Greetings, members of the Mediators list!

Today (Tuesday, 3 February, 1998) marks the first realtime session of our seminar at the University of St. Andrews and the opening of the list for discussion. For now the list will be unmoderated, although I reserve the right to switch to a moderated format anytime I judge the noise level to be too high. Let me remind you that all list discussion is to be governed by our Community Rule, which has been distributed to all members. If for some reason you deleted it without reading it, you may get a copy by sending the message:

get mediators med.comrule


Note that this command is case sensitive; it must be sent in small letters exactly as it appears above. (It’s best just to copy the phrase and paste it into a new message.)

In general, to post to the list you should (1) have read the assigned primary texts, online lectures, and seminar paper summaries, (2) have kept up with the list discussion thus far, and (3) adhere to the rules in the Community Rule. Please remember to begin the subject header of each posting to the list with MED: and to sign your name (not pseudonym) and e-mail address at the end of the message.

This course module is an experiment inspired by the fine models provided by James O’Donnell in his online courses on Augustine and Boethius and Robert Kraft in his online course on the Dead Sea Scrolls (both at the University of Pennsylvania). It also builds on the online course I taught here at St. Andrews last year on the Old Testament Pseudepigrapha.

Our discussion list currently has 197 people signed on and I want to thank all of you for your interest. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank publicly John Henderson, the Head of User Services for the Information Technology Services at St. Andrews, for the enormous amount of time and effort he has invested (and continues to invest) in setting up the technical side of these courses.


The Mediators web page is available at:

This page contains information on the Mediators list, a collection of links to related sites on the World-Wide Web, information on textbooks, and a schedule of classes and topics. It also has links to our Community Rule, to the web page on the International Conference on the Historical Origins of the Worship of Jesus, and to the Annotated Basic Bibliography for the course (the latter is still in progress).

To get a list of all the files available on the Mediators archive send the (case sensitive) message:

index mediators



The realtime module meets every Tuesday for two hours. This week, the class will spend the first hour going over some basic concerns of the course, then, during the second hour, the instructor will give an introductory lecture on the methodology of studying ancient divine mediators. An online version of this lecture will be posted to the list and added to the web page shortly after the message you are reading now is sent out. In the second class meeting, I will be giving two lectures back to back, one on Enoch and one on Melchizedek, exploring their significance as divine mediator figures. I will assign primary texts and two online articles for this week. After that, we will meet each week to discuss a student’s seminar paper that has been distributed to the class in advance. Abstracts of the papers will be posted to the list and on the web page.

The current program for the semester is as follows:

Starred topics will be covered by student essays. The other topics will be covered in lectures (L) by the instructor, except the last session, which will be a joint effort of the entire class.

Week 1: Introduction and Methodology (L)
Read: Davies, “Divine Agents, Mediators, and New Testament Christology,” _Journal of Theological Studies_ 45 (1994) 479-503

Week 2: Case Studies: Enoch (Metatron) (L)
Read: 1 Enoch 37-71, 3 Enoch 1-20; online lecture by James VanderKam on the Enoch literature

Melchizedek (Michael) (L)
Read: Genesis 14; Psalm 110; Jubilees 13:22-27; 11Q13; Philo, _Legem Allegoriae_, III 79-82; Josephus, Antiquities 1.10.2; Hebrews 7, Revelation 12; NHC IX,1; and Davila, “Melchizedek, Michael, and War in Heaven”

Week 3: Moses* (Ysmena Pentelow)

Week 4: The Future Davidic Ruler*

Week 5: Solomon* (Andrew Home-Cook)

Week 6: Elijah*

Week 7: The Teacher of Righteousness*

Week 8: The Sibyl* (Dennis Johnson)

Week 9: Apollonius of Tyana* (Andrew Home-Cook)

Week 10: Philo of Alexandria’s Logos* (Masanobu Endo)

Week 11: Jesus

(c) 1998
Reproduction beyond fair use only on permission of the author.

Back to the Mediator Figures Web Page.

Contact details

St Mary’s College
The School of Divinity
University of St Andrews
South Street
St Andrews
Fife KY16 9JU
Scotland, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1334 462850 
Fax: +44 (0)1334 462852