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Theological Reflection

John Southwick 280 041


I have already completed half of firt year while doing a part!time half coure lat academic year"
Thi year I have done the remaining half of firt year and half of econd year"
1"
I think the module overall have given a #road and good introduction to $hritian theology" I had a
peronal interet in theology #efore I tarted tudying a well a a keen interet in hitory and
politic and o ome u#%ect e"g" &elief and Thought have #een rather imple and unchallenging for
me #ut the ma%ority of u#%ect have #een very enlightening" Thoe that have linked well together
are church hitory and #elief and thought particularly ome on the u#%ect of chritology and
oteriology" It wa good to ee the link to what we now #elieve and the hitorical conte't it wa
#orne out of" There wa a lot of overlap with (ew )erpective on )aul #eing taught in three
different u#%ect* &elief and Thought* Introduction to (ew Tetament and in +thic alo" There wa
a complement #etween the &elief and Thought with an introduction to open theim and it,
implication for deciion making in -iciplehip" I wa not aware of any tenion in the u#%ect"
2"
The learning for the year that ha mot tretched my thinking ha #een the new perpective* open
theim and pot!modernim" I wa facinated #y the new thinking on )auline theology parked #y
Sander review of 1
t
century Iraeli Judaim" The caricature of Judaim a a religion of work
#aed righteoune pringing from .utheran reading of Roman and /alation in the conte't of
the pre!reformation $atholic church wa in my opinion correct" I particularly liked -unn, analyi
that the law poken of in )auline theology wa that of #oundary marker* e"g" dietary law* Sa##ath
o#ervance and circumciion" Thi led to an ethnocentric religion* wherea now a $hritian thee
#oundary marker have diappeared and it i love for each other that 0hould1 replace thee
ethnocentric marker" 2pen theim I found facinating and 3uite innovative" I particularly like that
it draw on a ocial trinitarian model of /od and that it, main concern i a /od who get ,involved,
in relationhip of love* and re3uire free #eing a a reult" I would not go a far a one of the main
premie that foreknowledge i determinitic #ut do agree that there ha #een an unhealthy
yncretim #etween /reek philoophical idea a#out the attri#ute of /od and #i#lical tetimony of
the attri#ute of /od which hould #e addreed" 4inally* in -iciplehip we had an introduction to
pot!modernim and it, effect on ociety* culture* philoophy and theology" I found the hitory of
modern thought and it, progreion to pot modern thought and impact their on $hritianity a
well a ociety facinating and alo ome of the current outworking of pot!modern thought today"
5"
2ne of the main area I need to work on academically i that of time management" I am a erial
procratinator when it come to eay deadline and tudying for e'am" I have #een fortunate that
during term time I enure that I do all of the reading* a I don,t ee the point in #eing here if you do
not do o and it allow you to engage in cla a lot more effectively* and a a reult when it come to
e'am I have a good recollection of the area covered" I often do e'tra reading if I,m intereted in a
certain topic which give me an added advantage" 6owever for e'am I have done little tudy #ut
#een a#le to get good grade #ecaue I have engaged with the u#%ect throughout the term" I feel in
future that I want to change thi a the coure will only get harder a the year progre" Thi alo
applie to eay writing" I want to tart reading for my eay in the ame way that I read for coure
work" I want chooe the eay title early and then incorporate the #ook I need to read into the
reading chedule for that coure which will allow me to conider the 3uetion over a longer period
of time and not reult in a #lind panic a ha #een the cae on a couple of occaion thi year" 7 I
am only in firt year thi ha not affected my grade #ut in the following year with a higher
marking cale I want to have pent an increaed amount of time on eay and have read more
e'tenively* giving myelf plenty of time to conider my anwer and write in a le hurried fahion"
4"
2n the #ai of my tudie thi year the 3uetion that I would like to reearch further are thoe
three area that I have already outlined a#ove" The new perpective on )aul* open theim and pot
modernim and in particular the church, repone in miion to a pot modern ociety" 7 far a
open theim i concerned* although I don,t #elieve all that )innock et al have uggeted I think they
have done a great ervice to the de#ate on the determinitic outlook of claical theim which I with
the open theit dilike alo" Their analyi of the yncretim #etween /reek thought and claical
theim i omething that i of great interet to me" I would alo add that the yncretim #etween
modernim and the wetern church i alo of great interet and it, impact on our a#ility8ina#ility to
reach a pot!modern generation" 4inally the ocial trinitarian doctrine of /od which ha fuelled the
open theit i omething I am eager to tudy more" The model with it, ontology of /od #eing in
loving relation and not u#tance i revelatory and ha wide implication for #elief and practie" I
think it i particularly intereting that it, origin can #e traced to the $appadocian father and wa a
#reak from /reek theitic idea of /od #ut a #reak founded in the revelation of /od in the #i#le"
9"
In diciplehip we conidered the 3uetion i a pirituality that i not ocially engaged a u#!
$hritian pirituality" 4or me thi i the topic for wetern church today" There i a maive
credi#ility gap #etween what we ay and what we do" $hurche in the wet are turning into middle
cla ghetto and le and le involved in reaching the poor and marginalied in ociety" It wa
good to look at thi and ee the #i#lical foundation for uch action a well a ee ome of the current
trend and thought within evangelicalim on the word!deed a'i" I peronally feel there i in thi
country a tendency* #ecaue of the welfare tate and it, ha#it of infantiliing populace* to point at
the government and init they do the thing that the church hould #e doing itelf" That i not to ay
we houldn,t lo##y government #ut our primary focu hould #e reaching the poor and marginalied
ociety ourelve and getting peronally involved with them not %ut throwing money at a pro#lem
or hiring omeone ele to deal with it" 7lthough I do not have a pecialim a I wanted to tudy
language I feel drawn thi year* in particular after itting in on an ur#an theology eminar done #y
)aul +de of ur#an e'preion* to a minitry if in thi country to the ur#an poor* whether that #e in
church planting with omething like ur#an e'preion or ome other kind of minitry"