Methodology of Old Testament Exegesis

The general aim of this course is to introduce the student into the methodology of interpreting the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. This process is achieved by a synthesis of textual, linguistic, historical, literary critical, rhetorical, form critical and theological approaches. During this course the student will be introduced to the primary sources of the exegesis, such as the most important Hebrew biblical manuscripts, the critical editions of the Hebrew text of the Old Testament and the ancient translations of the Old Testament. The student will also encounter the secondary exegetical literature, such as word studies and commentaries, learning how to use them in the individual research and theological activities. The course also gives an overview of the importance and usefulness of softwares in biblical research (especially the BibleWorks program), enhancing significantly the critical arsenal meant to help the exegete.


Specific competences

By the end of this course the student is able to critically analyse the Hebrew text of the Bible; to interpret and use the critical apparatus of the Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (3rd edition); to prepare detailed Hebrew word-studies; to structure a text according to rhetorical and grammatical structuring lines; to define the genre of a biblical text based on its content and vocabulary; to define major ideas and coherence of a pericope; to use the critical commentaries related to the biblical literature; to use BibleWorks' recent version in the exegetical process.

General competences

The student is able to analyse and interpret complex texts in foreign languages; to use new technology in analysing ancient texts.

Total estimated time

Classroom study Course Seminar Practice
2 hours/week 1 1 0
28 hours/semester 14 14 0
Individual study Hours/sem
Total estimated time 98
Studying course notes and bibliography 14
Further documentation in libraries, electronic platforms, or on the field 14
Preparing essays, papers, or documentation 40
Personal tutoring 2
Total individual study 70


The student is required to deliver a written exegetical paper about a concrete biblical pericope (the pericope should be approved by the teacher). The paper contains the detailed exegetical analysis presenting the methods and steps discussed during the lectures. The length of the paper should be between 4000-5000 words.