Criteria for exegetical paper:
The content of the paper must be five pages and not more than six pages in length. The fifth page must be at least 75% full with content. If the paper is less than the minimum requirement, the grade will be deducted.
There must be a minimum of five resources. Of these, at least four sources must be commentaries, one Bible encyclopedia, and one Bible dictionary.
Outline of an exegetical paper:
Main Idea and Outline (approximately 1 page) Identify your passage. Then summarize the main idea of the passage in one sentence. Next present a full outline of your passage, showing how the main idea unfolds. For each main point of your outline, show in parentheses which main verses correspond. All of the verses of your passage should be included in the main points of your outline.
Introduction (approximately ½ page) This paragraph should gain the reader’s attention and introduce the main idea of your passage.
Context (1-2 pages) This part consists of two sections. First, include a brief discussion of the historical-cultural context of the book. What do your readers need to know about the biblical author, the original audience, and their world in order to grasp the meaning of the passage? Second, discuss the literary context of your passage. Describe the author’s flow of thought in the book and discuss how your passage fits into and contributes to the flow of thought. Pay particular attention to how your passage relates to the passage that precedes it and the one that follows it.
Content (approximately 2-4 pages) This represents the body of your paper and the heart of your exegetical work. In this section you should explain what the text says and what it means. You must consult Bible commentaries, but be careful not to let them dictate what you conclude about the passage. Be critical of your sources, and do not be afraid to disagree with the commentators.
Application (1 page) Discuss several applications of this passage to contemporary audiences. Be as practical and realistic as possible.
Do not quote someone merely to gain a footnote.
If you summarize or paraphrase a source, you must footnote that source.
A source should be quoted if—and only if—in your opinion (a) the reader needs to “hear” the way that the source said it, or (b) a paraphrase or summary is not adequate for your purposes.
Short, direct prose quotations should be incorporated into the text of the paper and enclosed in double quotation marks: “One small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.”
A prose quotation that runs to four or more lines of text in a paper, should be set off from the text, single-spaced and indented in its entirety four spaces from the left marginal line with no quotation marks at beginning or end.
Use footnotes to cite a source but also for detailed discussion that is important for clarification or argument but which will clutter the flow of your text. Use it also for references to peripheral issues that need mentioning and the notation of a source(s) where the reader can further pursue that issue.
The first time you reference a source, use the following footnote style:
Author’s first name and last, Title of the Book, (City where the book was published, State where the book was published: Name of publishing company, year of publication) page number of source. If you use the reference a second time but the references are not consecutive, use the following footnote style:
Last name(s) of author(s), page number. If you use the reference a second time and the references are consecutive, use the following footnote style:
Ibid., page number. If you use the reference a second time and the references and page numbers are consecutive, use the following footnote style:
Each paper must have a bibliography. For the form of the bibliography consult the bibliography in this syllabus.
This is a New Testament Class at a religious school and needs to be written from a general Christian point of view.
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