SC 241 The Eagle’s Vision: An Introduction to the Narrative, Christology, and Theology of the Fourth Gospel

Module Level

8 (undergraduate)

Time Allowance

Lectures 24 hours Tutorials 4 hours


Continuous Assessment: 40% End of Term Examination: 60%

Module Aims

To introduce students to the interpretation of the Fourth Gospel and to examine more closely the recent literary and narrative approaches to the Fourth Gospel

Indicative Syllabus:

This module will examine

  • the relationship of the Fourth Gospel to earlier Gospel tradition;
  • the more significant text-critical issues relating to the Fourth Gospel;
  • the Formation of the Fourth Gospel, with particular reference to major
  • literary and narrative interpretations of the Fourth Gospel, with special attention to analysis of the principal characters (Jesus, God, Spirit, disciples,“Jews”);
  • key major pericopae, including the Johannine “signs” (esp. Cana, John 5, 9 and 11), the Johannine discourses in view of their distinctiveness (esp. John 6), Jesus and the feasts of the Jews (Jesus at Tabernacles John 7-10), Passion and resurrection traditions;
  • the Fourth Gospel and ‘the search for the Historical Jesus’;
  • the use of the Fourth Gospel in liturgical and sacramental practice;
  • theological questions of the Fourth Gospel, especially those of Christological, Pneumatological and Eschatological import

Learning Outcomes

  • Awareness of the distinctiveness of the Fourth Gospel especially at the literary and narrative levels
  • Familiar with scholarly issues of interpretation, including the contributions of R. E. Brown, R. A. Culpepper, A. T. Lincoln
  • Capable of applying the narrative approach to the Fourth Gospel
  • Awareness of the various Christologies and Eschatologies presented in the Gospel;
  • Confidence in the reading of the Fourth Gospel in liturgical worship and in preaching


  • Brown, Sherri and Moloney, Francis. Interpreting the Gospel and the Letters of John. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2017
  • Kysar, Robert. John, the Maverick Gospel. Third ed. Louisville, KY: Westminster/John Knox Press, 2007


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