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  • Biblical Methods: Form Criticism
    Form Criticism what kind of form is it that is here and how is it to be interpreted The value of Form Criticism is that it sets interpretive boundaries around the text which help the interpreter to not over or under interpret That is when one knows that one is reading a fable as in the fable of Jotham one knows that it is to be interpreted as any fable is in order to convey a moral message When it was told to Jotham he went and stood on the top of Mount Gerizim and cried aloud and said to them Listen to me you lords of Shechem so that God may listen to you The trees once went out to ano int a king over themseve tree Reign over us The olive tree answered them Shall I stop producing my rich oil by which gods and mortals are honored and go to sway over the trees Then the trees said to the fig tree You come and reign over us But the fig tree answered them Shall I stop producing my sweetness and my delicious fruit and go to sway over the trees Then the trees said to the vine You come and reign over us But the vine said to them Shall I stop producing my wine that cheers gods and mortals and go to sway over the trees So all the trees said to the bramble You come and reign over us And the bramble said to the trees If in good faith you are anointing me king over you then come and take refuge in my shade but if not let fire come out of the bramble and devour the cedars of Lebanon Judges 9 This fable is simply an anti monarchical story It must be

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  • Biblical Methods: Tradition Criticism
    which embodies the tradition and what is the broader word field used to describe the event For example passover is also called the feast of unleavend bread Are these the same Or different b Is there a formulaic structure which is always used when the tradition is described I e when the Prophets speak for God the text generally says thus says the Lord is this formula always present in the prophetic traditions Is it left out Why c Are there parallels A famous example of this is David s Census in 2 Samuel 24 and 1 Chronicles 22 The passage in Samuel says Again the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel and he incited David against them saying Go count the people of Israel and Judah In Samuel the Lord incites David but in Chronicles it is Satan who does so Satan stood up against Israel and incited David to count the people of Israel What is one to make of this How is the tradition of the census altered by the Chronicler Why Another example of the use of tradition criticism is made clear when we examine how the New Testament writers were able to so intertwine the Old Testament traditions that only those well familiar with the Old Testament are able to discern these traditions To illustrate the following passages are offered Psalm 23 The Lord is my shepherd I shall not want He makes me lie down in green pastures he leads me beside still waters he restores my soul He leads me in right paths for his name s sake Even though I walk through the darkest valley I fear no evil for you are with me your rod and your staff they comfort me You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies you anoint my head with oil my cup overflows Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord my whole life long In this text the Lord is described as a shepherd who feeds his flocks on the green grass of the pleasant pasture This tradition is adopted by the writers of the Gospels when they describe the feeding of the 5000 Mark 6 30 39 The apostles gathered around Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught He said to them Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while For many were coming and going and they had no leisure even to eat And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves Now many who saw them leaving recognized them and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them As he went ashore he saw a great crowd and he had compassion for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd and he began to teach them many things When it grew

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  • H371 - The Reformation Before the Reformation: John Wycliffe
    In 1377 the Pope issued a Bull an official document which prohibits the publication of certain writings condemning in 18 theses the writings of Wycliffe Wycliffe s reaction was violent He began to denounce the Pope though contrary to Luther not the Papacy in vehement and incredibly harsh writings From 1378 to 1379 Wycliffe published his theological system in a series of tracts The main thesis of these works was that the Scriptures are the foundation of all doctrine This was the turning point of doctrinal history To this point Tradition was placed alongside Scripture as a source of doctrine but Wycliffe disputed this notion and John Hus of Prague and Martin Luther as well as Huldrych Zwingli and John Calvin would adopt the view of Wycliffe Wycliffe s doctrine of the Church was likewise revolutionary He saw the Church as a spiritual institution and not a political one Thus the pre reformation work of Wycliffe lay in his doctrines of Scripture and the Church It would be these precise doctrinal controversies which would later fuel the Reformation of Luther and Zwingli The significance of Wycliffe cannot be overlooked His movement towards Scripture and Church as spiritual society were the foundation stones on which the later Reformation would be founded He nevertheless did propose ideas that were very controversial He suggested that human freedom was non existent to the point that everything that a person did was predetermined His great animosity towards the Pope led him to make some outrageous personal statements and his distrust of human nature very nearly led him to completely dehumanize humanity Yet without Wycliffe there could not have been a Reformation Or for that matter an English translation of the Bible Wycliffe s translation is well known He did his work from the Latin Vulgate

    Original URL path: http://theology.edu/h371.htm (2013-12-09)
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  • Essay Questions for H371 - The Reformation I
    questions in the form of a three page essay use the assigned text and any other resources to help you and then submit your answers to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading 1 Discuss the history of the English translation of the Bible 2 Discuss the contributions of Wycliffe to the Reformation 3 Using your imagination describe what kind of history the Church would have had

    Original URL path: http://theology.edu/h371ques.htm (2013-12-09)
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  • H372 - The Reformation in Germany: Martin Luther
    He became incredibly interested in the Bible This interest grew over a period of many years and later came to fruition Luther journeyed to Rome in 1510 on business for the order and was disappointed by the great luxury which he saw among the cardinals In 1511 Luther was sent by his superior to Wittenberg to be the professor of Biblical Theology Before he could assume this duty he was required to obtain a doctorate in theology which he accomplished in 1512 He then assumed his duties as lecturer at the university of Wittenberg where he would remain the rest of his life In 1514 Luther was appointed preacher of the city Church in Wittenberg Thus he combined the pulpit and the podium in his ministerial duties As Luther continued to lecture on the Biblical text he became more certain that salvation was by grace alone His lectures on Psalms Romans Galatians and Hebrews show that this confidence in grace was growing slowly but surely Especially in his lectures of 1516 1517 on Galatians can one see his growing love of grace and disdain of merits accomplished by human effort or bought in an indulgence sale By the time Luther lectured on Romans he had completely repudiated the idea of merit as earned grace It seems clear then that Luther did not come to his understanding all of a sudden but that the development of his theology took place over a period of many years The consequences of this change in theological perspective were far reaching The popular understanding of salvation was undermined and the power of the papacy was threatened Rome had no choice but to respond The matter with Luther came to a head in 1517 when Luther sent letters to his superiors asking them to repeal the indulgence sale and along with the letter a series of 95 theses which supported his request These theses were spread all around the country and they ignited a fire of protest against the economic and spiritual misdeeds of Rome In 1519 Luther was summoned to Leipzig in order to defend his views or recant them He presented his case with vigor and the Reformation was born in Germany As the Reform movement grew the ideas of Luther were spread around Germany and beyond At the University of Wittenberg the reigning scholastic theology was replaced by Biblical languages and studies in 1518 In 1520 Luther wrote his three most significant works Sermon on Good Works Babylonian Captivity of the Church and The Freedom of a Christian These works set forth the ideas that 1 Christian ethics arise from faith 2 there are only two sacraments the Eucharist and Baptism and 3 freedom means responsibility These ideas served as the foundation stones of all later Lutheran thought and their influence can be felt to the present day The Roman Church was not sitting on its hands during this period of uproar In 1520 Luther received notice that if he did not recant

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  • Essay Questions for H372 - The Reformation II
    THE REFORMATION II Please answer each of the following questions in the form of a three page essay use the assigned text and any other resources to help you and then submit your answers to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading 1 Describe the causes of Luther s reformation 2 Discuss the accomplishments and failures of the Lutheran reformation 3 Write a brief biography of Luther

    Original URL path: http://theology.edu/h372ques.htm (2013-12-09)
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  • H373 - The Reformation in Switzerland: Huldrych Zwingli and John Calvin
    one can clearly tell Zwingli was well on the road to reforming theology long before Luther sent his 95 theses to the archbishop After his move to Zurich in 1519 the plague struck the city Up to 1 3 of the population was killed and Zwingli himself became very ill It was after this illness that Zwingli wrote his wonderful poem The Plague After the plague came to an end Zwingli began to reform the city of Zurich and the worship of the church Icons and images were removed from the churches and music was banned because the singers sang for their own glory insisted of the glory of God Perhaps many modern churches should reconsider the motivations by which their singers perform Zwingli was not opposed to music per se or art for that matter Rather he believed that every action which a Christian performed should be for the glory of God and not for human self aggrandizement Zwingli was himself an accomplished musician and often he played some instrument for relaxation While in Zurich where he remained from 1519 till his death in 1531 Zwingli was the leading ecclesiastic His example both encouraged his friends and infuriated his foes There were plots against him and plans laid to kill him Zwingli read widely during this period of his life His library contained such authors as Aristotle Athanasius Augustine Beroald Billican Chrysostom Cicero Siculus Erasmus Jerome Gregory of Nyssa and Josephus He was successful in reforming the Church non violently There was no peasants revolt as in Germany under Luther no tract written encouraging the princes to kill stab exterminate as Luther wrote The most significant writings of Zwingli are available in English His theology has been ably examined by W P Stephens and he is gaining a hearing more each day In Zwingli s theology there is an excellent balance of mind and heart whereas in Luther religion is a dry intellectual exercise For this reason Zwingli is the father of the modern Baptists Quakers and Mennonites Zwingli was able to integrate in his own person both spiritual piety and intellectual vigor The brief work The Shepherd demonstrates the power of his piety and intellect The leading contributions of Zwingli s theology for modern Christianity lie in his clear explanation of the doctrines of the church the Eucharist Baptism the Church Faith and the Bible as well as his doctrine of God the Trinity and the afterlife Zwingli was also instrumental in furthering the academic study of the Bible Each day preachers and priests were invited to attend lectures on the Bible and the Biblical languages These lectures eventually led to a new and excellent translation of the Bible The Zurich Bible is still used in German speaking Switzerland though of course the language has been updated Zwingli hoped when he learned of Luther s work that the two of them would be able to work together to bring about the peaceful reformation of the Church Luther and

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  • Essay Questions for H373 - The Reformation III
    THE REFORMATION III Please answer each of the following questions in the form of a three page essay use the assigned text and any other resources to help you and then submit your answers to the Quartz Hill School of Theology for evaluation and grading 1 Discuss the development of Zwingli s theology 2 Discuss the similarities and differences between Zwinglian and Luther 3 Describe the task of Calvin School

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