Encountering the New Testament, 4th Edition

A Historical and Theological Survey

series: Encountering Biblical Studies

Materials available for professors by request only


2. The Middle East in the Days of Jesus

Discussion Questions

  1. What do you find to be the significance of Alexander the Great for the New Testament?
  2. Compare the good things Herod the Great did for his territory with what the current American president has done.
  3. What do you think Herod Antipas really wanted to do with Jesus? Present incidents that will support your ideas.
  4. What are some examples of polytheistic syncretism?

Assignment Ideas / Class Activities

  1. Provide students with a map of Palestine and have them identify the main cities, regions, and areas based on this chapter. Students could use the key terms available as their list of important points.
  2. Have students chart out a timeline of significant events in Jewish and Greco-Roman history.
  3. Use a chart of ancient kings and have students decide if their reigns were positive or negative.
  4. Using chart paper, make a flowchart showing the events leading up to the fall of Jerusalem.
  5. Develop a “Who Am I?” game to identify different religious groups.