I am writing this the third week of March. Russia's war against Ukraine has been ongoing for about a month. Like many of you, I bet, I keep thinking of the students I have had over my career who are from Ukraine and are there now in the middle of this carnage. How are they? Those of you who are closer to being students may be thinking of classmates from Ukraine. Also, since the demise of the Soviet Union (1991) and the establishment of an independent Ukraine it has become a magnet for U.S.-based, evangelical activity, including among Stone-Campbell Movement churches.
I count five former students, one at least from every school where I have taught, and an untold number of mission efforts, plus a Ukrainian couple who were translators when I taught in the nation of Georgia. I even had a seamstress recently who emigrated to the U.S. from Ukraine who certainly must have family there she is worried about. How about you? Who do you know that are Ukrainian, here or in Ukraine now?
People in the U.S. and certainly evangelicals, including my local Christian church are trying their best to rally around the Ukrainian people who are being ravaged so unjustly. Why? For sure, they are showing such resolute bravery in the face of so much unjust devastation and death. When given the opportunity to express themselves on media cameras, they also seem to express their innocence when they question "What did we do to deserve this?"
In a recent article in Christianity Today (February, 2022) called, "Death Not Welcome Here," Kate Shellnut, while not addressing Russia's war against Ukraine, makes an observation that struck me as a relevant point for Christians to ponder when thinking about helping Ukraine in this war. She says, "Evangelicals often adopt the label of 'pro-life.' But being pro-life also means the opposite. We oppose death." She continues, "We should work to save lives, to avoid careless deaths, in every arena that we can."
Shellnut lists a number of important areas and ways Christians can and should oppose needless and innocent death. Me? I thought immediately of those Ukrainians we see on media day after day crying over the deaths of innocents: children, elderly, pregnant mothers, hospitalized. But I also picture the death of entire cities like Mariupol, reduced to shells of charred buildings. Schools and colleges, gone. Hospitals and charitable organizations gone. Iconic, historical and government buildings, gone. Homes, gone.
When you see this article, the war may be over. Maybe God saw fit that the Ukrainians held out against the onslaught of death being pummeled against them. Maybe it still continues. Maybe the war is long over and peace restored. Maybe Kyiv is on its way to the beautiful city I visited for a day in 2009.
As believers, may we continue to value the dignity of human life and work against needless and pointless death wherever we can, including in Ukraine. In this issue, our first two articles address education in quite different historical contexts. James Lappeman tackles the educational shifts in ministerial education against the backdrop of the so-called Boston Movement in Churches of Christ while Frank Bellizzi tells the fascinating tale of educational efforts among Native Americans from the perspective of a single, female member of Christian churches (previous to split with the more conservative churches) a hundred years ago.
Our third and fourth articles focus on two more notable educators. Derek Estes focuses on Thomas B. Warren, who taught at Freed-Hardeman University and Harding Graduate School of Religion among others, to discern a representation of epistemology for Churches of Christ. Brad Helgerson brings the discerning mind of Jack Cottrell, who taught at Cincinnati Christian Seminary, to bear on the matter of baptism in relationship to faith and salvation.
In one of our last two articles, Eric Seibert supplies SCJ readers with one of his presentations at the 2021 SCJ Conference, hosted by Lincoln Christian University, that focuses on how to preach biblical texts that contain violence. In the second, Joshua Seth Houston examines relevant NT texts to discern the depth and breadth of Paul's understanding and use of Greek.
• • • • On a personal note, due to personal issues, this issue of SCJ is well late of its labelled publication. Efforts are being made to restore SCJ's normal published seasons by publishing SCJ 25.1 and 25.2 yet in 2022. • • • •
William R. Baker, Editor
Christian Standard editors Isaac and Russell Errett maintained a literary feud with Gospel Advocate editor David Lipscomb. In the late 1890s, while mission society leaders sought to establish a Tennessee branch, Lipscomb regularly criticized the society movement. Russell Errett, in turn, caricatured Lipscomb as an old woman attempting to sweep back ocean waves with a broom, a caricature widely known among Churches of Christ today. Their feud serves as a microhistory illuminating the complex factors that divided the Stone-Campbell Movement into two divergent groups by the end of the nineteenth century.
Kathryn Gin Lum and Paul Harvey, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Race in American History
(James L. Gorman, Johnson University)
Dyron B. Daughrity, The History of Christianity: Facts and Fictions
(Shawn C. Smith, Lincoln Christian University)
Thomas S. Kidd, America's Religious History: Faith, Politics, and the Shaping of a Nation
(Christina Littlefield, Pepperdine University)
Daniel K. Williams, Defenders of the Unborn: The Pro-Life Movement before Roe v. Wade
(Kathy J. Pulley, Missouri State University)
Joseph K. Gordon, Divine Scripture in Human Understanding: A Systematic Theology of the Christian Bible
(John Mark Hicks, Lipscomb University)
Richard Rice, The Future of Open Theism: From Antecedents to Opportunities
(William Curtis Holtzen, Hope International University)
Bradley Jersak, IN: Incarnation & Inclusion, Abba & Lamb
(Carl Bridges, Johnson University)
Matthew Nelson Hill, Embracing Evolution: How Understanding Science Can Strengthen Your Christian Life
(Richard A. Knopp, Lincoln Christian University)
Mitzi Smith, ed., I Found God in Me: A Womanist Biblical Hermeneutics Reader
(Amy Smith Carman, Brite Divinity School)
Leah D. Schade and Jerry L. Sumney, Apocalypse When? A Guide to Interpreting and Preaching Apocalyptic Texts
(Amy McLaughlin- Sheasby, Boston University School of Theology)
Matthew Kaemingk and Cory B. Wilson, Work and Worship: Reconnecting Our Labor and Liturgy
(Frank Weller, South Lansing Christian Church)
Scott Cormode, The Innovative Church: How Leaders and Their Congregations Can Adapt in an Ever-Changing World
(Justin Butler, Maysville, Kentucky)
Barbara J. McClure
(Brite), Emotions: Problems and Promise for Human Flourishing
(Miriam Y. Perkins, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan)
Jerusha Matsen Neal, The Overshadowed Preacher: Mary, the Spirit, and the Labor of Proclamation
(Rob O'Lynn, Kentucky Christian University)
Amy-Jill Levine, Sermon on the Mount: A Beginner's Guide to the Kingdom of Heaven
(Stanley N. Helton, Alberta Bible College)
Charles Kimball, Truth over Fear: Combating the Lies about Islam
(Evertt W. Huffard, Harding School of Theology)
Tremper Longman, III, The Bible and the Ballot: Using Scripture in Political Decisions
(Jess Hall, Hendersonville, Tennessee)
John Goldingay, Old Testament Ethics: A Guided Tour
(John C. Nugent, Great Lakes Christian College)
Craig G. Bartholomew, The God Who Acts in History: The Significance of Sinai
(Ryan J. Cook, Moody Theological Seminary)
R. W. L. Moberly, The God of the Old Testament: Encountering the Divine in Christian Scripture
(Joseph W. Mueller, Manhattan Christian College)
Christopher J. H. Wright, Here Are Your Gods: Faithful Living in Idolatrous Times
(Don Sanders, St. Charles, Missouri)
Duane Garrett, The Problem of the Old Testament: Hermeneutical, Schematic & Theological Approaches
(Chad Summa, Central Christian College of the Bible)
Don C. Collett, Figural Reading and the Old Testament: Theology and Practice
(John C. Poirier, Germantown, Ohio)
Stephen B. Chapman, The Law and the Prophets: A Study in Old Testament Canon Formation
(Ted Blacketer, Lincoln Christian University)
Suzanne Richard, ed., New Horizons in the Story of the Early Bronze III and Early Bronze IV of the Levant
(Jess Long, Lubbock Christian University)
John A. Cook and Robert D. Holmstedt, Intermediate Biblical Hebrew: An Illustrated Grammar
(Cheryl L. Eaton, Lincoln Christian Seminary)
John A. Cook and Robert D. Holmstedt, Beginning Biblical Hebrew: A Grammar and Illustrated Reader; and John A. Cook and Robert D. Holmstedt, Intermediate Biblical Hebrew: An Illustrated Grammar
(Daryl Docterman, Southeastern University)
Benjamin J. Noonan, Advances in the Study of Biblical Hebrew and Aramaic: New Insights for Reading the Old Testament
(Randall K. J. Tan, Clear Bible, Inc.)
L.S. Baker, Jr., Kenneth Bergland, Felipe A. Masotti, and A. Rahel Wells, eds., Exploring the Composition of the Pentateuch
(Paavo Tucker, Lipscomb University)
John Goldingay, Genesis
(Jennifer M. Matheny, Nazarene Theological Seminary)
David Toshio Tsumura, The Second Book of Samuel
(Phillip G. Camp, Lipscomb University)
Alexander W. Breitkopf, Job: From Lament to Penitence
(Adam L. Bean, Emmanuel Christian Seminary at Milligan)
Jerome F. D. Creach, Discovering Psalms: Content, Interpretation, Reception
(John C. Wakefield, Milligan University)
M. Daniel Carroll R., The Book of Amos
(Jason Bembry, Emmanuel Christian Seminary)
Dana M. Harris, An Introduction to Biblical Greek Grammar: Elementary Syntax and Linguistics
(David H. Warren, NW Florida School of Biblical Studies)
Dariya Rafiyenko and Ilja A. Seržant, eds., Postclassical Greek: Contemporary Approaches to Philology and Linguistics
(James E. Sedlacek, Nazarene Theological College)
Walter D. Zorn, The Faithfulness of Jesus the Messiah: A Gospel Emphasis
(David Lertis Matson, Hope International University)
Helen K Bond, The First Biography of Jesus: Genre and Meaning in Mark's Gospel
(Jon Carman, Baylor University)
M. Eugene Boring, Hearing Paul's Voice: Insights for Teaching and Preaching
(Thomas Scott Caulley, Kentucky Christian University)
Chosen by David Reed
View Quotables from Other Issues Here
"These scholars seem to assume that if faith is the means (as Paul abundantly professes) it is also the moment."
Bradley J. Helgerson, "Jack Cottrell's Defense of Baptism as the Occasional Condition" (SCJ 24.2:215)
"Scholarship and the technical knowledge of biblical languages and the biblical text were key to pastoral authority in the Reformation."
James Lappeman, "New Church Movements and Second-Generation Theological Education" (SCJ 24.2:164)
"The colleges and universities were labelled as having lost credibility for the job for which they were designed: training ministers."
James Lappeman, "New Church Movements and Second-Generation Theological Education" (SCJ 24.2:173)
"Too often sermons and midweek lessons have left our members hungry."
James Lappeman, "New Church Movements and Second-Generation Theological Education" (SCJ 24.2:178)
"Kennedy referred to Chestnutt as "the tall sycamore of North Carolina and the giant teacher and true missionary of the West."
Frank V. Bellizzi, "Miss Meta's Close Call" (SCJ 24.2:183)
"Unless the work of American males produced homes, they were not men. Unless women helped create and control a domestic space, they could not be true women."
Frank V. Bellizzi, "Miss Meta's Close Call" (SCJ 24.2:189)
"A belief is justified, according to Warren, if it is formed on the basis of strong evidence and good reasoning."
Derek Estes, "Religious Epistemology in the Churches of Christ" (SCJ 24.2:197)
"I am not claiming to know merely that there is a "high probability" that God exists or that the Bible is the word of God: I am saying that I know that God exists and the Bible is the word of God."
Derek Estes, "Religious Epistemology in the Churches of Christ" (SCJ 24.2:201)
"The result is either "baptismal regeneration" that "invests" the water ritual with "effectual cleansing power" or a kind of "credal regeneration" that assigns to a "human decision" the saving power God's grace alone possesses."
Bradley J. Helgerson, "Jack Cottrell's Defense of Baptism as the Occasional Condition" (SCJ 24.2:209)
"Wouldn't it be good to steer clear of violent verses especially when there are so many friendlier passages in the Bible emphasizing God's love, mercy, and grace? I think not. In fact, I believe it is terribly unwise to ignore these troubling texts."
Eric A. Seibert, "Preaching and Teaching from Violent Old Testament Texts" (SCJ 24.2:218)
"Instead, they say to us in effect, "Move along, move along. Nothing to see here." But there is something to see. And we should look. Indeed, we must look. Sanitizing violent texts conceals their problematic nature and fails to help us come to terms with the moral and ethical difficulties they raise."
Eric A. Seibert, "Preaching and Teaching from Violent Old Testament Texts" (SCJ 24.2:221)
"The God Jesus reveals functions as the standard, or measuring rod, by which all biblical portrayals of God should be evaluated."
Eric A. Seibert, "Preaching and Teaching from Violent Old Testament Texts" (SCJ 24.2:228)
"Alexander's conquest of the Mediterranean, Egypt, parts of Asia, and the majority of the Middle East paved the way for Greek to become the language of the ancient world. This Hellenization introduced and popularized complex styles of rhetoric, such as those found in Aristotle, Quintilian, Epictetus, and eventually Paul. Wright correctly suggests Paul is "at home, in fact, in the street-level world of Hellenistic discourse."
Joshua Seth Houston, "Paul within Greco-Romanism" (SCJ 24.2:233)
"Paul's letter to Philemon exemplifies his knowledge of Greek grammar and syntax as well as rhetorical structure."
Joshua Seth Houston, "Paul within Greco-Romanism" (SCJ 24.2:238)