Minor inReligion

Minoring in Religion involves studying the nature of religious belief and traditions.

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Religion Curriculum Overview

Minoring in Religion involves studying the nature of religious belief and traditions. What is the importance of religious values for the individual and for the human community? Who does theological literature related to social issues? You’ll explore how religious perspectives have a significant role in public life—and keep it real by observing and reflecting on religious activities of faith communities in the Twin Cities—as you take 20 credit hours toward a religion minor in conjunction with a different bachelor’s degree major.

Required: 8 Credits
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
THL - 353 Varieties of Beliefs 4
THL - 100 Biblical Heritage of Christian 4
THL - 215 Hist & Lit of the New Testamnt 4

From a Christian perspective, this course explores the varieties of human religious beliefs. Major religions are surveyed in terms of artifacts, behaviors, emotions, beliefs, values, world views, and histories. The course will cover Animism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Judaism, Islam, and Christianity, with special attention in the latter case devoted to the Christian denominations of North America. Prerequisites: THL100 or THL206 or THL215

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An investigation of the sacred literature and basic theological expressions of the Christian tradition. The course emphasizes the covenant dealings of God with His people and the completion of the old covenant in God's new covenant in Jesus Christ. Students will read selected portions from each major division of the Old and New Testaments and will explore themes taken up by the ecumenical creeds. This course fulfills the introductory general education requirement for Theology and counts toward the minor in Religion.(THL100 is not open to students enrolled in or having taken THL203, THL206 or THL303)

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An introduction to the historical context and literature of the New Testament. Students master the stories and teachings of early Christianity, practice the use of the tools of biblical interpretation, and grow in their ability to read texts of the Bible in their historical and literary contexts.

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Electives: 12 credits
Course ID Course Name Credit Hours
THL - 310 Archaeology and the Bible 4
THL - 320 Global Christianity 4
THL - 325 Goodness, Justice & Christ Fth 4
THL - 336 The Problem of Evil 4
THL - 342 Athens and Jerusalem 4
THL - 344 Martin Luther: Saint & Sinner 4
THL - 351 Jesus and Muhammad 4
THL - 352 Is God Green? 4
THL - 356 One Nation under God? 4
THL - 357 Christianity & the Media 4
THL - 371 Mission of God 4

Archaeology has become an indispensable source for the reconstruction of past cultures and therefore is of direct importance for Biblical studies. The course aims at giving students insight into the material culture of societies in the ancient Levant from the Bronze and Iron ages down to the material context of Early Christianity in the Roman and Byzantine periods. Students will be introduced to basic methods of archaeological work and to important archaeological regions, periods and types of material culture relevant to the world of the Bible and Christianity. Students will use archaeological data to reconstruct contexts for biblical texts. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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The question ÒWhat is Christianity?Ó will be explored from a global perspective. After surveying the state of Christianity, its teachings, and practices, students will wrestle with basic questions of life and Christian vocation in the third millennium. A major component of the course will be study of worship practices of area churches representing diverse cultural and immigrant groups. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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In this course, students will examine the ways in which both philosophical and theological frameworks change how we live our individual lives and shape the future of our families, friendships, sports teams, businesses, and political societies. In particular, the course invites students to relate these frameworks to their own thinking about sex and family, war and peace, work and the use of its financial fruitsÑand more generally, to the moral and political action to which they believe they are called in this life. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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The problem of evil has led human beings to ask difficult questions about God. If God is both all-powerful and completely good (as many religious traditions claim), then why does God allow evil? Or, does evil demonstrate that in fact, there is no God? In this course, students will grapple with classic philosophical, Christian, and other religious approaches to these questions. They also will examine how these different approaches lead to different practical responses to evil in our personal lives and in our public life together. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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A selective historical survey of the principal areas of inquiry, key figures, major issues, and central themes commonly addressed by western philosophy and Christian theology during the ancient, medieval, modern and contemporary periods. Among the topics that may be considered are the relationship of faith and reason; truth; nature and grace; the classical arguments for the existence of God; evil; the philosophical and theological virtues; and religious language. The course is based on extensive readings from primary sources and is supplemented by lectures and discussions. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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This course examines the life and theology of the Martin Luther, instigator of the Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. A prolific writer and bold thinker, Luther appears today on many top ten lists of most influential people in the last millennium. By studying Luther in his medieval context and by reviewing the influence of his thought since the 16th century, the course will explore the relevance of his theology for the 21st century. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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This course explores the lives, contributions, teachings, and significance of Jesus and Muhammad through selected reading of the Christian Scriptures, pagan and Jewish sources, the QurÕan, Ibn Hishan, Al-Waqidi, and some later writers. Students will gain skill and confidence in reading ancient texts and understanding the historical, social, and religious trends that shaped the ancient world. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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Drawing on the resources of Christianity and other religions, this course examines issues of ecology, sustainability and human health (broadly conceived). Students will explore the significance of Biblical themes of creation and new creation as they consider 21st century ethical choices for the care of the cosmos and the human community. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology.(Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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The claim that the United States is a Christian nation will be examined from the Puritan settlers through the rise of the religious right in the late twentieth century, with particular emphasis on the notion of covenant and the influence of Christian leaders in various reform movements (abolitionist, temperance, womenÕs suffrage, civil rights). The question of Òone nation under GodÓ will be tested against the Lutheran doctrine of the two kingdoms. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology.(Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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Christianity has an unmistakable interplay with various forms of the media. This course explores subtle and overt Christian themes in movies, music, magazines/newspapers, theater, the World Wide Web, and television. Students locate, watch, and critically analyze numerous media resources and discuss them in correlation to Christian themes in the Bible. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 THL215)

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This course traces the mission of God through the Old and New Testaments. It explores God's intent for his mission people in the past, present and future and discloses that intent in biblical narratives and texts and in Lutheran theology and Lutheran confessions. This course fulfills the intermediate general education requirement for Theology. (Prerequisite: THL100 or THL206 or THL215)

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An academic minor normally consists of 20 to 24 credits taken in courses in one area or related areas of study prescribed by the faculty.

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