Part iib 2017-18 Group c papers

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PART IIB 2017-18
Group C Papers

Paper C1a Advanced Hebrew

Paper C1b Advanced New Testament Greek

Paper C1c Advanced Sanskrit

Paper C1d Advanced Qur'anic Arabic

Paper C2 Creation and Covenant

Paper C3 New Testament Christology

Paper C6 Disputed questions in the Christian tradition

Paper C8 Judaism II

Paper C9 Islam II

Paper C10 Hinduism and Buddhism II

Paper C11 God, metaphysics and the modern challenge [BTh41]

Paper C12 Theology and the Natural Sciences: God and Creatures

All Group C Papers for 2016-17 are examined by 3-hour examination.

Group D1 Papers - Special Subjects

* Paper D1b Jesus and Paul in the Second Century

* Paper D1c Political Theology

* Paper D1d The Doctrine of God: Love and Desire

Paper D1e Philosophy in the Long Middle Ages

Paper D1f Jews, Christians and Muslims before and after Muhammad

* Paper D1g Self and Salvation in Indian and Western Thought
Group D2 Papers - Interdisciplinary Subjects

* Paper D2a A Topic in the History of Christianity – Councils in Context

* Paper D2b Religious Experience: Mesmerism, Spiritualism & Psychical


* Paper D2c Judaism and Western Philosophy

* Paper D2d Judaism and Hellenism

* Paper D2f Topics in Christian ethics

* Paper D2g Imagination

* Group D papers marked by * are examined by two 5,000-word essays.

Paper C1a - Advanced Hebrew

Paper Coordinator:

Dr James Aitken

Supplementary Regulation

This paper is concerned with the exegesis of a prescribed text or texts in Hebrew. It will involve: translation from and linguistic, text-critical and exegetical comment on texts which the Board will from time to time prescribe, including some parts of the prophetic and poetic books of the Old Testament; passages for unseen translation from Hebrew into English; a passage for translation from English into Hebrew; and essay questions on literary and theological aspects of the prescribed texts.

Prescribed Texts:

  1. 1 Samuel 1–6; b) Psalms 23-25, 42-43, 45-46, 72-74

The edition of the Hebrew Bible to be used is Karl Elliger and Willhelm Rudolph, eds, Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 1977).
Course description

This paper would normally be taken in a student's third year after doing Paper B1(a). A very good student might manage it in the year after offering Elementary Hebrew (A1(a)). The paper is concerned with a selection of texts, and is designed (apart from their intrinsic interest) to introduce students to the special features of poetic Hebrew (parallelism, grammatical features, imagery) and also to text-critical and lexicographical problems of Hebrew generally. Throughout the course lectures and private study are expected to be supplemented by fortnightly supervision work on translation from English into Hebrew, which will be tested in the examination. The lectures will focus mainly on linguistic aspects of the texts, but their theological and literary aspects will be explored in two or three essays which students will write in the course of the year.

Aims and Learning Outcomes

By the end of the year students are expected (a) to have developed their understanding of Hebrew to an advanced level, involving familiarity with the special features of Hebrew poetry; and (b) to have acquired a knowledge of some major aspects of the content of the set texts.

Form and Conduct of Examination

The examination will consist of a three-hour written paper. Candidates will be required to offer either unseen translation or composition, but may not offer both. Candidates will be required to translate four passages out of six from the prescribed portions of texts, commenting on specified words; to attempt one essay question out of a choice of four; and either to translate two unseen passages from Hebrew into English or to translate a passage (not from the prescribed texts) from English into pointed Biblical Hebrew (square script not modern cursive). Copies of the Hebrew Bible will be provided.


It is recommended that students receive supervisions throughout the year focussing on preparation for the linguistic parts of the examination, but also including some essay practice on the themes.

Paper C1b - Advanced New Testament Greek

Paper Coordinator:

Dr Jonathan Linebaugh

Supplementary Regulation

This paper will contain (i) passages for translation, and for textual, grammatical, exegetical and theological comment from such portions of text as the Faculty Board will from time to time prescribe, and (ii) passages for unseen translation from texts of similar provenance.

Prescribed Texts

James, 1 Peter and Jude

Course description

This paper will allow students to extend their understanding of Hellenistic Greek and also to study in detail particular texts that extend students’ familiarity with the New Testament. Students will develop skills in questions of textual criticism, language, historical background, exegesis, and theology, particularly as these are encountered through the exercise of translation. In addition to working with prescribed texts students will also develop skills in translating unseen passages which may be taken from the New Testament, other early Christian literature of similar date, or the Greek Bible.

In addition to the translation classes, four lectures on New Testament Textual Criticism will normally be offered.

The Part IIA set texts paper will normally be a pre‐requisite, but students who have taken our Part I Greek paper (or its equivalent) to a high standard will be considered.

Form and Conduct of Examinations

The examination for this paper will consist of a three‐hour written paper.

Candidates will be required to answer three questions on the set texts, including translation, exegetical comment and discussion, and textual criticism. They will also be required to answer one question of unseen translation from a choice of two passages; some significant difficult vocabulary will be provided for the unseen question. Copies of the New Testament in Greek will be provided.

Paper C1c - Advanced Sanskrit

Paper Coordinator:

Dr Eivind Kahrs

Supplementary Regulation

This paper will contain passages for translation and comment from a number of texts which the Faculty Board shall from time to time prescribe, together with questions on the language and content of those texts.

Prescribed Texts

Gītagovinda of Jayadeva, chs.1, 2, 6, 7 (Lee Siegel, Sacred and Profane Dimensions of Love in Indian Traditions as Exemplified in The Gītagovinda of Jayadeva, Oxford University Press, Delhi, 1978);

Kaha Upaniad 1-2 (Patrick Olivelle ed.: The Early Upaniads, Oxford University Press 1998, pp. 374 86. Bhāgavata Purāna, Book 10, chs.29-33 (ed. by J.L.Shastri , Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1983)

Pudgalaviniścaya, from the Abhidharmakosabhāsya of Vasubandhu (ed. by Swami Dwarikadas Shastri, Bauddha Bharati Series, Benares, pp.1218-1234).
Form and Conduct of Examinations

The examination will consist of a three-hour written paper. Candidates will be required to translate three passages from the prescribed texts from Sanskrit into English, to answer questions on their language and content, and to translate one unseen passage from Sanskrit to English.

Paper Coordinator:

Dr Tony Street

Prescribed Texts

The Qur’an, Suras LV, LXXV, LXXVI, LXXXI;

Rashid Rida, Tafsir al-Manar (Cairo, 3rd edn 1367 AH), Vol. III, pp. 254-261; Abu'l-Qasim al-Qushayri, Lata'if al-isharat, ed. Ibrahim Basyuni (Cairo, n.d.), Vol. III, pp. 238-50;,Abu Hamid al-Ghazali, al-Risala al-Qudsiya, ed. Abdul Latif Tibawi, Islamic Quarterly 9 (1965), 78-94; Averroes, Fasl al-Maqal (Provo: 2001) 1‒22 and Avicenna, al-Najat (ed. Kurdi, Cairo: 1331 AH) 267‒275, 285‒300.
Further description to follow

Paper C2 – Creation and Covenant

Paper Coordinator:

Dr Katharine Dell

Supplementary Regulation

This paper will examine from the perspective of biblical theology, as well as a historical perspective, the twin themes of creation and covenant in the Hebrew Bible. Through close textual analysis the relationship between these themes will be studied, and their role in contemporary biblical theologies, both Jewish and Christian, will be explored.

Set Texts

1. Genesis 1– 3;

2. Genesis 9, 17;

3. Exodus 19, 24;

4. Psalms 89, 104, 105;

5. Jeremiah 31;

6. Isaiah 65, 66;

7. Job 28, 38.

Course Description

Creation and covenant are two major theological themes of the Hebrew Bible, found in texts either individually or in close interaction with each other. It has been recognized in recent years that while covenant remains such a key issue in the biblical narratives, an equally important place is given to creation, and the relationship between the two has been productive in discussions of ‘Biblical theology’, both from a Jewish and a Christian perspective. This course seeks to examine these themes, and to chart changing ideas across differing social and historical contexts as represented in the Israelite material, including interaction with the creation myths of the ancient Near East. From this the paper will examine the development in scholarly perceptions of these themes, how they have evolved over time, and how far it is possible, or desirable, to explore biblical theology from either a Jewish or a Christian perspective.

Essay topics for section A will be based on the set texts for this paper, examining different aspects of creation and covenant. Section B will focus on essay questions covering issues arising from biblical theology and from a broader knowledge of the subject area.


Two lecture series of eight lectures apiece in Michaelmas/Lent terms.


  • The covenant theme in biblical theology

  • Covenant with Noah: legal and cultic

  • Covenants with Abraham

  • Covenant with David

  • The covenant with Israel – Ps 105 and the Mosaic covenant.

  • The covenant in the eighth century prophets

  • The new covenant and everlasting covenant in later prophecy/apocalyptic

  • Covenant within Jewish theology


  • The Creation theme in Old Testament Theology

  • Genesis 1-3: foundation and disruption

  • Genesis 9: the Noachic (Noahide) covenant

  • Creation in the wider Old Testament

  • Creation in the wisdom tradition

  • Creation in the God speeches of Job and Psalm 104

  • New Creation in post-exilic prophecy and eschatological ideas.

  • Writing an Old Testament Theology


Set texts and teaching for this paper are intended to assist knowledge and understanding of the Hebrew Bible and Biblical Theology. In particular the paper aims:

  • To develop exegetical skills and an engagement with Biblical text

  • To help students understand and evaluate critically the current scholarship on biblical theology

  • To assist in the appreciation of the development of biblical themes in the Hebrew Bible

  • To help students appreciate the historical context within which biblical ideas developed


As a result of taking this course, students should attain:

(a) Knowledge of:

  • the key texts that shaped ideas of creation and covenant

  • the relationship between the biblical themes of creation and covenant

  • the principal strands in thinking on Jewish and Christian biblical theology

  • the main debates between scholars on the interpretation of the relevant biblical texts

(b) The Ability to:

  • identify major issues and problems inherent in the study of the themes

  • evaluate the difficult and conflicting debates on the nature of biblical theology

  • handle and evaluate the biblical texts, and be able to apply both historical and theological approaches to them

  • distinguish and assess critically conflicting interpretations of biblical theology in secondary literature

  • develop generic transferable skills of synthesis, analysis, critical reasoning, and communication

Form and Conduct

The form of examination will be four gobbets from a choice of twelve and three essays from a choice of at least twelve, two from Section A and one from Section B.


Six supervisions are recommended. At least four should focus on the topics of the lectures and set texts. Up to two should examine topics on the broader discipline of ‘Biblical theology’ and its changing features.

Preliminary Bibliography

Anderson, Bernhard W., Creation versus Chaos: the Reinterpretation of Mythical Symbolism in the Bible (Philadelphia: Fortress, 1987).

Anderson, Bernhard W. (ed.) Creation in the Old Testament. (IRT 6, London: SCM / Philadelphia: Fortress, 1984).

Bernat, David A., Sign of the Covenant. Circumcision in the Priestly Tradition (Atlanta: SBL, 2009).

Bright, J., The Authority of the Old Testament (London: SCM Press, 1967).

Brown, W. P., Cosmos and Ethos: the Genesis of Moral Imagination in the Bible (Grand Rapids, MI/ Cambridge: Eerdmans, 1999).

Brueggemann, W., ‘A Convergence in Recent Old Testament Theologies’ (JSOT 18; Sheffield, 1980) 2–18.

Brueggemann, W., Theology of the Old Testament: Testimony, Dispute, Advocacy (Minneapolis: Fortress, 1997).

Dell, Katharine J., ‘Covenant and Creation in Relationship’, in A D H Mayes / R B Salters (eds.) Covenant as Context: Essays in Honour of E. W. Nicholson ( Oxford: OUP, 2003) 111–133.

Dell, Katharine J., ‘God, Creation and the Contribution of Wisdom’, in: Gordon, R P (ed.) The God of Israel (Cambridge: CUP, 2007) 60–72.

Eichrodt, W., Theology of the Old Testament, 2 vols (Philadelphia: Westminster, 1967; reprint of Theologie des Alten Testaments, Leipzig, 1933-9).

Fretheim, T. E., God and World in the Old Testament: A Relational Theology of Creation (Nashville: Abingdon, 2005).

Hermisson, H-J., ‘Observations on the Creation Theology in Wisdom’ in J G Gammie, W A Brueggemann, W L Humphreys, J M Ward (eds), Israelite Wisdom: Theological and Literary Essays in Honour of Samuel Terrien (Missoula, MA: Scholars Press, 1978) 43-57.

Knierim, Rolf, The Task of Old Testament Theology: Substance, Method and Cases (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1995).

Levenson, Jon D., The Old Testament, the Hebrew Bible, and Historical Criticism: Jews and Christians in Biblical Studies (Louisville: Westminster/John Knox, 1993).

Murray, Robert, The Cosmic Covenant (HeyM 7, London: Sheed & Ward 1992).

Novak, David, The image of the non-Jew in Judaism: an historical and constructive study of the Noahide Laws (New York: E. Mellen Press, 1983).

Perdue, L., Wisdom and Creation (Nashville: Abingdon, 1994).

Perdue, Leo G. / Morgan, Robert / Sommer, Benjamin D. (eds) Biblical Theology: Introducing the Conversation (Nashville: Abingdon, 2009).

Preuss, H. D., Old Testament Theology (Louisville: KY: Westminster/John Knox Press; Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1985-6) [German: 1991].

Rendtorff, Rolf 1994. Canon and Theology: Overtures to an Old Testament Theology (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1994).

Reventlow, H. G., Hoffman, Yair (eds), Creation in Jewish and Christian Tradition (Sheffield: Academic Press, 2002).

Von Rad, G., Old Testament Theology (vol. 1; Edinburgh and New York: Oliver and Boyd, 1965).

Von Rad, Gerhard. ‘The Theological Problem of the Old Testament Doctrine of Creation’, in The Problem of the Hexateuch and other Essays (Edinburgh: Oliver & Boyd, 1966) 131–42.

Schmid, Hans H., ‘Creation, Righteousness and Salvation: “Creation Theology” as the Broad Horizon of Biblical Theology’, in: Anderson (ed.) Creation in the Old Testament (1984), 102–117.

Sommer, Benjamin D., ‘Dialogical Biblical Theology: A Jewish approach to Reading Scripture Theologically’, in: Perdue / Morgan / Sommer (eds.) Biblical Theology (2009), 1–53.

Wright, George E., God Who Acts. Biblical Theology as Recital. (SBT 8. London: SCM, 1952)

Zimmerli, W., ‘The Place and Limit of Wisdom in the framework of Old Testament Theology’ SJT 17 (1964) 146-158.


Paper Coordinator:

Dr Andrew Chester

Supplementary Regulation

This paper will be concerned with central issues, arising from the primary sources and critical scholarship, in the study of Christology within the New Testament.

Prescribed Texts:

There are no prescribed texts for this paper, but a list of recommended readings will be available in the Faculty Library and on the website from the end of full Easter Term.

Course Description

The paper will involve detailed investigation of main themes and issues involved in the study of Christology within the New Testament. The main topics that will be dealt with are: Problems and Issues involved in New Testament Christology; Questions concerning Jesus as Prophet, Son of Man, and Messiah; Messianic Hope in relation to Christology; Resurrection and the Beginnings of Christology; The Scope and Significance of Christological Titles; Wisdom, Logos and Pre-existence; Angelology and Angelomorphic Christology; Visionary Traditions and Christology; The Use of Scripture in relation to Christ; The Worship of Christ; Christology and Jewish Monotheism; Christology in John, Hebrews and Revelation; Political Significance of Christology.


  • To build on and develop skills acquired in Part IIA (specifically, any or all of Papers B1b and, especially, B4 and B5, although study of these is not a prerequisite); in particular, exegetical skills and engagement in critical approaches to and analysis of New Testament texts

  • To enable students to engage in the close study and critical analysis of relevant primary sources

  • To help students understand and evaluate current scholarship and debates about main issues concerning Christology within the field of New Testament study.

Learning Outcomes

As a result of taking this course, students should attain the following:

(a) Knowledge of:

  • the main issues that arose in the origin and development of Christology in the New Testament period

  • the major textual evidence for the study of New Testament Christology

  • the principal ideas and theoretical frameworks that underpin current understanding of the subject

  • the methods and tools of critical New Testament scholarship

(b) The Ability to:

  • identify major issues and problems inherent in the study of Christology within the New Testament

  • evaluate the difficult and complex nature of the primary sources, and appraise the value of the claims and implications involved

  • distinguish and critically assess conflicting interpretations, within secondary literature, of early Christology in its formative stages

  • develop generic transferable skills of synthesis, analysis, critical reasoning, and communication

Form and Conduct of Examination

The examination will take the form of a three-hour written paper. This will contain at least ten essay questions, of which candidates will be required to attempt three. NRSV Bibles and Greek New Testaments (Nestle-Aland 27th Edition) will be made available to candidates who wish to use them.


Teaching for the course will be by means of 16 one-hour lectures. Suggested supervision essay topics and titles will be made available for the benefit of students and potential supervisors, and specific bibliographies will be provided with each of these.


Paper Coordinator:

Dr Philip McCosker

Supplementary Regulation

This paper will examine theological problems arising within ‘classical’ Christian theology, in the context of major theological loci. The Faculty Board may from time to time prescribe topics and texts for special study.

Prescribed Topics

A. Doctrine of God

B. Doctrine of the Trinity

C. Incarnation

D. Salvation and Sanctification

E. Faith and Rationality.

Course Description

The paper will examine theological problems arising within 'classical' Christian theology, in the context of the doctrines of God and the Trinity, Christology, soteriology and sanctification, and faith and rationality. In each section of the paper, we will examine primary texts discussing aspects of the doctrines in question, comparing and assessing their various forms, alongside modern critiques of those doctrines.


1. To examine key texts of the Christian tradition, focusing largely on pre-fifteenth century authors.

2. To teach skills of close reading and analysis of theological texts.

3. To teach skills of theological reasoning and the comparison of doctrines.

4. To examine and evaluate doctrinal debates in the Christian tradition.
Learning Outcomes

As a result of offering this paper, students should attain to the following:

I. knowledge of:

1. the recommended primary texts for the paper.

2. the forms of the selected theological doctrines and loci.

3. some standard critiques of doctrines in their classical forms.

II. the ability to:

1. analyse theological texts.

2. compare doctrines and understand doctrinal typologies.

3. critically evaluate doctrines and theologoumena in their various forms.


The paper will be assessed by a three-hour written paper (details of which are in the Form and Conduct notice below). In exam answer and supervision essays, students should demonstrate knowledge of both the doctrines in question and first-hand knowledge of the recommended primary texts; superior essays will also show awareness of and ability to evaluate modern critiques of the doctrines in their classical forms.

Form and Conduct of Examination

The examination will take the form of a three-hour written paper divided into five sections:

A. Doctrine of God

B. Doctrine of the Trinity

C. Incarnation

D. Salvation and Sanctification

E. Faith and Rationality.

Candidates will be required to answer four questions, each from a different section. There will be at least three questions in each section.

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