2nd semester: Monday morning                                                                         (Min. No. 8)

 

CONTENT

This unit will examine how the Old Testament portrays God as just and merciful and the criteria whereby Israel is called to be the just and merciful society. It will consist of an analysis of the terms Justice and Mercy and associated terminology within their literary, historical and theological contexts. It will consider how these terms and the contexts in which they are used contribute to Theodicy—the notion of the just God.

PREREQUISITES: Level 2: BA1020 and BN1020 or equivalent; Level 3: at least 15 points Old Testament at second Level

LEARNING OUTCOMES

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

Level 2:

  1. apply their exegetical skills to the understanding of key theological terms in the Old Testament
  2. demonstrate an ability to grasp the meaning of texts and terms
  3. discuss the relationship between terminology in different contexts with a view to constructing a theology of mercy and justice
  4. demonstrate a broad knowledge of the relevant background material
  5. present papers in the context of seminar discussions

Level 3:

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

  1. apply their exegetical skills to the understanding of key theological terms in the Old Testament
  2. demonstrate an advanced ability to grasp the meaning of texts and terms
  3. critically assess the relationship between terminology in different contexts with a view to constructing a theology of mercy and justice
  4. demonstrate a broad knowledge of the relevant background material
  5. present papers and lead seminar discussions

ASSESSMENT

Level 2: 1500 word exegetical paper (35%); 3000 word major essay (65%)

Level 3: 2000 word exegetical paper (35%); 3000 word major essay (65%)

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY *set text recommended for purchase

Birch, Bruce C. Let justice roll down: The Old Testament, Ethics, and Christian Life. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox, 1991.

Boda, Mark J. A Severe Mercy: Sin and Its Remedy in the Old Testament. Siphrut; Literature and Theology of the Old Testament Scriptures. Winona Lakes, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2009.

Boecker, H. J. Law and the Administration of Justice in the Old Testament and Ancient East. Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Fortress, 1980.

Crenshaw, James L. Theodicy in the Old Testament. London: SPCK, 1983.

———. Defending God: Biblical Responses to the Problem of Evil. Oxford: OUP, 2005.

Heagle, John. Justice Rising: The Emerging Biblical Vision. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 2010.

Houston, Walter J. Contending for Justice: Ideologies and Theologies of Social Justice in the Old Testament. London: T&T Clark, 2006.

*O’Brien, Mark A. Restoring the Right Relationship: The Bible on Divine Righteousness. Adelaide: ATF, 2014.

Weinfeld, M. Social Justice in Ancient Israel and in the Ancient Near East. Minneapolis, MN: Fortress, 1995.

 

Lecturer: MARK O’BRIEN OP