Academics

Religious Studies Courses (RLST)      

RLST 310. Introduction to Old Testament
3 hours
This course will explore the Old Testament with a special attention to the historical and cultural context in which the various books developed.
Introducing and using modern critical tools for studying scripture, the
course will survey the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible), the
historical books, the prophetic and wisdom literature and will raise
questions concerning the theological meaning of the Old Testament both
then and today.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 320. Introduction to New Testament
3 hours
This course will explore the New Testament with a special attention to
the historical and cultural context in which the various books developed.
The course will introduce modern critical methods for examining the
Gospel texts, with a focus on the historical Jesus question, and will
survey the other literature of the New Testament, including Paul's letters
and the Book of Revelation. The theological meaning of these books
both then and now will be discussed.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 330. History of Christianity I
3 hours
This course will trace the development of Christianity from its founding
up to the Reformation. Focusing primarily on key events in the life of
church and society, this course will survey such topics as early church
life and the persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire, the
development of early doctrines about Jesus, the development of
monasticism, the Christianization of Europe in the Middle Ages, the
Crusades, the papacy and the Renaissance.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 340. Christian Worship and Sacraments
3 hours
Worship and reverence are the nearly universal human responses to the
presence of the divine. This course will examine the specifically
Christian response to the divine initiative in Jesus Christ: worship and
liturgy through word and sacrament. Using the Eucharist or Lord's
Supper as a focus, this course will examine both the history of Christian
doctrines and practices with regard to the sacraments, and the many ways in which Christians worship today.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 345. Religion in America 3 hours
This course surveys the history of religion in America, with an emphasis on the development of both American Protestantism and Catholicism from the time of the first European settlers down to the present. The course will also survey such topics as Native American religion, Judaism in America, African-American religion, and the relationship of religion and American culture.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 370. Christology: The Person and Work of Jesus
3 hours
One central claim of Christianity is that God is most fully and finally revealed in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. This course will explore the wide range of Christian understandings of Jesus, examining first the scriptural sources, then the historical development of Christian doctrines and church teachings about Jesus and finally the writings of contemporary theologians and other thinkers.
Prerequisite: RST 130; RST 320 recommended

RLST 400. Contemporary Catholicism: Church, World and Theology
3 hours
The Catholic Church has undergone a massive amount of change in the thirty years since the close of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). This course will examine the Council in detail in order to understand what changes it began in Catholic worship, practice and thought. Particular emphasis will be given to the new styles of theology, which have become prevalent in the Catholic Church. Selected theologians will be read on a series of important theological issues such as God, Christ, church, ministry, etc.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 430. Contemporary Christian Morality
3 hours
This course will examine both the process of moral reasoning and a range of contemporary moral issues using critical tools drawn from theological ethics. Drawing on Scripture, tradition, reason and the contemporary situation, the course will examine Christian ethical responses to such issues as sexuality, family life, medicine and health, the environment, business, violence, and euthanasia.
Prerequisite: RST 130

RLST 435. The Doctrine of God: One and Triune
3 hours
The mystery of God is at the heart of religion. This course will examine the particularly Christian doctrine of God, the claim that God is One and Three, a Trinity of Father, Son and Spirit. Beginning with the scriptural sources about the relationship of God and humanity, this course will survey the development of the Christian doctrine and the understanding of this mystery today.
Prerequisite: RST 130; RST 320 and 330 recommended

RLST 499. Senior Seminar in Religious Studies
3 hours
This capstone course is designed to assist students in the integration and critical examination of the various concepts, theories, and methods of inquiry presented both in general education and the major. Learning outcomes for both the general education program and the major are reviewed. Course assignments assist students in assessing the degree for which learning outcomes have been mastered. Senior standing is required.
Prerequisites: RST 130 and RST major