Spring Semester, 2023 Larry E. Jones
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Western Bible College
Course number 2206 Ph: (816) 392-1276
Old Testament Survey I
An exposition of the Pentateuch and the historical books (through Esther). This survey will deal with background issues, methodology of interpretation, and the theology of God’s covenant dealing with his people. 3 semester hours
Student should be able to:
- Describe the content of the Pentateuch and historical books
- Relate these writings to their historical and cultural background in the ANE world.
- Compare and contrast biblical and ANE documents to identify similarities and differences.
- Trace and synthesize the promise, covenant, and land themes and show how these are connected to the blessings and cursing, law, and sacrifice, and rebellion and fulfillment concepts
- Describe and evaluate modern approaches to understanding the composition of the Pentateuch and the Deuteronomistic historical records.
- Develop skill in interpreting scripture, and applying its lessons to modern life.
- Transform their own personal spiritual formation and excitement based on God’s Word.
Hamilton, V., Handbook on the Pentateuch. Grand Rapids: Baker, 1982
Howard, D., An Introduction to the Old Testament Historical Books. Chicago: Moody, 1993
Pritchard, J.B. The Ancient Near East: An anthology of the Texts and Pictures. Vol I. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1958
These text books can be purchased at smile.amazon.com sign up for Western Bible College as the charity
Other assigned and unassigned books articles will be mentioned in class. Students should read as widely as possible in supplementary texts from all points of view to be thoroughly acquainted with key historical, critical, exegetical, and theological issues
- Commit themselves to be in class and come prepared
- Read the biblical text for each book covered and the assignments in the textbooks
- Compete minor study paper assignments in preparation for class
- Take all test when scheduled and complete written assignment on time (A late penalty will be assigned to all papers not handed in during the class period that they are due).
- Complete a Mid-Term Exam 40%
- Complete a final exam 40%
- Do a literary analysis of a narrative 20%
I normally grade on a curve and use short essay exams rather than t/f’s multiple guess, thus a student needs to know their material well. Since people who ask questions in church (or non-Christian) do not usually give multiple choice answers for you to chose from, it is important for you to be able to respond to them out of the wealth of your understanding of issues. These kinds of test also require that you know your material better so try to keep up with your reading and start reviewing your notes well before the exams. Questions will come from lectures as well as the readings.
Recommended secondary texts:
Wolf, H. An introduction to the Old Testament Pentateuch. Chicago: Moody, 1991
Archer, G. A Survey of Old Testament Introduction. Chicago: Moody ,1994
Dillard, R and Longman, T. An Introduction to the Old Testament. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1994
Hailer, W.C A History of Israel from the Bronze Age Through the Jewish Wars. Nashville: B&H, 1998
Durning the class, commentaries on various books of the Bible will be mentioned for students to evaluate for further use int their ministry. These will include commentaries like Ross, Hamilton, or Wenham on Genesis, or Hartley or Wenham on Leviticus, Hubbard or Campbell on Ruth, Williamson or Fensham on Ezra and Nehemiah. It is important to begin building a solid library of resources now. It is wise to go to the library and read a section from any book to make sure that it is the kind of commentary that will help you. Some use Hebrew, some are devotional, so make sure you spend your money wisely.
Schedule: (We may not be able to follow this schedule exactly but the general plan is given. Students should read The appropriate passages in the Bible and text for each class). The below listed schedule will be in view along with Western School Calendar of Events Spring Semester 2023
Jan 12th Introduction
Critical Views of the Pentateuch
Jan 19th Structure of Gen 1-11
Jan 26th Gen 12-25 The promises to Abraham
Gen 25-50 The life of Jacob
Feb 2nd The date of the Exodus
Feb 9th Ex 32
Feb 16th The Law
Leviticus and Worship
Take home Mid-Term exam
March 3rd The Numbers
March 10th spring break
March 17th Joshua
March 24th Introduction to narrative literature
1 Sam 1
1 Sam 4-7
March 31st short research paper 4-6 pages
Apr 6th The United Kingdom
Apr 13th The Divided Kingdom
Apr 20th The exile and Post-exilic era
Apr 27th Ezra
Take home final exam
The paper is due one week after the end of the semester. The structure of the paper will be explained durning the class March 24th. This is a short paper of 4-6 pages research paper based on the literary analysis of David and Bathsheba story in 2 Sam 11-12 and will not require the reading of a whole group of commentaries. You will Trace the plot, characters of both David and Bathsheba
The final exam will be fastly approaching so it will be imperative to not leave your work on this paper until the last week.