Seeing the Forest in the Trees
Event Date: October 4, 2014
Course Title: Introduction to Reformed Theology: Seeing the Forest for the Trees
Conference Date: October 4, 2014; 8:30am to 3:00 pm
Conference Location: Covenant Reformed Church, 265 Albion Rd., Toronto. See map.
Taught by: Dr. Jason VanVliet (Professor at Canadian Reformed Theological Seminary in Hamilton)
Note: Due to various scheduling factors, the conference will be held on one day only for a total of six hours, with 30 min lunch break. The format of the conference will include some pedagogical variety (read: it won’t be straight lectures…) so that everyone stays on track.
A study of method and practice of a Reformed approach to theology. We’ll dive into questions such as:
- How is the study of theology related to other disciplines of study such as philosophy, apologetics, history, science, literature, psychology, etc?
- What’s a Domus Dogmaticus? (you’ll have to sign up to find out J)
- Is there a distinctive Reformed approach to theology, or does Reformed theology use the same method as other traditions and simply come to some different conclusions?
- People talk about biblical theology and systematic theology. Is one better than the other?
- Do the Reformed confessions assist or encumber us as we mature in Christ?
- Ministers say that doctrine has everything to do with life. But how so?
- What about other theologies such as: feminist theology, process theology, liberation theology, and liturgical theology?
- Students will gain an increased appreciation for theological (or: doctrinal) studies
- Students will be able to articulate the distinctive aspects of a Reformed approach to theology
- Students will grow in learning how doctrinal studies are both relevant and practical for our daily walk of life
Explanation of the Course Format:
The course is introduced by a conference that consists of 6 hours of instruction by, and interaction with, the professor. The conference is open to anyone for a fee ($25), without committing to the course requirements. Those who register as a student for the course will, in addition to the conference lectures, meet in class for 10 hours of follow-up classes. These follow-up classes can be held in different geographical locations where the number of registered students in the area warrants. The follow-up classes will consist of discussing chapters in the textbook (4 x 2 hrs discussion) plus a wrap-up discussion with the professor toward the end of the semester (1 x 2 hrs).
- Textbook: Muller, Richard A. The Study of Theology: from biblical interpretation to contemporary formulation. Zondervan, 1991.
- 4 chapter summaries from textbook for discussion classes (3 pp dbl spaced each)
- 1 research paper on a doctrinal topic of student’s choice. Students will explore not only the biblical basis and confessional formulation of the doctrine, but also the real-life application of it
Conference fee – $25 (For conference only)
Course – level 1 – $70 (Bachelor’s level)
Course – level 2 – $100 (Master’s level)
Auditing the course – $40
Initial application fee to register as a student – $25
Contact for more information and to register: firstname.lastname@example.org
Course Professor: Dr. Jason Van Vliet
Th.D. from Theological University of Apeldoorn, the Netherlands in 2009
Dissertation: Children of God: The Imago Dei in John Calvin and His Context.
M.Th. from McMaster Divinity College, Hamilton, 2005
Thesis: “Arbitrium Humanum: Liberum vel Liberandum? An Historical-Theological Study of John Calvin’s Doctrine of the Will”