Welcome to
Qoheleth Resources


Qoheleth’ is the narrator of the Old Testament book of Ecclesiastes. This Hebrew name is often translated ‘Teacher’ or ‘Preacher’, and originally referred to someone who gathered a congregation together in order to speak to them. His most famous catchphrase was ‘Vanity of vanities! All is vanity!’

File:Gottlieb-Torah Scroll 1876.jpgWho am I?

G.K. Chesterton wrote in his autobiography, ‘my birth… is an incident which I accept, like some poor ignorant peasant, only because it has been handed down to me by oral tradition.’ I quite agree! I was born (I am reliably informed) in Croydon, where I grew up. I have always answered to the rather inaccurate name ‘Richard Johnson’ – Richard means ‘a hard ruler’ in Anglo-Saxon, and my father was not named John. Never mind. I studied geography at university, although ‘studied’ may also be a rather inaccurate verb; ‘scraped through’ might be better. After selling books for a while I really did study for 4 years at London Bible College.

I then worked for almost twenty years at Redcliffe College, as the Head of Biblical Studies and as the librarian, I was made redundant in 2009, a couple of weeks after my 50th birthday. As Bilbo (who was himself 50 at the beginning of ‘The Hobbit’) would have said, it was clearly ‘time for a new adventure’! It reminded me that in ancient Israel there was the following command for the Levites: ‘from the age of fifty years they shall withdraw from the duty of the service and serve no more’ (Num 8:25). Although I’m neither a hobbit nor a Levite, it was encouraging that I was not alone in facing major changes at the age of fifty.

I decided to become self-employed, and to set up a small home-based company. 

Other pages of the website will give you an indication of the sort of things I do; but feel free to consult me if there is anything else you think I ought to be able to do that might also, as a useful spinoff, help to pay the mortgage and bring up two teenage daughters…

Oh, and if you got to this page by accident and you were really looking for a counsellor in the Gloucester area, please do visit my wife’s website.

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