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BIBS218 Judaism in the Time of Jesus

An overview of the history and literature of Judaism from Alexander the Great to the fall of Masada (332 BCE - 74 CE), focusing particularly on the Dead Sea Scrolls.

The history and literature of early Judaism from Alexander the Great to the Bar Kochba Revolt (332 BCE-135 CE). It is an essential introduction to the background of the two major religious traditions to come out of this historical period, Judaism and Christianity.

Paper title Judaism in the Time of Jesus
Paper code BIBS218
Subject Biblical Studies
EFTS 0.15
Points 18 points
Teaching period(s) Semester 2 (Distance learning)
Semester 2 (On campus)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $955.05
International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.

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36 100-level points
BIBS 318, RELS 211, RELS 311, RELX 211, RELX 311
Schedule C
Arts and Music, Theology
Any student with an interest in the origins of Judaism and Christianity.
Teaching staff
Lecturer: Reverend Dr James Harding
Paper Structure

Lectures, teaching day and videoconferences.

  • Two 1500-word essay (20% each)
  • One three-hour examination (60%)
Teaching Arrangements

The Distance Learning offering of this paper is taught remotely.

Campus: One two-hour lecture per week.
Distance: Seven two-hour videoconferences on Zoom spaced throughout the Semester.


Shaye J. D. Cohen, From the Maccabees to the Mishnah (3rd ed.; Louisville, Ky.: Westminster John Knox, 2014).
Further readings and notes will be made available via e-reserve.

Course outline
View the course outline for BIBS 218
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Cultural understanding, Ethics, Environmental literacy, Information literacy, Self-motivation, Teamwork, global perspective, interdisciplinary perspective, lifelong learning, scholarship, communication, critical thinking, cultural understanding, ethics, environmental literacy, information literacy, self-motivation, teamwork.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes
By the end of the paper students will have:
  • Acquired a broad overview of the history and literature of Judaism in the late Second Temple period
  • Gained a broad understanding of the Jewish context in which Jesus lived and early Christianity emerged

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Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system

Semester 2

Teaching method
This paper is taught On Campus
Learning management system


Stream Days Times Weeks
A1 Thursday 14:00-15:50 28-34, 36-41