Samuel Chen: My experience at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

Samuel Chen, a minister of the Church of God of Prophecy who lives in Manchester, UK, shares his experience as a student of Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in the UK, through the Hispanic Ministries Program.

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Samuel Chen
Samuel Chen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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For more information on how to enroll on our study programs in the USA, UK, and the Caribbean, visit our website: http://www.gordonconwell.edu/hmp/future/Application-Procedure.cfm 

Homiletics in the UK

Traveling to the UK to teach a Homiletics course of the Hispanic Ministries Program, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.

See the materials for the course: http://drpablojimenez.net/courses-workshops/pr-500-introduction-to-preaching-homiletics/

PR 500 Introduction to Preaching – Syllabus

PR 500 INTRODUCTION TO PREACHING

Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

Download this Syllabus on PDF

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October 2017

Instructor: Dr. Pablo A. Jiménez

Mailing Address: 130 Essex Street, South Hamilton, MA 01982

Website: www.drpablojimenez.net

E-mail: pjimenez@gordonconwell.edu

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube & Skype: drpablojimenez

 

Course Description:

Preaching the Gospel of Jesus is a daunting challenge, particularly in the Hispanic and Caribbean context, which is multilingual and multiethnic, postmodern and postcolonial. This reality shapes preaching, as the main means the Church employs to interpret and communicate the Gospel.

This course will seek to offer the student an introduction to the practice of preparing and delivering expository sermons, taking into consideration our particular context. It is our objective to provide the student the tools and processes necessary to prepare biblical, clear, edifying, and even creative sermons. Learning experiences include reading, discussion, lecture, exegesis, practice preaching, watching sermons, and self-critique.

Course Objectives:

The aim of the course is empowering students to develop their full potential as preachers. At the end of the course the students should be able to:

  1. Present a coherent theology of preaching.
  2. Understand preaching as a communicative process.
  3. Employ contextual hermeneutic perspectives in the preparation of their sermons.
  4. Design effective sermons.
  5. Evaluate the impact of the postmodern and postcolonial condition on contemporary homiletics.
  6. Present effectively their sermons.

Course Textbooks: (All available through Amazon’s Kindle Store)

Robinson, Haddon. Biblical Preaching: The Development and Delivery of Expository Messages. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2014. ASIN: B00IGDKNI2

Stanley, Andy. Communicating for a Change: Seven Keys to irresistible Communication. Colorado Springs, CO: Multnomah Press, 2006.. ASIN: B001E2WM54

Required Readings: (To be distributed by the professor)

Jiménez, Pablo A. “And the Word Became Flesh: Homiletics and Evangelical Preaching in Hispanic Churches”, In The Hispanic Evangelical Church in the United States: History, Ministry and Challenges, edited by Samuel Pagán. Elk Grove, CA: National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, 2016, pp. 299-326.

_____. “If You Just Close Your Eyes: Postcolonial Perspectives on Preaching from the Caribbean” Homiletic Vol. 40 No. 1, (2016): 22-28.

_____. “Toward a Postcolonial Homiletic: Justo L. González Contribution to Homiletics.” In Hispanic Christian Thought At the Dawn of the 21st Century: Apuntes in Honor of Justo L. González, edited by Alvin Padilla, Roberto Goizueta & Eldin Villafañe. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2006, pp. 159-167, 305-306.

Suggested Readings:

Graves, Mike & David J. Schlafer. What is the Shape of Narrative Preaching? Essays in Honor of Eugene Lowry. St. Louis, Abingdon Press, 2008. ASIN: B001NEKAF2

Lowry, Eugene. The Homiletical Plot: The Sermon as Narrative Art Form. Westminster John Knox Press, 1980. ASIN: B00SLHGXEQ

Kuck, David W. Preaching in the Caribbean: Building up a People for Mission. Kingston” BY the author, 2007. (No ISBN)

Stott, John R. W. Between Two Worlds: The Art of Preaching in the Twentieth Century. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1982. ASIN: B001Y35JB2

Mitchell, Henry H. Celebration and Experience in Black Preaching. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2010 (Revised edition). ASIN: B0052EFW66

Schlafer, David J. What Makes this Day Different?: Preaching Grace on Special Occasions. Cambridge: Cowley Publications, 1998. ASIN: B009D16VH8

Thomas, Frank. They Never Like to Quit Praisin’ God: The Role of Celebration in Preaching. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press/United Church Press, 1997. ASIN: B00DD045UA

Travis, Sarah. Decolonizing Preaching: The Pulpit as Postcolonial Space. Eugene, OR: Cascade Press, 2014.

Willhite, Keith & Scott M. Gibson. The Big Idea of Biblical Preaching: Connecting the Bible to People. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 1998. ASIN: B009M6T1YY

Wiseman, Karyn L. I Refuse to Preach a Boring Sermon: Engaging the 21st Century Listener. Cleveland, OH: The Pilgrim Press, 2013. ISBN-10: 0829819568

Assignments:

All written assignments should be typed, double-spaced and written in a 12-point font such as Arial, Helvetica or New Times Roman. Formats: Send your paper in MS Word (extension doc or docx) or Adobe Acrobat (extension pdf). All assignments will have a maximum value of 100 points. No late work will be accepted. If you experience illness or emergency, you must request an extension, sending an email to the instructor. Your email on this issue must be an official extension petition.

  1. Class preparation and participation: All students must read the textbooks before the first day of class. Each student must also participate in class discussions. Although no paper is required, the instructor will grant a grade for this assignment.
  2. Biblical Interpretation: Study ONE biblical text from the list included below, following the key questions listed in THE THREE STEPS SYSTEM (enclosed as an appendix). Your paper should have no less than three and no more than five pages. DUE: October 13.
  • Genesis 32:22-32 (Narrative)
  • Psalm 130 (Poetic Literature)
  • Isaiah 5 (Prophetic Literature)
  • Matthew 13.1-9 (Parable)
  • Mark 1.21-28 (Miracle Story)
  • Luke 5:1-11 (Discipleship Story)
  • Romans 5.1-11 (Epistle)
  • Revelation 4 (Apocalyptic text)
  1. Sermon Outline: Write a sermon outline or manuscript based on the text studied for Assignment #2 and using the system taught in class. DUE: October 14.
  1. Final Exam: Take an exam on the sermon theory taught in class. DUE: October 15.
  2. Sermon Manuscript: Develop your outline into a full sermon manuscript of no less than 1,000 and no more than 2,000 words, using the system taught in class.  DUE: October 26.

Grading Scale:*

Grade Percentage Points
A 100 – 95 % 500-475
A- 94 – 90 % 474-450
B+ 89 – 87 % 449-435
B 86 – 84 % 434-420
B- 83 – 80 % 419-400
C+ 79 – 77 % 399-385
C 76 – 74% 384-370
C- 73 – 70% 369-350
D+ 69 – 67 % 349-335
D 66 – 64 % 334-320
F 63 – 0 % 319-0

Topics:

Topic Required Readings  Suggested Readings
Basic Definitions Robinson, Chapter 1
Theology for Preaching  Jiménez, Davis, Kuck, Stott
Communication Principles Stanley, Chapters 1 to 10 Wiseman
Biblical Interpretation for Preaching Robinson, Chapters 2 to 4 Willhite & Gibson
Sermon Rudiments Robinson, Chapter 5
Sermon Outline Robinson, Chapters 6 to 9
Basic Sermon Forms Graves, Lowry, Schlafer
Sermon Delivery Robinson, Chapter 10, Stanley, Chapters 11 to 17 Mitchell, Thomas
Evaluation & Planning

The Three-Step System

Biblical Interpretation for Preaching

I. Point of contact: First Step in the Preparation of Biblical Sermons

Begin with prayer. Ask God to make you sensible to the Word and to speak through your sermon to the congregation. Keep a devotional atmosphere throughout the exercise.

Read the text several times. Work primarily with the translation that has become part of your own being. Compare it with other translations for the purpose of comparing and contrasting emphasis, movement, and structure. Do not use secondary sources for this exercise.

Read the text once more, aloud and with feeling. Only then, proceed to answer the following questions.

  1. What are the questions that this text sparks?
  2. What feelings surface as you read the text?
  3. What memories does the text cause you to recall?
  4. Imagine that you are immersed in the world of the text:
  • What do you see?
  • What do you hear?
  • What do you smell?
  • What do you touch?
  • What do you taste?
  • How does it feel to be in that world?
  1. Has your perception of the text changed? How?
  1. What is this text about? List the topics and ideas suggested by the text.

II. Explanation: Second Step in the Preparation of Biblical Sermons

After a direct interaction with the text, turn to secondary sources such as commentaries, dictionaries, and other homiletic aids. Insofar as possible, identify the historical context in which the text is found. Then, proceed to answer the following questions.

  1. What was the situation of the community to whom the text was written?
  2. Identify the form, the function and the literary structure of the text.
  3. Note the key words of the text. How are they used in this particular document?
  4. Have you found answers to you questions about the text?
  5. What are the mayor theological claims of the text?
  6. Enumerate the topics suggested by the text.

III. Interpretation: Third Step in the Preparation of Biblical Sermons

Move once again to the present, exploring the message of the text for the contemporary Church. Make the hermeneutic movement self-consciously and critically. Then, proceed to answer the following questions.

  1. Establish a correlation between your social location and the social location of the text. What realities function in our world in the same way as in the world of the text?
  • Identify the elements of salvation. Identify the sources of conflict.
  • Who is the powerful? Who are powerless?
  • In order to interpret the text appropriately, with whom do we should identify with in the text?
  1. Does the function of the text in its ancient setting suggest a possible function for our sermon in our setting?
  1. Does the form or the literary structure of the text suggest a given design for the sermon?
  2. Does the text suggest any guidelines for contemporary pastoral action?
  3. What are the “good news” for the congregation? For the Church at large? For the world?
  4. Enumerate the possible “sermons-in-a-sentence” suggested by the text. Pick one for your sermon and save the others for future sermons.
Pablo writes
Pablo writes

And the Word Became Flesh

An essay by Pablo A. Jiménez:

Jiménez, Pablo A. “And the Word Became Flesh: Homiletics and Evangelical Preaching in Hispanic Churches”, In The Hispanic Evangelical Church in the United States: History, Ministry and Challenges, edited by Samuel Pagán. Elk Grove, CA: National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, 2016, pp. 299-326.

Download this document on PDF

The Hispanic Evangelical Church
The Hispanic Evangelical Church

 

Toward a Postcolonial Homiletic

An essay written by Dr. Pablo A. Jiménez:

Jiménez, Pablo A. “Toward a Postcolonial Homiletic: Justo L. González Contribution to Homiletics.” In Hispanic Christian Thought At the Dawn of the 21st Century: Apuntes in Honor of Justo L. González, edited by Alvin Padilla, Roberto Goizueta & Eldin Villafañe. Nashville: Abingdon Press, 2006, pp. 159-167, 305-306.

Download this document on PDF 

Hispanic Christian Thought
Hispanic Christian Thought

Open House @Gordon-Conwell

Are you exploring a call to ministry? Visit Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (GCTS), during its Open House 2017, to be held October 17 to 18. There is financial aid available for prospective students. For more information, visit: http://www.gordonconwell.edu/hamilton/future/Open-House.cfm

GCTS Open House 2017
GCTS Open House 2017

YOU CAN STILL REGISTER FOR HMP FALL 2017 COURSES!

Dear students:

Our deadlines for FALL 2017 Courses of the Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, Hispanic Summer Program (GCTS HMP) are fast approaching.

If you are interested in registering for any FALL 2017 GCTS HMP course, please send your registration forms now. Do not wait! The earlier we receive and process your registration forms, the earlier we are able to confirm it.

The information for all course, and syllabi for each one to them, are already available on our website: http://www.gordonconwell.edu/hmp/current/Course-Schedules-Calendars.cfm
If you are an international student interested in traveling to the U.S. for any courses, please remember that you will need to process an I-20 and/or an F-1 Visa. If you have questions regarding an I-20 or F1 Visa, please contact us immediately. You must register to an specific course before your I-20 can be processed. Please allow a minimum of 6 weeks for an I-20 to be processed.

For more information, write to hispanicministries@gordonconwell.edu today.

Register now!

In Christ,
The Hispanic Ministries Program, GCTS
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