New Testament Exegesis

The texts of the New Testament have had significant religious and cultural influence, both in Sweden and the world at large. They play a central role in all Christian religious practice and have therefore come to influence understandings, values, social norms, language, literature, art etc everywhere that Christianity is of or has had importance. Today Christianity is the largest religion in the world and is represented in most parts of the world. It has been found in Sweden for around 1000 years.

The research discipline of New Testament Exegesis studies these important texts from a variety of angles. The study comprises, amongst other areas, the texts’ background, form, meaning, reception and effect. Since the study of the history of the early Church is so closely intertwined with the study of the New Testament texts, even this historical research field has come to be found within the research discipline New Testament Exegesis. Many New Testament exegetes are also engaged in the study of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Qumran library, or other Jewish or early Christian literature from the same period.

Even in terms of method New Testament Exegesis is a multifaceted research discipline. Traditional philological and historical methods and perspectives, such as textual criticism, source criticism, form criticism, tradition criticism, editorial criticism, archaeology and history of the times have now been complemented with a number of new methods. Examples which can be mentioned are textual linguistics, discourse analysis, narrative criticism, psychological and sociological models, history of consequences, reception criticism, various types of ideology criticism, such as feminist criticism and post-colonial criticism as well as deconstruction.

The research discipline of New Testament Exegesis at Uppsala University has been marked by a striving for synthesis between old and new methodological approaches. In terms of choice of subject the research conducted has covered broad areas and has, amongst others touched on linguistic issues in the new testament texts, questions surrounding the historical Jesus, the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Qumran library, the reception of new testament texts in fiction, the role of the Bible in interreligious dialogue and the history of interpretation from an ideological critical perspective. In Uppsala the research discipline New Testament Exegesis enjoys close cooperation with Old Testament Exegesis developed over a number of years. In addition it has close connections with the patristics seminar at the Newman Institute in Uppsala.