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Professor Paul Trebilco

Paul photo 12Professor
BSc (Canterbury), Bachelor of Divinity (Otago), PhD (University of Durham)

Room: 4S2, Arts Building
Tel 64 3 479 8798
Email paul.trebilco@otago.ac.nz

Paul Trebilco is Professor of New Testament. He studied Chemistry at the University of Canterbury, and then did a Bachelor of Divinity at Otago before completing his PhD in the New Testament in 1987 at the University of Durham.

He has published work on the Jewish and Greco-Roman backgrounds to the New Testament, the Acts of the Apostles, the apostle Paul, early Christians in Ephesus, the relationship of Scripture and Church tradition, and the Self-designations used by the earliest Christians in the New Testament.

He is currently the General Editor of the Society for New Testament Studies Monograph Series, published by Cambridge University Press.

Teaching

Interpreting the New Testament

Jesus in the New Testament

The Epistles

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Preferred Areas of Supervision

  • The Historical Jesus
  • The Johannine Literature (John's Gospel, 1-3 John and Revelation)
  • Acts of the Apostles
  • Pauline Theology
  • The Pastoral Epistles
  • Unity and Diversity in the New Testament

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Main Research Interests

  • The Early Christians in Ephesus
  • The Pastoral Epistles
  • The Johannine Literature
  • Diaspora Judaism

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Current Research

  • The issue of self-designation in earliest Christianity. What terms would an early Christian use to address a gathering? We might think they would use the term "Christian", but since this is found only three times in the New Testament, it is unlikely that this is the term they would have used
  • On-going work on the early Christians in Ephesus
  • The development of early Christian communities in Asia Minor into the second century
  • The Pastoral Epistles
  • The sense of the "local" and the "global", as lens through which we can view the New Testament and earliest Christianity

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Current Postgraduate Students

  • Don Beattie (PhD) “Redaction and Testimony in Luke 15:1-16:13: Reconsidering the Original Orator/Lukan Author Relationship”
  • Nick Brennan (PhD) “Leading Many Sons to Glory’: Human Destiny and the Identity of Christ in the Epistle to the Hebrews”
  • Alesana Eteuati (PhD) “Destigmatization in Matthew 1-3: A reading of Matthew’s infancy and baptismal narrative”
  • Anna Hluan (PhD) “Silence and the role of women in Corinth: A Study of the impact of Bible Translation on Myanmar Christians’ view of the role of women in the Church”
  • Ben Hudson (PhD) "Salvation History and Apocalyptic in Ephesians"
  • George Mombi (PhD) “Exploring the Meaning and Significance of the concept of “in Christ” in Colossians as a response to Melanesian concept of ‘Gutpela Sindaun’, with special reference to the concepts of Fullness, Riches, Mystery and Hiddenness”
  • Jacqui Lloyd (PhD) "The Length of Jesus' Ministry in the Synoptic Gospels: A Historical Investigation"
  • Jonathon Lookadoo (PhD) “The Messiah in Early Pauline Readers: A Study of ὁ χρίστος in Clement, Ignatius, and Polycarp”
  • Phillip Porter (PhD) "The Possibilities of the Gospel Narratives for Parable Interpretation!"
  • Christine Sansotta (MTh) “Leadership in the New Testament with a focus on Pauline Literature”
  • Julia van den Brink (PhD) “The Concept of Blessing in Luke”
  • Deolito Vistar (PhD) “The Function of the Temple Incident in the Narratives of the Four Evangelists”
  • Blake Wassell (PhD) "Pilate and the Jews in the Gospel of John: A Study in Historiography, Kingship, and Friendship"

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Recent Postgraduate students

  • Carmen Anderson (MTh) “Ἀμήν I Say to You”: Faith, Understanding and Speaking the Truth in Matthew’s Gospel”
  • Doug Anderson (PhD) “The Origin and Purpose of Matthew 27:51b-53”
  • Tualagi Ah-Yek (MTh) “The metaphor of shepherding in John 10:1-18 and 1 Peter 5:1-7 and its significance for Samoan Ministry”
  • David Balchin (MTh) “To Understand the Righteousness of God in Romans is to Understand how the Gospel is the Power of God for the Salvation of those who believe”
  • Erin Bay (PhD) "The Social Significance of the Sacralized Body in The Epistle to the Romans: Pauline Subversion of Cultural Constructions of Human Worth"
  • Deborah Bower (PhD) “Isaiah, the Gospel of Luke, and Peter in Conversation with Cornelius. A Narrative-Critical Analysis of Acts 10:1-11:18”
  • Chris Caradus (PhD) “Beyond a Sonderweg for Israel: An Exploration of Persistence of Exile Themes in relation to Romans 11.26”
  • Tim Dack (MTh) “Grace Redefined in 1 Corinthians 12:9a”
  • Matt Easter (PhD) ““Let Us Go to Him”: The Story of Faith and the Faithfulness of Jesus in Hebrews”
  • Gerard Ellis (PhD) “Grammar as Theology: A Linguistic Rereading of Philippians 2:6-7a”
  • Mark Forman (PhD) “The Politics of Inheritance? The Language of Inheritance in Romans within its First-Century Greco-Roman Imperial Context
  • Patrik Frank (PhD), "Blessed is he who keeps the words of prophecy in this book": an intra-textual reading of the Apocalypse as Parenesis
  • Sarah Harris (PhD) “The Davidic Shepherd King in the Lukan Narrative”
  • Erin Heim (PhD) “Light Through a Prism: New Avenues of Inquiry for the Pauline Ui`oqesi,a Metaphors”
  • Dale Hokin (MTh) “Is Motivation of Reward and Punishment Faithful to the Teachings of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark?”
  • Luke Hoselton (PhD) "New Creation in Colossians: A Comparative, Exegetical, and Theological Analysis"
  • Tom Innes (PhD) “Into the Deep Water, to the Other Side: Discipleship in Luke’s Lake Stories”
  • Alan Missen (MTh) “Worship and witness in the Apocalypse”
  • Tony Siew (PhD) “The War Between the Two Beasts and the Two Witnesses: A Chiastic Reading of Rev 11:1-14:5”
  • Dillon Thornton (PhD) “Hostility in the House of God: An “Interested” Investigation of the Opponents in 1 and 2 Timothy
  • Sean du Toit (PhD) “1 Peter: Negotiating Life within the Greco-Roman World”
  • Gillian Townsley (PhD) “The Straight Mind in Corinth: Queer Readings Across 1 Cor 11.2-16”
  • Kevin Waldie (PhD) “Compassion, Jesus and Luke: Words and Deeds in a Redaction-Compositional Study of Luke 6:12-8:3”
  • Rick Weymouth (PhD) “The Christ-Story of Philippians 2:6-11: Narrative Shape and Paraenetic Purpose in Paul's Letter to Philippi”
  • Max Whitaker (PhD) "Is Jesus Athene or Odysseus? Investigating the unrecognisability and metamorphosis of Jesus in his post-resurrection appearances"
  • Martin Williams (PhD) “The Doctrine of Salvation in the First Letter of Peter: A Theological-Critical Study”

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Publications

Trebilco, P. (2012). Self-designations and group identity in the New Testament. Cambridge University Press, 375p.

Trebilco, P. (2014). Creativity at the boundary: Features of the linguistic and conceptual construction of outsiders in the New Testament. New Testament Studies, 60(2), 185-201. doi: 10.1017/S0028688513000404

Trebilco, P. (2011). Why did the early Christians call themselves η εκκλησια? New Testament Studies, 57(3), 440-460. doi: 10.1017/S0028688511000087

Trebilco, P. (2012). The significance of the distribution of self-designations in Acts. Novum Testamentum, 54, 30-49. doi: 10.1163/156853611X593269

Trebilco, P. (2004). The early Christians in Ephesus from Paul to Ignatius. Germany: Mohr Siebeck, 842p.

Authored Book - Research

Trebilco, P. (2012). Self-designations and group identity in the New Testament. Cambridge University Press, 375p.

Trebilco, P., Caradus, C., & Rae, S. (2009). Asia Bible Commentary Series. 2 Timothy and Titus. Manila, Philippines: Asia Theological Association, 222p.

Trebilco, P., & Rae, S. (2006). 1 Timothy. Singapore: Asia Theological Association, 199p.

Trebilco, P. (2004). The early Christians in Ephesus from Paul to Ignatius. Germany: Mohr Siebeck, 842p.

Trebilco, P. R. (1995). Considering Orthodoxy: Foundations for Faith Today. Orewa: Colcom Press, 186p.

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Edited Book - Research

Morris, P., Shepard, W., Trebilco, P., & Tidswell, T. (Eds.). (2014). The teaching and study of Islam in western universities. Abingdon, UK: Routledge, 198p.

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Chapter in Book - Research

Trebilco, P. (2014). The Holy Spirit in 1 John. In J. T. K. Lim (Ed.), Holy Spirit: Unfinished agenda. (pp. 71-74). Singapore: Genesis Books & Word N Works.

Trebilco, P. (2013). The social setting of the Epistle to the Romans. In K. K. Yeo (Ed.), From Rome to Beijing: Symposia on Roger Jewett's commentary on Romans. (pp. 299-309). Lincoln, NE: Kairos Studies.

Trebilco, P. (2013). Studying "fractionation' in earliest Christianity in Rome and Ephesus. In C. Breytenbach & J. Frey (Eds.), Reflections on the early Christian history of religion [Erwägungen zur frühchristlichen religionsgeschichte]. (pp. 293-333). Leiden, The Netherlands: Brill.

Trebilco, P. (2013). 1 Timothy 3.16 as a proto-rule of faith. In J. B. Green & T. Meadowcroft (Eds.), Ears that hear: Explorations in theological interpretation of the Bible. (pp. 170-190). Sheffield, UK: Sheffield Phoenix Press.

Trebilco, P. (2013). The province and cities of Asia. In J. B. Green & L. M. McDonald (Eds.), The world of the New Testament: Cultural, social and historical contexts. (pp. 501-521). Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic.

Trebilco, P. (2011). Christians in the Lycus Valley: The view from Ephesus and from Western Asia Minor. In A. H. Cadwallader & M. Trainor (Eds.), Colossae in space and time: Linking to an ancient city. (pp. 180-211). Göttingen, Germany: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht.

Trebilco, P. (2010). Jesus Christ: Creator and redeemer (Colossians 1:15-20): An exposition. In B. Nicolls, T. R. Lua & J. Belding (Eds.), The Church in a changing world: An Asian response: Challenges from the Malang Consultation on globalization. (pp. 39-48). Quezon City, Philippines: Asia Theological Association.

Trebilco, P. (2010). Jesus Christ: Our servant Lord (Philippians 2:6-11): An exposition. In B. Nicolls, T. R. Lua & J. Belding (Eds.), The Church in a changing world: An Asian response: Challenges from the Malang Consultation on globalization. (pp. 49-59). Quezon City, Philippines: Asia Theological Association.

Trebilco, P. (2010). Antioch (Pisidian). In J. J. Collins & D. C. Harlow (Eds.), The Eerdmans dictionary of early Judaism. (pp. 334-336). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans.

Trebilco, P. (2010). Asia Minor. In J. J. Collins & D. C. Harlow (Eds.), The Eerdmans dictionary of early Judaism. (pp. 392-396). Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans.

Trebilco, P. (2009). Asia Minor and the Bible. In H.-J. Klauk, B. McGinn, P. Mendes-Flohr, C.-L. Seow, H. Spieckermann & B. D. Walfish (Eds.), Encyclopedia of the Bible and its reception: Anim-Atheism. (pp. 1034-1037). Berlin, Germany: Walter de Gruyter.

Trebilco, P. (2008). Diaspora. In C. A. Evans (Ed.), Encyclopedia of the historical Jesus. (pp. 156-157). New York: Routledge.

Trebilco, P. (2006). The Jews in Asia Minor: 66-c. 235 CE. In S. T. Katz (Ed.), The Cambridge history of Judaism: Volume IV: The late Roman-Rabbinic period. (pp. 75-82). UK: Cambridge University Press.

Trebilco, P. (2006). Asia. In K. D. Sakenfeld (Ed.), The new interpreter's dictionary of the Bible: A-C (Vol. 1). (pp. 303-304). Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.

Trebilco, P. (2004). The Christian and Jewish Eumeneian formula. In J. M. G. Barclay (Ed.), Negotiating diaspora: Jewish strategies in the Roman Empire. (pp. 66-88). London: T & T Clark International.

Trebilco, P. (2004). The significance and relevance of the Spirit in the pastoral epistles. In G. N. Stanton, B. W. Longenecker & S. C. Barton (Eds.), The Holy Spirit and Christian origins. (pp. 241-256). Michigan: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

Trebilco, P. (2001). Timorati di Dio. In A. Lewin (Ed.), Gli Ebrei Nell'impero Romano. (pp. 161-193). Florence: Editrice La Giuntina.

Trebilco, P. (2000). Jewish communities in Asia Minor. In C. A. Evans & S. E. Porter (Eds.), Dictionary of New Testament Background. (pp. 562-569). Downers Grove, Illinois: Inter-Varsity Press.

Trebilco, P. (2000). The goodness and holiness of the earth and the whole creation (1 Tim. 4:1-5). In N. Habel (Ed.), Readings from the Perspective of Earth. The Earth Bible. Vol.1. (pp. 204-220). Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press.

Trebilco, P. (1997). Jewish backgrounds of the New Testament. In S. E. Porter (Ed.), Handbook to Exegesis of the New Testament (New Testament Tools and Studies, vol 25). (pp. 359-388). Leiden: Brill.

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Journal - Research Article

Trebilco, P. (2014). Creativity at the boundary: Features of the linguistic and conceptual construction of outsiders in the New Testament. New Testament Studies, 60(2), 185-201. doi: 10.1017/S0028688513000404

Trebilco, P. (2013). Early Christian communities in the Greco-Roman city: Perspectives on urban ministry from the New Testament. Ex Auditu, 29, 25-48.

Trebilco, P. (2012). The significance of the distribution of self-designations in Acts. Novum Testamentum, 54, 30-49. doi: 10.1163/156853611X593269

Trebilco, P. (2011). Why did the early Christians call themselves η εκκλησια? New Testament Studies, 57(3), 440-460. doi: 10.1017/S0028688511000087

Trebilco, P. (2006). Gospel, culture, and the public sphere: Perspectives from the New Testament. Evangel, 24(2), 37-45.

Trebilco, P. (2006). Christian communities in Western Asia Minor into the early second century: Ignatius and others as witnesses against Bauer. Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 49(1), 17-44.

Trebilco, P. (2003). What shall we call each other? Part Two: The issue of self-designation in the Johannine Letter and revelation. Tyndale Bulletin, 54(1), 51-73.

Trebilco, P. (2002). What shall we call each other? Part One: The issue of self-designation in the Pastoral Epistles. Tyndale Bulletin, 53(2), 239-258.

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Conference Contribution - Verbal presentation and other Conference outputs

Trebilco, P. (2015, May). Identity formation in earliest Christianity: Constructing outsiders in New Testament letters. Keynote presentation at the Society for the Study of Early Christianity (SSEC) Conference: The early church: Cults and controversies, Sydney, Australia.

Trebilco, P. (2015, May). The Artemis cult in Ephesus and the Johannine letters. Keynote presentation at the Society for the Study of Early Christianity (SSEC) Conference: The Early Church: Cults and Controversies, Sydney, Australia.

Trebilco, P. (2015, May). Engaging—or not engaging—the city: Reading 1-2 Timothy and the Johannine letters in the city of Ephesus. Keynote presentation at the Centre for the Social-Scientific Study of the Bible Conference: Cities of God? An Interdisciplinary and International Assessment of Early Christian Engagement with the Ancient Urban Environment(s), London.

Trebilco, P. (2013, July). Creativity at the boundary: Features of the linguistic and conceptual construction of outsiders in the New Testament. Verbal presentation at the 68th General Meeting of the Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, Perth, Australia.

Trebilco, P. (2012, May). Reading Ephesians in Ephesus. Invited presentation at the Ephesus as a Religious Center under the Principate: An International Symposium in Honor of Richard Oster, Memphis, USA.

Trebilco, P. (2011, August). When did the early Christians first call themselves Christianoi? Verbal presentation at the 66th General Meeting of the Society for New Testament Studies (SNTS), Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.

Trebilco, P. (2011, November). Epigraphy and the study of the Polis and the Ekklesia in the Greco-Roman world. Verbal presentation at the Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting (SBL), San Francisco, CA.

Trebilco, P. (2010, September-October). Theological foundations for mission in the New Testament. Verbal presentation at the Divine Determination: The Mission of God and the People of God Conference, Nelson, New Zealand.

Trebilco, P. (2009, July). The humility and exaltation of the servant Lord (Philippians 2:5-11). Verbal presentation at the Asia Theological Association (ATA) Consultation: Christian Leadership Formation in an Age of Crisis: Our Christian Response to Globalization and Religious Pluralism, Malang, Indonesia.

Trebilco, P. (2009, December). Self-designation in earliest Christianity. Verbal presentation at the Aotearoa-New Zealand Association of Biblical Studies (ANZABS) Conference, Dunedin, New Zealand.

Trebilco, P. (2008, July-August). 'Global' and 'Local' in the New Testament and in earliest Christianity. Verbal presentation at the 63rd General Meeting of the Society for New Testament Studies (SNTS), Lund, Sweden.

Trebilco, P. (2008, September). Christians in the academic world: Reflections on engagement from the perspective of the New Testament. Keynote presentation at the Christian Scholars in the Academic World Conference, Tauranga, New Zealand.

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Other Research Output

Trebilco, P. (2015, April). Early Jewish communities in Asia Minor and the early Christian movement. Sydney College of Divinity Annual Lecture, Sydney, Australia. [Public Lecture].

More publications...