New Testament

The Ph.D. program in New Testament is intended to prepare students to do research in this field and to teach in an academic setting (usually a university department of religious studies or a theological seminary). Areas of strength in the Duke program include Paul, the use of the Old Testament in the New, the Synoptic Gospels, the Jewish cultural context of the New Testament, and biblical theology. The faculty has expertise in historical, exegetical, literary, and theological methods of interpretation.

Major Field Requirements

  • Course Work
    • For students entering with a Master's degree or equivalent:
      • 3-4 courses each semester for 2 years
      • At least 6 of these must be advanced courses in New Testament
    • For students entering without a Master's degree or equivalent:
      • 3-4 courses each semester fro 3 years
      • May, in the first year, include basic language courses or undergraduate/Divinity School courses
  • Languages
    • Modern:
      • Students must pass competency exams in German and French before taking their preliminary exams. Depending on interest, a reading knowledge of other languages such as modern Hebrew and Spanish may also be acquired.
    • Ancient:
      • Students are expected to have or develop good to excellent biblical Hebrew and ancient Greek, and to demonstrate competency in both languages. They may also study rabbinic Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac, Coptic, Latin, and/or other languages during their doctoral years.
  • Responsible Conduct of Research Training
  • Preliminary Examinations
    • 4-hour New Testament introduction examination (history, authorship, chronology, etc.)
    • 4-hour New Testament thought/theology examination
    • 3-hour internal minor examination
    • 3-hour external minor examination
    • Oral defense
  • Dissertation

Inside Minor Requirements

  • 3 courses

New Testament

Doron Wilfand: "Mark, Matthew and the Tanakh: A Comparison of Tanakh References in Mark and Matthew." 2016. Advisor: Joel Marcus

Lori Baron: "The Shema in John Against its Background in Second Temple Judaism and the New Testament." 2015. Advisor: Joel Marcus

T. J. Lang: “Mystery and the Making of a Christian Historical Concsiousness: From Paul to the Second Century.” 2014. Advisor: Douglas Campbell

Jill Hicks-Keeton: “Rewritten Gentiles: Conversion to the ‘Living God’ in Ancient Judaism and Christianity.” 2014. Advisor: Joel Marcus

Kathy Dawson: “Reading Galatians As Rhetorical Parody: Paul's Reinterpretation of Scriptural Demands for Obedience to the Law and the Implications for Understanding Faithfulness and Apostasy.” 2013. Advisor: Richard B. Hays

Stephen Carlson: "The Texts of Galatians and its History." 2012. Co-Advisors: Mark Goodacre, Bart Ehrman.

Nathan Eubank: "Wages of Righteousness: The Economy of Heaven in the Gospel According to Matthew." 2012. Advisor: Richard Hays