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EV559: EVANGELISM IN CONTEXT: ST PATRICK AS MODEL. Chap Clark.
DESCRIPTION: St. Patrick’s life, work, and ministry changed Ireland more than any single person in history. Never straying far from his humble roots as a slave in his beloved country, he was able to integrate his insightful pragmatism, strategic thinking, relational savvy, and authentic love for people to bring about lasting transformation in the name of Jesus Christ. In this course, we will examine the key aspects of Patrick’s life, faith, and ministry, and, using this as a lens, we will explore how the life of St. Patrick of Ireland can teach us what evangelism in our culture and context can be.
SIGNIFICANCE FOR LIFE AND MINISTRY: All Christian ministry incorporates presenting, both verbally and in service, sharing the good news of Christ and encouraging people to commit to following him. Whatever the “strategy,” the Scriptures offer the basic parameters and style of the task of evangelism. Regardless of the mode or programmatic philosophy of Christian evangelism, we as God’s “witnesses” (Acts 1:8) must seek to understand and live out the Gospel in any social context. St. Patrick of Ireland offers us one of the clearest contextualization of the Gospel in a culture that has no interest. The awareness of his culture and his ability to live out and present the timeless truths of the Gospel provides modern evangelists the model for being God’s witnesses in today’s post-Christian society.
LEARNING OUTCOMES: Students completing this course will have demonstrated (1) an understanding of the biblical meaning of evangelism and conversion, the development of evangelism in church history, and a variety of theological perspectives on evangelism and conversion, (2) an historical awareness of how an evangelistic strategy in church history has direct relevancy for today, (3) increased ability to analyze cultural, local, and church or ministry contexts to determine and implement potential outreach activities, strategies, and motivation, (4) an understanding of contemporary culture and its impact on evangelism in culture, church, ministry, and personal relationships today, and (5) an increased passion for evangelism and confidence in personal ability to share about faith in Jesus.
COURSE FORMAT: The class will meet weekly on Wednesdays from 11:30-2:30, Pacific time (2:30-5:30 Eastern time).
Freeman, Philip. St. Patrick of Ireland: A Biography. New York: Simon & Schuster. Pub. Price: $12.79. ISBN: 978-0743256346. (240 p. assigned).
Green, Michael. Evangelism in the Early Church. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdsman, 2004. Pub. Price: $29.00. ISBN: 978-0802827685 .
Hunter, George G., III. The Celtic Way of Evangelism. 10th ed.Nashville: Abingdon, 2010. Pub. Price: $16.99. ISBN: 978-1426711374. (144 p. assigned). To be read prior to class meeting April 3.
Rah, Soong-Chan. The Next Evangelism: Freeing the Church from Western Cultural Captivity. Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2009. Pub. Price: $15.00. ISBN: 978-0830833603.
Reese, Martha Grace. Unbinding the Gospel: Real Life Evangelism. 2nd ed. Danvers: Martha Grace Reese, 2008. Pub. Price: $20.99. ISBN: 978-0827238084.
Webber, Robert E. Ancient-Future Evangelism: Making Your Church a Faith-Forming Community. Grand Rapids:Baker Books, 2003. Pub. Price: $20.00. ISBN: 978-0801091605.
ASSIGNMENTS AND ASSESSMENT (learning objective[s] assessed by assignment):
RELATIONSHIP TO CURRICULUM: Meets MDiv core requirement in Evangelism (MIN 3)
NOTE: This ECD is a reliable guide to the course design but is subject to modification. Textbook prices are set by publishers and are subject to change.