A Course of Study Program
Under the accreditation of the United Methodist General Board of Higher Education




North Central Jurisdiction United Methodist Church

Native American Course of Study

Fall 2016 courses will take place in Dayspring UMC, 201 N. Norwood Pl, East Peoria, IL 61611 (309) 698-2527

See the 'contact us' page for contacts on how to obtain more information
. The dates for the Fall 2016 COS are indicated below.
Please select one course for each gathering.

The following courses are being offered:

COS 321 - Bible III: Gospels
                   September 13-15 (13-14 Full days, 15th 1/2 day)
                   Location: East Peoria, Ill.

Texts: Mark Allen Powell, Introducing the New Testament
Frederick Murphy, An Introduction to Jesus and the Gospels
Alan Culpepper, Anatomy of the 4th Gospel Supplementary:
Sharon Ringe, Luke (Westminster Bible Companion)
Moody Smith, Abingdon New Testament Commentary on John

Assignments: NACOS 321 BIBLE III, GOSPELS assignment to be brought to the course Sept. 13-15.

Read AN INTRODUCTION TO JESUS AND THE GOSPELS and Introduction through Chapter 8 of INTRODUCING THE NEW TESTAMENT. If time permits, I recommend reading Chapter 9 about the Book of Acts as well.

We will read each of the Gospels aloud during the course. Bring your favorite translation.

1. AN INTRODUCTION TO JESUS AND THE GOSPELS identifies several methods for understanding scripture. Some of them are: (1) Explanation, often called historical criticism, which means identifying aspects of the text that are not necessarily apparent to the readers, or are overlooked by modern readers, such as historical background or attitudes and values of certain groups; for example the Jewish culture of Jesus with Torah, circumcision, purity laws, dietary rules, feast days, sects, and rituals, (2) Textual criticism, which notes the genre of the text such as parable, saying, history, miracle story, etc. (3) Interpretation which applies our information about the ancient world’s values and attitudes, concepts of Christianity and religion in general, to arrive at plausible conclusions of what the text meant to its author and original hearers, and (4) Empathetically entering a text through your own experiences and situation in life to be challenged or transformed by it.

Using these methods as a minimum, give your understanding of the Parable of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25–37. You may use other methods in addition to these. What does the text call upon you to do or become? Does it have a further meaning in society today? Explain. Three to five pages.

2. Analyze the use of Post colonial Criticism as described in AN INTRODUCTION TO JESUS AND THE GOSPELS. Who are the people (groups and/or individuals) in the Gospels with whom American Indian people are likely to find similarities of experiences? Two to four pages.

3. Respond to this statement, “The God of the Old Testament is different from the God of the New Testament.” One to two pages.

4. Each of the Gospels presents a different focus upon Jesus. Describe the unique picture that emerges from each one. What is the meaning of Jesus’s crucifixion in each Gospel? Drawing upon this, how do you describe Jesus? What is his meaning for your life? Six to ten pages.

COS 423 - Mission
                   October 11-13 (11-12 Full Days, 13th 1/2 day)
                   Location: East Peoria, Ill.

Texts:   Mortimer Arias, Announcing The Reign of God
Henry Knight & F Douglas Powe, Transforming Evangelism: The Wesleyan Way of Sharing
Faith Eddie Fox and George Morris, Faith-Sharing Supplementary:
Doug Powe, New Wine and New Wineskins: How African American Congregations Can Reach New Generations
Stephen Gunter, Elaine Robinson, ed., Considering the Great Commission


COS 424 - Ethics
                   October 11-13 (11-12 Full Days, 13th 1/2 day)
Texts:   Robin Lovin: An Introduction to Christian Ethics: Goals, Duties and Virtues

Homer Noley: First White Frost

2012 Book of Discipline: Social Principles
2012 UMC Book of Resolutions

ASSIGNMENTS: A paper of 5-10 pages is due one week before the first class on the ethical considerations and implications of the UMC's response to the Sand Creek Massacre, the 2012 General Conference Act of Repentance, and results of the call for all U.S. Conferences to hold an Act of Repentance. This paper will be graded with a weight of 1/3 for its understanding of the ethical foundation for reconciliation, 1/3 for the student's personal response in interpreting this action to a "hostile populace," and 1/3 for participation in class discussion. By "hostile populace," I mean the Native American community that doubts the intentions of the church based upon history and certain members of the U.M.C. who protest that it is a waste of resources.
We will discuss several ethical decisions such as establishing boundaries with parishioners, access to church resources, accuracy of reports, and establishing a reputation of personal integrity through confidentiality coupled with personal transparency. We also will examine means of reducing the pastor's liability for accusations of wrongdoing.
The final element of the course is a study of the Social Principles with an emphasis upon their ethical foundations and particular stances of the denomination as stated in THE BOOK OF RESOLUTIONS. Students will choose a topic from these two during the first class for a second paper due two weeks after the class.

The 100 level classes must be taken before the 500 level classes.