Georgia — World-renowned author, lecturer, and Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life special presenter Dr. Joel Hoffman gave two lectures at Temple Israel, in Columbus, January 27 and 28, to standing room-only crowds.
Dr. Hoffman, who spoke on the subject of “The Bible Didn’t Say That,” from his latest book And God Said, holds a Ph.D. in linguistics and has served on the faculties of Brandeis University and Hebrew Union College. His mission is to find, through translation, what the writers of the Bible meant to convey.
“Everybody has the right to interpret the Bible differently,” Hoffman said. “I’m trying to get the original meaning of the words. I use the tools of modern linguistics and translation, much as an archaeologist uses the science tools of today to learn more about the past.”
Marlene Garnett, of Temple Israel, said, “The weekend was quite a success for Temple Israel… There was an outpouring of interest from the Christian community, as well as our own. On Friday night, we estimate that he spoke to 200, standing room only. And all of his books were sold, the majority to Christians. Many guests asked if they could return on Saturday, and they did. I consider this weekend an outreach to the citizens of Columbus, in addition to being an educational and entertaining experience for us.”
Ronnet Rice, Temple Israel education director, said, “Hoffman was great. Jerry Seinfeld was in town on Friday, and I swear Joel was funnier.”
Joel Hoffman has the “it” factor — the ability to address equally the most knowledgeable learner and the novice, with a great sense of humor, humility, and warmth. His love for both his subject matter and the learner helps make him one of the most engaging speakers today.
For more information on booking Dr. Hoffman or other ISJL presenters, contact ISJL Director of Programming Ann Zivitz Kimball at email@example.com or 601-362-6357.