NT302/502 Early New Testament Church

This subject (along with Jesus & the Gospels) forms the foundation for advanced studies in the New Testament.

This subject introduces you to the birth and expansion of the church according to the Acts of the Apostles against the cultural, religious and political background of first century Greco-Roman world, and to the letters of the New Testament and the Apocalypse, their characteristics and major themes.

Special attention is given to the life and preaching of the Jerusalem church, and the mission of St Paul.

Subject CodeNT302 - Undergraduate
NT502 - Graduate
Study ModesMST City Campus or Online
Next AvailableSemester 2, 2019

Dr. Greg Forbes


This subject examines the spread of the gospel as recorded in the Book of Acts and highlights the teachings of the early church and the issues they faced. It’s all too easy to take snippets from the New Testament and apply them to our lives without any appreciation of how the text was understood by its original recipients. But without this appreciation it is all too easy to misinterpret the New Testament, and accordingly misapply it.

At the end of this unit you will be familiar with the historical context of the early church, and will be able to explain how the gospel spread beyond its immediate Jewish environment so that Gentiles were incorporated into the covenant community of God.

You will also be able to discuss the major themes of the New Testament epistles and relate them to the particular contexts of their recipients.


    Both the On-Campus and Distance modes of this subject will be taught by Dr. Greg Forbes.

      Time Commitment

      The On-Campus mode of this subject will require a time commitment of roughly 10-12 hours per week, which is made up of both lecture/in-class time and self directed study.

      The Distance mode of this subject will require a time commitment of roughly 10-12 hours per week in total.


        Assessments will be advised first week of class.

          Required Textbooks

          • Achtemeier, Green & Thompson, Introducing the New Testament:
            Its Literature and Theology
            (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2001).
          • Barnett, P., Jesus and the Rise of Early Christianity (Illinois: IVP, 1999).


          • Peterson, David G., The Acts of the Apostles (Pillar NT Commentary: Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009).

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