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Summer 2014/Seattle



NS531: PAULINE THEOLOGY (4 Units: 120 hours). Blaine B. Charette.

DESCRIPTION: This course focuses on the nature of Paul’s thought and introduces the student to the central theological emphases of his letters read within the context of Paul’s life setting and the challenges faced by the communities for which he was writing.

LEARNING OUTCOMES: Students completing this course will have demonstrated the ability (1) to work with the Pauline letters in a manner that takes seriously the particular contexts of their composition and their cumulative contribution to Pauline theology; (2) to identify the key theological emphases of Paul’s teaching and how major interpreters of Paul have explained these emphases; (3) to demonstrate the relationship between Paul’s theology and other important theological voices in the New Testament; (4) to reflect on how Paul’s theology can speak to the questions and problems faced by individuals and faith communities today.

COURSE FORMAT: Lectures and discussion of the Pauline letters and assigned secondary readings. The course will meet for two weeks in an intensive format, nine days total for 3.5 hours each night, for a total of 31.5 classroom hours.

REQUIRED READING: 1,098 total pages assigned.

Eisenbaum, Pamela. Paul. Was Not a Christian: The Original Message of a Misunderstood Apostle. HarperCollins, 2009. ISBN: 978-0061349911, Pub. Price $24.99 [294 pp. assigned].

Thiselton, Anthony C. The Living Paul: An Introduction to the Apostle’s Life and Thought. IVP, 2010. ISBN: 978-0830838813, Pub. Price $20.00 [162 pp. assigned].

Thompson, James W. Moral Formation according to Paul: The Context and Coherence of Pauline Ethics. Baker, 2011. ISBN: 978-0801039027, Pub. Price $25.00 [213 pp. assigned].

Wright, N. T. Paul: In Fresh Perspective. Fortress, 2008. ISBN: 978-0800663575, Pub. Price $24.00 [181 pp. assigned].

Zetterholm, Magnus. Approaches to Paul: A Student’s Guide to Recent Scholarship. Fortress, 2009. ISBN: 978-0800663377, Pub. Price $24.00 [248 pp. assigned].

RECOMMENDED READING: See the course syllabus.


  1. A comparative review of the books by Thiselton and Wright as introductions to Paul’s thought (approx. 1500 words; 20%). [This assignment is related to learning outcomes #2,3,4].

  2. Two theological reflection papers: the first on the meaning of Gal 2.16 in recent interpretation with reference to Zetterholm’s account of the ‘new perspective’; the second on ‘the identity and redemption of Israel’ in Rom 9-11 in conversation with the discussion in Eisenbaum (each paper approx. 2000 words; 40%). [This assignment is related to learning outcomes #2,4].

  3. An exegetical paper on a Pauline text or a research paper on a Pauline theme (approx. 3500-4000 words; 40%). [This assignment is related to learning outcomes #1,2,4].

PREREQUISITES: NS501 or NT500. [Auditors do not need to complete the written assignments]

RELATIONSHIP TO CURRICULUM: Meets MDiv core requirement in New Testament Theology (NTT).


NOTE: This ECD is a reliable guide to the course design but is subject to modification. Textbook prices are set by publishers and are subject to change.

For your convenience, order these texts online through the Archives Bookshop.