|COURSE NUMBER:||HIST 364|
|COURSE TITLE:||Futures in the Past: Historical Theology|
|NAME OF INSTRUCTOR:||Dr. Douglas Harink|
|CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION:||credits 3(hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)|
|COURSE DESCRIPTION:||A study of important stages in the development of
Christian doctrine and some of the major figures in the history of
Christian theology. We will examine the influence of social, political
and cultural contexts on doctrine and theology, and ask the question
whether and how a study of the Christian past might give shape to the
church, theology and Christian faithfulness in the present and future.
Same as THEO 364.
Prerequisites: THEO 250, and HIST 202 or 204
New Testament is just the beginning. By the end of the period of
the apostles (~ 100 CE) the Christian Church had spread into the Roman
Empire, and even established itself in the centre of that empire, the
city of Rome. In the following centuries the church would reach to the
very ends of that empire, and finally well beyond the West, to the very
ends of the earth. Every move into a new context required new
attention to the question of how to understand the Christian message
faithfully in that context. In other words, the church’s mission
to and engagement with new cultures demands that the church always be
addressing the nature of its own identity, an identity which depends
ultimately on answering some fundamental questions: Who is God?
Who is Jesus Christ? Who is this Holy Spirit who creates and empowers
the Church? What is the Church? What kind of reality is this world?
What is the goal of God’s work in the world? What is the mission of the
Church? The attempts to answer these questions faithfully creates
a fascinating history of theological reflection in a wide variety of
forms: apologetic tracts, letters, theological and philosophical
treatises, sermons, commentaries on scripture, creeds and confessions —
all produced by a motley crew of colourful groups and characters over
nearly 2000 years.
In this course we will attempt to gain a perspective on the history of Christian theology through some of its most prolific and influential figures. We will explore them through their own writings, focusing on some of their most characteristic contributions to the development of Christian theology. Throughout the course we will ask not only what was thought, said and argued “back then,” but also ask what gifts these historic figures might continue to have for the church and Christians in our own time, and for the future: that is, to discern not only the shape of the past, but also the “futures in the past.”
|MARK DISTRIBUTION IN PERCENT:||
|COURSE OBJECTIVES:||Upon successful completion of this course students should have gained:
Required texts, assignments, and grade distributions may vary from one offering of this course to the next. Please consult the course instructor for up to date details.
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