Rummaging around the Internet, I happened upon Yale Open Courses. They are taped main lecture sessions for a handful of courses that Yale decided to make available. Browsing through the material, “Introduction to the Old Testament” and “Introduction to the New Testament” looked interesting so I checked them out andI decided to take them.
I am beginning with Introduction to the Old Testament for three reasons. First, I am drawn to the Old Testament in a special way. When I have a choice, I proclaim the first reading, which is usually from the Old Testament. The Old Testament is mysterious, a mystery deriving from both cultural and historical distance and a personal lack of familiarity. The Old Testament features a wider variety of style and expression and events and shows in great detail the panorama of humanity.
Second, the Old Testament came first and the beginning is a very good place to start. Since it was God’s plan to prepare His people through the Old Testament for Christ, studying the Old Testament would hopefully prepare me for meeting Christ in the New Testament and every new day.
Finally, I enjoyed the style of the professor teaching the Old Testament course better. Having viewed and begun thinking about her first three lectures, I know there will be much to critique. But Professor Hayes presents her material in a way that is authoritative and respectful.
The first lecture covered Yale administrative stuff (ugh!! – I am glad that I can ignore this), the foundational premises of the class and some substance. an overview of Professor Hayes’ premises. Her discussion of four “myths” about the Bible and how she will deal with “faith propositions” offers some food for thought.
So stay tuned for the first substantive installment of “A Church Guy Goes To Yale” coming next week.