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Dr Robert Tilley

Dr Robert Tilley

Old Testament

BA (Sydney, 1989), MA (Sydney, 1991), BD (Sydney, 1993), PhD (Sydney, 2001)

+ 61 2 9752 9525


  • Doctor of Philosophy, University of Sydney (2001)
  • Bachelor of Divinity (Honours, First Class), University of Sydney (1993)
  • Master of Arts (Awarded with Merit), University of Sydney (1991)
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Sydney (1989)


The Doctoral Thesis

My doctoral thesis was entitled Reading the Sacred Text. The work argued for a rethinking of the relationship of Scriptural revelation to the Christian understanding of the nature of creation as a text of God, and it did this by way of an engagement with late-modern (or postmodern) discussions on the nature of textuality. It culminated in a study of the hermeneutics of St Paul.


Areas of Research Interest

The biblical understanding of time and space and its relationship to exegesis and economy. A Marian hermeneutics in light of temple-theology and the Song of Songs. The nexus between the rise to dominance of financial capital and Artificial Intelligence and its effect on culture, especially on education.



I tutored and lectured in Biblical Studies at the University of Sydney in 2001. From 1999 through to 2010 I lectured across a number of Adult Education Colleges in the fields of Theology, Philosophy, Biblical Studies, as well as on fine art and literature. These colleges included WEA Sydney, Adult Education at Sydney University, St James Centre, and the Aquinas Academy (where I still give series of talks). Subsequent to 2010 I lectured at the Catholic Adult Education Centre at Lidcombe until it shut down. From 2002 to the end of 2004 I gave series in the same topics at the Matthew Talbot Hostel. In 2012 I lectured at the University of Notre Dame Sydney on Wisdom Literature. I began teaching at the Catholic Institute of Sydney in 2010 where I have taught on both the New and Old Testaments.


Select Publications

  • “An Empty Heart: The Australian Expanse in Coetzee, Gerald Murnane and Shaun Prescott’s The Town.” In Beauty and the Christian Tradition, edited by Matthew Del Nevo, Robert Andrews and Rohan Curnow, 133–60. Strathfield, NSW: St Pauls Publications, 2020.
  • “Justice, Mercy, and Predestination in Romans.” In Justice, Mercy and Well-Being: Interdisciplinary Perspectives, edited by Peter G. Bolt and James R. Harrison, 89–109. Eugene, OR: Pickwick Publications, 2020.
  • “The Petrine Keys of Mercy: A Biblical Defence of Amoris Laetitia.” Australasian Catholic Record 97, no. 1 (2020): 3–17.
  • “Usury and the Interpretation of the Sacred Text.” In The Impact of Jesus of Nazareth: Historical, Theological, and Pastoral Perspectives, Vol. 1: Historical and Theological Studies, edited by Peter G. Bolt, James R. Harrison and Darrell Bock, 149–78. Macquarie Park, NSW: SCD Press, 2020.
  • “Crisis? What Crisis?: Gospel Criticism and the Ideological Use of an Illiterate Jesus Movement.” Journal of Gospels and Acts Research 3 (2019): 15–40.
  • “Mary the Temple of Scripture: The Biblical Art of Sacred Circumlocution.” In Mariology at the Beginning of the Third Millennium, edited by Kevin Wagner et al., 209–25. Eugene, OR: Pickwick Publications, 2017.
  • “Social and Personal Well-Being under Late-Capitalism: Laudato Si’ and the Character of Interconnectedness.” In Well-being, Personal Wholeness and the Social Fabric: An Interdisciplinary Approach, edited by Doru Costache, Darren Cronshaw and James R. Harrison, 154–82. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2017.
  • “The Biopolitical Economy of Anti-Essentialism.” Solidarity: The Journal of Catholic Social Thought and Secular Ethics 7, no. 1, art. 5 (2017).
  • “Opposing the Virtual World of Late-Capitalism: A Biblical Theology of Education.” In Teaching Theology in a Technological Age, edited by Yvette Debergue and James R. Harrison, 65–85. Newcastle on Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015.
  • “Revelation: Scripture.” In An Introduction to Philosophy and Theology within Catholic Liberal Education, edited by Angus Brook, 194–201. Sydney: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.
  • “Revelation: Tradition.” In An Introduction to Philosophy and Theology within Catholic Liberal Education, edited by Angus Brook, 202–9. Sydney: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.
  • “The Cathedral of Being: Re-enchantment and the Writings of the Popes.” Solidarity: The Journal of Catholic Social Thought and Secular Ethics 5, no. 1, art. 2 (2015).
  • “Book Review: Theology and the Body, Stephen Garner (ed.).” Australian eJournal of Theology 21, no. 3 (2014): 265–6.
  • “Promoting What We Oppose—Part 2.” Solidarity: The Journal of Catholic Social Thought and Secular Ethics 4, no. 1, art. 6 (2014).
  • “The Birth of Ideology: Genesis and the Origins of Self-Deception.” Crucible 5, no. 1, art. 2 (2013): 1–22.
  • “Promoting What We Oppose: Faith, the Free Market, and First Things.” Solidarity: The Journal of Catholic Social Thought and Secular Ethics 3, no. 1, art. 1 (2013).
  • “The Joy of Artifice: The Metaphysics of Pantomime in G.K. Chesterton.” In Reviving the Moral Imagination: G.K. Chesterton on Stage and Screen, edited by Karl Schmude, 34–49. Sydney: Campion College, 2013.
  • Caritas in Veritate and the Metaphysics of Defiance.” In Globalisation and the Church: Reflections on Caritas in Veritate, edited by Neil Ormerod and Paul Oslington, 49–85. Strathfield, NSW: St Pauls Publications, 2011.
  • Benedict XVI and the Search for Truth. Strathfield, NSW: St Pauls Publications, 2007.
  • “William Robinson and Nature.” Australian eJournal of Theology 1, no. 1, art. 23 (2003).