In these units, students will investigate the cultural, political, religious and geographical environment of intertestamental Judaism and early Christianity, in order to better understand the Old and New Testaments in their contexts. In addition, students will also experience the modern political and religious tensions in Israel and the Palestinian Territories, places that will be visited during the study tour. As a result, students will also explore the biblical and historical roots of this modern political/religious conflict. The unit is comprised of two elements: a study tour of the Holy Land (which offers no credit points) and an assessment unit which prepares the students for the experience, offers opportunity to reflect upon the experience, with application to interpretation of texts in light of the tour experience.

Unit code: BS9051T

Unit status: Approved (New unit)

Points: 24.0

Unit level: Postgraduate Elective

Unit discipline: Biblical Studies

Proposing College: Trinity College Theological School

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Learning outcomes


Reflect upon the impact of the context on their understanding and interpretation of biblical texts;


Analyse their own responses to the experience of the land in which the Bible stories are grounded;


Apply their experience of a particular place, custom, practice, or sociological insight to the discipline of biblical studies.


Reflect theologically on sites and texts included in the journey of the tour and integrate with other theological and social disciplines


Reflect biblically and historically upon the modern political conflict between Israel and Palestinian Territories.

Unit sequence

A Foundation Unit in Field B


Students will travel to the Holy Land together. Preparation for the tour will include reading and outlining an investigative project for the tour, as well as information about the sites to be visited. During the tour there will be engagement at particular sites with experts in the field and seminars with participants.

Indicative Bibliography

  • Bible with the Apocrypha (*New Revised Standard Version)
  • Raymond Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1997.
  • Walter Brueggemann, Chosen? Reading the Bible Amid the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2015.
  • Walter Brueggeman, The Land: Place as Gift, Promise and Challenge in Biblical Faith (2nd ed.). Minneapolis: Augsburg Fortress, 2002.
  • John Collins, Introduction to the Hebrew Bible (3rd ed.). Minneapolis: Fortress, 2018.
  • Everett Ferguson, Backgrounds of Early Christianity (3rd ed.). Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans. 2003
  • Lamontte M. Luker, An Illustrated Guide to the Holy Land. Nashville, TN: Abingdon. 2013
  • Jerome Murphy-O’Connor, The Holy Land: An Oxford Archaeological Guide (5th ed.); Oxford: Oxford University Press. 2008.
  • N. T. Wright, The Way of the Lord: Christian Pilgrimage Today. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2014.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)

Essay 4000 words

4000 60.0

Journal 1500 words

1500 20.0

Investigation 1500 words

1500 20.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 30 Sep, 2019

Unit record last updated: 2019-11-18 12:22:43 +1100