SC 336 - The Human God

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Module Level

8 (Undergraduate)

Time Allowance

Lectures: 24 hours Tutorials: 4 hours Assignment: 10 hours Private study: 24 hours


Continuous assessment: 40% End of Semester examination: 60%

Module Aims

To read and interpret the Gospel of Mark in ways that permit appreciation of its essential narrative and theological character, and that enhance sensitivity to the cultural contexts of its origins, and those of its contemporary readers and hearers. 

Indicative Syllabus:

Reading the gospels as narratives: plot, character, time, viewpoints, contexts

Mark’s portrait of Jesus: humble Lord or abandoned son?

God and “his things:” the cross, powerlessness, faithfulness, and Kingdom

Caesar and his “his things:” honour, oppression, brutality, and Empire

Master of Surprise: the women in Mark as parables of Jesus

Beyond Fear: the Gospel of Mark as a narrative of risen Lord

Reading Mark Today: vision and hope for those on the margins of harsh and alienating societies 

Learning Outcomes

  • be able to distinguish the narrative, theological, historical, and cultural dimensions of the Gospel of Mark, and their inter-related interpretative import;
  • be familiar with narrative, literary, and contextual approaches to textual interpretation, their parameters and values;
  • be capable critically to discuss the essential narrative character of the Gospel of Mark, its theology of God, its Christology, and its eschatology;
  • will be able to conduct a narrative and theological analysis of certain key texts from the Second Gospel.