On January 14-16, I had the opportunity to lead a PhD module seminar on Ecclesiastes at Central Baptist Theological Seminary in Plymouth, MN. I enjoyed getting better acquainted with their faculty (for a list of the faculty, click here). Two of Central’s faculty members are Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary graduates: Dr. Dan Brown, who graduated with a Master of Divinity degree in 1982 (a year before I began teaching at Detroit), and Dr. Jeffrey Straub, who graduated with an MDiv in 1994 and then did classroom work in our ThM program. One of the classes that I taught Dr. Straub was a ThM Hebrew Exegesis of Micah in the Fall of 1996. Besides being a WYSIWYG person, one of the things I remember most about Dr. Straub was his intermittent mantra: “Don’t sweat the dagesh” (a dot that is inserted at key junctures in the middle of Hebrew letters). This proverb was good for a laugh or two in the 1990s; however, it was even funnier when one of the students on the first day of the seminar asked me if I sweat the dagesh. At that point, I knew that I had been set up. It was good to renew friendships with the faculty and staff at Central.
I had two students in the seminar: Gelu Pacurar, a pastor from Arad, Romania, and Tim Little, an adjunct faculty member at Faith Baptist Theological Seminary and assistant bookstore manager. In the following picture, Tim owns the Macintosh and Gelu has the other computer.
Each day, the students had to be prepared to orally translate from their Hebrew Bibles four chapters in Ecclesiastes. In addition, they lead discussions on key introductory and interpretative issues in Ecclesiastes. When the class is concluded on April 13 & 14, each student will present a term paper, respond to the other student’s paper, and do a critical book review. I am pleased with the effort that both Gelu and Tim exerted in the seminar and I found the interaction refreshing. I may have been refreshed, however, because I have learned as a seminary professor that it is more blessed to give than receive. If you want to check out the course requirements, clickhere.