If you're on the fence about attending Austin Seminary's 2015 MidWinter Lectures, February 2-4, here's a primer on what our speakers hope to impart to you and why it matters.
Currie Lectures: “When in Romans . . .”
Beverly Roberts Gaventa, Distinguished Professor of New Testament, Baylor University
Christians often find Paul's letters abstract and remote from everyday concerns, and Romans is a particular challenge. I hope these lectures will provide powerful aids for hearing the complex interaction of Creator and creation in this letter, and that a fresh hearing will enliven our preaching and teaching of Paul.
Jack Haberer, pastor of Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church, Naples, Florida, and former editor of The Presbyterian Outlook
My hope is that the preachers and other Bible teachers serving their churches will find some language with which to better guide and affirm their members' efforts to interpret Scripture, especially as they seek to understand God's will for their lives. When trying to answer big questions or address ethical dilemmas or make important decisions, so many of us have provided either pat formulas or lofty platitudes -- neither of which has any connection to folks' real lives. A serious reconsideration of how Jesus and the apostles interpreted the Hebrew scriptures, including the times that they did the opposite of what those scriptures commanded, can help us formulate a paradigm for our own application of all of the scriptures in the here and now.
Kimberly Bracken Long, associate professor of worship at Columbia Theological Seminary
Marriage has a complicated history, and the church has taken a variety of approaches to marriage over time. I'd like to see 21st century American churches think more deeply about how being Christian affects being married, and how Scripture informs our understanding of marriage-not just for our own sakes, but for the sake of anyone who is being married in our churches. What does the church have to give to those contemplating marriage, those doing the hard work of being married, and those whose marriages end?