An essential introduction to the Bible, its overall theology, historical context, and contemporary interpretation. After considering the overall biblical drama (its themes, shape, and historical claims), there will be a significant focus on how to interpret the Bible faithfully. In addition to regular class work focused on particular texts, the course will require individual students to present an exegesis of a text. This course seeks to provide the skills necessary for understanding the Bible with a diligent and humble attention to the text and its context. Special attention will be paid to the history of Christian engagement with the Bible, beginning with the apostles’ own reading of Israel’s Scriptures, as well as the contemporary renewal of theological exegesis. The general set of outcomes Trinity desires for each of our graduates includes the following:
1.The student will recognize and identify the biblical theology evident in the course work.
2.The student will be able to articulate an Anglican understanding of biblical, historical, systematic, and pastoral theology. Students of other traditions, especially those in the Lutheran and Presbyterian programs, should be able to articulate the theological perspective of their own tradition.
3.M.Div.: The student will be able to effectively communicate the Christian message to a diversity of people in order to advance the mission of God.M.A.R.: The student will be able to effectively teach the Christian faith.S.T.M.: The student will demonstrate the ability to carry out research from original sources.
4.M.Div.: The student will be prepared to effectively lead in a variety of Christian communities.M.A.R.: The student will be equipped to apply scholarship to the life of the church in his or her chosen theological discipline.S.T.M.: The student will be equipped to successfully pursue further independent research and post-graduate study in his or her chosen theological discipline.
This course is one of the core courses in the curriculum that provide an understanding of Scripture and biblical theology, thereby grounding this curriculum as a whole (outcome 1). Such attention to biblical theology is at the heart of a classic Anglican approach to Scripture (outcome 2; see Article XX of The Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion), and an understanding of the Bible is a pre-requisite for both effectively communicating the Christian message and offering effective leadership (Outcomes 3 and 4). So this course contributes to each of these general outcomes, doing so through the following specific objectives:
1.To explain some basic ingredients in a Christian doctrine of Holy Scripture, such as inspiration, infallibility, and authority.
2.To explore some chapters in the history of biblical interpretation.
3.To introduce students to a two-testament approach to biblical theology and the distinctive contribution each testament makes to our understanding of the Bible as Christian scripture.
4.To facilitate the development of interpretive skills for reading Scripture.