This course is an exegetical study of the Gospel of Matthew that relies on either contemporary English translations of the text or the original Greek. We will consider the ancient cultural context of Matthew, the canonical context in which Matthew is one Gospel among many, and various contemporary cultural contexts in which Matthew is read today. We will pay close attention to the text of Matthew and the messages it conveys. Finally, we will draw all of these things together into a frank, open dialogue about what Matthew means for readers today. Some class meetings will be on campus; others will be online via Zoom. Students who are unable to attend an on-campus meeting can request permission to attend the relevant meeting online instead. Students in NT 3XM3 will prepare for each meeting by completing assigned academic reading, by locating useful academic resources, and by answering a list of questions about a key theme or passage from Matthew. Students in 2XM3 & 6XM6 will undertake weekly analyses of the Greek text. Students in NT 5XM5 will explore Matthew in relation to the practice that is the focus of their practice-led research. Class meetings will involve brief overview lectures followed by small and large group discussions.
- Know the basic narrative structure of Matthew’s Gospel;
- Be familiar with contemporary scholarship as regards the origin of Matthew’s Gospel;
- Know the main theological and ethical teachings of Matthew’s Gospel;
- Better understand how Greek grammar enables the creation of coherent Greek texts (NT 2XM3 & NT 6XM6);
- Appreciate the significance of Matthew’s Gospel for practice-led research (NT 5XM5);
- Assume a receptive and diligent posture towards the Bible;
- Become self-aware as a modern reader of the Bible, recognizing both the antiquity of the texts and the various ways in which contemporary life influences our understanding of it;
- Dispense with over-confidence (or lack of confidence) concerning knowledge of the Bible, adopting instead an attitude of life-long learning;
- Have the ability to quickly locate reliable scholarly resources that discuss a particular NT passage;
- Have the ability to ask key questions in order to explore the meaning of a text;
- Have the ability to reflect canonically, theologically, and contextually so as to explore how people can/should understand the New Testament today;
- Have the ability to exegete a Greek text in a way that responsibly relates its grammar to all of the other things that are significant for interpretation (NT 2XM3 & NT 6XM6);
- Have the ability to draw responsibly from Matthean scholarship in order to illuminate a specific contemporary practice (NT 5XM5).