THP407 Judaism and Early Christianity (8)

This subject explores the rise of Judaism following the Babylonian exile (mid-sixth century BCE) to the second century CE. It examines the influence of Hellenism, the Maccabean revolt, Judea under Herod and Rome, the two Jewish Wars, sectarian Judaism and Jewish beliefs and institutions in the first century CE. The rise of early Christianity within the context of formative Judaism and the competing responses of these two movements to the destruction of the temple in 70 CE are examined.


Session 1 (30)
On Campus
United Theological College
Canberra Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: THP407. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Theology

Enrolment Restrictions

This subject is not available to students who have completed subject THL303 as this is a paired subject and shares similar content.

Assumed Knowledge

Students are recommended to have prior knowledge equivalent to or studied THL408 and THL409.

Subject Relationships

THL303 Paired Subject

Incompatible Subjects


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate a critical and advanced understanding of issues relating to the history and development of Judaism from the mid-sixth century BCE to the second century CE;
  • be able to identify distinguishing features of major Jewish groups and institutions in the first centuries BCE and CE and critically evaluate their impact upon the Jewish war of 66-73 CE;
  • be able to discuss critically Jesus and the rise of early Christianity within the context of Second Temple Judaism;
  • be able to discuss the historical relationship between Second Temple Judaism and early Christianity and its significance for biblical interpretation and Christian traditions;
  • be able to demonstrate advanced competence in the exegesis and interpretation of biblical texts through critical engagement with primary biblical materials and constructive engagement with secondary literature; and
  • be able to demonstrate self-guided learning, including advanced research, writing and communication skills.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • The development of Judaism from the sixth century BCE to the second century CE
  • An examination of evidence relating to sectarian Judaism
  • Josephus, Philo and the Dead Sea Scrolls as sources for understanding Second Temple Judaism and early Christianity
  • Torah and messiah in sectarian Judaism (including early Christianity)
  • The impact upon Judaism of Hellenism, Roman occupation and Herodian rule
  • Jesus in the context of Judaism
  • Diverse expressions of early Christianity in relation to Judaism
  • Biblical interpretation, including the role of Israel and expressions of anti-Judaism in New Testament texts

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: June 2022. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.