1st semester Monday evening Foundational Unit                                         (Min. No. 8)

This unit aims to provide students with a comprehensive overview of the formation, socio-historical setting and literary forms of the New Testament literature. Whilst studying the various books of the New Testament, students will be introduced to contemporary methods of critical biblical interpretation. The theological issues of these writings will also be explored.



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

1. demonstrate an advanced understanding of the social, historical and political milieu of the first century CE

2. analyse the relationship between New Testament texts and the Old Testament and articulate implicit and explicit intertextual references

3. discuss issues associated with the critical attitude towards Judaism in some of these texts

4. describe and discuss the formation of these texts as the source documents of the early Christian communities

5. use contemporary critical methods of biblical interpretation to prepare an exegetical essay

6. use resources, such as commentaries, dictionaries and concordances, for biblical research
and communicate their findings in a research essay.

2000 word exegetical essay (35%); 4000 word research essay (65%)


* Bible with the Apocryphal / Deuterocanonical Books. Suitable versions of NRSV (New Revised Standard Version) or RSV (Revised Standard Version). NRSV is preferred.

Set Text: *Perkins, Pheme. Reading the New Testament. 3rd ed. Revised and Updated.New York: Paulist, 2012. (Available through Amazon or Book Depository)

Boring, M. Eugene. An Introduction to the New Testament: History, Literature, Theology. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2012.

Holladay, Carl R. A Critical Introduction to the New Testament. Interpreting the Message and Meaning of Jesus Christ. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, 2005.

Johnson, Luke Timothy. The Writings of the New Testament: An Interpretation. 3rd. ed. Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 2010.

Levine, Amy-Jill, and Marc Zvi Brettler, eds. The Jewish Annotated New Testament: New Revised Standard Version Bible Translation. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

Malina, Bruce J., and Richard L. Rohrbaugh. Social-Science Commentary on the Synoptic Gospels. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress, 1992.

Moloney, Francis J. A Friendly Guide to the New Testament. Mulgrave, VIC: John Garratt Publishing, 2010.

Rhoads, David M., Joanna Dewey, and Donald M. Michie. Mark as Story: Introduction to the Narrative of a Gospel. 2nd ed. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress, 1999.

Ryan, Maurice, ed. Reading the Bible: An Introduction for Students. Tuggerah, NSW: Social Science Press, 2003.

Throckmorton, Burton H. Gospel Parallels: A Comparison of the Synoptic Gospels. 5th ed. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1992.