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Online · School of Divinity · Biblical Studies


  • CG
  • Section 8WK
  • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020
  • Modified 02/10/2020

Course Description

An intensive exegetical study of the Gospel of John, including an investigation of the uniqueness of this Gospel compared with the synoptic Gospels, and a study of the life and teachings of Christ which are distinctive in this Gospel.





Recognizing that students come from various church backgrounds and that each is working towards a degree at Liberty University, it is expected that the student should know the general background of the life of Christ, including chronology, geography, social customs, historical backgrounds, and events in His life. Also, the student should be aware of the issues, problems and areas of concern that have faced Christian scholars in the Gospel of John in particular and the life of Christ in general. Therefore, the student should be aware of these aspects of John so that he/she reflects a graduate level of understanding. But also, the student will want to capture the zeal and spirit of the Gospel of John.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Explain the Gospel’s political, religious, and cultural context.
  2. Examine major issues regarding the interpretation of John’s Gospel.
  3. Analyze select major theological themes in the Gospel of John.
  4. Discuss issues related to difficult passages/ideas in the Gospel of John.
  5. Apply select truths from the Gospel of John to daily Christian living.

Course Resources

Required Resources

The resources below are provided in the course at no cost to the student.

Carson, Donald A. The Gospel According to John. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1991.

Köstenberger, Andreas J. Encountering John: The Gospel in Historical, Literary, and Theological Perspective. 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2013.

Tozer, Aiden W., and James L. Snyder. And He Dwelt Among Us: Teachings from the Gospel of John. Ventura: Regal, 2009.

Disclaimer: The above resources provide information consistent with the latest research regarding the subject area. Liberty University does not necessarily endorse specific personal, religious, philosophical, or political positions found in these resources.

Additional Materials for Learning

  1. Computer with basic audio/video output equipment
  2. Internet access (broadband recommended)
  3. Blackboard recommended browsers
  4. Microsoft Word
  5. John W. Rawlings School of Divinity: Turabian-Based Writing Guide

Course Assignments

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (5)

There will be 5 Discussion Board Forums throughout this course. The student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided topic for each forum. The instructions to the discussion board may require responses to multiple questions in a thread. Each response is to be a minimum of 400 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to at least 1 other classmate’s threads. Each reply must be a minimum of 200 words. Please consult grading rubrics for more details.

Book Critique

The student will submit a 5–10-page critical review of A. W. Tozer’s And He Dwelt Among Us: Teachings from the Gospel of John, that will include a summary and analysis of the book. Current Turabian formatting must be followed throughout. Please consult grading rubric for more details.

Research Paper

The student will write a 12–20-page research-oriented paper in current Turabian format that focuses on a topic of the student’s choosing. The instructor will provide a list of approved topics from which he/she may choose. The paper must include at least 6 references in addition to the course textbooks and the Bible. Please consult grading rubric for more details.

Tests (4)

Each test will cover the Reading & Study material for the module/week in which it is assigned. Each test will be open-book/open-notes, contain 45 true/false, multiple-choice, matching, and fill-in-the-blank questions, and have a 1-hour and 15-minute time limit.

Course Grading

Course Requirements Checklist


Discussion Board Forums (4 at 60 pts ea, 1 at 50 pts)


Book Critique


Research Paper


Tests (4 at 90 pts ea)




Course Policies

Style Guidelines

All assignments for this course are to be formatted in accordance with the John W. Rawlings School of Divinity: Turabian-Based Writing Guide. Discussion assignments and essay examinations may use the parenthetical citation style. All other written assignments should use the footnote citation style. Supplemental writing aids are available via the Online Writing Center.

Extra Credit

No additional “for credit” assignments will be permitted beyond those given in the course requirements stated above.

Course Changes

Course requirements are subject to change by the administration of the University at any time with appropriate notice.


Late Assignment Policy

Course Assignments, including discussion boards, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.

If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, then he or she must contact the instructor immediately by email.

Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:

  1. Late assignments submitted within one week after the due date will receive up to a 10% deduction.
  2. Assignments submitted more than one week and less than 2 weeks late will receive up to a 20% deduction.
  3. Assignments submitted two weeks late or after the final date of the course will not be accepted outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.
  4. Group projects, including group discussion board threads and/or replies, and assignments will not be accepted after the due date outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.

Disability Assistance

Students with a disability and those with medical conditions associated with pregnancy may contact Liberty University’s Online Office of Disability Accommodation Support (ODAS) at [email protected] for accommodations.  Such accommodations require appropriate documentation of your condition.   For more information about ODAS and the accommodations process, including how to request an accommodation, please visit Requests for accommodations not related to disabilities or pregnancy must be directed to the Registrar’s Office, which generally handles medical needs support.

If you have a complaint related to disability discrimination or an accommodation that was not provided, you may contact ODAS or the Office of Equity and Compliance by phone at (434) 592-4999 or by email at [email protected].  Click to see a full copy of Liberty’s Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy or the Student Disability Grievance Policy and Procedures.

Course Attendance

In an effort to comply with U.S. Department of Education policies, attendance is measured by physical class attendance or any submission of a required assignment within the enrollment dates of the course (such as examinations, written papers or projects, any discussion board posts, etc.) or initiating any communication with one’s professor regarding an academic subject. More information regarding the attendance policy can be found in the Academic Course Catalogs. Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting a required academic assignment (such as the Course Requirements Checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic activity) will be dropped from the course. Students who wish to re-engage in the course are encouraged to contact Academic Advising to discuss their enrollment options. Students who begin an online course, but at some point in the semester cease attending, and do not provide official notification to withdraw, will be assigned a grade of “FN” (Failure for Non-Attendance). Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the official start date should familiarize themselves with the withdrawal policy.

Grading Scale

A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F
940-1010 920-939 900-919 860-899 840-859 820-839 780-819 760-779 740-759 700-739 680-699 679 and below

For courses with a Pass/NP final grade, please refer to the Course Grading section of this syllabus for the assignment requirements and/or point value required to earn a Passing final grade.

Add/Drop Policy

The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory.

Honor Code

Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.

Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.

While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University.

Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.

The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at

Additional Items

Program Learning Outcomes for NBST 615

NBST 615 supports the academic programs of the Rawlings School of Divinity as a New Testament elective.

The program learning outcomes for these programs are listed with the program in the 2019/20 Rawlings School of Divinity Graduate Catalog. This course is related to at least one of the program learning outcomes listed for each of these programs and contributes to your success in acquiring the knowledge and skills that are described. Here is the link to the catalog page where this information can be found:

2019/20 Rawlings School of Divinity Graduate Catalog (


NBST 615

Textbooks: Carson, The Gospel According to John (1991).

Köstenberger, Encountering John (2013).

Tozer & Snyder, And He Dwelt Among Us (2009).


Reading & Study




Carson: pp. 21–40, 68–95

Köstenberger: Appendices 1–2, ch. 1

Tozer & Snyder: Introduction–ch. 4

3 presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

Class Introductions

DB Forum 1





Carson: pp. 40–68, 95–139

Köstenberger: chs. 2–3,

Excursuses 1–3, 8

Tozer & Snyder: chs. 5–9

2 presentations

DB Forum 2

Test 1




Carson: pp. 141–240

Köstenberger: chs. 4–6, Excursuses 4–7

Tozer & Snyder: chs. 10–13

2 presentations

Book Critique



Carson: pp. 240–359

Köstenberger: chs. 7–8

2 presentations

DB Forum 3

Test 2




Carson: pp. 359–453

Köstenberger: chs. 9–10

2 presentations

DB Forum 4



Carson: pp. 455–550

Köstenberger: chs. 11–12

3 presentations

DB Forum 5

Test 3




Carson: pp. 550–663

Köstenberger: chs. 13–14

3 presentations

Research Paper



Carson: pp. 665–686

Köstenberger: chs. 15–16

2 presentations

Test 4




DB = Discussion Board


NOTE: Each course week begins on Monday morning at 12:00 a.m. (ET) and ends on Sunday night at 11:59 p.m. (ET). The final week ends at 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Friday.