Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

Hello! how are you?
I am from Chile, South America and it is my first post in this forum.

I am writing because I am finishing a Master's in Missiology at a denominational university in my country (surely you have not even heard of this place ūüėį¬†ha ha). I took this course because it was the only reasonable option for me at the time, but in reality I have always searched for something about the Old Testament with a concentration on the Ancient Near East. I'm looking for a master's degree that is, in some way, more conservative, but I think that in first-level schools that does not exist. What "more conservative" options are there in the best schools in the US? Will I have to look at a denominational school?
I have also thought about going to the Hebrew University of Jerusalem for M.A. in the Bible & the Ancient Near East to learn Hebrew and Akkadian. After finishing I plan to see options that give me the opportunity to study a PhD in the religious area (OT with a concentration in ANE), but the truth is that I do not know if this is a master's degree like that of Jerusalem will help me to choose a school of religion, because the program is not religious.

To summarize, I'd like to end with an Old Testament PhD and Ancient Near East, hopefully more conservative. It is difficult what I ask, I know, but I would like to know if anyone has any idea of what I could do with my life ... haha

Thank you in advance for your help. Cheers!

Edited by Fabio77
minor issue
Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm sure you can find a nice maximalist option to suit you, but be warned that studying ANE context tends to not jive very well with the demands of theological conservatism. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Kuriakos said:

Estoy seguro de que puede encontrar una buena opción maximalista que se adapte a usted, pero tenga en cuenta que estudiar el contexto ANE tiende a no coincidir muy bien con las demandas del conservadurismo teológico. 

I understand, thank you very much for your answer.

 

5 hours ago, sacklunch said:

No tengo claro qué quieres decir con "más conservador". Aclara un poco si puedes.

I seek to escape a bit of biblical criticism. I know that in the first level universities it is impossible, but will there be one that is less dedicated to that subject than others?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 5 weeks later...
Posted (edited)

Personally, I have pretty much written off any German/secular continental European institute because of our shared concern over obsession with biblical criticism. You could consider attending a more conservative Christian university that doesn't necessarily narrowly affiliate itself with a particular denomination. Here are a few examples in no particular order, though there are many more:
Samford University
Baylor University
Biola University
Moody Bible Institute
Calvin University
Taylor University
Dallas Theological Seminary
I think, though, it's hard (and probably unwise?) to "escape" biblical criticism if you are looking to get a PhD in OT/ANE. I am at your stage and not experienced in this field, but it seems (to me) more or less ubiquitous. As a believer who holds to conservative theology, I think a good approach is to study biblical criticism with a healthy dose of skepticism; give criticism a critical reading! Even conservative/evangelical Christian universities like the ones listed above will have biblical criticism curricula. In my opinion, what's more important is what you take away from the learning process, and not whether or not you can escape learning about biblical criticism. Of course, obsessive prioritization of biblical criticism is no fun.

Do you know of any professors you'd love to study under? I think that's a good question to ask, even for an MA.

This fall I will begin the Hebrew University program that you're considering. I get the impression that they have a good variety of approaches in their curriculum, but I haven't actually studied there yet! A big draw for me is the language-learning opportunities. Would love to see you there... Let us know what you decide on!

Edit: I can't speak for every religious school out there, but I imagine that Hebrew University's program being secular won't be a problem. So long as you can show that you've learned the skills useful in pursuing a PhD, and have kept up your religious growth in your personal life, I don't see that it would be an issue--especially since you already have a Master's in Missiology from a denominational university, which shows that you have a religious education.

Edited by moilit
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/2/2020 at 5:54 AM, moilit said:

Personally, I have pretty much written off any German/secular continental European institute because of our shared concern over obsession with biblical criticism. You could consider attending a more conservative Christian university that doesn't necessarily narrowly affiliate itself with a particular denomination. Here are a few examples in no particular order, though there are many more:
Samford University
Baylor University
Biola University
Moody Bible Institute
Calvin University
Taylor University
Dallas Theological Seminary
I think, though, it's hard (and probably unwise?) to "escape" biblical criticism if you are looking to get a PhD in OT/ANE. I am at your stage and not experienced in this field, but it seems (to me) more or less ubiquitous. As a believer who holds to conservative theology, I think a good approach is to study biblical criticism with a healthy dose of skepticism; give criticism a critical reading! Even conservative/evangelical Christian universities like the ones listed above will have biblical criticism curricula. In my opinion, what's more important is what you take away from the learning process, and not whether or not you can escape learning about biblical criticism. Of course, obsessive prioritization of biblical criticism is no fun.

Do you know of any professors you'd love to study under? I think that's a good question to ask, even for an MA.

This fall I will begin the Hebrew University program that you're considering. I get the impression that they have a good variety of approaches in their curriculum, but I haven't actually studied there yet! A big draw for me is the language-learning opportunities. Would love to see you there... Let us know what you decide on!

Edit: I can't speak for every religious school out there, but I imagine that Hebrew University's program being secular won't be a problem. So long as you can show that you've learned the skills useful in pursuing a PhD, and have kept up your religious growth in your personal life, I don't see that it would be an issue--especially since you already have a Master's in Missiology from a denominational university, which shows that you have a religious education.

Baylor would not be a good fit for this sort of thing, nor does it belong in a list with a bunch of fundamentalist institutions

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/5/2020 at 12:16 AM, Kuriakos said:

Baylor would not be a good fit for this sort of thing, nor does it belong in a list with a bunch of fundamentalist institutions

Thanks for the clarification.

My goal was not so much to give a list of fundamentalist institutions as to suggest some strong Christian institutions where a student wouldn't necessarily feel inundated by biblical criticism. I suppose Baylor is not a particularly conservative institution, though. I haven't been to Baylor, and it looks like you are there, so of course I defer to your opinion on this.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/2/2020 at 6:54 AM, moilit said:

Personally, I have pretty much written off any German/secular continental European institute because of our shared concern over obsession with biblical criticism. You could consider attending a more conservative Christian university that doesn't necessarily narrowly affiliate itself with a particular denomination. Here are a few examples in no particular order, though there are many more:
Samford University
Baylor University
Biola University
Moody Bible Institute
Calvin University
Taylor University
Dallas Theological Seminary
I think, though, it's hard (and probably unwise?) to "escape" biblical criticism if you are looking to get a PhD in OT/ANE. I am at your stage and not experienced in this field, but it seems (to me) more or less ubiquitous. As a believer who holds to conservative theology, I think a good approach is to study biblical criticism with a healthy dose of skepticism; give criticism a critical reading! Even conservative/evangelical Christian universities like the ones listed above will have biblical criticism curricula. In my opinion, what's more important is what you take away from the learning process, and not whether or not you can escape learning about biblical criticism. Of course, obsessive prioritization of biblical criticism is no fun.

Do you know of any professors you'd love to study under? I think that's a good question to ask, even for an MA.

This fall I will begin the Hebrew University program that you're considering. I get the impression that they have a good variety of approaches in their curriculum, but I haven't actually studied there yet! A big draw for me is the language-learning opportunities. Would love to see you there... Let us know what you decide on!

Edit: I can't speak for every religious school out there, but I imagine that Hebrew University's program being secular won't be a problem. So long as you can show that you've learned the skills useful in pursuing a PhD, and have kept up your religious growth in your personal life, I don't see that it would be an issue--especially since you already have a Master's in Missiology from a denominational university, which shows that you have a religious education.

Thank you very much for your comment, it was very helpful! The truth is that you are right, I could see criticism from a critical point of view without breaking my beliefs. I think I will follow in your footsteps at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and after that I will try to get to the USA in some top University already knowing a little more languages.
How did you do it to enter the Hebrew University? Is it difficult to enter there? I do not think I can enter this year due to the economic issue, but I hope that next year I will. I would like you, when you start your studies, to tell me what the master is like, I am really interested in going there. I hope we can keep in touch. Thanks to the other users who also helped me on this topic.

Cheers!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I look forward to seeing you at Hebrew U! They have a merit scholarship which covers all the tuition (but you'll still need to find a way to cover housing, food, flights, etc.) At this point almost all of the scholarship deadlines have passed for Fall 2020. You'll find this page is very useful:

https://overseas.huji.ac.il/scholarships-and-financial-aid/scholarships-and-financial-aid-for-international-students-non-us/graduate-students-scholarships-and-financial-aid/

I don't know whether or not the program is difficult to get into. My best advice is to put your best foot forward! As a Master's program, I can't imagine that it's as competitive as, say, a funded PhD program, but the scholarships may be competitive. Hard for me to gauge. Their online application portal can be glitchy, and some parts of the website are not updated, or aren't super clear about all the details. When applying, I strongly advise that you

1) apply for the early deadline (it'll allow various discounts and just generally helps everything go more smoothly).

2) contact their graduate admissions coordinator when you have any question about procedures or program/application details. I found the graduate admissions coordinator to be very helpful in answering my questions.

I'm happy to keep in touch... will message you.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 4 weeks later...

As someone who recently graduated with an MA in Old Testament from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, I think Gordon-Conwell could be a perfect fit for you. GC has a fantastic (and underrated) Hebrew language program that includes up to 4 courses in Hebrew grammar, as well as a number of exegesis courses. I was also able to take Aramaic, Akkadian, and a course on the History and Archaeology of the ANE.

I think you would probably also find that GC falls into the category of "conservative", while also making sure students understand the critical methodologies that will be assumed in PhD programs. 

Good luck!

Edited by Gilb220
Link to post
Share on other sites

Bar-Ilan may not be a bad choice, if you're open to Israel. They're not as conservative as somewhere like Gordon-Conwell, to my knowledge, but there are some very good, conservative-leaning faculty.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
√ó
√ó
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.