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Interpreting the New Testament –

First level unit for undergraduates
Foundational Unit for postgraduates

This unit will introduce students to the literature and history of the New Testament writings. In particular, students will examine various genres and techniques employed in the text to testify to the good news of Jesus Christ and proclaim the fulfillment of Old Testament tradition. Students will also develop a working familiarity with a variety of aids and critical approaches used to interpret and engage the New Testament.

Learning outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this unit, it is expected that students will be able to:

  1. Describe the contents of the New Testament: the types of literature, their particular interpretive demands, their place in the development of the canon, their theological outlook.
  2. Demonstrate an awareness of the historical and social world of the New Testament.
  3. Use appropriate interpretive approaches in exegesis of the New Testament.
  4. Access and use the tools of New Testament interpretation: lexicons, dictionaries, commentaries, and historical sources.
  5. Articulate the relationship of the New Testament to the texts and message of the Old Testament.
  6. (and for postgraduates) Articulate a transition from text to life, particularly in terms of theological and hermeneutical application.

Offered: Second semester 2019 (face to face and online)

Faculty: Toni Nguyen


One 1000 reading review 25%
Two 500 word document studies 25%
One 2000 word essay 50%

One 1500 reading review 25%
Two 750 word document studies 25%
One 3000 word essay 50%

Select Bibliography:

(* indicates required text)

Baulkham, Richard. Jesus and the Eyewitnesses: The Gospels as Eyewitness Testimony. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006
Bockmuehl, M. Seeing the Word: Refocusing New Testament Study. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2006.
Brown, Raymond E., An Introduction to the New Testament, New York: Doubleday, 1997.
Burge, Gary M., Lynn H. Cohick & Gene L. Green, The New Testament in Antiquity, Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2009.
Childs, B.S. Biblical Theology of the Old and New Testaments: Theological Reflection on the Christian Bible. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992.
Coggins, R.J. and J.L. Houlden, eds. A Dictionary of Biblical Interpretation. London: SCM Press, 1990.
*Cousar, C.B. An Introduction to the New Testament: Witnesses to God’s New Work. Louisville & London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2006.
Elwell, Walter A. & Robert W. Yarbrough, Encountering the New Testament: A Historical and Theological Survey. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 1998, 2005, 2013. 
Green, J.B. ed. Hearing the New Testament: Strategies for Interpretation. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2010.
Johnson, L.T. The Writings of the New Testament. Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1999.
Köstenberger, Andreas, and Richard Patterson, Invitation to Biblical Interpretation: Exploring the Hermeneutical Triad of History, Literature, and Theology. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 2011.
Pennington, Jonathan T., Reading the Gospels Wisely. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2012.
Smith, D.E. ed. Chalice Introduction to the New Testament. St. Louis: Chalice Press, 2004.
Wright, N.T. Paul: In Fresh Perspective. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2005.