TH4607 - History of Hermeneutics


History of Hermeneutics


10 CC   5 ECTS

Distance Learning: King's Evangelical Divinity School eCampus


10 hours of recorded lectures 10 hours
90 hours of generated study time. 90 hours

Students have access to an online discussion forum to communicate with tutors and other students, along with e-mail support from tutors. Where appropriate, telephone support is also available.
Scheduled hours Placement Hours Independent Guided study
10 0 90

Core course material is noted as required in student courseware and typically includes recorded lectures and reading of select textbooks, papers or book extracts. All students are expected to listen to all of the course lectures and read the required materials. A range of supporting teaching material is also available to students as further recommended learning options.

1.    Rabbinic Hermeneutics
2.    Hermeneutics and the New Testament Writers
3.    Interpretation of Scripture During the Patristic Era
4.    Medieval Exegesis
5.    Effects of the Reformation on Biblical Interpretation
6.    Puritanism and Revivalism: Post-Reformation Developments
7.    The Enlightenment and the Rise of the Historical-Critical Method
8.    A Reaction: Fundamentalism, Bibliolatry and Text-proofing in the Twentieth Century
9.    Neo-orthodoxy and Existentialist Approaches to the Bible
10.    Politicised Interpretation: Liberation Theology and its Evangelical Counterpart

  • The main aim of this course is to provide students with an introduction to historical methods and practice of hermeneutics.
  • The module provide students with a continuation of studies on exegesis on hermeneutics complementing modules TH4605 and TH4606. 
  • The course offers suitable material that students may wish to examine in greater detail at dissertation levels 5 and 6

Audio lectures, guided reading, individual study, and individual support where appropriate. Students will prepare for assignments individually using interactive online learning material. Students are encouraged, but not required, to participate in online theological discussion on the eCampus Forum.

1.    Be aware of the main developments that have taken place throughout the history of biblical hermeneutics, from the inter-testamental period through to the twentieth century, which will reinforce exegetical principles so far established in previous studies.
2.    Acquiring key knowledge and understanding of the history of the Church during this period.
3.    Understand how different approaches to hermeneutics throughout time have led to widely varying interpretations of the Bible, which subsequently have had a bearing on the formation and articulation of Christian doctrine.

Component Weighting % Learning outcome(s) assessed Assessment category
12000 written assignment100%1-3Coursework

As assessment

Barth, K. (1959). Dogmatics in outline. New York: Harper & Raw, Pub.

Bray, G. L. (1996). Biblical Interpretation : Past And Present. Leicester: Apollos.

Coggins, R.J. and J.L. Houlden (1990). A dictionary of biblical interpretation. London: SCM.

Dockery, D. S. (1992). Biblical Interpretation then And now : Contemporary hermeneutics in the light of the early church. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House.

Grant, R. M. & D. Tracy (1984). A short history of the interpretation of the Bible. London: SCM Press.

Hauser, A. J., & Watson, D. F. (2009). A history of biblical interpretation. Volume 2. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans.

Kierkegaard, S., & Moore, C. E. (Editor) (2003). Provocations: Spiritual writings of Kierkegaard. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis.

KoĢˆstenberger, A. J., & Patterson, R. D. (2011). Invitation to biblical interpretation: Exploring the hermeneutical triad of history, literature, and theology. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications.

Longenecker, Richard (1999). Biblical exegesis in the apostolic period. 2nd edition. Grand Rapids, MI: W.B. Erdmans.

McKim, D. K. (2007). Dictionary of major biblical interpreters. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

Silva, M. (1987). Has the church misread the Bible? The history Of interpretation in the light of current issues. Grand Rapids, MI.

Simonetti, M. (1994). Biblical interpretation in the early church : An historical introduction to Patristic exegesis, Edinburgh: T&T Clark.

Chris Lazenby


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