Back to list of units


Christology Without Fig Leaves

Second or third level unit for undergraduates
Elective unit for postgraduate

Content: Contemporary focus on the relativity of perspective has stripped Christology of some modern epistemological “fig leaves.” This exposure has forced the focus of Christology back to its apostolic roots in confession and biblical genres in expression. This renewed focus has been manifested in Triune perspectives of Christian identity and witness. The unit gives attention to this shift in a context of modern challenges to Christian faith and theological opportunities for contemporary expressions of Christian identity and witness.

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

  1. Identify significant features of modern epistemologies, their challenges to Christian faith and perceived influences on expressions of Christology;
  2. Develop interpretive approaches to apostolic sources for Christology and its expressions applicable to contemporary life.
  3. Demonstrate a capacity to work with diverse biblical genres in giving expression to Christian identity and witness.
  4. Identify contemporary expressions of Christian identity and witness that are shaped by intentional focus on Christology and Trinity. (2nd level)
  5. Articulate contemporary expressions of Christian identity and witness that are shaped by intentional focus on Christology and Trinity. (3rd level)
  6. Display evidence of research skills for studies in modern historical sources for contemporary Christology. (postgraduate)

: S. Curkpatrick



(2nd level) 18 points in SystematicTheology
(3rd level) 54 points in SystematicTheology
(postgraduate) A foundational unit in Field C (Christian Thought and History)

Class Time: Three hours per week


(2nd level)
Two 1300 word essays 50%
Four 600 word document studies 50%

(3rd level)
One 2500 word essay 50%
Four 650 word document studies 50%

One 3000 word essay 50%
Four 750 word document studies 50%

Select Bibliography:

Barth, K. The Word of God and the Word of Man. Trans. Douglas Horton. Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1978.
Greene C.J.D. Christology in Cultural PerspectiveMarking out the Horizons. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 2004.
Harnack, A. What is Christianity? trans. Thomas Bailey Saunders, 3rd and rev. ed. London and New York: Williams and Norgate; G.P. Putman’s Sons, 1904.
Houlden, L. ed. JesusThe Complete Guide. London: Continuum, 2005.
Jenson, R.W. Systematic Theology Volumes 1 & II: The Triune God, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997 / 1999.
Jüngel, E. God as the Mystery of the World: In the Foundation of the Theology of the Crucified One in the Dispute between Theism and Atheism, trans. Darrell L. Guder, Grand Rapids and Edinburgh: Eerdmans and T&T Clark, 1983.
Kierkegaard, S. Philosophical Fragments, ed. and trans. Howard V. Hong and Edna H. Hong. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1985.
Marion, J-L. Prolegomena to Charity, trans. Stephen E. Lewis, New York: Fordham University Press, 2002.
Marsh, C. Christ in Focus: Radical Christocentrism in Christian Theology, London: SCM, 2005.
Renan, E. The Life of Jesus, San Diego, CA.: Book Tree, 2007.
Taylor, C. A Secular Age. Cambridge MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard University, 2007.
Toulmin, S. CosmopolisThe Hidden Agenda of Modernity. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990.
Von Balthasar HU. Love Alone is Credible, trans. D.C. Schindler. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2004.