Download and read past papers                                                             Essays on the Holy Spirit

Seminar in Christian Experience: DO525

Spring 2011

Mark E. Moore

Ozark Christian College

417-624-2518, x 2711

1:30 p.m. Thurs

2 Credit Hours


 Schedule | Term Paper | Presentations | Essential Reading | Objectives | Policies

Course Description:

A study of the “mind of Christ’’ as it expresses itself in the life of the believer. An attempt to trace the course of personal Christianity so as to avoid the dangers of cold legalism or formalism on the one hand and the extremes of emotionalism on the other. The method will be directed research (reading and reports). Such subjects as conversion, Christian growth, the Holy Spirit in the life of the Christian, will be studied. (2 hours)

 Course Schedule & Reading Assignments:

1/19    Course Introduction: rules of the road
1/26    Introduction to major lenses of studying the Holy Spirit
          The Evolution of the Holy Spirit
          (Levison, Filled with the Spirit)

2/2     What does it mean to be filled with the Holy Spirit?
          Holy Spirit and supernatural manifestations [1 Cor 12-14]
          (Jack Deere, Surprised by the Power of the Spirit

2/9      How can we live by the Spirit? [Rom 8; Gal 5]
          Guidance, conviction, communication with the Spirit
          (Sergius Bulgakov, The Comforter)

2/16    The social construction of religious forms
          The Holy Spirit in various religious traditions [Luke/Acts; John]
Veli-Matti Kärkkäinen, Pneumatology)

3/8     Issues in Pneumatology
         Codifying the Holy Spirit
         (Dale Bruner, A Theology of the Spirit)

4/12    Developing a doctrine of the Spirit
          Experience and listening to the Holy Spirit
          (Steven R. Guthrie, Creator Spirit)

4/19     Papers Due

4/26     Presentation of Papers


Readings: You are expected to read five of the six books assigned. If you miss more than one, either by absence or voluntary omission, 10% will be deducted from your final grade. Furthermore, if you come to class without having read the book for discussion, you forfeit the right to participate in the discussion. You will do two things with each book. (1) Synthesize the thesis of the book in one paragraph. (2) Make a list of questions based on specific passages from the book that you will bring with you to class for discussion.

 Term Paper Topics: You should begin working on your papers immediately. Either choose a topic from the list or suggest another topic to your course supervisor. No two papers will be written on the same topic, so all must be approved. Papers should be 5,000-7,500 words in length and reflect the level of spiritual discussion developed in the first six weeks of class. Each paper must have a thorough Biblical exegesis of your topic as well as practical application for Christian living. Two students per class period will present their papers. Each student will have 20 minutes to defend their thesis. Another student will be responsible to critique each paper in a written form. They will be given 10 minutes for their critique. The rest of the class, then, will discuss the paper for the remaining 25 minutes. Based upon this critique, the author will then rewrite the paper for a grade. First draft papers are due by 5:00 p.m. [via email], April 14. Final edits are due 5/16 at 5:00 p.m. via Email. This final paper is the only grade in this course.

Paper Topics:

  1. Prophecy – nature and function

  2. Pentecostalism and Global missions

  3. The evolution of the understanding of the Holy Spirit in the Scriptures, by period, book, or author

  4. The development of the understanding of the Holy Spirit in Church History. You may select a period, geographic area, or author(s).

  5. The Holy Spirit’s role in the life and ministry of Jesus (and the Gospels).

  6. The Holy Spirit’s role with the Messiah

  7. The Holy Spirit’s role in the world – unbelievers and physical creation.

  8. Filioque

  9. The Holy Spirit’s work in Conversion

  10. The Holy Spirit’s work in Sanctification

  11. How the Holy Spirit affects/arbitrates (continued) Revelation?

  12. How the Holy Spirit guides and/or teaches?

  13. Gifts of the Spirit and/or the Spirit as Gift

  14. The Spirit as Feminine

  15. The Holy Spirit as Wisdom

  16. Does the Holy Spirit fill the Body of Christ or the body of the Christian?

  17. Life in the Spirit: How can I be filled with the Spirit?

  18. The view of the Spirit in Orthodoxy, Catholicism, Protestants, or Charismatics.

  19. Communion with the Holy Spirit in the Sacraments

  20. Metaphors for the Holy Spirit and how they inform our understanding of his person.

  21. Faith healing

  22. The relationship between eschatological expectation or political turmoil and ecstatic experiences (prophecy, tongues, visions, convulsions).

  23. Ecstatic experiences in other religions and/or cross-cultural analysis.

  24. The anatomy of a revival.

  25. The freedom in the Spirit.

  26. The Spirit and prayer: Devotional life, consolation, intervention.

  27. Dreams and Visions as communications of the Spirit.

  28. The Spirit and opposition – power encounters and exorcisms.


  • Anderson, Allan. Moya: The Holy Spirit in an African Context. Pretoria: University of South Africa, 1991. [This book is an excellent example of how one’s cultural background and presuppositions affect ones theology, particularly of the Spirit. Great window into alternative ideas of spiritual realities.]

  • Guthrie, Steven R. Creator Spirit: The Holy Spirit and the Art of Becoming Human. Baker, 2011. [Guthrie is a scholar in sacred music and applies his field to pneumatology, arguing that the Spirit is the creative force behind the arts.]

  • Bennett, Dennis J. Nine O’Clock in the Morning. Gainesville, FL: Bridge-Logos, 1970. [Bennett tells his own pilgrimage into the Baptism of the Holy Spirit as an Anglican Pastor. His story has been immensely influential in Pentecostal circles, though the book has no scriptural references.]

  • Bulgakov, Sergius. The Comforter. Trans. Boris Jakim. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2004. [Bulgakov has been dead for over one hundred years, but his voice is still a clarion articulation of classic Easter Orthodox robust pneumatology.]

  • Burgess, Stanley M. Ancient Christian Traditions. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1997. The Holy Spirit: Eastern Christian Traditions. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1989. The Holy Spirit: Medieval Roman Catholic and Reformation Traditions. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1997. [Burgess writes as a historical theologian from a Pentecostal perspective. Superior footnotes allow the reader to access the original sources].

  • Chan, Francis. Forgotten God: Reversing Our Tragic Neglect of the Holy Spirit. Colorado Springs: Cook, 2009. [Chan is a well-loved pastor that passionately addresses a neglect of the Spirit he has experienced in practical ministry.]

  • Congar, Yves. I Believe in the Holy Spirit, Tr. David Smith. New York: Crossroad, 1999. [This is a comprehensive Pneumatology from a Catholic perspective.]

  • Cymbala, Jim. Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1997. [A compelling work on prayer and the power of the Spirit.]

  • Deere, Jack. Surprised by the Power of the Spirit. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 1993. [Deere, a former professor at Dallas Theological Seminary, recounts his conversion to Pentecostalism from cessationism. His reasoning and theology is compelling.]

  • Edwards, Denis. Breath of Life: A Theology of the Creator Spirit. Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 2004. [This is a Pneumatology from a liberal American perspective espousing the universality of the Holy Spirit as creator. Quite similar in orientation to Moltmann’s earlier work.]

  • Harris, Randall (Ed.) The Contemporaries Meet the Classics on the Holy Spirit. West Monroe, LA: Howard, 2004. [A topical collection of snippets on the Holy Spirit – a great introduction to many authors across the centuries.]

  • Heron, Alasdair. The Holy Spirit: The Holy Spirit in the Bible, the History of Christian Thought, and Recent Theology. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1983. [All of this in just 180 pages! Obviously a brief overview, but a good starting place for tracing the development of Pneumatology.]

  • Kärkkäinen, Veli-Matti Pneumatology: The Holy Spirit in Ecumenical, International, and Contextual Perspective. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2002. [This Scandinavian Pentecostal shows how various Pneumatologies are shaped by both their ecclesiastical and cultural contexts.]

  • Keener, Craig. The Spirit in the Gospels and Acts. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1997. [Keener provides an excellent example of exegetical work on the Holy Spirit from an evangelical perspective.]

  • ---. Three Crucial Questions about the Holy Spirit. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1996. [Keener, noted Evangelical theologian addresses three critical issue: Baptism of the Spirit, Gifts of the Spirit, and how to recognize the Spirit.]

  • Levison, John R. Filled with the Spirit. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2009. [He surveys the emergence and evolution of the doctrine of the Holy Spirit in Jewish literature, including the NT, up through the first century. This is an expansion of his earlier work, The Spirit in First-Century Judaism (Boston: Brill, 2002)].

  • MacArthur, John F. Charismatic Chaos. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1992. [MacArthur gives a biased and unsympathetic critique of the Pentecostal movement.]

  • Miller, Calvin. Loving God Up Close: Rekindling Your Relationship with the Holy Spirit. New York: Warner Books, 2004. [In classic Miller style, he calls us devotionally into a communicative relationship with the Holy Spirit.]

  • Moltmann, Jürgen. The Spirit of Life: A Universal Affirmation, Tr. Margaret Kohl. Minneapolis: Fortress, 1992. [A German analytical and “liberal” view arguing for the universal Spirit, broader than evangelical or Pentecostal limited views.]

  • Montague, George T. The Holy Spirit: Growth of a Biblical Tradition. New York: Paulist Press, 1976. [Montague, a Catholic hermeneut of note, traces the evolution of Pneumatology in Biblical literature].

  • Nee, Watchman. Release of the Spirit. Cloverdale, IN: Sure Foundation, 1965. [Nee demonstrates a classic Eastern perspective of a Spiritual (and practical) pneumatology. Lots of spiritualizing and allegory.]

  • Schandorff, Esther Dech. The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit: A Bibliography Showing Its Chronological Development, 2 Vol. Lanham, Maryland: Scarecrow Press, 1995. [A massive bibliography of categorized multilingual sources thoroughly documenting the literature pertaining to the Spirit.]

  • Sheldon, James. Mighty in Word and Deed. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1991. [Sheldon is an Associate Professor at Oral Roberts University. This book is based on his PhD dissertation and argues for a unique pneumatology of Luke using redaction criticism concluding that he is interested in the power of the Spirit more than his role in conversion as Paul is.]

  • Turner, Max. The Holy Spirit and Spiritual Gifts. Peabody, MO: Hendrickson, 1996, 1998. [A scholarly overview of spiritual gifts and their philosophic foundations in OT and intertestamental literature.]

 College Mission:

The ultimate mission of Ozark Christian College is to glorify God by evangelizing the lost and edifying Christians worldwide. The immediate mission of Ozark Christian College is to train men and women for Christian service through an undergraduate Bible college education.

College Learning Objectives (CLO):

Ozark Christian College seeks to develop students who:

  1. Know sound doctrine from the Word of God. (Biblical Doctrine)

  2. Understand evidences for the basis of faith in Christ and the Bible.  (Apologetics)  

  3. Interpret the Bible to understand the author's intended meaning. (Hermeneutics) 

  4. Demonstrate an intellectual development for critical thinking and lifelong learning. (Intellect)

  5. Communicate effectively in written and oral forms. (Communication)

  6. Display a personal growth in Christian character and fellowship with Christ. (Devotion)

  7. Apply a variety of skills for leading others to Christ, helping them mature in Christ, and   equipping them to serve Christ. (Evangelism & Discipleship)

Biblical Studies Area Objectives (BSAO):                            

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the history of the Old Testament and New Testament.

  2. Document how the Old Testament scriptures reveal God’s preparation for the coming of the Messiah.

  3. Articulate basic Christian doctrine through exegetical study of the scriptures.      

  4. Understand issues dealing with the origin, interpretation and application of the Bible.

  5. Articulate a strong faith in Jesus as the Son of God and the Bible as the Word of God.

  6. Apply Biblical texts to life.           

Course Goals:

  1. We will create a community in which our readings and experiences converge in a Spirit-centered dialogue on how to live Christianly with particular emphasis on developing a theology of the Spirit. This dialogue will become the basis for our praxis, where we live out the implications of our faith. (CLO 7; BSAO 5)

  2. The course will provide the student with a graduate-type educational experience which will help him/her transition into the next level of academic work. (CLO 4)

  3. The course will create a model for discipleship which will hopefully be exported by each student into their perspective fields of service. (CLO 1, 6; BSAO 6)

 Course Policies and Expectations:

  • ADA Accommodation: If you have a disability and are requesting an accommodation, please contact the Executive Director of Admissions at 417-624-2518 Extension 2006 as soon as possible.
  • Attendance: Absences over 6 will result in the failure of this course as outlined in the college catalogue (page 53-4). Four tardies will be counted as one absence. If a student arrives fifteen minutes after class or leaves fifteen minutes before class is over it will be counted as an absence. 
  • Homework: Late work is unacceptable. Assignments and projects are due at the beginning of the class period on which they are assigned.  If you are absent, you are still responsible for having your work brought to class and turned in for you. All work is to be typed unless otherwise noted.
  • Tests: Should you miss an exam you will take a different exam and you will have exactly one week to make it up from the class period on which it was given. You may take it at the testing center (L12) after paying a $5 late fee in the business office.
  • Cheating/Plagiarism: Cheating will result in a zero on the assignment in question and a mandatory meeting with the dean of students to determine further discipline which may include failure in the class or dismissal from the college. Cheating  includes but is not limited to (1) using material from another student for tests, memory, or term papers, (2) not properly citing sources in papers and assignments so as to make it look original, (3) using cheat sheets – written or electronic – for tests or quizzes.

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