One of the main purposes of the advisory committee of the Oikonomia Network is to provide resources and support to all our network members, to help them develop pedagogical excellence. The first task has been to review syllabi, papers, videos, and other materials produced by our network schools. The first round of the committee’s review has just been completed. The committee has identified 34 helpful models that illustrate success in integrating work and economics in theological education.
The content reviewed included:
- 65 syllabi
- 14 papers and articles
- 74 audio-visual resources
Here are the models identified by the committee as the most helpful:
14 Syllabi and Classroom Reports
- Reports on classroom integration projects (Bethel) – see also OT video module here.
- Church and society (Biola)
- Church and entrepreneurship (Gordon-Conwell)
- Social ethics, urban focus (Grand Rapids)
- Internship program (Indiana Wesleyan)
- Global perspectives on ministry leadership (Moody)
- Report on using EWP elements in two research classes (Moody)
- Vocational discipleship (Nazarene)
- Christianity and economics (Pepperdine)
- Theology of work (Reformed-Orlando)
- Entrepreneurship and mission (Seattle Pacific)
- Spiritual capital (Seattle Pacific)
- Theology of business (Seattle Pacific)
- Faith, business, and money (Sioux Falls)
Five Papers and Articles
- “Discipleship Dynamics” church curriculum product (Assemblies of God)
- Faith and work small group curriculum product (Bethel)
- Paper on capitalism and moral narrative (Seattle Pacific)
- Paper on teaching vocation (Trinity)
- Paper on theology and economics (Westminster-California)
15 Audio-Visual Resources
- Flourishing Churches and Communities event (three full length videos) – work, economics, and the local church (Assemblies of God)
- Keith Reeves sermon audio and slides – “There’s Something About Martha” (Azusa-Pacific)
- Preaching 9 to 5 event (three videos) – how to preach theology of work (Biola)
- Amy Sherman lecture – empowering your congregation (Biola)
- Dallas Willard lecture and two clips – spiritual formation and work (Biola)
- Greg Forster chapel and two podcasts – theology of work and economics (Dallas)
- Kern Forum event audio– vocational discipleship (Nazarene)
- Russell Moore lecture – “Mapping Out Your Next Trillion Years” (Southwestern Baptist)
- Gerry Breshears video course – part of the Christians in the Marketplace curriculum (Western)
Note that some of these resources are not yet publicly available.
These models are not a one-size-fits-all, cookie-cutter model of success; every school and every faculty member is unique. Their freedom to innovate is central to the network’s success. But as our community matures, all its members have the opportunity to learn from one another’s work. The network can serve its members by identifying the examples that are the most likely to be helpful to the most people.
Our desire is that the review process be as transparent as possible. The committee is now reviewing the 34 models to develop a “rubric” that will lay out what it is about these models that made the committee identify them as the most helpful. We are also working on other pedagogical resources for our members.
The committee examined content collected from ON schools up through January of this year. It also reviewed content created through smaller ON grants beyond the 18 core schools of the network. One syllabus from outside the ON was included in the review, with the permission of its author – the course on Christianity and economics from Pepperdine. This course was taught by Kenneth Elzinga, an economist at the University of Virginia and a national thought leader among Christians in the field of economics.
The members of the ON advisory committee are:
- Chris Armstrong, Wheaton College
- Gerry Breshears, Western Seminary
- Greg Forster, Kern Family Foundation
- Donald Guthrie, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Trinity International U.)
- P.J. Hill, Wheaton College
- Tom Nelson, Christ Community Church
- Scott Rae, Talbot School of Theology (Biola U.)
- Charlie Self, Assemblies of God Theological Seminary (Evangel U.)
As always, all the committee members welcome your questions and concerns. Feel free to reach out to any of them at any time.