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Faculty Profiles

Gene Green, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of New Testament

On Faculty since 1996
630.752.5283
BGC 522


My thirteen years spent in Latin America (the Dominican Republic and Costa Rica) before coming to Wheaton provided abundant opportunities to learn how to read another culture. The first hurdle was learning survival skills in the new environs. How do buses work? Where do I get our bills? How do I go about paying them? How can we avoid getting parasites? The multitude of adjustments to the material (and microbic) culture provided constant adventures.

The next valley was learning the language. Ten months of intensive daily training were just enough to bring me up to a basic level of comprehension. After gaining sufficient proficiency to understand most conversations, newspapers and broadcasts, a whole new world of confusion opened up. I could not understand the humor. Historical allusions were opaque. Reactions to some comments mystified me. My life became a repeated refrain from a Dylan tune, "There's something happening here and you don't know what it is, do you, Mr. Jones?"

Poco a poco, with a little help from my friends who served as informants, I was able to crawl into the culture and begin to understand its intricacies. The moments of understanding were thrilling as each new piece of the complex mosaic fell in place. To understand meant more than learning where the post office was and finding the correct words and grammar to ask for a stamp.

And now I come to Scripture, fully aware of how difficult it is to comprehend another person's communication. I am overwhelmed by the enormity of the task of hearing the message across the temporal, geographic, linguistic and cultural gulf that stands between me and the authors and first readers/hearers. I also wonder how my understanding of Scripture is informed theologically by the people of God who have interacted with these texts for thousands of years. They have left an interpretive heritage.

Moreover, I am aware that I am part of a global church which has become self-theologizing. Interpretation is not something that is undertaken solely in the West and exported to the rest of the world. Listening to African, Asian and Latin interpreters raises new questions and makes me aware of how my own social location and perspectives influence my reading. The business of biblical interpretation is humbling, laborious and frustrating. Yet God speaks to us in his Word as he did back then, through history, and around the globe.

University of Aberdeen
Ph.D., New Testament Exegesis, 1980

  • Biblical Interpretation 
  • New Testament Theology
  • Tyndale Fellowship for Biblical Research: member
  • Institute for Biblical Research: member
  • Society of Biblical Literature: member
  • Evangelical Theological Society: member
  • Society for Pentecostal Studies: member
  • John Stott Ministries: board member
  • A Contextual Theology of the New Testament. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans. (Project accepted, no date for submission)
  • Macedonian Christianity: The Spread of the Christian Faith Along the Via Egnatia. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic. (Proposal submitted, no date for submission)
  • Bearing. A Midwife and a Theologian Look at Childbearing. With Deborah A. Green, M.S., C.N.M. (No date for submission)
  • BITH 111 Theology of Culture
  • BITH 213 New Testament Literature and Interpretation
  • BITH 356 1 Corinthians
  • BITH 359 1 Peter
  • BITH 325/371/524 Biblical Interpretation and Hermeneutics
  • BITH 451 Greek Exegesis - 1 and 2 Thessalonians
  • BITH 451 Greek Exegesis - 1-2 Peter and Jude
  • BITH 458 Acts of the Apostles
  • BITH 469 Luke
  • BITH 469/546 1 Thessalonians
  • BITH 469/546 2 Thessalonians
  • BITH 469/546 1, 2 Peter and Jude
  • BITH 494 Senior Seminar (Integrative capstone on Global Christianity; also on The Family)
  • BITH 551 Greco-Roman Backgrounds of the New Testament
  • BITH 564 Principles of Interpretation (Hermeneutics)
  • BITH 625 World Christian Perspectives

Colossians [translation], Common English Bible,Gene Green, 2010

1 and 2 Thessalonians, Baker Evangelical One-Volume Commentary on the Bible, Gene Green, 2010

Relevance Theory and Theological Interpretation: Thoughts on Metarepresentation Journal of Theological Interpretation, Gene Green, 2010

Intertextuality and Sociology in Early Christianity: A Study of 2 Peter and Jude, Reading Second Peter with New Eyes. Methodological Reassessments of the Letter of Second Peter, Gene Green, 2010

Review of Rediscovering Paul: An Introduction to His World, Letters and Theology, By David B. Capes, Rodney Reeves and E. Randolph Richards, Bulletin of Biblical Research, Gene Green, 2009