On Monday I begin taking an on-line class from Northwest Nazarene University. The class I am taking is Biblical Theology from Dr. George Lyons.
Here is a part of the course description from Dr. Lyons' class:
"This class is a survey of the historical and theological discipline and data of biblical theology. Some attention is given to its history, definition, and methods. Major attention focuses upon the content of biblical theology: its major witnesses, themes, and theologically significant passages. Consideration is given to the relationship between this synthesizing account of the religious and theological message of the Bible and responsible exegesis, hermeneutics, systematic theology, and preaching.
There are many worthy ends for studying the Bible — historical information, literary appreciation, social insight, cultural awareness, religious comprehension, spiritual formation, etc. The explicit aim of this course is theological understanding and integration. Within this context, learning disconnected biblical trivia is not an end in itself. Although biblical knowledge is a noble pursuit, a major goal of Scripture study for Christians must be to allow the Bible to shape their understanding of the triune God and how God relates to human beings, and the entire created order."
I have taken classes before from Dr. Lyons and he is an excellent and very challenging professor. I am looking forward to growing through my study of the Word of God within the context of this class. It is my prayer that my studies will be fruitful and will "spill" over in a productive and formative way into the lives of my family, friends and coworkers.
Why am I taking a class?
Lord willing, I would like to make application to the Drew University On-line Doctor of Ministry program next Fall. As a prerequisite to applying for this program I am in need of some additional credits in the areas of Biblical Studies, Biblical Theology and Church History. Thus, I am planning on taking this class and two others this year.
Taking an on-line class (25 hours a week) within the context of a full-time job and life in general is very demanding, but it can be done. Lord willing, I can do it and I want to do it. As the saying goes, "If you're gonna be dumb, you gotta be tough." I will need to make some changes in my personal schedule and be very disciplined as I move through the class. My personal reading list will go on hold for awhile and my "TV time," which is non-existent anyway, will remain non-existent.
I am looking toward pursuing a D.Min. degree because it is something that I am interested in and it is something that I hope that God can use for His glory in my life. I want to be available for God to work in and through my life.
Within my new schedule and responsibility I hope to keep up on my family blog and I hope to keep up on this blog. Be warned, there is good chance that some of my thoughts from my classes may end up as posts on this blog.
I would appreciate your prayers as I move into taking classes. Please pray -- not that I would get an "A" in the class or become a genius but rather that I would keep those things that are most important in life at the forefront of my mind and heart. Relationships are the things that I can't sacrifice for this class, degree or any other life venture. Pray that I would keep my relationships with God, my wife, my daughters, my family and my friends in the place of utmost importance.
I am excited and a little nervous about this class. Thanks for listening to my ramblings....