Sanctification, Spiritual Formation, and Personal Transformation
This course is also offered as THEO 613
This course seeks to render explicit the relation of “spiritual formation” (an expression of relatively recent coinage) to the traditional theological language of “sanctification” (now largely fallen into disuse). More fundamentally, it will clarify and reconnect “spiritual formation” to the biblical presentation of Christ as the Light of the world and humanity’s Lord and Teacher; his call to individuals to enroll as his disciples; his teaching that love for him is inseparable from keeping his way by obeying his commands. Special attention will be paid to the process by which individual persons and their lives—however gritty, grimy, and grim their present condition, in a merely human perspective—can be slowly, steadily, and surely transformed into his likeness. We will examine an array of notable accounts of “spiritual formation” to assess the extent to which they stand up to scrutiny and illuminate—in relation to “the logic of biblical discourse” (Yeago)—the overall vision of “the good life,” “blessedness,” and the path of growth into mature integrity and goodness as exemplified and taught by Jesus Christ and practiced and elaborated by his earliest followers.
In addition, the course seeks to remedy what we shall call “the information/conformation-to-Christ gap,” by exploring several of the time-tested classical spiritual practices that foster openness, awareness, and responsiveness to God’s presence, speaking, and leading in our lives. The ultimate goal of the course is to unite the head and heart in better understanding and loving the triune God as Christ has made him known, strengthening our disposition to seek God, learning from him how to walk with him in his ways, in a life-relationship of ever-deepening trust and interactive engagement with him as we participate with him in his ongoing action to redeem and make new the world that he loves.
This course is onsite only.
Looking For Textbooks?
Call 604-228-1820 or 1-800-334-3279 to check on textbook availability. You can also email [email protected].