Introduction to the Synoptic Gospels - Part III

Introduction to the Synoptic Gospels - Part III

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?

Course code: TH0030

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.

Table of Contents

Part III: Mysteries of the Life of Christ

  • 34. Nativity
  • 35. Baptism
  • 36. Kingdom of God
  • 37. Transfiguration
  • 38. Eucharist
  • 39. Passion and Death
  • 40. Resurrection