Fall Quarter 2016
September 24 – December 10
Classes ordinarily run for 10 weeks
The Gospel of Luke (2 credits)
Professor: Peter Hintzoglou
Location: La Canada Presbyterian Church, La Canada, CA
Monday evenings, (Sept. 26-November 28)
6:45 – 9:15pm
The practice of our Christian life and witness depends to a large extent upon our understanding of the Gospel, the person of Christ, the function of the Holy Spirit and the spiritual practices such as prayer, forgiveness, and so on. Luke, in his Gospel, introduces us to the person and ministry of Jesus. In this seminar we will explore the mission of His ministry, the nature of salvation, and the practices designed to help believers build healthy, loving, giving relationships and be effective witnesses to the love of Jesus.
Spirituality and Social Justice (2 credits)
Professors: Janna Gosselin and Charles Marks
Location: Second Baptist Church, Santa Ana
Saturday mornings: October 1, 8, 22, 29; November 12, 19; December 3, 10
9:30am – 12:00pm
“Two of the great hungers in our world today are the hunger for spirituality and the hunger for social justice. The connection between the two is one the world is waiting for.” This class aims to address that very connection. Although a meaningful spiritual life and social justice are both significant topics for the church and society today, few explore the crucial link between the two. Yet this link is where lives can be transformed. The lives of deeply religious people, on the one hand, show that, as their spiritual life deepens, a deeper interest in the welfare of others is a natural outgrowth. On the other hand, for those interested in perpetuating needed social change, a deeper spiritual life is vital to avoid burn-out. Beyond mere self-care, spirituality prompts the activist to transform his/her goals from a movement against a particular social ill to a movement toward deeper goals of hope, love and reconciliation. The leadership of Howard Thurman, Martin Luther King, and Sojourner Truth exemplified this principle. In sum, a focus on spirituality both builds and sustains movements for social justice, allowing all to work from and for God’s love.
The Prophets (2 credits)
Professor: Michael Woodcock
Location: First Presbyterian, Encino
Tuesday evenings: September 27, Oct 4, 11, 25, Nov 1, 8, 15, 29 plus two outside Ministry engagements
6:45 – 9:15pm
This course will introduce the prophetic books of the Old Testament, with attention to the prophets’ calling, message and ministry, their historical setting, and the formation of the books that bear their names. These writings occupy a crucial place within the Old Testament and in the grand sweep of scripture, as they bear witness to Israel’s “death” and “resurrection.” We will explore the essential contribution they make to our understanding of God’s freedom, justice, commitment, passion, holiness, and steadfast love. Our study will yield some fresh discoveries of the prophets’ urgent relevance for our lives and our world, including the areas of social justice, idolatry, spiritual integrity, and hope. In our class meetings we will make use of both broad survey and more detailed investigation of key passages, as well as spiritual practices, discussion and reflection. We will also participate in two outside ministry experiences that implement some key parts of the prophets’ message.
Shadowing the Bible Teacher: The Book of Daniel (2 credits)
Professor: Jerry Tankersley
Location: Laguna Presbyterian Church, Laguna Beach, CA
Wednesday mornings: Sept 28 – Nov 2, plus three independent study sessions with the Bible teacher
7 – 8:30am
This new course offers the opportunity to shadow a pastor who is an outstanding Bible teacher. Students will attend Laguna Presbyterian’s regular Wednesday morning Bible study; and meet three times separately (independent study) with Dr. Tankersley as you consider various strategies for teaching the Bible in a congregational setting.
Daniel is an Old Testament story that places representatives of the Lord in Babylonian Exile. The relevance of these stories for the church points to what some say about the postmodern marginalization of the people of God. We have been displaced by the “principalities and powers”, have lost authority and influence in the culture, and our identity is in doubt. Institutionally we have lost out in possessing the symbols which western culture values. Therefore, can we survive? How do we stay alive, flourish in our walk with God, and fulfill our calling? Daniel gives us clues, stirs our imaginations, and inspires our obedience.