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Mark Fairchild

Mark Fairchild
Mark Fairchild received his Ph.D. from Drew University in New Testament Studies with additional coursework at Princeton Theological Seminary and Union Theological Seminary. Dr. Fairchild is the chair of the Department of Bible and Religion at Huntington University. His primary interests involve research in ancient Anatolia, and he has visited over 250 ancient sites throughout Turkey and has taken over 200,000 high resolution photographs, many of which have been reproduced in various publications. In 1992, he collaborated with 11 other scholars at Yeshiva University, exploring the Greek encounter with Judaism during the Hellenistic Period. In 2002, he joined 20 other scholars at the University of Chicago to investigate societal transformations and the legitimization of power in the early Islamic states. Dr. Fairchild’s interest in ancient Greek, Jewish, Christian and Islamic relations continues today, and he is currently the Program Director for the Ephesus Meeting, an academic conference at the ancient site of Ephesus in Turkey. Recently, Dr. Fairchild was invited to address the Turkish Embassy in Washington D.C. and the World Affairs Council.

Presenter at

  • Bible & Archaeology Fest XVI, November 22 - 24, 2013
    Why Did John Mark Depart from the Anatolian Mission (Acts 13:13)?
    One of the great mysteries of Paul’s Journeys is why John Mark abruptly abandoned the mission midway through the first journey (Acts 13:13-14). After traveling through all of Cyprus and then continuing the journey up to Perga, why did John Mark suddenly quit and head back home? A related question pertains to the precise route taken by the apostle from Perga to Pisidian Antioch. This paper argues that these two issues are related. That is, John Mark departed from the mission after learning that Paul planned a perilous journey through inhospitable regions and over grueling and hazardous mountain passes to Pisidian Antioch. But why did Paul plan such a journey? This paper suggests that Paul chose a route that would have connected him with Jewish communities along the way. Paul tells us that he deliberately traveled to cities that possessed Jewish enclaves. The paper presentation will include slides illustrating the journey of Paul and Barnabas.
  • Bible & Archaeology Fest XV, November 16-18, 2012
    Pirates, Synagogues and Curses in Cilicia
    Piracy was rife throughout the Anatolian Mediterranean coast during the Hellenistic Period. The problem eventually became so disruptive for trade and the transport of grain to the emerging and expanding Roman Empire that the Senate appointed their most effective general, Pompey, to deal with the problem. The region of Cilicia was particularly plagued with piracy and several cities on the coast were controlled by pirates. Recently, two synagogues have been discovered in the western portion of Cilicia, which is known as Rough Cilicia. Additionally, an inscription has been found that refers to a Jewish community in the area. The inscription is a decree issued by the members of the synagogue and refers to persons who have been excluded from synagogue activities as well as curses that had been issued to unknown individuals. The decree attempts to revoke these curses and to bring about reconciliation with those who had been excluded. Is there a connection between the Jewish community in Cilicia and the pirates? This presentation offers some suggestions as to how the Jewish community responded to the prevalent pirate culture that surrounded them.

Selected Article by Mark Fairchild