Matt’s MA

I do not know if anyone wants to read these, but they are there so, I may as well post them so that you can have a gander if you fancy.


(What is church and why do we do things the ways that we do?)

This was an overview of church history and how things have changed, caused splits or become normal over time.  An opportunity to look back at how we got to where we are now.  Not always pretty, to be honest! The Lecturer was Steve Holmes who is head of School at St Andrews in Scotland and heavily involved in developing doctrine for the Evangelical Alliance. He is actually N T Wright’s boss!

How and Why Does Liberation Theology Challenge Traditional Ecclesiology?

Liberation Theology is a catholic theology and considered by many to be very controversial as it allows for taking up arms against the oppressor.  It started in South America and is very much focused on justice, the poor and helping the oppressed.

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The Authority Structure of SVC. How it Functions and How it Relates to the Stated Ecclesiology of the Church

This is taking a look at how our the church functions, practically and how this is actually bearing out the ecclesiology which is what we believe about church and how we do it.  I have taken “Southampton Vineyard Person” as our stated ecclesiology.

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Patristic Christianity

This was amazing. A look at the early church fathers and how they understood things.  It was, frankly, life-changing as we see how much of what we hold as “orthodox” was not actually believed by most of those in the first three centuries, some of whom actually knew the Apostles and others who were at the table deciding what went into our Scriptures!  Not so easy to dismiss their views!

The lecturer was Brad Jersak who is just amazing and his book, “Her Gates Will Never be Shut” may just have changed my life!


A Critical Analysis of John Chrysostom’s Paschal Homily

This homily (sermon) was an Easter sermon that was so significant that, even today, it is read out every Easter Sunday in the Orthodox church.  Chrysostom is considered to be one of the three Fathers of Orthodoxy.

If you want to read the essay, you need to first read the Paschal Homily (it is only four paragraphs – which is shorter than the essay!).

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Paul in Contemporary Theological Context

This course looks at the 13 letters of Paul and the different cultural contexts over the last 2000 years, seeking to enable good exegesis by setting Paul firmly within the culture of 1st century Palestine and the Roman world and good hermaneutics, by looking at how we can properly translate that to today’s Western culture.

An Exegesis of Romans 10:1-13

This essay looks at this passage which is in the middle of a long discourse about Paul’s fellow Jews, their place in the larger story of God and thus the place of the church within that.

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The Spirit, the Flesh and the Law in Paul’s Letters

This essay explores the comparison between the life in the Spirit and life under the law, and life in the Spirit and life in the flesh.  It looks, mainly at Romans and Galatians for this.

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The Gospel of Luke: History, Theology and Spirituality

This course does what it says on the tin.  We only focused on the Gospel of Luke and not Acts.

Actually it really opened my eyes to Luke and his radical ideas.  In this gospel, Luke really places a lot of emphasis on women, the poor, the outcasts and justice.  He has such a bias towards those whom society excluded that it is a very powerful read.

The Presentation of the Kingdom of God in the Marginalised and the Outcasts in the Gospel of Luke

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Advanced Old Testament Interpretation

This course kind of does what it says on the tin…

I have to say that it gave me a fresh love of the Jewish Scriptures.

The Overarching Message of Deuteronomy

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The Issue of Poverty in the Book of Deuteronomy

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