Textual appeal

It’s the toughest job you’ll ever love. And no, it’s not the Marine Corps. Teaching an introductory course in New Testament can be worthy of combat pay. This is especially true when most of the students are Christian.

Biblical scholars and their students have very different presuppositions regarding the Bible. If I could explain these presuppositions to my students, I thought, then we could begin to communicate. This strategy eased tensions tremendously. My students began to understand my reasons for making certain moves in interpretation and textbook selection. Nevertheless, teaching Christianity’s sacred texts to Christians can be dangerous—a danger I try to deal with by structuring my New Testament course in a certain way.

 

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