Peder Borgen


Peder Borgen, Professor Emeritus.

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Peder Borgen was born in Lillestrom, Norway in 1928 by parents O. E. Borgen and Harda (maiden name Pytte). In 1961 he married  Inger (maiden name Duesund). Daughters: Heidi (born 1965) who is married to Hans Fredrik Hansen. Grandchildren: Peder Tobias and Jenny Agnete. Ingunn (born 1967) who is married to Jan Peter Aursnes. Grandchildren: Philip Gustav and Tia Eline. Inger is a retired family-therapist. She worked at the church-related family counselling centre in Trondheim for 25 years. She has served as President of the Norwegian Methodist Women's Society and was a delegate at the Congresses of the World Federation of Methodist Women in Nairobi, 1986, in Singapore 1991 and Rio de Janeiro in 1996. She has served as Vice President of the Federation's Section for Europe, and was the Norwegian Society's corresponding contact person for international relations for many years. She has been honoured as a 'Senior Friend of the Federation'. She was until 2004 a lay member of the Board of Ordained Ministry of the Annual Conference of the Methodist Church in Norway.


Peder Borgen graduated from Oslo Christian College (Kristelig Gymnasium) in 1947. He then studied theology at The University of Oslo, receiving his Master's degree (cand. theol.) in 1953. Attended the First Assembly of the World Council of Churches, Amsterdam 1948, as a press-reporter. Participated as youth delegate in the St. Paul's Festival, Greece, 1951. The Festival was a celebration of the 1900th anniversary of St. Paul's and Christianity's coming to Europe. With scholarships from the Fulbright Scholarship Program, the World Council of Churches and the Crusade Scholarship Program of the Methodist Church he pursued further studies in the field of the New Testament at The Graduate School of Drew University, Madison, New Jersey, and gained his Ph.D.Degree in 1956. In 1955 he attended the Summer School on International Affairs, The American University, Washington, D.C., and The United Nations, New York. He returned to Norway in 1956 and was ordained in the Methodist Church in Norway, and served as minister of the Methodist Church in Harstad, Norway, 1956-1958. The Norwegian Council for Research in the Humanities granted him a fellowship from 1958-1962. During parts of April-May 1959 he travelled together with three American scholars by car in the Communist Soviet Union, Poland and East-Germany. When staying in Moscow they attended Easter services in the main Baptist Church and paid a visit to Zagorsk, the centre of the Russian Orthodox Church. From the balcony of a Hotel they watched the First of May Parade on the Red Square in Moscow. With a scholarship from the Netherlands' Universities' Foundation for International Co-operation Peder Borgen attended its Summer School on Religion and Culture, held on the campus of the Free University, Amsterdam, in 1959.

In 1962 he was appointed Assistant Professor at Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington, D.C. and was promoted to Associate Professor in 1964. In 1966 he received the degree Doctor Theologiae from the University of Oslo, and was in 1997 appointed Associate Professor at the University of Bergen, Norway, and became in 1973 full Professor at the Department of Religious Studies, The University of Trondheim, Norway. Member of The Board of Tapir Academic Publishers, Trondheim, 1977-1983. Member of the Joint Commission of The World Methodist Council and The Lutheran World Federation, 1979-1984. In 1985 he was the host of the 40th Meeting of Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, held at the University of Trondheim. This was the first time the Society met in Norway.

He attended the meetings of the Oxford Institute, held in Oxford, England, under the auspices of the World Methodist Council, 1958, 1982 and 1987. Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Liberal Arts and the Graduate Studies Program, The University of Trondheim, 1981-1984, and Deputy Rector for the School of Humanities, Sciences and Social Sciences, 1984-1987. In co-operation with the University of Lund, Sweden, and the Norwegian Institute of Technology, the University of Trondheim, he organized seminars for people from business and industry on religion and culture, 1987-1988. On his 60th birthday, January 1988, he received the Festschrift CONTEXT, edited by professor P. W. Bøckman and by Dr. R.E. Kristiansen.

 In late Fall 1989 he chaired the committee in charge of organizing the visit to The University of Trondheim of that year's recipient of the Nobel's Peace Price, the Dalai Lama. He became member of the Board of The Studia Philonica Annual, published by Scholars Press, Atlanta, GA, 1986-2008. Member of the Advisory Board of the monograph series Emory Studies published by Scholars Press, Atlanta, 1992-1998. Member of The World Methodist Council 1986-1991. Participated in the Council's Meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, in 1986. One of the Vice Presidents of World Methodist Historical Society, 1991-2006. Member of the Editorial Board of Novum Testamentum and Novum Testamentum Supplement Series, Royal Brill Publishers, Leiden, The Netherlands, 1990, President of the Board, 1994-2008.  In 1995 he presented a paper on religious freedom at a national seminar sponsored by the Norwegian Free Church Council as part of the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the first Norwegian law in 1845 on the rights of religious dissenters. 1996-1997: Co-chairperson of the joint Saami-Methodist committee for the celebration of the 80 years since the first National Meeting of the nomadic Saami people was held in Trondheim Metodist Church in 1917. Member of the SNTS Committee for Eastern Europe, 1997 – 2007. August- September 2005: Participated in the “Third East – Western Symposium of European New Testament Scholars.” Theme: “Unity and Diversity in New Testament Ecclesiology” held in St. Petersburg, Russia. After the Symposium: Travelled with his wife to Moscow recalling his visit to the city in 1959.

2005-06: As President of the Editorial Board of Novum Testamentum he, with the support of the Board and the staff concerned at Brill Publishers, appointed the Professors C. Breytenbach and J. C. Thom as the new executive editors of the Journal.

President of the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters, 1996-1999. President of the International Society for New Testament Studies, Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas, 1998-1999. Member of the Editorial Board of New Testament Studies, published by Cambridge University Press, 1977-1980; chairman of the Board, 1998-1999. As past President of the SNTS he participated in the Conference on African Hermeneutics and Theology, Hammanskraal, South Africa, August 1999. Member of the Board of Advisors of the Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation, 1995-2000. Upon retirement in 1996 he received a Senior Fellowship under the auspices of the Norwegian National Research Council, 1996 and 1998-1999. In 1997 he worked on a project on Saami history sponsored by the Norwegian Governmental Department of Interior Affairs. Spring 1999 the couple moved to Lilleström, a town outside of Oslo.

He has been invited guest lecturer at universities and theological seminaries in Europe, North America and Israel, and has presented papers at several international seminars, symposia and congresses.

In December 1998 His Majesty King Harald V appointed him as Knight First Class of the Norwegian Order of St. Olav. 

In 2003 he was awarded the Gunnerus medal, which is the highest honour given by The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters.

For his 75th birthday, January 2003, he received the second Festschrift, Neotestamentica et Philonica. Studies in Honor of Peder Borgen, Edited by D.E. Aune, T. Seland and J.H. Ulrichsen. Leiden, 2003.

Member of the Joint Council of members of the Norwegian Parliament and representatives of the Norwegian academic community 2001 - 2004. His professional memberships are: Society of Biblical Literature; Studiorum Novi Testamenti Societas; The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters, Trondheim (Norway's oldest academic institution founded in 1760). Member of the Norwegian Academy of Sciences and Letters, Oslo, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and Letters, Uppsala; the Royal Society of Sciences, Uppsala, (the oldest academy in Scandinavia, founded in 1710); World Methodist Historical Society; the Scandinavian Plato Society for Classical Studies, and the Norwegian Society of Church History.

On July 28th 2008 he retired as President (1995-2008) of the Editorial Board of Novum Testamentum and Novum Testamentum Supplements published by E.J. Brill Academic Publishers, Leiden, the Netherlands. Brill Publishers held a Symposium in his honour, in Oslo, Norway. Papers were read by the Professors Lars Hartman, Uppsala, Sweden, Maarten Menken, Zeist, The Netherlands, Cilliers Breytenbach, Berlin, Germany, and Johan Thom, Stellenbosch, South Africa. A reception was hosted by the Dutch Ambassador to the Kingdom of Norway at his official residence, followed by a gala dinner in the Grand Hotel, at which tributes were given to him by the Representatives of the Publishers and the Board, the Dean of the Theological Faculty, University of Oslo, the Rector of the Norwegian School of Theology, the Bishop of the Methodist Church, the Representative of The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters, and by others. – A valedictory note written by his successor, Professor J. Keith Elliott, Leeds, England, was printed in Novum Testamentum 51 (2009) Fasc. 1, 104-105. The papers which were presented at the Symposium, were published in Novum Testamentum 51 (2009), Fasc. 4.



Eschatology and 'Heilsgeschichte' in Luke-Acts, (typewritten and microfilm dissertation), Drew University, Madison, NJ, 1956.

Bread from Heaven. An Exegetical Study of the Concept of Manna in the Gospel of John and the Writings of Philo. Supplements to Novum Testamentum, Vol. 10, Leiden, 1965. Second edition Leiden, 1981.

'Paul Preaches Circumcision and Pleases Men', and Other Essays on Christian Origins, Trondheim, 1983.

'Logos Was the True Light', and Other Essays on the Gospel of John, Trondheim, 1983.

Philo, John and Paul. New Perspectives on Judaism and Early Christianity, Atlanta, GA., 1987.

Early Christianity and Hellenistic Judaism. Edinburgh, 1996. Second edition (paperback), 1998.

Samenes første landsmøte. 6.-9. februar 1917. Grunnlaget for Samefolkets Dag 6. februar. Historisk oversikt. Dokumentasjon. Kommentar, Trondheim 1997. ('The First National Meeting of the Saami People. 6.-9. of February 1917, held in Trondheim Methodist Church).  

Philo of Alexandria, An Exegete for His Time, Brill Publishers. Supplements to Novum Testamentum 86. Leiden 1997. Reprint published by the Society of Biblical Literature, Atlanta, 2005.

Vei Utenfor Allfarvei (Way Outside of the High-Road). Studier i skjæringspunktet mellom kirkehistorie, personalhistorie og samfunnshistorie. Transactions of The Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters, 2009, 1, Trondheim 2009.



Religiøs pluralisme i bibelsk tid og i Norge i dag, Trondheim, 1979.

Det nye testamentes omverden, Trondheim, 1980.

Mennesket og naturen i kristendom og naturvitenskap, Trondheim, 1980.

Kirken i sentrum. Trondheim Metodistmenighet 100 år. Together with A. Kolby et al., Trondheim 1981.

Hvem er Jeppe? Rusgift, terapi og menneskesyn. Together with Tore Meistad, Trondheim, 1982.

Bibelen i brennpunktet for tro, historie og litteratur, Trondheim, 1983.

The Many and the One. Essays on Religion in the Graeco-Roman World, Presented to H. Ludin Jansen, Trondheim, 1985.

Teologi på tidens torg, FS Peter Wilhelm Bøckman. Together with O. Hognestad, et al., Trondheim, 1987.

Religion, Literature, and Society in Ancient Israel, Formative Christianity and Judaism. Together with J. Neusner, E. S. Frerichs and R. Horsley, Lanham, 1987.

The Social World of Formative Christianity and Judaism, Essays in Tribute to Howard Clark Kee. Together with J. Neusner, E.S. Frerichs and R. Horsley, Philadelphia; 1988.

Miljøkrise og verdivalg, Trondheim, 1991.

Kristne kirker og trossamfunn. Together with B.Haraldsø, Trondheim, 1993.

The New Testament and Hellenistic Judaism. Together S. Giversen, Aarhus, 1995. 2nd edition published as paperback by Hendrickson Publishers, U.S.A.

Recruitment, Conquest and Conflict. Strategies in Judaism, Early Christianity and the Greco-Roman World. Together with Vernon K. Robbins and David Gowler, Atlanta, 1998.

The Philo Index. A Complete Greek Word Index to the Writings of Philo of Alexandria, Computer-Generated, together with Kåre Fuglseth and Roald Skarsten. Grand Rapids, Michigan and Leiden, 2000.

The Complete Works of Philo of Alexandria. A Key-Word-In-Context Concordance. Together with Roald Skarsten and Kåre Fuglseth, Vols 1-8, Piscataway, NJ, 2005.


"Philo of Alexandria. A Critical and Synthetical Survey of Research since World War II", in W. Haase (ed.), Aufstieg und Niedergang der römischen Welt, II: Principat, 21:1, Berlin, 1984, 98-154.

"Philo of Alexandria", in M. Stone (ed.), Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period. Compendia Rerum Judaicarum ad Novum Testamentum, II:2, Assen, 1984, 233-282. A section on Aristobulus is included.

"Philo of Alexandria", in The Anchor Bible Dictionary, 5, Doubleday. New York, 1992, 333-342. 

"Ekumeniske tendenser og problemer i metodismen", Norsk teologisk tidsskrift, 72 (1971) 19-42. 

 "Johannes Olsonius. Theosophus et Medicus Bergensis", Norsk teologisk tidsskrift, 73 (1972) 1-26. 

"Fornuftens, erfaringens og den sosiale konteksts rolle i relasjon til Skriftens autoritet", Nordisk ekumenisk årsbok, 1980/1981, 35-48. English translation: "Biblical Authority in Relationship to Auxiliary Keys such as Reason, Experience, and Social Contexts", Epworth Review, 8 (1981) 72-81. 

"Synd och nåd", Tro och liv, 3 (1981) 29-34. 

"Jødisk/kristen utdannelse og gresk utdannelse", in O. Hognestad and O. G. Winsnes (eds.), Kunnskap og forståelse, Trondheim, 1983, 33-62.

"Filo. Diasporajøde fra Aleksandria", in H. Kvalbein (ed.), Blant skriftlærde og fariseere, Oslo, 1984, 143-156.

"Bibel - kultur - identitet", in O. G. Winsnes (ed.), Religionskunnskap og allmennutdannelse, Trondheim, 1985, 79-113.

 "Bibelske tema i litteratur, film og teater", in P. W. Bøckman (ed.), Bibelske tema i litteratur, film og teater, Trondheim, 1987, 9-22.

 "The Church as the Body of Christ", Doxology, 4 (1987) 7-16.

"John and the Synoptics: Can Paul Offer Help?", in G. F. Hawthorne (ed.), Tradition and Interpretation in the New Testament. Essays in Honour of E. Earle Ellis. Grand Rapids, Mich., 1987, 80-94.

"Creation, Logos and the Son: Observations on John 1:1-18 and 5:17-18", Ex Auditu, 3 (1987) 88-97.

"Undervisning i kristendom, andre religioner og livssyn", in A. Vikan and Aa. O. Aakervik (eds.), Skolen mot år 2000, Namsos, 1989, 53-69.

"En tysk buddhist tolker kristendommen og dens historie", in P. W. Bøckman (ed.), Kristendommen og religionene, Trondheim, 1989, 45-64.

 "Metodistkirken, en tvernasjonal kirke i Norge og i andre land", in P. Øverland (ed.), Norges kristne kirkesamfunn, Trondheim, 1991, 28-38.

 "There Shall Come Forth a Man. Reflections on Messianic Ideas in Philo", in James H. Charlesworth (ed.), The Messiah. Developments in Earliest Judaism and Christianity, Minneapolis, 1992, 341-361.

"Overcoming Fears," in James H. Charlesworth with Frank X. Blisard and Jerry L. Gorham (eds), Overcoming Fears Between Jews and Christians, New York, 1992) 109-118. 

"Philo and the Jews in Alexandria" in Per Bilde, Troels Engberg-Pedersen, Lise Hannestad and Jan Zahle (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt, Aarhus, 1992, 122-138.    

"Man's Sovereignty over Animals and Nature according to Philo of Alexandria, in Tord Fornberg and David Hellholm (eds.), Texts and Contexts. Biblical Texts in their Textual and Situational Contexts, FS Lars Hartman. Oslo, 1995, 369-389.  

"Militant proselyttisme og misjon." In: Reidar Hvalvik og Hans Kvalbein (ed.), Ad Acta. Studier til Apostlenes Gjerninger og urkristendommens historie, FS Edvin Larson. Oslo, 1994, 9-26.  

"Moses, Jesus, and the Roman Emperor. Observations in Philo's Writings and the Revelation of John." In: Novum Testamentum, 38 (1996) 145-159.

"In Accordance with the Scriptures." In: John Barclay and John Sweet (eds.), Early Christian Thought in its Jewish Context. FS Morna Hooker, Cambridge, 1996, 193-206.

"Religionsfrihet og statskirke," in Baptist, 3 (1996) 7-26. 

"The Gospel of John and Hellenism." In: R. Alan Culpepper and Clifton Black (eds.), Exploring the Gospel of John. FS D. Moody Smith, Kentucky, 1996. 98-123.

"'Philanthropia' in Philo's Writings." In: Linda Bennett Elder, David L. Barr and Elizabeth Struthers Malbon (eds.), Biblical and Humane. FS John F. Priest, Atlanta, 1996, 173-88.

"Emperor Worship and Persecution in Philo's 'In Flaccum' and 'De Legatione ad Gaium' and the Revelation of John." In: Hubert Cancik, Herman Lichtenberger and Peter Schäfer (eds.), Geschichte - Tradition - Reflexion. III: Frühes Christentum. FS Martin Hengel, Tübingen, 1996, 493-509.

"Philo of Alexandria - a Systematic Philosopher or an Eclectic Editor?" In: Symbolae Osloenses, 71 (1996) 115-134. FS Knut Kleve.

"The Crossing of the Red Sea as Interpreted by Philo: Biblical Event - Liturgical Model - Cultural Application," in Julian V. Hills (ed.), Common Life in the Early Church, FS Graydon F. Snyder. Valley Forge, 1998, 77-90.

 George Scott B Wesleyan Missionary to Sweden: Aspects of His Preaching,” in Richard Sykes (ed.), Beyond the Boundaries. Preaching in the Wesleyan Tradition. Oxford, 1998, 116-135. 

"Two Philonic Prayers and Their Contexts: An Analysis of Who is the Heir of Divine Things (Her.) 24-29 and Against Flaccum (Flac.) 170-75," New Testament Studies, 45 (1999) 291-309. (Presidential address, delivered at the 53rd General Meeting of the SNTS at Copenhagen, 1998).

"Philo's Against Flaccus as Interpreted History." In A Bouquet of Wisdom, edited by Karl-Johan Illman et al. FS for Professor Karl-Gustav Sandelin, Aabo, 2000, 41-57. 

"Jøder og kristne. Følelse av slektskap - opplevelse av overgrep -forståelse av skyld - dialogens vei," i Kropp og sjel, Edited by Th. Jörgensen, D. Rian og O. G. Winsnes. FS Olav Hognestad, Trondheim, 2000, 195-201.

"Openly Portrayed as Crucified. Some Observations on Gal 3:1-14." In Christology, Controversy & Community. FS D. Catchpole. Edited by D. G. Horrell and Chr. M. Tuckett, Leiden, 2000, 345-353.

 "Greek Encyclical Education, Philosophy and the Synagogue. Observations from Philo of Alexandria's Writings," In Libens Merito, FS Stig Strömholm. Edited by O. Matsson, Å. Frändberg, M. Hedlund, S. Lunell and G. Sedin. Uppsala 2001, 61-71.

"George Wolff (1736-1828): Norwegian-born Merchant, Consul, Benevolent Methodist Layman, Close Friend of John Wesley," Methodist History, 40 (2001) 17-28.

"Application of and Commitment to the Laws of Moses. Observations on Philo's Treatise On the Embassy to Gaius," In In the Spirit of Faith, FS D. Hay. Edited by D.T. Runia and G.E. Sterling. The Studia Philonica Annual, 13 (2001) 86-101.

A Necessary and Important Step," in M.N. Getui, T. Maluleke, and J. Ukpong (eds.), In Interpreting the New Testament in Africa, Nairobi, 2001, 1-4.

"Avtalen 'Nådens fellesskap' mellom Metodistkirken og Den norske kirke," in Tidsskrift for Teologi og kirke, 73 (2002) 185-198.

"The Gospel of John and Philo of Alexandria," in J.H. Charlesworth and M.A. Daise (eds.), Light in a Spotless Mirror. Reflections on Wisdom Traditions in Judaism and Early Christianity,Harrisburg, London, New York, 2003, 45-76.

"Philo of Alexandria as Exegete," in A.J. Hauser and D.F. Watson (eds.),A History of Biblical Interpretation, Vol. 1: The Ancient Period. Grand Rapids.Cambridge, 2003, 114-143.

"Ute-økumenikk og hjemme-økumenikk. Hendelser og erfaringer," In K.O. Sandnes, H. Hegstad, G.Heiene, og S. Thorbjørnsen (eds.), Etikk, tro og pluralisme. FS Lars Østnor, Bergen, 2004, 269-280.

”The Contrite Wrongdoer – Condemned or Set Free by the Spirit. Romans 7:7-8:4,” in The Holy Spirit and Christian Origins. FS J.D.G. Dunn. Edited by G.N. Stanton, B.W. Longenecker and S. C. Barton. Grand Rapids. Cambridge, 2004, 181-192.

“Der Methodismus und die Anfänge der Pfingstbewegung in Norwegen: eine auf Thomas Ball Barratt konzentrierte Studie mit einem kurzen Hinweis auf Erik Andersen Nordquelle,“ in P.Ph. Streiff (Hg.), Der europäische Methodismus um die Wende vom 19. und 20. Jahrhundert. EmK Geschichte – Monografien, Band 52, Medienwerk der Evangelisch-methodistischen Kirche. Freiburg, 2005, 237-257.

"Crucified for His Own Sins - Crucified for Our Sins: Observations on a Pauline Perspective," in J. Fotopoulos (ed.), The New Testament and Early Christian Literature in Greco-Roman Context. FS D. E. Aune. Supplements to Novum Testamentum 122, Leiden/Boston:Brill, 2006, 17-35.

“The Scriptures and the Words and Works of Jesus,” in T. Thatcher (ed.), What We Have Heard from the Beginning. The Past, Present, and Future of Johannine Studies, Waco, 2007, 39-58.