Theological Analysis



“SALT” stands for “Summarize and Apply Learn Topic.” In this assignment, the student will demonstrate comprehension, assimilation, and application of the information and/or skills acquired in the assigned Learn materials for a given module and/or modules. The student will do this by completing a “SALT” assignment related to a specific topic covered in the Learn materials for a given module or modules. For each “SALT” assignment, there will be a prompt describing the assignment and detailing what the student must do to complete the assignment. To complete the assignment, the student must have read the assigned textbook readings and watched the assigned presentations appropriate to the topic. Having done so, the student will then complete the assignment described in the prompt, making sure to interact with the appropriate Learn materials (both textbook readings and presentations) and documenting that interaction with correctly formatted footnotes and bibliography. See the grading rubric for specific grading criteria.


Watch the assigned presentation, “The Theological Metanarrative of Paul’s Thought.” Then, choose one (1) of Paul’s letters and demonstrate, through a careful analysis of the argument and logical flow of the letter (see course presentations for the letter’s central argument), how your choice of the central theological metanarrative of Paul’s thought (i.e., Christology, Soteriology, or Eschatology) helps to make sense of the letter. You should move section-by-section (not verse-by-verse; there is not enough time or space to do that) through the letter demonstrating how the argument and flow of the letter are informed and clarified by the theological metanarrative you have identified.

For example, in the second half of 1 Corinthians (1 Cor. 7-16), Paul takes up questions put to him by the Corinthians and answers them. You can identify the questions they asked by Paul’s use of the Greek expression, Περὶ δὲ (“now concerning”). In 1 Cor. 7, Paul addresses a question they asked about whether a Christian should marry, or remain married to, a pagan. Paul tells the Corinthians not to change their marital status because, in his words, “the form of this world is passing away” (1 Cor. 7:31), indicating that he interprets mundane issues such as marital status within the larger context and metanarrative framework of eschatology. Similarly, in 1 Cor. 8, Paul settles a petty, mundane squabble over the menu at church suppers (they were debating whether to serve meat that had been offered to idols; see 1 Cor. 8:1) with a soaring Christological confession (“for there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist,” 1 Cor.
8:6), suggesting that Christology is the metanarrative through which he filters practical pastoral counsel, at least in this passage in this letter. And so, your task is to home in on the one Christological metanarrative (Christology, Eschatology, Soteriology) that, in your considered opinion, best accounts for Paul’s theology in the letter you have chosen to analyze, making sure to provide at least one specific example of a passage from the letter that is illuminated by your choice.

Your paper must have two sections: (1) Summary in which you describe the theological metanarrative that, in your judgment, best accounts for Paul’s thought in his letters; (2) Application in which you demonstrate how your choice of metanarrative best accounts for what Paul says in his Epistle to the (your choice of Paul’s letter). See assignment instructions for specific details.


Read the prompt associated with the given “SALT” assignment and then compose a Word document for submission that addresses the assignment therein described. Your Word document must be characterized by the following:
• Length of assignment: 3 pages double-spaced, strictly applied (excluding title page, contents page, and bibliography page; footnotes count in the page total).
• Format of assignment: Turabian. All sources used must be documented in current Turabian format with properly formatted footnotes and a full bibliography of sources used.
• Interaction with Learn materials. The student’s submission must demonstrate interaction with assigned Learn materials appropriate to the topic, including both textbook readings and assigned presentations. In most cases, there will be an assigned presentation on the topic. The student is required to interact with that presentation and document that interaction with footnotes.

• Extra-course sources: This is not a research assignment as such; rather, it is an assignment to assess whether the student has read/watched the assigned Learn materials, understood what they have read/watched, and can then apply that information and/or skills to new contexts.

• Assignment components. The assignment must have two (2) distinct, clearly labeled

o Summary: In this section, the student will summarize the information on the topic from the assigned Learn materials (textbooks and presentations). In completing this section, it is best to read the appropriate section(s) from the textbooks and watch the appropriate presentations, and then compose your summary from memory; otherwise, you will likely exceed the page limit. (1 page)

o Application: In this section, the student will take the information and/or skills learned and apply them to a new biblical passage, situation, or context as described in the assignment prompt. (2 pages)

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