REL 106: final examination


1) Bible passage ID (20%): identify the book in which a given passage can be found (20 of 25 passages)

2) Terms (30%): identify 30 of 35 terms for which a brief description will be given (a list of all the terms will be provided)

3) Short-answer questions (50%): short-answer questions (focus on at least the main issues; more details and examples, the better, e.g., particular names, places, events, time periods, passages or books of the Bible)

For review:

1. Sample topics and questions you should be ready to discuss or answer:

sample topics:
creation myths
documentary hypothesis
JEDP & their characteristics
ancestral history
exodus & wilderness
Mosaic covenant/tradition
settlement in Canaan (3 models/theories of settlement)
monarchy & United Monarchy
Davidic covenant/tradition
prophetic literature
comparison of Isaiah of Jerusalem (8th cent.) & Jeremiah (7th cent.)
Priestly History
Deuteronomistic History
Wisdom literature
Chroniclers' Work
apocalyptic thought & literature
relative chronology of significant characters & events (e.g., was Abraham before or after David?)

Provide the historical-critical explanation of the process through which the books of the Torah (Pentateuch) were composed and brought together. In your answer show your understanding of the source hypothesis and the major characteristics of the various sources.


Compare the distinctive features of the two accounts of creation recorded in Gen 1.1–2.25, commenting on the sources they represent. Also discuss themes or convictions common to both.


What is the most significant event, or root experience, in the memory of the Israelites? Why? How does this experience influence the various economic, historical, literary, political, religious, theological developments or issues in the Hebrew Bible?


Discuss the developments from the Tribal Confederacy to the divided kingdom, describing the main stages of development, as well as identifying the main figures in the biblical narrative and the theological and historical issues or themes that we may discern within the developments.


Settlement in Canaan: What are the three models/theories proposed for understanding the settlement of the Israelites in Canaan? Describe each theory and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each view. 


What books are included in the Deuteronomistic History? List as many characteristic features of this literature as you can.


Discuss the rise of monarchy in ancient Israel (e.g., Samuel tradition, Saul tradition).


Describe and compare the two major theological traditions in ancient Israel. What are the features of each? How are they similar? How are they different? What sorts of problems arose as a result of the differences?

Mosaic tradition: be able to list & describe briefly the significant characteristics

Davidic tradition: royal theology, Zion theology


What is the nature and function of Hebrew prophecy?

Compare Isaiah of Jerusalem with Jeremiah? What do we know about these two personalities? Be specific. What are their theological biases? How do we know?


What are some general characteristics of the Psalms. Describe three types or categories of psalms.


What are some significant features of wisdom literature in general? What types of wisdom literature are there, what distinguishes them, and which books of the Hebrew Bible belong to them?

What are the perspectives of Ezra & Ruth on the issue of Jewish identity? What historical reality or crisis were these books addressing? Compare & contrast these as responses to that historical development.

In what ways does the theme of egalitarian ethos emerge in the Hebrew Bible? Be as detailed as possible, using biblical examples to illustrate your points.

In the historical understanding of the Bible, what is meant by the claim that the time of the literature is not the time of the tradition?


questions in Coogan book and online quizzes

2. Highlighted terms on the R-drive