E-lert - September 2013

Register for fall Lay School classes!

Are you interested in going deeper in your theological studies? We are offering exciting classes through our Lay School of Theology this fall! The Lay School curriculum includes a wide variety of courses on biblical topics from both the Old and New Testaments, theological issues and modern church and cultural studies.

All classes are held Mondays from Sept. 23-Oct. 28. There will be no classes on Oct. 7.

All Those Christians: Who They Are and What They Believe
Mark Granquist, Associate Professor of Church History
Mondays, Noon-2 p.m.

There are a bewildering number of different kinds of Christian groups in the world today, and it seems like the number increases every day. This course will attempt to bring order out of chaos by clustering these groups into denominational families, which we can then study. We will look at these Christian "families" and try to understand their distinctive beliefs and practices, their structures and the ways in which they worship. The primary focus will be on North America, but we will also think about how these Christian traditions have spread around the world.

Revelation, Faith and the End (webcast available)
Eric Barreto, Assistant Professor of New Testament
Mondays, 7-9 p.m.

Revelation is a difficult book to read. With powerful and often disturbing images, John leads us into a world of comfort and hope in the midst of persecution—but also fear and trepidation as the very foundations of the world are shaken. Making matters even more difficult are the various ways Christians have read this book. Is Revelation a precise sketch of the last days, a word of relief to early Christians no longer relevant to us or something in between? For far too long, many Christians have avoided this last book of the Bible, but we shouldn't. In Revelation, we learn that God is ever faithful and that God's love knows no end.

Spirituality and the Old Testament
Cameron Howard, Assistant Professor of Old Testament
Mondays, 7-9 p.m.

In this course we will explore the many ways spirituality is alive in the Old Testament. We will listen for the ways that Old Testament voices, including the characters in it and the writers behind it, conceive of spirit and interact with the divine. We will consider how Christians can engage the Old Testament as a resource for a life of faith, especially by observing the encounters with God described in Scripture. Though the Psalms will be part of our study, our work will focus more closely on other forms of divine-human interaction in the Old Testament, including covenant, sacrificial worship, prophecy and wisdom.

For more information or to register for these courses, visit www.luthersem.edu/layschool.