David Tombs is a lay Anglican theologian and the Howard Paterson Chair Professor of Theology and Public Issues at the University of Otago, Aotearoa New Zealand. His work draws on liberation and contextual theologies to address public issues in transformative ways. His writing focusses on liberation, reconciliation, and crucifixion and his publications include Latin American Liberation Theology (Brill 2002), Explorations in Reconciliation (edited with Joseph Liechty, Routledge 2006), When Did We See You Naked?’: Jesus as a Victim of Sexual Abuse co-edited with Jayme Reaves and Rocío Figueroa (SCM 2021).
Originally from the United Kingdom, David previously lectured at the University of Roehampton, London, and the Irish School of Ecumenics, Trinity College Dublin, Ireland. He studied theology at Oxford (MA), Union Theological Seminary, New York (STM), and London (PhD), and completed postgraduate work in education at Birmingham (PGCE) and London (MA).
David Tombs, Sithembiso Zwane, Charlene van der Walt, “A Contextual Bible Study on the Crucifixion of Jesus: Engaging the issue of male violence against men”
This presentation discusses a new contextual bible study that seeks to open up conversation on the stripping and naked exposure of Jesus (Matthew 27:26-31). This is an outcome from a collaborative partnership between the Ujamaa Community, University of KwaZulu-Natal (South Africa) and the Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Otago (Aotearoa New Zealand). The paper presents: (1) an explanation of the principles of Contextual Bible Study and ‘slow reading’ as developed at the Ujamaa Centre; (2) an overview of the questions used in this bible study and the issues they address; (3) initial responses to the use of the bible study with groups in South Africa in 2019 and assessment of its scope for liberative and transformative work within churches and communities.