North Park Theological Seminary to Host Annual Lectures and Theological Symposium

The Bible on a pulpit in Isaacson Chapel.

Lectures feature biblical scholars, Symposium focused on 'family' as theological topic

CHICAGO (September 19, 2012) — North Park Theological Seminary (NPTS) will host Christian scholars later this month in two consecutive, annual events designed to enrich theological understanding and enhance spiritual life. The Nils W. Lund Memorial Lectureship, September 26–27, will focus on current developments in biblical studies and their relationship to the mission and ministry of the church. The Symposium on the Theological Interpretation of Scripture, September 27–29, features presentations and discussion of "family" in the scriptural context. Both events are organized by Seminary faculty.

Seminary and North Park University students, faculty, pastors and others will attend the Lund Lectures in Nyvall Hall's Isaacson Chapel at the University's Chicago campus. The lectures are named for Nils Lund, a former dean who served the Seminary from 1922 to 1954, and is best known as author a definitive text on biblical structure, Chiasmus in the New Testament. "He was an important figure in New Testament studies and as dean," said Rev. Dr. Stephen Chester, NPTS professor of New Testament and acting associate academic dean. After Lund's death, an endowment was established to fund the annual lecture series, Chester said.

Students will hear outstanding biblical scholars, said Dr. Klyne Snodgrass, Paul W. Brandel Professor of New Testament Studies, NPTS. "We want to celebrate biblical studies with the Lund lectures, help students get into discussions beyond where they've been before, and increase their theological awareness," he said.

The lectures feature Old Testament and New Testament scholars:

  • September 26: Dr. Stephen Barton, reader in New Testament (retired), Department of Theology and Religion, Durham University, Durham, U.K.  Barton will address, "The Conversions of the Emotions in Early Christianity."
  • September 27: Dr. Dennis T. Olson, Charles T. Haley Professor of Old Testament Theology, Department of Biblical Studies, Princeton (N.J.) Theological Seminary. Olson's comments will focus on "Old Testament Resources for a New Twenty-First Century World."

The Lund Lectures are free and open to the public.

Symposium features prominent scholars

The Symposium, September 27–29, will bring together several prominent scholars from various church traditions. They will speak on a variety of topics related to family, followed by responses and discussion with the audience. Faculty with the University and the Seminary are among the presenters and respondents.

In recent years, there's been a revival of interest in the theological interpretation of Scripture, said Chester. "Every year for the Symposium, we gather eight or nine scholars from various disciplines to reflect on what Scripture has to say about an important theme of topic that relates to Christian life and the work of the church," he said. "The presenters have to bring Scripture and theological resources to bear on the topic. What you get is a variety of disciplinary perspectives." Family has been under consideration as a possible topic for many years, he added.

About 70 faculty, pastors, lay people and students -- some of whom are taking a course related to the Symposium -- will attend the event in Nyvall Hall, Room N-25. "There is an extended opportunity for formal and informal discussion. Rarely do you get this kind of extended conversation in an academic conference," Snodgrass said. The Symposium also includes worship and prayer, he added. Registration for the Symposium is required.

Symposium proceedings are published in EX AUDITU: An International Journal for the Theological Interpretation of Scripture.

North Park University is affiliated with the Chicago-based Evangelical Covenant Church (ECC). Theological education in the ECC tradition is provided by North Park Theological Seminary, a graduate school of the University.

Use @npunews to follow North Park University News on Twitter. For further information or resources, contact John Brooks, Director of Media Relations and News, via email or at (773) 244-5522. Learn more about North Park University.

Next Steps

Learn more about North Park Theological Seminary's academic programs.