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COURSE NUMBER: THEO 374
COURSE TITLE: Micah's Challenge
NAME OF INSTRUCTOR: Roy Berkenbosch, M.Div., Jonathan Nicolai Dekoning
CREDIT WEIGHT AND WEEKLY TIME DISTRIBUTION: credits 3(hrs lect 3 - hrs sem 0 - hrs lab 0)
COURSE DESCRIPTION: The Hebrew prophet Micah summarized the calling of God’s people in the simple yet profound verse: “What does the Lord require of you?  To do justice, to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.”  This ancient but succinct statement remains a powerful summons for the people of God to understand the nature of biblical justice and to be engaged in the quest for justice today.  In a world besieged by economic inequality, violence, poverty and hunger, HIV/AIDS, war and famine, Micah’s Challenge is immediate and urgent.  In this course students will examine the biblical and theological foundations for justice and seek to apply and test those concepts in the context of the Millennium Development Goals.

Prerequisites: THEO 250
REQUIRED TEXTS:
  • Globalization, Spirituality and Justice,  Daniel G Groody, Orbis
  • Shalom: The Bible’s Word for Salvation, Justice and Peace, Perry Yoder (course pack)
  • Justice in a Global Economy, P. Brubaker, R. Todd-Peters, Laura Stivers, ed. Westminster John Knox Press, 2006
MARK DISTRIBUTION IN PERCENT:
Reading Journal 25%
Research Project 30%
Participation 15%
Final Exam/Book Review 30%
100%
COURSE OBJECTIVES: Upon completion of this course you should
  • Have a thorough understanding of the idea of justice as articulated in the Biblical narrative
  • understand how justice has been treated theologically in the history of the church
  • recognise the importance (and challenge) of a holistic Christian missional response to poverty and related issues.
  • understand and appreciate the idea of  “integral mission”
  • be familiar with the holistic causes and responses to poverty with special attention given to the Millennium Development Goals.
  • have developed a capacity for teaching and training others in appreciation, awareness and action concerning the issues raised in class
  • have a more strongly developed sense of personal vocation and calling to be an advocate and champion for Transformational Development.
COURSE OUTLINE:
  • January 10 Introduction and course overview, project assignments 
  • January 17  Theological Foundations 
    •   Read Yoder, page 1-52 **
  • January 24 I.S no class
  • January 31 Theological Foundations 
    •   Read Yoder, page 52-85 **
  • February 7 Theological Foundations
    •   Read Yoder 85-146 **
  • February 14 Restorative Justice
    •   Read Groody, chapter 3 and 4
  • February 21 No class, reading week
  • February 28 Justice and the Poor
    •   Read Groody chapter 2, 7 **
    •   Viewing of “Romero”
  • March 7 Poverty and Development
    •   Read JIGA chapter 10 **
  • March 14  Justice for Strangers: Immigration and Refugees
    •   Read JIGA chapters 9, 12
  • March 21  Food Justice
    •   Read JIGE, chapters 1, 4**
  • March 28 Climate Justice – read JIGA, chapters 7, 8
    • April 4   Research Presentations (TBD)
    • April 11  Research Presentations (TBD)


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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