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COURSE NUMBER: THEO 341
COURSE TITLE: Apocalypse Then (And Now)
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Dr Stephen Martin
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3 (hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course will examine the Book of Daniel, the "Synoptic Apocalypse" (Mark 13, Matthew 24, Luke 21) and the Book of Revelation in order to determine how their first audiences were challenged to interpret and respond to coming apocalyptic events. In the light of Christian debates about the Millennium, the Second Coming and Final Judgement, and with attention to apocalyptic themes in contemporary novels and films, we shall also discuss how biblical apocalyptic literature might speak to us today.

This course does not fulfill theology foundations requirements.

Prerequisites: THEO 250
REQUIRED TEXTS:
  • A good, scholarly study Bible: Either The NIV Study Bible; The HarperCollins Study Bible; or The New Interpreter’s Study Bible. All three are available in the bookstore. The transla? tion used in the lectures is the New Revised Standard Version. The books of Daniel and Revelation, Isaiah 24?27 and Mark 13 will be read during the course. You are expected also to have read the notes in your study Bible as preparation for each class.
  • Dark, David. Everyday Apocalypse: The Sacred Revealed in Radiohead, The Simpsons and Other Pop Culture Icons. Grand Rapids: Brazos Press, 2002.
  • Hill, Craig C. In God?s Time: The Bible and the Future. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002.
  • Koester, Craig R. Revelation and the End of All Things. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2001.
  • Pate, C. Marvin. Four Views on the Book of Revelation. Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publish? ing House, 1998.
  • Smith?Christopher, Daniel. “Introduction.” The Book of Daniel. New Interpreter’s Bible Commentary, Vol. 7 (Nashville: Abingdon, 1996), pp. 19?36.
MARK DISTRIBUTION IN PERCENT:
Report on Revelation5%
Reflection on "Apocalypse Later"5%
Review (1000 words)15%
Exegetical Essay (1500 words)25%
Midterm15%
Final Exam25%
Participation and preparedness10%
100%
COURSE OBJECTIVES: Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able:
  • To articulate the category of apocalyptic genetically and generically, so as to differentiate apocalyptic language from other literary genres in the Christian canon. 
  • To express appreciation of apocalyptic literature and its unique contributions to the Christian canon. 
  • To understand the role of the Book of Revelation in the biblical canon and a responsible biblical theology.
  • To develop interpretive keys to understanding how this strange, evocative, and inspired language might empower Christian cultural engagement today.
COURSE OUTLINE:
  • Sept 2: Course introduction
  • Sept 7, 9: Talking about Revelation
    • Note: Report on Revelation due in class Sept 9. 
  • Sept 12, 14, 16: Puzzle and promise
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 1
  • Sept 19, 23: What are we reading?  (1) Form
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 2
  • Sept 26, 28, 30: What are we reading? (2) Content
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 3
  • Nov 14, 16, 18: “The beast and the lamb” (Rev 12-15)
    • Reading: Rev 12-15; Koester ch. 5; Gorman ch. 8
    • Note: paper on Rev 12:7-12 due on Moodle Nov 14 at 9.00am.
  • Nov 21, 23, 25: “The Harlot and the bride” (Rev 15-19)
    • Reading: Rev 15-19; Koester ch. 6; Gorman 
    • Note: paper on Rev 15:1-8 due on Moodle Nov 21 at 9.00am.
  • Nov 28, 30, Dec 2: “The end” (Rev 19-22) 
    • Reading: Rev 19-22; Koester ch. 7; Gorman ch. 9
    • Note: paper on Rev 20:1-15 due on Moodle Nov 28 at 9.00am.
  • Dec 5, 7: Conclusion
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 10-11
  • Oct 3, 5, 7: How do we read? Interpretation
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 4
    • Note: Reflection on “Apocalypse Later” due in class Oct 7. 
  • Oct 12, 14: Midterm catch-up, review, and exam
  • Oct 17, 19, 21: “Christ and the churches” (Rev 1-3)
    • Reading: Rev 1-3; Gorman ch. 5; Koester ch. 2
  • Oct 24, 26, 28: “The scroll unsealed” (Rev 4-7)
    • Reading: Rev 4-7; Koester ch. 3; Gorman ch. 6
    • Note: paper on Rev 5:1-10 due on Moodle Oct 24 at 9.00am.
  • Oct 31, Nov 2, 4: “Trumpets of terror and hope” (Rev 8-11)
    • Reading: Rev 8-11; Koester ch. 4; Gorman ch. 7 
    • Note: paper on Rev 11:15-19 due on Moodle Oct 31 at 9.00am.
  • Nov 7, 9: Interlude: How to survive the apocalypse
    • Come prepared to discuss the book and report
  • Nov 14, 16, 18: “The beast and the lamb” (Rev 12-15)
    • Reading: Rev 12-15; Koester ch. 5; Gorman ch. 8
    • Note: paper on Rev 12:7-12 due on Moodle Nov 14 at 9.00am.
  • Nov 21, 23, 25: “The Harlot and the bride” (Rev 15-19)
    • Reading: Rev 15-19; Koester ch. 6; Gorman 
    • Note: paper on Rev 15:1-8 due on Moodle Nov 21 at 9.00am.
  • Nov 28, 30, Dec 2: “The end” (Rev 19-22) 
    • Reading: Rev 19-22; Koester ch. 7; Gorman ch. 9
    • Note: paper on Rev 20:1-15 due on Moodle Nov 28 at 9.00am.
  • Dec 5, 7: Conclusion
    • Reading: Gorman ch. 10-11


Required texts, assignments, and grade distributions may vary from one offering of this course to the next. Please consult the course instructor for up to date details.

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