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Systematic Theology 5112B
Christology and Soteriology

Tuesday 7:00-10:00
St. Peter's Ssminary, Room 108

Instructor: John Dool, 432-5726, x272,

Office hours by Appointment


A biblical, historical, and systematic consideration of the major questions concerning the Incarnation and Redemption. (3 hours; antirequisite: the former Dogmatic Theology 301A)


This course will assist students to grow in the following knowledge, skills and attitudes:

To gain an appreciation for the biblical foundations, key historical developments, and contemporary questions and avenues of thought in regard to the person and work of Jesus.

To gain a sense of the importance and limitations of historical knowledge in our understanding of Jesus.

To gain a sound understanding of the key doctrinal teachings of the church, how and why they developed, and the erroneous positions to which they responded.

To gain a sound understanding of the role of Christ in our redemption and how soteriology shapes Christology.

To learn to integrate principles of Christological thought into one’s independent exploration of Christological issues.

To learn to relate traditional teachings to contemporary questions and issues.

To learn to identify and constructively critique the Christological perspective in a given text or thinker.

To grow in recognition of the benefit of shared dialogue and shared exploration of theological issues.

To gain an appreciation for the expression of God’s love in the mystery of the Incarnation and redemption.

To develop an openness to growth in one’s own understanding of who Jesus is.


A theological analysis of the Christology of one of the gospels, 8-10 pages (10 pages maximum; further details provided below). Due Feb. 12 (25%)

A research paper, 10-12 pages (12 pages maximum; further details provided below). Due March 26 (30%)

A final, written examination (25%)

Class participation. Each class students will submit a written comment or question (one paragraph) based on the week’s readings (20%)

Assignments are due at the beginning of class on the dates indicated. 10% per day will be deducted from assignments handed in late unless prior arrangements have been made with the instructor. Assignments are recorded as having been received on the day they reach the instructor’s hands. Do not submit assignments by e-mail or by campus mail.



Roch Kereszty, Jesus Christ: Fundamentals of Christology. New York: Alba House, revised ed., 2002

Richard Norris, ed., The Christological Controversy, Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1980.

These are available at the UWO bookstore. A few additional required readings will be put on reserve in the library. 


Part 1: Scriptural Witness

Week One:
• Introduction; Biblical Methods in Christology; The Infancy Narratives (Kereszty, part 1, ch.1 and ch.3)

Week Two:
• The Mission of Jesus and the Kingdom of God (Kereszty, part1, chs.4-5)

Week Three:
• Biblical Witness to Resurrection and its Interpretation (Kereszty, part 1, ch.2; Lk 24; Mt 28; Jn 20-21); The Meaning of Resurrection (Anthony Kelly, “The Resurrection: Love as Transformative”, God is Love, Collegeville MN, Liturgical Press, 2012, pp.50-63))

Week Four:
• The Titles of Jesus (Kereszty, part 1, ch. 6) 

Section 2: Historical Development

Week Five:
• Introduction to Patristic Christology and Soteriology (Kereszty, part 2, Introduction and ch.1); Pre-Nicene Developments (Norris, Introduction, pp.1-17); Irenaeus, Tertullian, and Origen (Norris, pp.49-81)

Week Six:
• The Council of Nicea and the Arian Controversy (Norris, Introduction, pp.17-21; selections from Athanasius, Norris, pp.83-101); The Apollinarian Controversy (Norris, Introduction, pp.21-23; selections from Apollinaris, Norris, pp.103-111)

Week Seven:
• The Nestorian Controversy and Ephesus (Kereszty, part 2, ch.2, pp.235-248; Norris, Introduction, pp.23-31; selections from Nestorius and Cyril of Alexandria, Norris, pp.113-45); Leo the Great and Chalcedon (Norris, pp.145-156)

Week Eight:
• The Councils of Constantinople (Kereszty, part 2, ch.2, pp. 248-50); Medieval Christology (Kereszty, part 2, ch.3; selections from Thomas Aquinas); Anselm 

Week Nine:
• Reformation and Liberal Protestant Christology (Kereszty, part 2, ch. 4); 20th Century Protestant Christology (Kereszty, part 2, ch. 5) 

Section 3: Systematic Christology

Week Ten:
• Introduction to Systematic Christology; The Mystery of the Incarnation as Communion (Kereszty, part 3, Introduction, ch.1, and ch.2, pp.343-49); The Incarnation in the Context of Trinitarian Theology

Week Eleven:
• The Incarnation and the Humanity of Jesus (Kereszty, part 3, ch.2, pp.358-77 and ch. 3; Thomas Weinandy “The Council of Chalcedon: Some Contemporary Issues”, Theology Digest, v.53, no.4, 2006, pp.345-56)

Week Twelve:
• The Redemption (Kereszty, part 3, ch. 4; Louis Roy, "The Death of Jesus: Its Universal Impact", New BlackFriars, v.83, no.981, Nov.2002, pp. 517-28; Gerald O’Collins, “Redemption as Transforming Love”, Jesus Our Redeemer: A Christian Approach to Salvation, pp.181-99 )

Week Thirteen:
• Christ the Liberator; Christ and Non-Christians (Kereszty, part 3, ch.5; Walter Kasper, “Relating Christ’s Universality to Inter-religious Dialogue”, Origins, v.30, no.21, Nov. 2, 2000); Review 


Students are responsible for knowing the University’s academic policies and regulations and any particularities of their own course of study. These can all be found at the University’s website ( Ignorance of these policies is not an excuse for any violation thereof. The following policies are particularly important to note:

Submission of Assignments: It is the responsibility of the student to organize his or her work so that the assignments are completed on time. A penalty of 10% of the value of the assignment will be deducted for each day it is overdue without permission.

Plagiarism: Students must write their essays and assignments in their own words. Whenever students take an idea or a passage from another author, they must acknowledge their debt by quotation marks and/or footnotes. Plagiarism is a major academic offense. Students may be required to submit their work in electronic form for plagiarism checking.

Selection and Registration of Courses: Students are responsible for ensuring that their selection of courses is appropriate and accurately recorded, that all prerequisite course(s) have been successfully completed, and that they are aware of any anti-requisite course(s) that they have taken.


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