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This week I’ve been sharing a glimpse of each of the four courses I’m teaching this semester. My fourth class is called Teaching the Bible. Here’s the trailer I prepared for the course:

I find this class challenging to teach, at least in the parts of class where I need to lecture. But what I’ve tried to do is to take students into my process of praying, preparing, and presenting biblical content to various groups of listeners and learners

The value of the course, in my opinion, is the lab component: the part of the course where students get to get up and teach the rest of the class, followed by our constructive reflections. I enjoy hearing students teach and am always come away encouraged by their openness and thoughtfulness.

What is surprising is that I have been unable to find a satisfying textbook for the class. There are good books on interpreting the biblical text, and there are good books on teaching. But I have yet to find a book that covers both topics well. The result is that I have put together a course pack of readings from various sources. Here are a few of the pieces I’m using:

  • Lenora Tisdale, Preaching as Local Theology and Folk Art (selections)
  • James C. Wihoit and Leland Ryken, “Effective Teaching” from Effective Bible Teaching chs 1-4
  • Haddon Robinson, “What’s the Big Idea?” from Biblical Preaching
  • Bryan Chappell, “Fallen Condition Focus” from Christ-Centered Preaching
  • Christopher H.J. Wright, How to Teach and Preach the Old Testament (chs. 6-8)
  • Tim Keller, “Preaching the Gospel in Post-Modern Culture”
  • Richard Robert Osmer, “Exploring the Faith Cube” from Teaching for Faith
  • Chip and Dan Heath, Made to Stick (selections)

One other thing I’ve done this summer, in light of the killing of George Floyd, is added a relevant book to each of my classes to help students wrestle with current events in a way that connects to our learning in class. In Teaching the Bible we are reading and reflecting on Dr. King’s early sermons, in the volume Strength to Love. I’m hoping this book will help us think about how our teaching engages with and is prophetic towards our cultural context, while also learning from the rhetorical brilliance of a legendary Christian communicator.

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