The Biblical Interpretation (BI) concentration focuses on Hebrew Bible and Early Christian (canonical and apocryphal) literature. Students will gain competence to teach courses in the languages, literature, history, and religion of ancient Israel and early Christianity. Graduates will also be prepared to conduct research and scholarship in biblical studies. Students may specialize in select areas of either Hebrew Bible or the New Testament and their cognate literatures.
- Minimum of one year of Hebrew and one year of Greek, with demonstrable usage of each within the last three years
- A research paper in biblical studies, preferably an analysis of a biblical text
- Assumes a general background in biblical literature and history
In addition to the Methods for Interpreting Biblical Texts course, students are required to take at least one Colloquium in Biblical Interpretation (2-3 credit hours), which addresses key themes, issues, or topics in the field of Biblical Studies. Students are also required to take at least two of the following seminars:
- THEO 6143: NEW TESTAMENT LANGUAGE AND TEXT
- THEO 6146: HEBREW BIBLE LANGUAGE AND TEXT
- THEO 6135: HEBREW BIBLE ENVIRONMENTS
- THEO 6133: NEW TESTAMENT ENVIRONMENTS
These courses are designed to give students basic competencies in the skills, methodologies, and background of biblical studies. Particular emphases of each course will vary somewhat depending on which of the BI faculty are teaching in any particular quarter.
Methods for Interpreting Biblical Texts (4 credit hours)
Focuses on a range of methodologies used to interpret biblical texts, from classical historical critical methodologies, to contemporary methodologies. This course is taught every other year. Canonical emphasis will be determined by the faculty's area of concentration.
New Testament Language and Text or Hebrew Bible Language and Text (4 credit hours)
These courses are designed to increase students' facility with critical editions of the Hebrew Bible and New Testament, including introducing students to advanced scholarly resources, tools, and technology. Courses cover issues such as advanced grammar, textual criticism, paleography and work with manuscripts, and other material evidence related to the interpretation of ancient texts in relevant biblical languages. Courses are taught every other year, on an alternating schedule.
Hebrew Bible Environments or New Testament Environments (4 credit hours)
Study of history, society, culture, religions, and other aspects of the larger world within which the biblical materials were developed and used. Courses taught every other year, on an alternating schedule.