I’ve been up to my neck in ancient texts and commentaries over the past few months. It’s been tough work, but so rewarding. Since March I’ve been reading in preparation for a Doctor of Ministry (D.Min.) program that I’m beginning at Northern Seminary this summer. Although it will mean a lot of hard work, I’m excited to start this new adventure.
The program’s emphasis is New Testament Context. We’ll be seeking to better understand (1) the New Testament’s social, religious, and cultural context, (2) how this context informs our reading of the New Testament, and (3) what these new insights mean for our churches and ministries. Here are a few words of description from the program’s director, Scot McKnight:
Time and time again flashes of insight come to Bible readers when they grasp a social custom at work, a religious controversy throbbing behind a question put to Jesus, or a historical memory that is shaping precisely what Jesus was teaching or the apostle Paul writing. Because this “background” or “Jewish context” is so important and at the same time much less accessible for pastors, the DMin in the New Testament Context will provide pastors with the opportunity to focus study on Jewish texts and this will enable them to shed light on pressing concerns in the church today.
In addition to the great content, the opportunity to study under Dr. Scot McKnight was something not to be missed. I’m also excited to learn under North Park University’s own Dr. Joel Willitts, who will be teaching several classes in the program. The class culminates with a study trip to Israel! If you’re interested, you can learn more about the program here.
I’d love if you’d be willing to pray for me during this endeavor. Please pray for me – both this week as the program begins, and over the next four years of studying, reading, writing, and lots of hard work.