History has formed an important aspect of Old Testament studies. This course examines and analyzes the missiological functions of history in the Old Testament, emphasizing and critiquing the converging relationship of history and mission in the world of the Old Testament.
The course engages the active presence of God in the events of history. In the Old Testament, this active presence of God in history is seen in his acts of salvation on behalf of individuals and communities in ancient Israel. Since the divine acts of salvation in history climaxes with the revelation of Jesus Christ in the New Testament, the course will help the students see, understand and connect with God’s continuous works of salvation in Christ, and the continuous expressions of this act of salvation in their homes, community, and working place.
Old Testament history describes Yahweh’s deeds of salvation on behalf of ancient Israel. However, this story of salvation in the Old Testament has its climax in the revelation of Jesus Christ in the New Testament. The understanding of God’s works of salvation within this story demands the involvement of men and women in God’s ongoing mission to save the world. The justification for this course lies in its commitment to read and understand the entire Old Testament from the perspective of God’s mission.
This course is biblical-oriented by its diligent quest to understand the biblical texts in their historical contexts and the description of God’s saving acts within Old Testament historical books.
The study is missiologically-driven by its quest to read and understand Old Testament history from the perspective of mission.
Acts of God in the Old Testament occurred within a specific historical context. This contextual character of God’s salvation in history inevitably suggests the contextual nature of salvation history, and the need for students to understand as well as engage this contextual dimension of salvation history.
The Old Testament historical books largely describe Israel’s relationship to other nations. In spite of the hostility of God to the cultures of the surrounding nations, he longs through Israel to bring all the nations to his saving purpose. This intercultural purpose of God in the historical books naturally underscores the need for contemporary intercultural discourse.
The God of the Old Testament history reveals himself as a God of mission who is practically concerned with the suffering and pain of his people. There is the need to explore this practical involvement of God in history to address the practical needs of our modern communities.
The course encourages synergy between the knowledge of God’s mission as laid out in the Old Testament history and the need for an experiential encounter with God in one’s daily life.