mark Lanier's gracious hospitality in Houston at the Lanier Theological Library and Learning Center on June 7 - 9, 2023.

David Fleer

CSC Director