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CT3/9797S

Churches of Christ Identity

Also offered as CH/CT3/9097S

Elective unit for postgraduate

Content:

This  unit enables students to integrate continuing studies in Field C with a focus on theological and historical influences, expressions and aspirations in Australian Churches of Christ identity and contemporary witness. The unit examines biblical, historical, theological and philosophical precursors to the nineteenth century Restoration movement in the USA (“Disciples of Christ”) and its subsequent expressions in Australia and Asia, along with continuing influences, conversations, tensions and aspirations in Churches of Christ identity.

Churches of Christ identity is exhibited within its foci: Christological, so as to name and identity, unashamedly Christian; testimonial, so as to purpose, disseminating good news; as to character, given to generosity and veracity after Christological grace and truth.

Christian identity within Churches of Christ is not creedal or doctrinaire, much less programmatic. It is interstitial*, offering interfaces of engagement and creative possibility as a forum of Christian testimony. This forum encompasses New Testament proclamation and its vital interpretations within the relay of Christian witness. Faithful and intelligent engagement within this space, in the midst of humanity, is orientated to generous and veritable testimony that is exhibited by christologically focused deed and word. The tone of this engagement is given within apostolic ministry and weighed as to interpretation through continuing faith and relay within specific contexts and emerging challenges. (*Interstitial—an interfacing space)

 

Learning Outcomes: Upon successful completion of this unit, it is expected that students will be able to:

Undergraduate level 3

  1. Critically examine significant biblical, historical, theological and philosophical precursors to the nineteenth century Restoration movement (“Disciples of Christ”) and its foundational emphases.
  2. Describe and discuss historical expressions and directions emerging from the Disciples of Christ since 1830, especially those relating to Australian Churches of Christ.
  3. Evaluate theologically, historical and contemporary aspects of Churches of Christ identity and witness.
  4. Develop a theological critique of Churches of Christ identity with reference to emerging trajectories of its expression.
  5. Demonstrate theological critical skills in formulating and executing a research project.

 

Postgraduate level 9

  1. Critically examine significant biblical, historical, theological and philosophical precursors to the nineteenth century Restoration movement (“Disciples of Christ”) and its foundational emphases.
  2. Describe and discuss historical expressions and directions emerging from the Disciples of Christ since 1830, especially those relating to Australian Churches of Christ.
  3. Evaluate theologically, historical and contemporary aspects of Churches of Christ identity and witness.
  4. Develop a theological critique of Churches of Christ identity with reference to emerging trajectories of its expression.
  5. Develop a researched theological critique of Churches of Christ identity in its variegated expressions, with particular reference to contemporary theological and cultural challenges for Christian identity

 

Pre-requisites:

For undergraduates –
60 points in Field C or 180 course points with at least 45 points in Field C
For postgraduates
45 points in Field C or 60 course points with at least 30 points in Field C

Offered:  online in 2018 (semester 2)
This is an online unit commencing with a gathered forum on  24th July followed by eight online  sessions.
This course can be taken for University credit, with assessment, over 14 weeks.
Stirling Theological College also offers the opportunity to audit an online study course on Churches of Christ Identity. The course focuses on theological and historical influences, expressions and aspirations in Australian Churches of Christ identity and contemporary witness. It examines biblical, historical and theological precursors to the nineteenth century Restoration movement in the USA and its subsequent expressions in Australia and South East Asia, continuing influences, conversations, tensions and aspirations in Churches of Christ identity. Complementary resources are also available online from the Hindmarsh Research Centre for Mission and Ministry, Stirling.

Assessment:

Undergraduate – Four 500 word document studies contributing to a 5000 word project: 100%
Postgraduate – Four 750 word document studies contributing to a 6000 word project: 100%

Recommended Reading:

* = set texts recommended for purchase

Blakemore, W.B., gen. ed. The Renewal of the Church: The Panel of Scholars Reports, 3 vols. St. Louis: Bethany Press, 1963.
*Blowers, P.M., ed. The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2005.
*Blowers, P.M., et al, eds. The Stone-Campbell Movement: A Global History, Danvers: Chalice, 2013.
Carson, G.T., Foster D.A., & Holloway C.J. eds. One Church: A Bicentennial Celebration of Thomas Campbell’s Declaration and Address. Abilene: Leafwood Publishers, 2009.
Campbell, T. Declaration and Address; Stone BW and others. Last Will and Testament of the Springfield Presbytery. St. Louis: Bethany Press, 1960.
Crow, PA, & James O. Duke, eds. The Church for Disciples of Christ: Seeking To Be Truly Church Today: A Report and Resource by The Commission on Theology Council on Christian Unity. St. Louis: Christian Board of Publication, 1998.
Garrett, L. The Stone-Campbell Movement: An Anecdotal History of Three Churches. Joplin: College Press, 1981, 1983.
Locke, J. The Reasonableness of Christianity with A Discourse of Miracles and part of A Third Letter Concerning Toleration, edited, abridged and introduced by IT Ramsey. London: A&C Black, 1958.
McLoughlin, W.G. Revivals, Awakenings, and Reform: An Essay on Religion and Social Change in America, 1607-1977. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1978.
Niebuhr, H.R. The Kingdom of God in America. New York: Harper, 1937/1959.
Seale, J.M., ed. Lectures in Honor of the Alexander Campbell Bicentennial, 1788–1988. Nashville: Disciples of Christ Historical Society, 1988.
North, J.B. Union in Truth: An Interpretive History of the Restoration Movement. Cincinnati: Standard Publishing, 1994.
Stirling G. Churches of Christ: Reinterpreting Ourselves for the New Century. Melbourne: Vital Publications 1999.
Toulouse, M.G. Joined in Discipleship: The Shaping of Contemporary Disciples Identity, St. Louis: Chalice, 1997.
Toulouse, M.G., ed. Walter Scott: A Nineteenth Century Evangelical. St. Louis: Chalice, 1999.
Williams E.L., Churches of Christ: an interpretation. Melbourne: Vital, 1980.
Williams E.L., A Biblical Approach To Unity. Melbourne: Austral, 1957.