Church History

A literary and historical analysis of Ephesians 5:18-6:9

Author
Shana Cress
Abstract
Within Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, there is a set of instructions termed the Haustafeln, or “household codes.” Paul turns his focus upon roles within the home. The question that inevitably arises from a text nearing 2,000 years of age is one of relevance. Do these instructions apply to those of a different time and culture? Several matters need to be examined. Previous research has linked this passage to Aristotle, to Roman culture, and to Stoic philosophy. Since the form of the Ephesians household codes is said to resemble Aristotle’s works, a reading of Aristotle’s code is necessary. Roman household characteristics that need to be explored include the pater familias, the goal of harmony, and the Roman conceptuality of adultery. Stoic philosophy will be examined through the writings of Epictetus. By closely examining his discourses, we can look for similarities or dissimilarities to Ephesians. If Paul’s goal was for Christians to blend in to the surrounding culture, then this will be evident as these subjects are investigated. In addition to this historical work, a literary analysis of Ephesians 5:18-6:9 will be performed. This thesis will argue that this passage on the household, Ephesians 5:18-6:9, is best understood against a Christian and not pagan philosophical background, situated within the epistle as a natural progression of Paul’s thought that is consistent with other Scriptural teaching.

Teaching church history in the local congregation

Author
Brent Klein D.Min.
Abstract
Using Church History: An Essential Guide, by Justo Gonzalez1 as the primary text and by means of a Bible study, study guides, and presentations on various historical events, over a ten-week period, the participants were led through a brief study of the twothousand-year history of the New Testament Church.

The purposes of the project are to 1) teach the participants significant events of the Church’s past beyond what they have learned from Acts, certain events of the Reformation era, and the events that have occurred in their lifetimes; 2) help them see that God has guided the events of history for the benefit of the Gospel and His Church; and 3) help them find assurance and guidance from how the Church has dealt with issues in the past as they deal with current issues in the Church.

On the parish level, the teaching of God’s Word and the Catechism is first and foremost. In addition to that, it is also worth considering teaching some church history to the laity. God’s people can derive guidance (and along with that, assurance) from the events of the Church’s past and the lives of Christians who came before.

Enhancement of the project director's doctrinal preaching skills at Gate City Baptist Church, Pocatello, Idaho, to increase congregational awareness of selected Baptist distinctives

Author
Robert A Palculict
Abstract
The purpose of this project was to enhance the project director's doctrinal preaching skills at Gate City Baptist Church, Pocatello, Idaho, to increase congregational awareness of selected Baptist distinctives. The project director researched the fields of doctrinal preaching and Baptist distinctives. The project director researched the fields of doctrinal preaching and Baptist distinctives. He also developed two annotated bibliographies. Experts in their respective fields evaluated these bibliographies for proficiency and scholarship. The director developed a sermon series to increase congregational awareness of Baptist distinctives. Finally, he preached these selected Baptist distinctives to worshipers at Gate City Baptist Church. He used several tools to determine the success of the project, including a pre-test and post-test and rubrics related to doctrinal preaching and Baptist doctrine.

Revitalizing Rural: Merging Churches for Cooperative Ministries that Bring Renewal

Author
Tiffany A Nagel-Monroe
Abstract
The author researched changes in the Oklahoma Conference of the United Methodist Church as it pertains to church development, statistical changes, and the decline of the rural/small congregation churches. This project focuses on a two-point charge in rural Oklahoma who merged together through ministries and programs to bring about renewal and regeneration in an unlikely place. The project is to show that cooperative and collaborative ministry models can and will bring about revitalization, even in the rural and small churches where little to no investment is being made.

14,000 lighthouses: renewing the "C" in the YMCA

Author
David J Newman
Abstract
This thesis examines whether or not the YMCA has drifted from its original mission. It begins by tracing the foundation of its mission throughout its historical roots and demonstrates the profound effects that the YMCA has been able to accomplish when it has operated according to its mission of putting Christian principles into practice. It measures the mission knowledge and application within specific context of Countryside YMCA in Lebanon, Ohio and also examines other research to assess if the results are reflective of the movement as a whole. The conclusion revels that Countryside YMCA has drifted from its mission. The author introduces a three part, reproducible strategy to renew the "C" in a local YMCA through two training seminars, a chaplaincy program and planting of a missional church that is strategically partnered with a local YMCA.
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