Synoptic Gospels III - Mysteries of the Life of Christ

Synoptic Gospels III - Mysteries of the Life of Christ

What is the Jesus presented in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke like? How did he understand himself? How did the Evangelists understand him? Is that the same or different to the understanding of the disciples?

ECTS Credits: 3

Professor: Anthony Giambrone


This course introduces students to the first three Gospels in the New Testament
Canon. As a foundational course in the first cycle of theological study, closely bound
to the course on the Fourth Gospel, the class will first treat introductory issues,
including the nature of Gospel literature, the Synoptic Problem, and the historicity
and fourfold collection of the Gospels. Next, a rapid reading of Matthew, Mark, and
Luke will be offered, highlighting characteristic elements of structure and theology
and meant to foster appreciation for the simultaneous diversity and unity of the
Gospels’ revelation. Attention will be given here also to the Acts of the Apostles as
the companion volume to Luke. Finally, as a theological study of “the principal
witness to the life and teaching of the Incarnate Word” (DV 18), the course will
conclude with a synthetic section organized around the mysteries of the life of Christ.

Course Goals

Students who successfully complete this course will…
1. Encounter a representative range of key exegetical figures and modes of
Gospel scholarship.
2. Appreciate fundamental issues in the interpretation of Matthew, Mark, and
Luke (and Acts).
3. Recognize theological motifs characteristic of each synoptic Gospel.
4. Understand major aspects of the life and teaching of the Lord.
5. Attain basic literacy in the study of Gospel revelation and acquire the skills
necessary to teach and preach these texts soundly to a lay audience.
6. Exercise theological judgment in interpreting select Gospel passages.