We are excited to present the new semester of Sunday Morning Seminary, a free virtual educational opportunity offered by the faculty of Memphis Theological Seminary.

The pandemic has brought to attention how useful online meetings can be for bringing the expertise of accomplished scholars in the fields of biblical studies, church history, Christian ethics, and church ministry to you at home.

Sunday Morning Seminary offers you the chance to hear from our professors, to ask them questions and to engage in discussion with other participants through Zoom’s Q&A and Chat features.

All courses are held online on the Zoom webinar platform on Sundays from 9:00 am-10:00 am central time.

If you are unable to join us live, recordings are made available by the Tuesday following on the Sunday Morning Seminary web page.

After registering, on the Friday prior to the Sunday class, you will receive the Zoom link you need to join the meeting through the email address you provide on the registration form. (If you register after Friday, the Zoom link will be sent to you on Sunday morning.)

*Even if you have registered for previous Sunday Morning Seminary courses, you will need to register again if you wish to join any or all of the Fall 2020 courses.*

Click here to familiarize yourself with the Zoom platform prior to class, and try consulting the Zoom Help Center if you run into any problems.


Registration for the Fall 2020 semester is now open!

Faith Formation in the 21st Century (October 4, 11)
Dr. Carmichael Crutchfield, Clara Scott Chair of Church and Ministry and Professor of Christian Education, Spiritual Formation, and Youth Ministry
What is the call of the Church historically and today concerning faith formation?
What is faith formation and its importance to the life of the church?
What is the distinct challenge of faith formation in the 21st century?

“For Thine is the Kingdom”: Christianity and Empire, Past and Present (October 18, 25)
Dr. Janel Bakker, Associate Professor of Mission, Evangelism, and Culture
In his ministry while on earth, Jesus made frequent references to the kingdom of God—not as an empire that his followers were authorized to build or enlarge but rather as the ever-present realm of God’s love and justice that his followers were invited to receive as a gift and welcome with a childlike spirit. However, in various historical contexts, many Christians with political capital have defied Jesus’ teachings and sought to expand their power in the name of ushering in the kingdom of God. From the marriage of “Christendom” and European colonialism to the surge of white Christian nationalism in the United States in the contemporary context, we’ll explore examples of Jesus’ followers misusing political power to harm others. We’ll also consider opportunities for faithful Christian witness in our time and place by living into the words that Jesus taught us to pray: “for thine is the kingdom.” 

Wisdom from Job: Giving and Receiving Comfort in Times of Suffering (November 1, 8)
Dr. Tricia Vesely, Visiting Assistant Professor of Hebrew Bible and Christian Ethics
Dr. Vesely will explore the question of how to offer comfort to those who suffer, drawing upon the biblical book of Job.  Like many today, Job is faced with the loss of economic security, loved ones, and health. This biblical book is filled with images of suffering, yet it offers timely wisdom on why our attempts to comfort others may fail what might bring true comfort in times of hardship.

Faith, Doubt, and Suffering: Some Liberation Theological Lessons for Life Today (November 15, 22)
Dr. Scott Prather, Adjunct Professor of Christian Ethics
Dr. Prather will discuss Gustavo Gutierrez’s classic meditation on theology in On Job: God-Talk and the Suffering of the Innocent. Liberation theological traditions emphasize faith as lived trust in a God of life and liberation, a God mysteriously and powerfully at work in the midst of a sin-soaked human history of death and domination. This notion of faith as an embodied, defiant act of hope in the face of indefensible evil and suffering raises central theological questions about the role of doubt — of questioning, of critique, of non-conformity (Rom. 12) — in communities of faith. Are faith and doubt inherently contradictory? Are there some forms of faith worth doubting, and if so, what does this say about the task of theology itself?

They Still Spark Wonder: New Light on the New Testament Christmas Stories (November 29; December 6, 13, 20
Dr. Mitzi Minor, Mary Magdalene Professor of New Testament
This course will look at aspects of the familiar Christmas stories which are often overlooked. When we do so, we often find new light shed on these beloved stories which can spark new wonder for us.




    View lessons from the original Summer 2020 semester:

    Sunday Morning Seminary does not provide credit toward degree or certificate programs. Please click here for more information about degree and certificate programs at MTS, as well as about auditing master’s level courses and studying as a non-degree seeking student.

    Questions or suggestions? Contact Nathan Brasfield at nbrasfield@memphisseminary.edu