The content essay assignment provides you with the opportunity to take a “deep dive” into the content of a particular interpretive issue within an Old Testament book. The ability to engage with the historical, literary, and theological elements of interpretation is an essential skill to develop in biblical studies. Developing these skills through research and writing is a time-tested means toward becoming a more competent reader and interpreter of Scripture. The content essay assignment probes challenging issues by answering the interpretive questions that rise from the text of Scripture.
You will write two (2) content essays during the course, one on the book of Judges and a second on 1 Samuel. The following parameters should be followed:
- Length of assignment: At least 1000 words but no more than 1500 words, excluding title page and bibliography.
- Format of assignment: current Turabian format. The paper must be double spaced. Use headings and page numbers as appropriate. Include title page and bibliography. The student must document Scripture passages with parenthetical citations within body of paper, but all other sources used must be documented with properly formatted footnotes in current Turabian format.
- Acceptable sources: The Bible (excluding study notes), textbook, and at least 3 additional academic sources published within the past 50 years that directly address the assigned Scripture passage. The student is encouraged to use academic biblical commentaries, academic journal articles, and academic monographs. Avoid devotional and general audience sources. Internet sources require instructor’s prior approval.
Content Essay: Judges Assignment
After reading Judges 1-8 and the corresponding textbook material, in an essay, answer the following questions pertaining to Judges:
- What is the recurring cycle that appears in the book of Judges? How does this relate to the theology of the book of Judges?
- Is there any prophetic significance to the recurring cycles in Judges and the concluding statement of Judges 21:25, “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in their own eyes.”? If so, explain how, and if not, then explain why not.
- What is the central message in the book of Judges and what is its relationship to the rest of the Old Testament?
Content Essay: 1 Samuel Assignment
After reading 1 Samuel 8-12 and the corresponding textbook material, in an essay, answer the following questions pertaining to 1 Samuel 8-12:
- Does God want Israel to have a king? After a critical analysis of the negative statements (1 Sam 8:1-22; 10:17-19; 12:1-25) and positive statements (1 Sam 9:1-10:16; 11:1-15) concerning kingship, what is your conclusion concerning kingship for Israel?
- How do Genesis 17:6, 16; 35:11; and Deuteronomy 17:14-20 relate to the negative and positive statements concerning kingship in 1 Samuel 8-12?
- Does the author of 1 Samuel depict kingship in a positive or negative manner? How does this relate to the message of 1 Samuel and its relationship to the rest of the Old Testament?
Engage the Bible, textbook, and at least 3 additional academic sources in the argumentation for your propositions. Each essay must be 1,000 – 1,500 words and follow current Turabian format. At least three (3) academic commentaries and the course textbook must be engaged and cited in meaningful research and discussion of assignment prompts. Preferred source material includes academic commentaries, but academic journal articles, and academic monographs are acceptable in addition to the academic commentaries and textbook. Avoid devotional, general audience sources. Internet sources require prior instructor approval.
Note: Your assignment will be checked for originality via the Turnitin plagiarism tool.