Sunday, September 16th: “When the Spirit gets loose in the Empire” all the rules get broken and upheld. What kind of writing is Luke-Acts (we are reading the second volume) and how good a writer and historian is Luke?
- Acts: the second part of Luke’s story of God’s work in the world
- Acts as Epic, a la Virgil’s Aeneid
- Luke’s Style; e.g., Peter escapes and comes to Rhoda’s house
- Luke’s depiction of the formation of the people of God
- Focus passage: Acts 12
Sunday, September 23rd: “The Last Day’s People of God,” in which we seek to get a grip on Luke’s distinctive presentation of the “last days,” early Christian views on time, what Pentecost meant for the early Christians, why the temple was important to them, and the movement of the Spirit into the church and the world. Key question: does Luke’s understanding of the “last days” look anything like ours?
- Luke’s view of the Last Days
- The Spirit and Pentecost
- Temple and People of God
- Focus passage: Acts 2
Sunday, September 30th: “And so we came to Rome,” in which we explore Acts’ focus on the movement of the gospel to the center of the Roman Empire, the character of the empire of Rome, Paul’s sea voyages, and Paul’s proclamation to the Roman authorities. Key question: is Acts a defense of the Roman Empire?
- Acts and the Roman Empire
- Sea Crossings, Shipwrecks, and the Gospel’s arrival in Rome
- Focus Passage: Acts 27-28
Stan Saunders has taught New Testament at Columbia Seminary in Decatur for 27 years. Prior to that, he taught at Wartburg Theological Seminary in Dubuque, IA. Stan holds a PhD from Princeton Theological Seminary and has also studied New Testament at the Universities of Tuebingen and Heidelberg in Germany. His primary research interests focus on early Christian eschatology, Matthew’s Gospel, the creation story in the New Testament, and the New Testament and the American prison system. Stan and his wife Brenda have two college age children.