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COURSE TITLE: Senior Theology Seminar
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Douglas Harink
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3(hrs lect 0 - hrs sem 3 - hrs lab 0)
COURSE DESCRIPTION: All students with theology as a first subject of concentration in the B.A. program are required to take this course. Students further develop skills in biblical, theological and interdisciplinary scholarship through the preparation of a senior research paper and seminar presentations and discussions.

Prerequisites: Six credits in theology at the 300 level.

The focus for Winter 2017 is The Gospel of John. In a straightforward reading John is accessible to anyone who can read. Nevertheless, along with Romans and Hebrews, John is one of the “mountains” of the New Testament, beckoning us, if we are prepared for the exertion, to breath-taking theological vistas. The teachings of this gospel are central to many discussions and doctrines in the Christian tradition. Understanding this gospel as best we can—the goal of this seminar—leads us deep into the heart of Christian theology and life..

In this seminar we will make our way carefully through the text of The Gospel of John, paying attention as we go to historical, literary, and theological dimensions of the text, and to the questions and challenges it poses to our current understanding and experience of the One to whom it witnesses, Jesus, the Messiah and Son of God. Aiding us on our journey will be the textbook (see below), as well as a variety of readings from interpreters of John from the Christian tradition (e.g., Origen, Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, John Calvin, etc.), and the modern “critical” era.
  • The NRSV text of The Gospel of John.
  • The Bible (a modern scholarly translation: NRSV, NIV).
  • Andreas J. Köstenberger, Encountering John: The Gospel in Historical, Literary, and Theological Perspective, Second Edition (Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2013). Available in the King’s bookstore.
  • Additional readings will be assigned regularly throughout the course, some made available to students in photocopy, others from materials on reserve in the library.
Seminar assignments and participation40%
Critical responses to draft research papers20%
Research paper40%
COURSE OBJECTIVES: Students will further develop skills in theological scholarship through careful reading and seminar discussion of selected biblical and/or theological texts, and through research, by making use of primary source materials, appropriate research tools and methods, and relevant and current secondary literature. Each student will produce a senior research paper demonstrating knowledge and understanding of a subject appropriate to the level of the student’s education.
  • January 5  Introduction to the course  
  • January 10, 12  John, chs 1-21; EJ Chs 1-3
  • January 17  John 1:1-18; EJ Ch 4
  • January 24, 26  John 1:19—2:25; EJ Ch 5
  • Jan 31, Feb 2  John, chs 3-4; EJ Ch 6
  • February 7, 9  John, chs 5-6; EJ Ch 7
  • February 14, 16 John, chs 7-9; EJ Chs 8, 9
  • Feb 28, Mar 2  John, chs10-12; EJ Ch 10
  • March 7, 9  John, chs 13-15; EJ Chs 11, 12
  • March 14, 16  John, chs 16-17; EJ Ch 13
  • March 21, 23  John, chs 18-20; EJ Ch 14
  • March 28, 30  John, ch 21; EJ Ch 15
  • April 4, 6, 11, 13 Student paper presentations
  • April 18  Research paper (final version) due.

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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