This Bible course will be taught by Dr. Matthew Colvin. This course will run from July 3rd through August 26th. The syllabus can be found here.
This course examines the operation of legal concepts in Biblical narratives, drawing on the work of David Daube, Calum Carmichael, JDM Derrett, and others. Consideration of legal concepts throws several Biblical passages into a new light and helps us understand the motivations of characters more clearly. Passages to be studied include the book of Ruth, the book of Esther, the story of Tamar (Gen 38), the Gibeonites’ deception (Joshua 9), the story of Jacob and Laban (Gen 28-31), the Samaritan woman at the well (John 4), and others. Legal concepts to be covered include laws of procedure, property law, traditio, Levirate marriage, and the go’el (kinsman redeemer). Students will gain a sense for when legal concepts are likely operative in a passage, as well as feeling out the limits that bound our interpretation of narratives in light of law.
Dr. Matthew Colvin holds a PhD in Classics from Cornell University. He is ordained in the Reformed Episcopal Church, and spent 2012-2017 as an Anglican missionary in Indonesia and the Philippines, where he taught Biblical languages to Filipino pastors. He has published articles on Heraclitus, Plato, and the Stoics, and a translation from Latin of the 1550 Magdeburg Confession. He is the author of The Lost Supper: Rethinking Passover and the Origins of the Eucharist. He now lives with his wife, Sora, and their four children on Vancouver Island.
Online only, runs 8 weeks, meeting 2hr/wk. via Zoom. Students will also have the option to participate in class discussion in the Davenant Common Room Discord server. Register now to reserve your spot. The course will proceed contingent on sufficient enrollment; on rare occasions, a class has to be cancelled due to insufficient interest. Once the registration period closes, the class meeting time will be set on the basis of a poll of availability from registrants. In case of cancellation or scheduling conflicts, students will be eligible for a refund or a transfer to another course.
This is a graduate-level course. Although a BA is not a necessary pre-requisite for this course, students should come prepared to do graduate-level work.