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Dirk G. Lange
Academic Dean
651-641-3468
Guillermo C. Hansen
Asoociate Dean for Graduate Theological Education
651-523-1647

Meet the Faculty

Kathryn M. Schifferdecker

Kathryn M. Schifferdecker

Associate Professor of Old Testament; Bible Division Chair

  • Th.D. (Harvard University, The Divinity School)
  • M.Div. (Yale University, The Divinity School)

Biography

Kathryn M Schifferdecker came to Luther Seminary as an assistant professor of Old Testament in 2006. Ordained in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America in 2001, Schifferdecker was associate pastor for five years at Trinity Lutheran Church, Arkdale, Wisc., before coming to Luther.

Schifferdecker is a frequent contributor to workingpreacher.org, Word & World and the author of Out of the Whirlwind: Creation Theology in the Book of Job (Harvard University Press, 2008). She is currently writing a commentary on the book of Esther.

Featured Work

Out of the Whirlwind: Creation Theology in the Book of Job

Out of the Whirlwind: Creation Theology in the Book of Job

Harvard University Press (October, 2008)

The book of Job is a complex, sophisticated treatment of the problem of undeserved suffering. It is also a sustained meditation on creation, on humanity’s place in creation, and on God’s ordering of creation. In this study, Kathryn Schifferdecker offers a close literary and theological reading of the book of Job—particularly of the speeches of God at the end of the book—in order to articulate its creation theology, which is particularly pertinent in our environmentally-conscious age. After all of Job’s agonized questioning, God’s answer does not directly address Job’s questions about undeserved suffering or divine justice. Instead, the divine speeches take Job on a God’s-eye tour of creation in all its beauty and complexity. In extraordinarily detailed and beautiful poetry, the divine speeches show Job that the world is radically non-anthropocentric, that there exist wild places and animals whose value has nothing to do with their usefulness to humanity, and that God delights in the freedom of God’s creatures. This vision of the divine speeches enables Job to move out of despair into renewed participation in God’s often-dangerous but beautiful world. This creation theology of Job, virtually unique in the Bible, has much to say to us today, as we struggle theologically and politically with the issues of environmental degradation and humanity’s relationship to the natural world.

Out of the Whirlwind: Creation Theology in the Book of Job

Courses

OT 1144 01THE BOOK OF JOB Summer Term 2018-2019

An examination of the book of Job and the theological questions it raises. Special attention is paid to questions about suffering, the problem of evil, and the nature of divine justice. The book is also examined in light of Christian theology and pastoral practice. Brief consideration is given to the place of Job within the context of other biblical wisdom literature. Prerequisite: LG0110 Biblical Hebrew

OT 1144 02THE BOOK OF JOB Summer Term 2018-2019

An examination of the book of Job and the theological questions it raises. Special attention is paid to questions about suffering, the problem of evil, and the nature of divine justice. The book is also examined in light of Christian theology and pastoral practice. Brief consideration is given to the place of Job within the context of other biblical wisdom literature. Prerequisite: LG0110 Biblical Hebrew SUMMER 2019: Those students who take the course for a full credit (1.0) will participate in a readers' theater performance Friday evening of "J.B.", a 20th-century play by Archibald MacLeish based on the book of Job. The morning sessions of the class will be primarily lecture-based. The afternoons will be used to prepare for the play performance, to talk about the themes of the play and how they compare to the book of Job, and to explore other literary and musical interpretations of Job.

CD 1633 01GOD EVIL AND SUFFERING Spring Semester 2018-2019

An examination of ways in which the Bible and the Christian tradition consider evil and suffering and how such consideration informs the task of interpreting and confessing the Gospel in the contemporary world. Special attention is given to implications for pastoral reflection.

OT 0115 01LAW AND NARRATIVE January Term 2018-2019

An overview of the Pentateuch (Genesis – Deuteronomy), the Deuteronomistic History (Joshua – 2 Kings), and other narrative texts, with attention to both legal material and narrative texts. Attention is paid to major theological themes, events, books, and figures. Attention is also paid to hermeneutical and exegetical issues regarding interpreting Old Testament law and Hebrew narrative. Texts are studied in order to equip students to interpret them for the sake of Christian life and ministry. Equivalency: SG0702 Scripture and Its Witnesses II

GR 8651 04INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDY Fall Semester 2018-2019

A tutorial taken with the advisor in the first year focusing on the intersection of the student's area of study with the program niche or thurst.

OT 0115 02 50LAW AND NARRATIVE - ONLINE Fall Semester 2018-2019

An overview of the Pentateuch (Genesis – Deuteronomy), the Deuteronomistic History (Joshua – 2 Kings), and other narrative texts, with attention to both legal material and narrative texts. Attention is paid to major theological themes, events, books, and figures. Attention is also paid to hermeneutical and exegetical issues regarding interpreting Old Testament law and Hebrew narrative. Texts are studied in order to equip students to interpret them for the sake of Christian life and ministry. Equivalency: SG0702 Scripture and Its Witnesses II

OT 0115 50LAW AND NARRATIVE - ONLINE Fall Semester 2018-2019

An overview of the Pentateuch (Genesis – Deuteronomy), the Deuteronomistic History (Joshua – 2 Kings), and other narrative texts, with attention to both legal material and narrative texts. Attention is paid to major theological themes, events, books, and figures. Attention is also paid to hermeneutical and exegetical issues regarding interpreting Old Testament law and Hebrew narrative. Texts are studied in order to equip students to interpret them for the sake of Christian life and ministry. Equivalency: SG0702 Scripture and Its Witnesses II

OT 1164 01PREACHING THE OLD TESTAMENT TEXTS Summer Term 2017-2018

An introduction to preaching from the Old Testament. The course examines various types of texts from the Old Testament, including narrative, law, and prophecy, and explores different hermeneutical approaches to preaching these texts. Special attention is paid to theological themes and to the preaching of these texts for the sake of Christian life and faith. Prerequisite: PR 0510 – Foundations of Biblical Preaching

OT 1164 99 RSRS - PREACHING THE OLD TESTAMENT Summer Term 2017-2018

An introduction to preaching from the Old Testament. The course examines various types of texts from the Old Testament, including narrative, law, and prophecy, and explores different hermeneutical approaches to preaching these texts. Special attention is paid to theological themes and to the preaching of these texts for the sake of Christian life and faith. Prerequisite: PR 0510 – Foundations of Biblical Preaching Fulfills Preaching elective

OT 0115 01LAW AND NARRATIVE Spring Semester 2017-2018

An overview of the Pentateuch (Genesis – Deuteronomy), the Deuteronomistic History (Joshua – 2 Kings), and other narrative texts, with attention to both legal material and narrative texts. Attention is paid to major theological themes, events, books, and figures. Attention is also paid to hermeneutical and exegetical issues regarding interpreting Old Testament law and Hebrew narrative. Texts are studied in order to equip students to interpret them for the sake of Christian life and ministry. Equivalency: SG0702 Scripture and Its Witnesses II

OT 0115 01LAW AND NARRATIVE Fall Semester 2017-2018

An overview of the Pentateuch (Genesis – Deuteronomy), the Deuteronomistic History (Joshua – 2 Kings), and other narrative texts, with attention to both legal material and narrative texts. Attention is paid to major theological themes, events, books, and figures. Attention is also paid to hermeneutical and exegetical issues regarding interpreting Old Testament law and Hebrew narrative. Texts are studied in order to equip students to interpret them for the sake of Christian life and ministry. Equivalency: SG0702 Scripture and Its Witnesses II

OT 1144 50 S6THE BOOK OF JOB Fall Semester 2017-2018

An examination of the book of Job and the theological questions it raises. Special attention is paid to questions about suffering, the problem of evil, and the nature of divine justice. The book is also examined in light of Christian theology and pastoral practice. Brief consideration is given to the place of Job within the context of other biblical wisdom literature. Prerequisite: LG0110 Biblical Hebrew

BP 7539 01COLLOQUY - THIRD YEAR DMIN - BP DMIN Session - BP 2017-2018

Colloquy for Third Year students - Biblical Preaching DMin degree program. COURSE MEETS JUNE 18-22, 2018 in GH306.

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Faculty Publications