Honour School of Theology and Religion

[For students starting before MT 2017: .

A

  • 1. The examination in the Honour School of Theology and Religion shall include:

    • (1) Biblical Studies including such sections of the New Testament in Greek as the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion shall from time to time prescribe by regulation.

    • (2) Christian Doctrine and its Historical Context.

    • (3) The study of a variety of religions.

    • (4) Such other subjects as the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion shall from time to time prescribe by regulation.

  • 2. No candidate shall be admitted to examination in this school unless he or she has either passed or been exempted from the First Public Examination.

  • 3. No candidate shall be admitted to examination in this Honour School unless he or she has satisfied a language requirement for the degree.

  • 4. No candidate shall be admitted to examination in this school unless he or she has satisfied a language requirement for the degree via his or her Preliminary Examination or has indicated how he or she will attempt to do so via his or her Second Public Examination.

  • 5. The examination in this school shall be under the supervision of the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion, which shall prescribe the necessary regulations.

B

  • 1. All candidates will be required to offer eight papers, as specified below, from the Schedule of Papers. There shall be four compulsory papers, taken by all candidates, covering the Old and New Testaments and the development of Christian Doctrine in its historical context. In addition to these compulsory papers, candidates will be required to offer four further papers chosen according to the schedules in either Track I, Track II, or Track III.

  • Examination regulations applying to all Tracks
  • 2. With the permission of the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion, any candidate may offer an essay either in place of one of the eight papers, or in addition to the eight required papers. The regulations governing essays are set out below.

  • 3. Candidates not offering the full Hebrew paper (24) as one of their eight papers may, in addition to their eight papers, offer the Hebrew translation component of paper 24 as an optional extra paper. All candidates may, in addition to their eight papers, offer the optional translation paper in New Testament Greek (paper 27). Candidates who so wish may offer both the Hebrew paper (whether as a full paper or as an optional translation paper) and the optional translation paper in New Testament.

  • 4. In papers (7) to (36), teaching may not be available every year on every subject.

  • 5. Any candidate may be examined viva voce.

  • 6. Candidates in the Final Honour School of Theology and Religion will be deemed to have satisfied a language requirement for their degree if they have passed one of Papers 7 (New Testament Greek), 8 (Biblical Hebrew), 9 (Qur'anic Arabic), 10 (Pali), or 11 (Sanskrit) in their Preliminary Examination.

    Candidates in the Final Honour School of Theology and Religion who have not passed one of Papers 7, 8, 9, 10, or 11 in their Preliminary Examination can still satisfy a language requirement by demonstrating a familiarity in their Second Public Examination with either Biblical Hebrew in Paper 1 or New Testament Greek in Paper 2.

    Candidates on Track I of the Single Honour School of Theology may also satisfy a requirement to be familiar with Biblical Hebrew by passing one of Papers 22, 23, or 24.

  • 7. In the following regulations, the English version of the Bible used will be the New Revised Standard Version. The Greek text used will be the text of the United Bible Societies, 4th edn.

All candidates must offer eight subjects, as specified below, from the Schedule of Papers.

TRACK I

  • (i) Paper (1)

  • (ii) Paper (2)

  • (iii) Paper (3)

  • (iv) Paper (4)

  • (v) Paper (5)

  • (vi) One paper chosen from Papers (22), (23), (24), (25), (26), or (28)

  • (vii) One further paper

  • (viii) One further paper.

TRACK II

  • (i) Paper (1)

  • (ii) Paper (2)

  • (iii) Paper (4)

  • (iv) Paper (5)

  • (v) One paper chosen from Papers (7), (8), or (9)

  • (vi) Paper (10)

  • (vii) One further paper

  • (viii) One further paper.

TRACK III

  • (i) Paper (1)

  • (ii) Paper (2)

  • (iii) Paper (4)

  • (iv) Paper (5)

  • (v) Paper (13)

  • (vi) and (vii) either Papers (14) and (15) OR Papers (16) and (17) or Papers (18) and (19) or Papers (20) and (21)

  • (viii) One further paper.

Regulations concerning language requirements

Candidates for the Final Honour School of Theology and Religion will be deemed to have satisfied a language requirement for their degree if they have passed one of Papers 7 (New Testament Greek), 8 (Biblical Hebrew), 9 (Qur'anic Arabic), 10 (Pali), or 11 (Sanskrit) in their Preliminary Examination. Candidates in the Final Honour School of Theology and Religion who have not passed one of Papers 7, 8, 9, 10, or 11 in their Preliminary Examination can still satisfy a language requirement by demonstrating a familiarity in their Second Public Examination with either Biblical Hebrew in Paper 1 or New Testament Greek in Paper 2. Candidates on Track I of the Single Honour School of Theology may also satisfy a requirement to be familiar with Biblical Hebrew by passing one of Papers 22, 23, or 24. Failure to attempt to demonstrate knowledge of a biblical language (‘language requirement’) in the paper through which a candidate has stated he or she will do so, will result in a failure of the examination. Inadequate demonstration of knowledge or understanding of the language concerned may result in the reduction of the mark for the paper by one class (i.e. normally 10 marks).

Regulations concerning essays

  • 1. Candidates may offer an extended essay either in place of the paper to be chosen under clause (viii) of Tracks I–III, or in addition to the eight required papers. Candidates should in general aim at a length of 10,000 words, but must not exceed 15,000 words (both figures inclusive of notes and appendices, but excluding bibliography).

  • 2. Prior approval of the subject of the essay must be obtained from the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion. Such approval must be sought not later than Friday in the third week of Trinity Full Term in the year preceding the examination. The request for approval should be addressed to the Undergraduate Studies and Examinations Assistant,  Faculty of Theology and Religion, Faculty Centre, Gibson Building, ROQ, Woodstock Road . The request must be accompanied by a letter from the tutor stating that this subject has his or her approval. The application should include, in about 100 words, an explanation as to how the topic will be treated, and a brief bibliography.

  • 3. The candidate's application for approval of title should be submitted through and with the support of his or her college tutor or the tutor with overall responsibility for his or her studies, from whom he or she should seek guidance on whether the subject is likely to be acceptable to the Board.

  • 4. The candidate is advised to have an initial discussion with his or her supervisor regarding the proposed field of study, the sources available, and the method of presentation. He or she should have further discussions with his or her supervisor during the preparation of the essay. His or her supervisor may read and comment on drafts of the essay.

  • 5. The subject of the essay need not fall within the areas covered by the papers listed in the Honour School of Theology. It may overlap any subject or period on which the candidate offers papers, but the candidate is warned against reproducing the content of his or her essay in any answer to a question in the examination. Subject to the provision of cl. 4 above, every candidate shall sign a letter declaring the essay to be his or her own work and that it has not already been submitted (wholly or substantially) for a final honour school other than one involving Theology, or another degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution. This letter, which can be found in the Handbook or on WebLearn, shall be presented together with the essay. No essay shall, however, be ineligible because it has been or is being submitted for any prize of this University.

  • 6. The candidate must submit two typed copies of the essay (bound or held firmly in a stiff cover), addressed to the Chair of the Examiners, Honour School of Theology and Religion, Examination Schools, High Street, Oxford not later than noon on the Friday of the eighth week of Hilary Term in the academic year in which he or she is presenting himself or herself for examination. The letter signed by the candidate in accordance with cl. 5 above must be submitted separately in a sealed envelope addressed to the Chair of the Examiners at the above address at the same time as the copies are submitted.

  • 7. The provisions of clauses 3-4 and clause 6 of these regulations will also apply to candidates submitting an extended essay as part of papers 6 and 34.

Schedule of papers

  • (1) God and Israel in the Old Testament

    The paper will include questions on such topics as the origins and purpose of Deuteronomy; the development of Israelite law; the theology and setting of Isaiah of Jerusalem; Deutero-Isaiah; psalmody and the Psalms; worship and festivals; the history of Israel; pentateuchal issues; the covenant; prophecy and particular prophets; wisdom; apocalyptic; the fate of the individual; creation; the Torah in post-exilic Judaism; method in Old Testament study; Old Testament ethics; Israel within its ancient Near Eastern Environment; God in history; king and messiah; divine grace and human freedom; Israel and the nations.

    Candidates will be required to comment on passages from the following texts in English:

    • (a) Deuteronomy 5-15; 26-8.

    • (b) Isaiah 1-11; 28-31; 40-5.

    • (c) Psalms 1, 2, 8, 15, 19, 46-9, 51, 72-4, 89, 96-9, 104, and 118.

      There will be an opportunity to comment on passages in Hebrew from:

      Deuteronomy 5; 12; 26.

      Isaiah 1; 6; 40.

      Psalms 1, 2, 8, 48, and 96.

      Candidates who choose to comment on Hebrew passages must also translate them. Credit will be given to candidates demonstrating competence in Biblical Hebrew.

  • (2) The Gospels and Jesus (with special reference to the gospels of Matthew and John)

    Questions will be set on the four gospels, their theology and ethics, literary and historical problems associated with the gospels, the historical Jesus, and different approaches to the gospels.

    Candidates will be required to comment on two passages from Matthew, at least three of which will be printed in English. They will also be required to comment on two passages from John, at least three of which will be printed in English.

  • (3) Pauline Literature

    Candidates will be expected to show a knowledge of the theological, ethical, literary and historical issues posed by study of the Pauline corpus of letters in the New Testament.

    Candidates will be required to comment on two passages from 1 Corinthians, and on two passages from Romans. Candidates for Track 1 will be required to comment on at least one passage from 1 Corinthians in Greek, and at least one passage from Romans in Greek. Of the passages printed in Greek only, at least one will be taken from 1 Corinthians 1-7, 15, and at least one from Romans 3-8. Of the passages printed in English only, at least one will be taken from 1 Corinthians 1-7, 15, and at least one from Romans 3-8; however, candidates from Track I may restrict their comment to texts printed in English if their other papers include translation and/or comment on at least two passages of Hebrew. Candidates for Track II or Track III or for the Joint School of Philosophy and Theology may restrict their comment to passages printed in English.

  • (4) The Development of Doctrine in the Early Church to ad 451

    Candidates will be expected to explain how early Christian thinkers undertook to clarify the teachings of the primitive Church and formulate a coherent system of thought in their cultural context. The paper will not only concern itself with formal pronouncements on the doctrines of the Trinity and Incarnation, but also with other controversies and the contributions of particular theologians.

    Questions relevant to the Gnostic, Arian, Nestorian and Pelagian controversies will always be set; other questions may relate, wholly or partly, to such topics as anthropology, soteriology, hermeneutics, ecclesiology, political theology, and the doctrine of creation and the fall. Candidates will be required to comment on a passage from one of the following texts or group of texts:

    The Nicene Definition, Arius' Letter to Eusebius, Arius' Letter to Alexander (from E. R. Hardy, Christology of the Later Fathers, Library of Christian Classics).

    Gregory of Nyssa, That there are not Three Gods (in Hardy, op. cit.).

    Cyril's Second Letter to Nestorius (in R. A. Norris, The Christological Controversy, Philadelphia: Fortress Press).

    The tome of Leo and the Chalcedonian Definition (in Norris op. cit.).

    Credit will be given to candidates who show knowledge (where appropriate) of the other texts contained in Norris.

  • (5) God, Christ, and Salvation

    Candidates will be expected to answer questions on topics in modern theology, from the early twentieth century through to the present, with particular reference to the doctrine of God, Christology, and soteriology. Special emphasis will be placed on the interrelationship between these three topics and on the way in which their treatment is affected by differing understandings of the nature, the sources, and the practice of theology. Candidates will be expected to be aware of the interplay of tradition, innovation and confessional context in the work of major systematic theologians of the twentieth century. All candidates should be able to use prescribed texts in an appropriate manner.

  • (6) Further Studies in New Testament and Christian Origins

    Candidates will be expected to study one particular subject area concerned with New Testament texts and/or related literature. In the Michaelmas Term of each year, the Board of the Faculty of Theology will publish a list of options on which teaching will be provided in the following academic year and on which the examination will be based. The options offered may vary from year to year and will be related to the research interests of the teachers concerned.

  • (7) The History and Theology of Western Christianity, 1050-1350

    The paper will consist of questions on the thought of the leading theologians (especially Anselm, Peter Abelard, Aquinas, Duns Scotus, and William of Ockham), and of questions on the main developments in the western church. It will be so set that any period of 150 years, with its theological writers, will provide sufficient coverage.

  • (8) The History and Theology of Western Christianity, 1500-1648

    The subject includes the work and thought of the leading mainstream Protestant reformers, especially Luther, Zwingli, and Calvin, together with the radicals, and the development of the Reformation in European society. Questions will be set both on renewal in the Roman Catholic Church throughout Europe, the confessional tensions which led to the Thirty Years’ War (1618-48) and on religious change in the kingdom of England from the Henrician reforms through to the reign of Charles I and the downfall of his government and Church.

  • (9) EITHER

    A. Christian Life and Thought in Europe and the English-Speaking World, 1789 -1921

    Candidates will be expected to show knowledge of the life and thought of the Christian churches of Europe and North America in their social and political context (with special reference to Britain) and the development and influence of Roman Catholic and Protestant theology in the context of Europe (including Britain) and North America. Candidates may approach the topic through the works of theologically important writers of the period, as well as other historical materials. Such writers might typically include S.T. Coleridge, J.H. Newman, F.D. Maurice, G. Tyrrell, E. Underhill, and P.T. Forsyth in Britain; R.W. Emerson, W. James, H. Bushnell, and W. Rauschenbusch in the USA; and F.D.E. Schleiermacher, G.W.F. Hegel, K. Marx, L. Feuerbach, S. Kierkegaard, F.R. de Lamennais, A. Harnack, A. Loisy, and K. Barth in Europe.

    OR

    B. Issues in Theology, 1789-1921

    The paper addresses key issues in theological thinking in Britain and Europe during the long nineteenth century. These include biblical interpretation, the nature of authority, reason and faith, ecclesiology, Christology, romanticism, literature and imagination, spirit and history, reductionism, religious experience, and the encounter with world religions. The topics will be addressed through seminal or representative texts. Kant, Hegel, Schleiermacher, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Newman and Coleridge are especially significant thinkers whose work or influence will normally be represented in the paper. Four main topics with prescribed texts will be published for each year.

  • (10) Further Studies in History and Doctrine

    Candidates will be expected to study one major theologian in relation to the situation and problems of the time, with special attention to certain texts. In the Michaelmas Term of the year preceding the year of the examination the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion will publish a list of theologians (with texts) on which teaching will be provided in the following academic year and on which the examination will be based. In the event of a candidate's opting to take a year out after having studied a chosen theologian, the examiners will set questions on that theologian in the year of that candidate's examination, even if that theologian is not available for study that year. Texts will be studied in English. One or two optional questions may be set which will require knowledge of the texts in original languages when these are other than English.

    A candidate may offer a second major theologian from amongst those available in the year of his or her examination. In the event that a candidate does choose to offer a second major theologian, that candidate will offer paper 10 as two papers. To facilitate this, separate papers (10(a), 10(b) etc.) will be set for each major theologian.

  • (11) Philosophy of Religion

    The subject will include an examination of claims about the existence of God, and God's relation to the world: their meaning, the possibility of their truth, and the kind of justification which can or needs to be provided for them, and the philosophical problems raised by the existence of different religions. One or two questions may also be set on central claims peculiar to Christianity, such as the doctrines of the Trinity, Incarnation, and Atonement.

  • (12) Christian Moral Reasoning

  • Candidates will be expected to elucidate and assess themes in Christian traditions of moral reasoning in relation to major ethical writings and contemporary moral and social debates. The paper will consist of three sections: (A) Christian Moral Concepts; (B) Prescribed Texts; (C) Concrete Moral Issues.

    Candidates will be required to answer one question from each section.

    • A. Christian Moral Concepts

      Methodological issues such as the moral roles of Scripture, and the relation of Scripture to other moral sources (e.g., reason, theological and philosophical traditions, experience); and basic concepts such as the good, worship, sanctification, freedom, natural law, divine command, discipleship, virtue, love, justice, and double effect.

    • B. Prescribed Texts

      Augustine, On Christian Doctrine, bk.1 (trans. R.P.H. Green, Oxford University Press)

      Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, Ia IIae, pp. 91-4 (trans. Thomas Gilby, Blackfriars ed., vol.28, Eyre & Spottiswood)

      Martin Luther, ‘The Freedom of a Christian’ (trans. W.A. Lambert, Harold J. Grimm, Luther's Works, vol.31, Fortress Press)

      Dietrich Bonhoeffer, ‘Christ, Reality and Good’, in Ethics (Works, vol. 6, ed. C. Green, Fortress Press).

    • C. Concrete Moral Issues

      Sexual, medical, and political.

  • (13) The Nature of Religion

    This paper will examine students in the main classical and contemporary approaches to the study of religions. It will cover some of the most important thinkers in the humanities and the social sciences who established the study of religion as a field of academic inquiry in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Students will be expected to be able to speak to basic questions about the relationship of religion to social change; the paper will focus on the fundamental theoretical questions about the concept of religion and strategies for defining it.

  • (14) The Formation of Rabbinic Judaism (Judaism I)

    This paper examines the history of rabbinic Judaism from the first century ce to the Renaissance against the background of the societies in which it flourished. Candidates will be required to comment on passages from the prescribed texts in English, and will be given an opportunity to comment upon the Hebrew text of certain selected passages. Also, discussion of the relation of Judaism to other religious traditions may be included.

  • (15) Judaism in History and Society (Judaism II)

    This paper examines the nature of modern Judaism against the background of recent history, including such topics as: the impact on Jewish thought and society of the Enlightenment and the Emancipation; the growth of Hasidism in the eighteenth and Reform in the nineteenth century; responses to the Holocaust, to the establishment of the State of Israel, and to the women's movement. Also, discussion of the relation of Judaism to other religious traditions may be included.

  • (16) Islam in the Classical Period (Islam I)

    The paper covers the historical origins and development of the theology, law, and mysticism of Islam, from the seventh to the fifteenth centuries. It will consist of questions on the Prophethood of Muhammad; the Qur'an; the Hadith; Shi'ism; the theologies of the Mu'tazilis, Ash'aris, and Hanbalis; Sufism (tasawwuf) and the major Sufi orders; and classical Muslim authorities. Candidates should be aware of the various interpretative methods relating to Muslim Scripture, the main debates and historical controversies of the Islamic tradition, and of contemporary methodologies in philosophy of religion. References to other religious traditions may be included.

  • (17) Islam in Contemporary Society (Islam II)

    The paper examines Islam against the background of recent history, including such topics as: Islamic reformism in the nineteenth to the twenty-first centuries; various Islamic movements including the anti-Hadith faction and Wahhabism; women and Islam; democracy and Islam; violence and war in Islam; and various modern Muslim thinkers.

  • (18) Foundations of Buddhism (Buddhism I)

    The paper deals with the main teachings and practices of early Buddhism, as reflected by the surviving literature of the various schools, discussing their formation against the background of the main religious movements existing in north-east India around the fifth century BC. Practices include both meditation and monastic life.

  • (19) Buddhism in Space and Time (Buddhism II)

    This paper deals with Buddhism as it developed and changed in space and time. The first part of the course will be devoted to the main ideas and schools of Mahāyāna (Great Vehicle) Buddhism. The second part will discuss the transmission and transformation of Buddhism in some of the main areas where it continues to exist in the modern world.

  • (20) Hinduism I : Sources and Development

    This paper offers a thematic and historical introduction to the sources and development of ‘‘Hindu’’ traditions from their early formation to the medieval period. It will explore the formation of Hindu traditions through textual sources, such as the Vedas, Upaniṣads and Bhagavad Gītā, along with the practices and social institutions that formed classical Indic religions.

  • (21) Hinduism II : Hinduism in History and Society

    Beginning with the early medieval period, this paper traces the development of Hinduism in devotional (bhakti) and tantric traditions. The paper examines the development of Śaiva, Śākta, and Vaiṣṇava traditions along with ideas about liberation, ritual, caste, asceticism, yoga and devotion. Candidates will be encouraged to consider the relations between Hinduism, modernity, and nationalism.

  • (22) Selected topics (Old Testament) I

    Candidates will be required to show detailed knowledge of one of the following topics. They will be required to comment on passages from the prescribed texts in English (New Revised Standard Version), and will be given an opportunity to comment upon the Hebrew text of certain specified chapters and sections.

    • (i) Prophecy

      1 Samuel 9; 10

      2 Samuel 7

      1 Kings 13; 18; 22

      Isaiah 1; 5-8; 10; 40; 42-4; 49; 51-3; 55

      Jeremiah 1-5; 7-9; 11; 12; 26-8; 31

      Ezekiel 1-4; 8-11; 14; 18; 20; 23; 36; 37

      Amos 1-5; 6-9

      Zechariah 1-8; 13

      Among these the following may be offered in Hebrew:

      1 Kings 13; 18; 22

      Isaiah 42-4

      Amos 1-5

    • (ii) Apocalyptic

      Isaiah 24-7

      Daniel

      Zechariah

      1 Enoch 1-16 (ed. H. F. D. Sparks, The Apocryphal Old Testament, OUP, 1984)

      2 Esdras 3-14

      Revelation

      Among these the following may be offered in Hebrew:

      Isaiah 24-7

      Zechariah 9-14

  • (23) Selected topics (Old Testament) II

    Candidates will be required to show detailed knowledge of one of the following topics. They will be required to comment on passages from the prescribed texts in English (New Revised Standard Version), and will be given an opportunity to comment upon the Hebrew text of certain selected chapters and sections.

    • (1) Wisdom

      Proverbs 1-9; 22:17-31:31

      Job 1-19; 38-42

      Ecclesiastes

      Wisdom of Solomon 1-9

      Ecclesiasticus (Sirach) Prologue; 1:1-25:12; 36:18-43:33; 51

      Among these the following may be offered in Hebrew:

      Proverbs 1-9

    • (ii) Worship and Liturgy

      Exodus 12-15; 19; 20; 24

      Leviticus 1-7; 16

      Deuteronomy 12-18

      1 Kings 5-8

      1 Chronicles 16

      Psalms 2; 18; 24; 27; 47-51; 68; 72; 78; 89; 95-100; 110; 113-18; 122; 124; 126; 128; 130-2

      A. E. Cowley, Aramaic Papyri of the Fifth Century bc (OUP, 1923), nos. 21; 30-4

      Among these the following may be offered in Hebrew:

      Exodus 19; 20; 24

      Leviticus 16

      Psalms 24; 95-100

  • (24) The Hebrew of the Old Testament

    Candidates will be required to show a general knowledge of the language, with a special study of the following prose texts from which passages will be set for translation and comment:

    Genesis 6-9

    Deuteronomy 5-6; 12; 26

    2 Samuel 11-14

    1 Kings 17-19

    Jonah

    Candidates will also be given an opportunity to show knowledge of Hebrew verse, and especially of the following texts, from which passages will be set for translation and comment:

    Psalms 1; 2; 8; 45-48; 96

    Proverbs 7-9

    Isaiah 1-2; 6; 40-42

    Candidates who do not offer Hebrew verse will not thereby be penalized.

  • (25) Archaeology in relation to the Old Testament

    The subject includes the geography of Palestine and of the neighbouring lands; the history of the development of Canaanite, Hebrew, and Jewish social life and culture; the history of places of worship and their furniture; and the general results of recent archaeological research in the Ancient Near East, insofar as they throw light on these subjects.

  • (26) Religions and Mythology of the Ancient Near East

    The paper will include a wide range of questions. The following texts are prescribed for special study:

    • (a) Akkadian Myths and Epics: The Epic of Creation, in B.R. Foster, Before the Muses: An Anthology of Akkadian Literature (3rd edition, Bethesda: CDL Press, 2005), pp. 439-85, and The Epic of Gilgamesh (standard version), in A. George, The Epic of Gilgamesh (revised edition, London: Penguin, 2003), pp. 1-100, 191-5.

    • (b) Egyptian Myths, Hymns and Prayers: in M. Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1973-1980; republished 2006), vol. I, pp. 51-7, 131-3; vol. II, pp. 81-132, 197-9, 203-23.

    • (c) Hittite Myths: The Disappearance of Telipinu (version 1) and The Song of Kumarbi, in H.A. Hoffner, Hittite Myths (2nd edition, Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1998), pp. 15-18, 42-5.

    • (d) Ugaritic Myths: The Baal Cycle, in W.W. Hallo (ed.), The Context of Scripture (Leiden: Brill, 1997; republished 2003), vol. I, pp. 243-73, ‘The Ba‘lu Myth’ (trans. D. Pardee).

    • (e) Philo of Byblos' Phoenician History, in H.W. Attridge and R.A. Oden, Philo of Byblos: The Phoenician History (Washington: Catholic Biblical Association of America, 1981), pp. 29-71.

    • (f) The Sefire Inscriptions, in W.W. Hallo (ed.), The Context of Scripture (Leiden: Brill, 2000; republished 2003), vol. II, pp. 213-17, ‘The Inscriptions of Bar-Ga’yah and Mati‘el from Sefire’ (trans. J.A. Fitzmyer).

  • (27) The New Testament in Greek

    Candidates will choose passages for translation from amongst a number taken from the Greek New Testament. The text used will be that of the United Bible Societies, 4th edn. The selection of passages will allow candidates to select passages for translation from the following texts and chapters: Acts 20-6, Colossians, 1 and 2 Thessalonians, Hebrews 7-10, James, 1 and 2 Peter, Revelation 1-12. There will also be opportunity to translate passages from outside these specified chapters.

    NB. This paper is not available as a full paper but only as an optional extra translation paper.

  • (28) Varieties of Judaism 100 bc -ad 100

    The paper will include a number of general questions and the following texts are prescribed for special study:

    Set texts in English:

    Qumran Community Rule, MMT (Miqsat Ma'ase Ha-Torah) (Some Observances of the Law) and Commentary on Habakkuk, in G. Vermes, The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (Allen Lane/Penguin, 1997).

    Josephus, Jewish War II (Loeb, 1956); Antiquities XVIII, 1-119 (Loeb, 1965); Against Apion II, 145-296 (Loeb, 1956).

    IV Ezra, ed. B. M. Metzger, in J. H. Charlesworth, ed., The Old Testament Pesudepigrapha (2 vols., DLT, 1983-5).

    Wisdom of Solomon (New Revised Standard Version).

    Philo, Migration of Abraham; Life of Moses I, 1-84 (Loeb, 1958).

    Mishnah, Berakoth, Bikkurim, and Aboth, chapter 1 (translated Danby, OUP, 1933).

    Psalms of Solomon XVII, tr. S. P. Brock, in H. F. D. Sparks, ed., The Apocryphal Old Testament (OUP, 1984).

    I Enoch 92-105, tr. M. A. Knibb, in Sparks, op. cit.

    Any or all of the following texts may be offered in the original languages. Such questions will only be set when a candidate or candidates have given notice on the entry form of an intention to comment on texts in Hebrew and/or Greek.

    Qumran Community Rule 1-4, in E. Lohse (ed.), Die Texte aus Qumran, Hebräisch und Deutsch (2nd edn., Darmstadt, Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 1971).

    Qumran Commentary on Habakkuk, ed. E. Lohse, op. cit.

    Josephus, Antiquities XVIII, 1-28, 63-4, 109-19 (Loeb, 1965).

    Philo, Life of Moses I, 1-44 (Loeb, 1958).

  • (29) Christian Liturgy

    Candidates will be expected to study the rites of initiation and the eucharist up to ad 451, the relationship between liturgy and theology and the influence of early Christian worship on contemporary liturgical revision.

    Candidates will be expected to have studied the following texts. Texts shown in square brackets will not be examined by gobbets.

    E. C. Whitaker (ed. M. E. Johnson), Documents of the Baptismal Liturgy (3rd edn., SPCK, 2003) pp.1-11, [11-13], 14-21, 40-50, 124-7, 176-83.

    R. C. D. Jasper and G. J. Cuming, Prayers of the Eucharist: Early and Reformed (3rd edn., Pueblo, 1987) pp. 7-12, 20-44, [52-66], 67-81, 88-99, 114-23, 129-37, 143-6, 159-67.

    E. J. Yarnold, The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation (2nd edn., T. & T. Clark. 1994) pp. [70-5], 76-97.

    [Church of England, Common Worship (Church House Publishing, 2000), Eucharistic Prayers B & F, 188-90, 198-200].

    [Church of England, Common Worship: Initiation Services (Church House Publishing, 2005)].

    [Methodist Church, Methodist Worship Book (Methodist Publishing House, 1999), The Baptism of those who are able to answer for themselves, and of Young Children, with Confirmation and Reception into Membership, 62-75; Eucharistic Prayer for Ordinary Seasons (3), 215-17].

    [Roman Catholic Church, The Roman Missal (ICEL, 1973), Eucharistic Prayers 2 & 4]

    [Roman Catholic Church, The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (ICEL, 1985)]

    [M. Thurian and G. Wainwright (eds.), Baptism and Eucharist: Ecumenical Texts in Convergence (WCC Publications, 1983), Eucharistic Prayer from the Eucharistic Liturgy of Lima, 252-4].

  • (30) Early Syriac Christianity

    Candidates will be expected to show a general knowledge of symbolism in the theology of the early Syriac Church.

    The following texts are prescribed for special study:

    Odes of Solomon 6, 11, 17, 19, 21, 24, 30, 36, 42, tr. J. A. Emerton in H. F. D. Sparks. The Apocryphal Old Testament (OUP, 1984).

    Acts of Thomas, secs. 1-29, 108-14, tr. A. F. J. Klijn (E. J. Brill, 1962).

    Aphrahat, Demonstrations 1, 4, 6, 12 (Dem. 1 and 6 tr. in J. Gwynn, ed. Select Library of Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers II.13 [1898, repr. W. B. Eerdmans, 1956], Dem. 4, tr. S. P. Brock, The Syriac Fathers on Prayer and the Spiritual Life [1987], ch. 1; Dem. 12, tr. in J. Neusner, Aphrahat and Judaism [E. J. Brill, 1971]).

  • Ephrem, Sermon on Our Lord, tr. in E. Mathews and J. Amar, St Ephrem the Syrian. Selected Prose Works (1994); Hymns on the Nativity, nos. 1 and 2, tr. K. McVey, St Ephrem the Syrian . Hymns (Classics of Western Spirituality, 1989); Hymns on Faith, no. 10, Hymns on the Church, no. 36, Hymns on Epiphany, nos. 1 and 6, tr. S. P. Brock in T. Finn, Early Christian Baptism and the Catechumenate (1992). The Hymns, tr. S. P. Brock, The Harp of the Spirit: Eighteen Poems of St Ephrem (Fellowship of St Alban and St Sergius, 2nd edn. 1983). Letter to Publius, tr. S. P. Brock, Le Muséon (1976) Book of Steps, Homily 12, tr. R. Murray, Symbols of Church and Kingdom (CUP, 1975).

  • (31) History and Theology of the Church in the Byzantine Empire from ad 1000 to ad 1453

    Candidates will be expected to show knowledge of the constitution and worship of the Church; monasticism; the development of mystical theology; the relations between Church and state and with the Western Church.

  • (32) Science and Religion

    Candidates will be expected to have an understanding of the richness and diversity of the relations between science and religion as they have been constructed in western cultures. They should be able to analyse the simplistic models of conflict and harmony, which have so often served ideological purposes. Questions will be set on the role of religious belief in the rise of modern science and on the challenge to religious orthodoxies from new forms of science. There will be questions on the religious beliefs of major scientists, such as Newton and Darwin, on the responses of theologians to major paradigm shifts within the sciences, and on the interplay between natural theology and the natural sciences. The examination will also provide an opportunity for candidates to discuss current issues such as the most appropriate response theologians might make to contemporary neuroscience and genetic reductionism. Questions may also be set on recurrent issues such as the presumed existence of extraterrestrial life.

  • (33) The Sociology of Religion

    The paper will consist of two parts. Candidates will be expected to answer at least one question from each part.

    • (a) Texts

      Candidates will be expected to know at least one of the following in detail:

      • (i) Karl Marx, Marx on Religion, ed. John Raines, Temple University Press, 2002 together with Capital, chapters 1 and 13 (Penguin Books, 1990).

      • (ii) E. Durkheim, The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life (Allen and Unwin, 1976).

      • (iii) M. Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (Harper Collins, 1991).

      • (iv) E. Troeltsch, The Social Teaching of the Christian Churches (2 vols., J. Knox, 1992).

      • (v) Talcott Parsons, Action Theory and the Human Condition (New York, 1978).

    • (b) Themes

      Candidates will be expected to show an understanding of some of the following issues in sociology of religion: secularization, fundamentalism, church and sect, new religious movements, civil religion. Questions will also be set on issues relating to class, race, legitimation, power and violence in religion and religious organization; and sociological readings of other parts of the Theology syllabus, including Biblical studies, doctrine and Church history. Familiarity with contemporary sociological discussion will be assumed.

  • (34) Mysticism

    Candidates will be expected to show knowledge of theoretical issues relating to the definition and interpretation of mysticism as well as important examples of mystical literature and traditions. The paper will be examined by two 5,000 word essays: one essay, chosen from a list of prescribed titles, will address theoretical issues; the other will relate to a special topic. The subject of the second essay will be chosen by candidates in consultation with tutors. Prior approval of the subject of the second essay must be obtained in advance from the Faculty Board. Titles, abstracts and bibliographies should reach the Faculty Board Secretary not later than the Fridat of thrid week in Trinity Term of the candidate’s second year.

    Possible subjects for essays include, but will not be limited to: Neoplatonism, hermetic and alchemical speculations, the Origenist tradition in Christianity, the Dionysian tradition, Rhineland mystics, medieval English mystics, Counter-Reformation mystics, Merkabah mysticism, Hekhalot mysticism, Ismaili and Sufi traditions, Upanishadic thought, Vedanta philosophy, Tantric traditions, Buddhist traditions.

  • (35) Psychology of Religion

    Psychology of religion is concerned with human experience and behaviour associated with religion in general. Psychological explanations of religion are based on empirical research of human behaviour (cognitive, emotional, and social) through life span and across different cultures.

    The paper will cover theories about aspects of behaviour or experiences relevant to religion and the empirical evidence on these theories: psychological research of different aspects of religion such as conversion, prayer, mysticism; cognitive and affective (i.e. psychoanalytic) accounts of religion; origin and development of religious concepts; normal and abnormal religious experience and behaviour; religious and secular moral behaviour; applications of psychology to religious education and health.

  • (36) English Church and Mission 597-754

    Candidates will be expected to study the main lines of the history of the English Church in this period, and some aspects of its theology. There will also be an opportunity to study works of art. Candidates will be expected to have studied the texts in Group I, on which alone gobbets will be set, and in at least one of sections (a), (b), (c) in Group II.

Group I

  • (a) Bede, Ecclesiastical History of the English People, Preface, Books I, 23-26; II; III; IV; V, 9-10, 19 (trans. B. Colgrave, in: Bede: the Ecclesiastical History of the English People; The Greater Chronicle; Bede’s Letter to Egbert, ed. Judith McClure and Roger Collins, OUP, 1994) pp. 37-41, 63-233, 247-51, 267-74.

  • (b) Bede's Letter to Egbert, trans. D. H. Farmer, ibid., pp. 337-51.

  • (c) Bede, On the Temple, trans. S. Connolly, in J. O'Reilly (Liverpool University Press: Translated Texts for Historians 21, 1995), Prologue and Book I to I, 8.4, pp. 1-33; Book II, 18.8 to 20.9, pp. 76-100.

  • (d) Eddius Stephanus, Life of Wilfrid in The Age of Bede (ed. D. H. Farmer, trans. J. Webb, Penguin Classics, 1988) pp. 105-82.

  • (e) ‘The Dream of the Rood’, in A Choice of Anglo-Saxon Verse, ed. and trans. R. Hamer (Faber, 1970), pp. 161-71.

Group II

  • (a) Adomnan of Iona, Life of St Columba, ed. and trans. R. Sharpe (Penguin Classics, 1995).

  • (b) Bede, Life of Cuthbert, in The Age of Bede (Penguin Classics, 1988), pp. 41-102, Bede, Lives of the Abbots of Wearmouth and Jarrow, ibid., pp. 185-208.

    Bede's Homily on the Gospel for the Feast of St Benedict Biscop, in Bede, Homilies on the Gospels, trans. L. T. Martin and D. Hurst, Preface by B. Ward (Cistercian Studies Series, 110, 1991), pp. 125-32.

    Letters of Aldhelm, in Aldhelm, The Prose Works, trans. M. Lapidge and M. Herren (Boydell and Brewer, 1979), pp. 152-70.

  • (c) Willibald's Life of St Boniface and The Correspondence of St Boniface, in C. H. Talbot, The Anglo-Saxon Missionaries in Germany (Stead and Ward, 1954), pp. 25-62, 65-149.

  • (37) Any other subject that may be approved by the Board of the Faculty of Theology from time to time by regulation published in the Gazette and communicated to college tutors by the end of the first week of the Trinity Full Term in the academic year preceding the examination in which the option will be available.

Optional translation papers (2 hours each)

The translation component of paper (24), The Hebrew of the Old Testament, may be offered as an optional extra paper by candidates who are not taking the full paper. Paper (27), The New Testament in Greek, may also be offered as an optional extra translation paper.]

[For students starting from MT 2017: .

A

  • 1. The examination in the Honour School of Theology and Religion shall include:

    • (1) Biblical Studies

    • (2) Systematic Theology and Ethics

    • (3) History of Religions

    • (4) Religion and Religions

    • (5) Such other subjects as the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion shall from time to time prescribe by regulation.

  • 2. No candidate shall be admitted to examination in this school unless he or she has either passed or been exempted from the First Public Examination.

  • 3. The Examination in this school shall be under the supervision of the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion, which shall prescribe the necessary regulations.

B

  • 1. All candidates will be required to offer eight papers  from the lists below. All Candidates will be required to submit a thesis (Paper 3000) at the end of Hilary Term of their final year in the Honour School as one of the eight papers in the Final Honour School.

    2. All candidates must offer four papers chosen from the list below, with the exception of Senior Status students who may offer up to five papers from the list below.

    • (1) Biblical Studies

      Paper (2101) The Narrative World of the Hebrew Bible

      Paper (2102) The Poetic World of the Hebrew Bible

      Paper (2103) The Gospels

      (2) Systematic Theology and Ethics

      Paper (2201) History of Doctrine

      Paper (2202) Ethics I: Christian Moral Reasoning

      Paper (2203) Themes in Nineteenth-Century Theology and Religion

      Paper (2204) Key Themes in Systematic Theology

      (3) History of Religions

      Paper (2301) History and Theology of the Early Church (64-337AD)

      Paper (2302) Medieval Religions

      Paper (2303) Early Modern Christianity 1500-1648

      Paper (2304) Formation of Rabbinic Judaism

      Paper (2305) Islam in the Classical Period

      Paper (2306) Foundations of Buddhism

      Paper (2307) Hinduism: Sources and Formations

      (4) Religion and Religions

      Paper (2401) Modern Judaism

      Paper (2402) Islam in Contemporary Society

      Paper (2403) Buddhism in Space and Time

      Paper (2404) Modern Hinduism

      Paper (2405) Science and Religion

    3. All candidates must offer three papers chosen from the list below, with the exception of Senior Status students who may offer up to two papers from the list below if they are offering five papers from 2101 to 2405.

    • (1) Biblical Studies

    • Paper (3101) Hebrew of the Hebrew Bible;

    • Paper (3102) Paul and the Pauline Tradition;

    • Paper (3103) Biblical Interpretation: Perspectives from the Social Sciences;

    • Paper (3104) Gender and Power in Biblical Texts;

    • Paper (3105) Worship and Liturgy in the Hebrew Bible;

    • Paper (3106) Prophecy and Revelation in the Hebrew Bible and Beyond;

    • Paper (3107) Law, Teaching and Wisdom in Biblical Tradition;

    • Paper (3108) Early Interpretation of the Hebrew Bible and Ancient Judaism;

    • Paper (3109) New Testament Theology;

    • Paper (3110) Study of a New Testament Book;

    • Paper (3111) The Afterlife of the New Testament;

    • Paper (3112) The Old Testament in Early Christianity

    • (2) Systematic Theology and Ethics

    • Paper (3201) Contemporary Theology and Culture;

    • Paper (3203) Analytic Philosophy and Christian Theology;

    • Paper (3204) Ethics II: Religious Ethics;

    • Paper (3208) Origen;

    • Paper (3209) Augustine;

    • Paper (3210) Anselm;

    • Paper (3211) Aquinas;

    • Paper (3212) Luther;

    • Paper (3213) Calvin;

    • Paper (3214) Kierkegaard;

    • Paper (3215) Newman;

    • Paper (3217) Barth;

    • Paper (3218) Tillich;

    • Paper (3219) Bonhoeffer;

    • Paper (3220) Rahner;

    • Paper (3221) Liberation Theology and its Legacy;

    • Paper (3222) Postliberal Theology;

    • Paper (3223) Radical Orthodoxy;

    • Paper (3224) Modern Debates concerning the Trinity;

    • Paper (3225) Modern Debates concerning Christology;

    • Philosophy Paper 107 Philosophy of Religion (as specified in the Regulations for Philosophy in all Honour Schools including Philosophy)

    • (3) History of Religions

    • Paper (3301) From Nicaea to Chalcedon;

    • Paper (3302) Saints and Sanctity in the Age of Bede;

    • Paper (3303) Faith, Reason, and Religion from the Enlightenment to the Romantic Age;

    • Paper (3304) Eastern Christianities from Constantinople to Baghdad;

    • Paper (3305) Further Studies in Judaism;

    • Paper (3306) Further Studies in Islam;

    • Paper (3307) Further Studies in Buddhism;

    • Paper (3308) Further Studies in Hinduism;

    • Paper (3309) Studies in the Abrahamic Religions;

    • Paper (3310) Varieties of Judaism 100BCE - 100CE

    • (4) Religion and Religions

    • Paper (3401) The Nature of Religion;

    • Paper (3402) Psychology of Religion;

    • Paper (3403) Sociology of Religion;

    • Paper (3404) Further Studies in Science and Religion;

    • Paper (3405) Mysticism;

    • Paper (3406) Feminist Approaches to Theology and Religion.

    4. Not all papers will be available every year.

    5. Papers (2101) The Narrative World of the Hebrew Bible; (2102) The Poetic World of the Hebrew Bible; (2103) The Gospels; (2204) Key Themes in Systematic Theology; (2301) History and Theology of the Early Church (64-337AD); (2303) Early Modern Christianity 1500-1648; (3101) Hebrew of the Hebrew Bible; (3102) Paul and the Pauline Tradition, and (3301) From Nicaea to Chalcedon will be available every year.

    6. Candidates may not offer more than two papers from (3303) Faith, Reason and Religion from the Enlightenment to the Romantic Age; (3305) Further Studies in Judaism; (3306) Further Studies in Islam; (3307) Further Studies in Buddhism; (3308) Further Studies in Hinduism; (3404) Further Studies in Science and Religion and (3405) Mysticism.

    7. All candidates will be required to submit a thesis (Paper 3000) by noon on Monday of Week 9 of Hilary Term in the final year of the Honour School as one of their eight papers.  The thesis must not exceed 12,000 words, inclusive of notes and appendices but excluding bibliography. The subject of the thesis need not fall within the areas covered by the papers listed in the Honour School of Theology and Religion. It may overlap any subject or period on which the candidate offers papers, but the candidate should not reproduce the content of his or her thesis in any answer to a question in the examination. Prior approval of the title and subject of the thesis must be obtained from the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion. Such approval must be sought not later than 4pm on Friday of Week 3 of Michaelmas Term in the final year of the Honour School. The request for approval should be made electronically on a form found in the course handbook which must be signed by the candidate’s tutor stating that this subject has his or her approval. The request must include an abstract of approximately 100 words addressing how the topic will be treated, and an indicative bibliography.

    Upon submission every candidate shall sign a letter declaring the thesis to have the same title as that previously approved by the Faculty Board, and to be his or her own work, and that it has not already been submitted (wholly or substantially) for an Honour School other than one involving Theology and Religion, or another degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution. This letter, which can be found in the course handbook, shall be presented together with but separate from the thesis. No thesis shall be ineligible for examination because it has been or is being submitted for any prize of this University.

    8. Candidates who take any of papers (3305) Further Studies in Judaism; (3306) Further Studies in Islam; (3307) Further Studies in Buddhism; (3308) Further Studies in Hinduism; or (3404) Further Studies in Science and Religion will be required to submit an extended essay for each paper by noon on Monday of Week 1 of Trinity Term in the final year of the Honour School. Extended essays should not exceed 10,000 words, inclusive of notes and appendices but excluding bibliography. Prior approval of the subject of the extended essay must be obtained from the Chair of the Study of Religion Subject Group, acting on behalf of the Undergraduate Studies Committee. Such approval must be sought not later than 4pm on Friday of Week 7 of Michaelmas Term in the final year of the Honour School. The request for approval should be made electronically on a form provided by the Faculty Office which must be signed by the candidate’s tutor stating that this subject has his or her approval. The request must include an abstract of approximately 100 words addressing how the topic will be treated, and an indicative bibliography.

    Upon submission every candidate shall sign a letter declaring the extended essay to have the same title as that previously approved by the Study of Religion Subject Group, and to be his or her own work and that it has not already been submitted (wholly or substantially) for an Honour School other than one involving Theology and Religion, another degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution. This letter, which can be found in the Handbook, shall be presented together with but separate from the extended essay. No extended essay shall be ineligible for examination because it has been or is being submitted for any prize of this University.

    9. Candidates who take papers (3303) Faith, Reason, and Religion from the Enlightenment to the Romantic Age or (3405) Mysticism will be required to submit two long essays by noon on Monday Week 1 of Trinity Term in the final year of the Honour School. Essays should not exceed 5,000 words, inclusive of notes and appendices but excluding bibliography. The first of these essays is chosen from a list of prescribed titles; the subject of the second is chosen by the student in consultation with his or her tutor. Prior approval of the title of that essay must be obtained from the Board of the Faculty of Theology and Religion. Such approval must be sought not later than 4p.m. on Friday of Week 4 of Hilary Term of the final year. The request should be made electronically on a form found in the course handbook which must be signed by the candidate’s tutor stating that this subject has his or her approval. The request must include an abstract of approximately 100 words addressing how the topic will be treated, and an indicative bibliography.

    Upon submission every candidate shall sign a letter declaring each of the two essays to be his or her own work and that neither has already been submitted (wholly or substantially) for an Honour School other than one involving Theology and Religion, another degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution. In addition every candidate shall sign a letter declaring the second essay to have the same title as that previously approved by the Faculty Board. This letter, which can be found in the course handbook, shall be presented together with but separate from the essay. No essay shall be ineligible for examination because it has been or is being submitted for any prize of this University.

    10. Candidates who take papers (3109) New Testament Theology; (3110) Study of a New Testament Book; (3111) The Afterlife of the New Testament; (3112) The Old Testament in Early Christianity; (3201) Contemporary Theology and Culture; or (3406) Feminist Approaches to Theology and Religion will be required both to sit a two hour written examination and to submit an essay for each paper offered. Essays must be submitted by noon on Monday of Week 1 of Hilary Term in the final year of the Honour School. Essays should not exceed 2,500 words, inclusive of notes and appendices but excluding bibliography. The subject of the essay will be decided in consultation with their subject tutor.

    Upon submission every candidate shall sign a letter declaring the essay to be his or her own work and that it has not already been submitted (wholly or substantially) for an Honour School other than one involving Theology and Religion, or another degree of this University, or a degree of any other institution. This letter, which can be found in the course handbook, shall be presented together with but separate from the essay. No essay shall be ineligible for examination because it has been or is being submitted for any prize of this University.

    11. All papers not listed in paragraphs 7-10 will be examined by three hour written examination.]