We live in a world of competing ideologies, worldviews and messages. In some ways, this was no different in the first century when Jesus lived and ministered. But in the midst of a cacophony of divergent religious claims and calls for political ideology, Jesus came with a singular, clarion call to announce the arrival of God’s Kingdom. The Gospel of Mark, in its typical powerful brevity, reports:
“Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.’” Jesus used the term “gospel” (literally good news) to describe his powerful message – a message of God’s sovereign act of salvation through him, the incarnate Son of God.
In this course we will explore an enduring question: What was the message of Jesus? We will examine the evidence of the canonical Gospels in the New Testament and explore the words and actions of Jesus himself. The word “canonical” comes from the Greek “kanon” which means “rule” or "measuring stick”. This term refers to the sacred texts that the early Church deemed to be inspired, trustworthy and without error. With regards to the message of Jesus, we are blessed to have four accounts, four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. This course is comprised of four units that explore the following topics:
Unit 1: The Four Gospels: Jesus as the Word of God
Unit 2: The Baptism and Temptation of Jesus in the Gospels
Unit 3: The Sermons and Parables of Jesus in the Gospels
Unit 4: The Ministry and Miracles of Jesus in the Gospels
The lead instructor for this course is Dr. Corné Bekker, Professor of Biblical Studies at the College of Arts and Sciences at Regent University. In this course, Dr. Pat Robertson, Dr. David Gyertson and Gordon Robertson, also join us with some older as well as newer recorded teachings on the message of Jesus in the Gospels.
Please note that there are self-paced reflection questions in most of the sections and a final reflection writing exercise at the end of the course. These exercises will help you to review, monitor and assess your learning and comprehension in the course.
Finally, this course is designed to provide the participants with substantial knowledge about the life, teachings, and nature of Jesus Christ. However, the for-credit version of this course, which will be available within the next several months, will require additional work, materials, and assessments that will be made available at that time.