At the crossroads of theological formation, service, and scholarship

Paul Anderson

Paul Anderson
Professor of Biblical and Quaker Studies
Office: Hoover 241
Phone: 503-554-2651

PhD, Glasgow University
MDiv, Earlham School of Religion
BA, Trinity Lutheran Seminary
BA, Malone College

Teaching and Research Interests: Gospel of John; Jesus and Spirituality; Quaker Studies

Paul Anderson has been teaching in the College of Christian Studies since January 1989. A student of D. Elton Trueblood in seminary, Paul became fascinated with the Gospel of John, and in addressing the tensions in John’s Christology in his doctoral work, found himself applying cognitive-critical analysis to the history and development of Gospel traditions. That provided an interdisciplinary approach to some of the Johannine riddles that have perplexed scholars for several centuries now.

Professor Anderson was a founding member of the John, Jesus, and History Project at the national SBL meetings and has served as co-chair of that project since 2005. The group published its first two John, Jesus, and History volumes in 2007 (Vol. 1, Critical Appraisals of Critical Views) and 2009 (Vol. 2, Aspects of Historicity in the Fourth Gospel), and our third volume 2011 (Vol. 3, Glimpses of Jesus through the Johannine Lens). His own book on the subject (The Fourth Gospel and the Quest for Jesus) argues for a more nuanced view, arguing also a new paradigm for understanding John’s composition, relations to other traditions, and likely contributions to the quest for Jesus. He calls his approach to John “the dialogical autonomy of the Fourth Gospel,” and refers to his new paradigm for seeing John as an independent tradition alongside the others as “a Bi-Optic Hypothesis.” 

In addition to his teaching at George Fox University, Paul has been a visiting professor at Yale Divinity School (1998–1999) and held a visiting DAAD professorship at the University of Mainz in German (May–August, 2010).