Dr. John Dickson

Australian speaker, author and historian, and public advocate for the Christian Faith


Since completing his PhD in Ancient History at Macquarie University in 2001, John has endeavoured to keep a hand in academic life, writing occasional peer reviewed articles and monographs, and teaching at tertiary level.  


After several years as an Honorary Associate of the Department of Ancient History, John was promoted to Honorary Fellow status in 2010.

He has taught Advanced Topics in Ancient History and Early Christianity Historiography, semester long courses for the Masters program at Macquarie.


Since 2011 John has taught From Historical Jesus to Written Gospels for the Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies, a semester long course focused on the historiography of the figure of Jesus in the Roman East. 


John is also a visiting lecturer in Regent's popular Summer Program, where he teaches a course titled Promoting Christ in the Public Square, focusing on current Western challenges to classical Christian faith.


In June 2014 the Academic Board of the Sydney College of Divinity (a consortium of theological colleges in the city) elected to confer on John the title of Honorary Research Associate.


2015 - "Gentiles, New Testament" (in Encyclopedia of the Bible and its Reception, edited by Dale C. Allison, vol.10. Berlin: De Gruyter): a technical entry on the New Testament treatment of "gentiles/nations" for the thirty-volume EBR  , intended to serve as "a comprehensive guide to the current state of knowledge on the background, origins, and development of the canonical texts of the Bible as they were accepted in Judaism and Christianity.”

2013 – “Mission-Commitment in Second Temple Judaism and the New Testament” (in Introduction to Messianic Judaism. Zondervan Academic): chapter for an international collection of papers exploring the historical origins of Messianic Judaism.

2009 – “Scholar of Biblical Proportions: tribute to Prof Martin Hengel (1926-2009)” (in the Newsletter of the Society for the Study of Early Christianity [SSEC], Macquarie University): an appreciation of the writings and influence of the renowned University of Tübingen historian of Judaism and Christianity, Martin Hengel.

2008 – “Genesis of Everything: an historical account of the Bible’s opening chapter” (International Society for Christian Academics in Science and Technology Online Journal): a review of the history of interpretation of Genesis 1, comparing the Hebrew text with Ancient Near Eastern cosmogonies.

2006 – “Gentile Pilgrims and Jewish Pioneers” (in the Newsletter of the Society for the Study of Early Christianity [SSEC], Macquarie University): a published version of a paper delivered to the annual SSEC Conference exploring eschatological pilgrimage and Jewish instruction of Gentiles in the Roman period.

2006 – James: the wisdom of the brother of Jesus. (Reading the New Testament Today Series. Sydney, Aquila Press): an historical and exegetical commentary on the first-century epistle of James the brother of Jesus.

2005 – “Euaggel- from Aristophanes to the Apostle Paul” 
(in New Testament Studies, vol. 51, Cambridge University Press):  a technical study of the origins and usage of heralding-terminology from Classical Greece to the Roman period.

2004 – “Humility as a Social Virtue in the Hebrew Bible?” (in Vetus Testamentum 54.2, Brill, Leiden): a technical article, co-authored by Dr. Brian Rosner, tracing the history and etymology of humility (anawa) as a virtue of social relations.

2003 – Mission-Commitment in Ancient Judaism and in the Pauline Communities: the shape, extent and background of early Christian mission (in Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 2.Reihe, vol.159. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck): a full scale monograph exploring propaganda and proselytizing activity within Judaism and Christianity in the Roman period

John is currently researching the significance of credal summaries in ancient Judaism and Christianity (in the broader context of the use of mnemonic devices in antiquity), with a focus on the earliest Christian credal statement found in 1 Corinthians 15:3b-5, (click here for an image of this).