Old Testament Analysis Paper Preparation/Research Guide
Everything in the Old Testament was written to be understood—by people like you. But the fact that the Old Testament was written over 2000 years ago by ancient people who spoke various languages (such as Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, etc.) means that often we much work at discovering what the authors actually meant. This interpretive task need not, must not, be left to the "experts."
This semester you will begin learning how to interpret the Old Testament for yourself. You will do this by critically analyzing a selection in the Old Testament. Use the following procedure to develop your Scripture Passage Analysis Paper.
1. You will be assigned a particular selection from the Old Testament to study.
2. Become familiar with the selection by comparing at least four(4) translations of the Old Testament. (See Resource List.) What is the selection about? Read it aloud. Note the differences in translations.
3. KEEP CAREFUL NOTES OF WHAT YOU ARE LEARNING ABOUT THE SELECTION.
4. Using the heading in your Harper-Collins Study Bible (bottom of the page) to guide you, read the sections before and after your selection. They may or may not be closely connected to your selected passage. Do they help you understand your selection? You may benefit from reading the entire book.
5. Relate the footnotes and study notes in your Harper-Collins Study Bible and one other study Bible (see approved resources list) to the selection you are studying. Begin to look for leads on the following matters:
a. Are there textual questions you need to understand? (That is, are there questions about what the
wording of the original actually was?)
b. What is the grammatical structure and literary type of the passage? You probably would benefit by drawing a diagram or mind map of the selection.
c. What key terms ("loaded" words) are used by the author? Make a list. Study about these words in the Bible dictionaries. How are the...