This unit will examine the Old Testament Historical Books (Joshua-Esther) that provide a window on in Israel’s history; from the conquest of Canaan to the exile of the Southern kingdom of Judah. The unit will pay specific attention to the ways in which these major events were interpreted by the Deuteronomistic historians. The unit will address how to read and interpret Old Testament historiographical writings today.

Unit code: BA2300A

Unit status: Archived (New unit)

Points: 18.0

Unit level: Undergraduate Level 2

Unit discipline: Old Testament

Proposing College: St Athanasius College

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Learning outcomes


Describe the message, content, and theology of the OT Historical Books


Apply Hermeneutical principles to biblical historiography. Students will carefully analyse how the authors selected and arranged material from their sources to produce a text with purpose, they would then extract the ethical or theological message behind the narrative


Apply exegetical skills in the interpretation of selected texts from the OT historical books


Explain the significance of these books for our own time

Unit sequence

Prohibited combinations Only 1 of BA1300A, BA1309A, BA2300A, BA2309A may be studied


Weekly lectures. Weekly reading material from both scripture and set text

Indicative Bibliography

  • Arnold, Bill T., Beyer, Brian E. Encountering the Old Testament: A Christian Survey. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1999.
  • Arnold, Bill T., Williamson, H.G.M. Dictionary of the Old Testament Historical Books. Downers Grove, IL: Intervarsity Press, 2005.
  • Boadt, Lawrence. Reading the Old Testament: An Introduction. 2nd ed. New York: Paulist Press, 2012.
  • Chrisolm Jr, Robert B. Interpreting the Historical Books: An Exegetical Handbook. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2006.
  • Howard Jr, David M. An Introduction to the Old Testament Historical Books. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers, 1993. (recommended for purchase)
  • Howard Jr, David M. An Introduction to the Old Testament Historical Books. Chicago, IL: Moody Publishers, 1993 (Kindle Edition) (recommended for purchase)
  • Loken, Israel. The Old Testament Historical Books: An Introduction. Maitland, FL: Xulon Press, 2008.


Type Description Word count Weight (%)
Multiple Choice Quizzes or Tests

4 Quizzes (equivalent to 1000 words)

0 25.0
Written Examination

2.5 hour exam (2500 Words)

0 50.0

Essay (1500 words)

0 25.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 1 Nov, 2017

Unit record last updated: 2022-10-31 15:54:18 +1100