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Course Summary

This advanced course unit aims to introduce students to the history, goals and general principles of biblical interpretation with attention paid to the recognition and interpretation of the various literary genres in the Bible, and to contemporary approaches to interpretation. It is an Elective unit and forms a part of a Specialisation in the Discipline of Biblical Studies.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Articulate a set of sound general hermeneutical principles with reference to a variety of biblical literary forms

  2. Analyse the diversity of historical and contemporary approaches to the interpretation of the Bible within the Christian tradition

  3. Evaluate the strengths of a variety of hermeneutic approaches to interpreting texts in different contexts

  4. Develop appropriate ways of effectively applying contemporary methods of hermeneutics

  5. Apply appropriate hermeneutical principles to a range of biblical texts with reference to a

      variety of life or ministry contexts


Course Content

  1. Defining biblical hermeneutics

  2. The history of biblical hermeneutics

  3. Key issues in biblical interpretation (e.g. text, context, author, recipients, purpose, effect)

  4. General hermeneutical principles.

  5. Hermeneutical principles for specific genres of biblical literature

  6. Contemporary approaches to biblical interpretation.

  7. The application of hermeneutics to life and ministry issues.

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