Responding to an invitation from the Cooperative Baptist Fellowship Virginia, Baptist Seminary of Kentucky has produced a Bible study resource that is freely available to Cooperative Baptists in Virginia and others.
The study, titled “Faithful Curiosity: A Five-Week Study in Luke and Acts,” can be downloaded from BSK’s website. The study focuses on three passages from Luke and two passages from Acts. It offers Bible study methods and provides two interpretive essays on each passage. The authors are BSK faculty, staff, students and alumni.
In an introduction to the study, editor Laura Rodgers Levens highlighted the benefits of studying the scriptures in community and listening to diverse perspectives.
“Those of us who have studied the scriptures for decades and what you might call ‘experts’ recognize that the more we learn, the more we realize there is much more to learn,” wrote Levens, associate professor of Christian mission at BSK. “The challenge of studying the scriptures continues, especially as we listen carefully to members of our community and pay attention to the different backgrounds and perspectives each brings to the study of the scriptures.”
The design editor for the resource is David Adams, director of institutional design at BSK and adjunct professor at the school. Writers include BSK professors Lewis Brogdon, John Inscore Essick, Dalen Jackson and Mark Medley; adjunct professors Amber Inscore Essick and Anastasia Holman; staff member and adjunct professor Erica Whitaker; BSK student T. Devan Franklin III; and alumni Aaron Austin and Kelly Hale.
BSK President David Cassady noted that the project demonstrates BSK’s commitment to scholarship and congregation. In a letter that prefaces the study, he wrote that “BSK’s primary commitment is to exercise the scholarly gifts and vocation together as stewards of the mysteries in the service of the church of God.”
The project was born out of a partnership between BSK and CBF Virginia which began in 2020. CBF Virginia provides financial assistance to students in Virginia who wish to pursue “on-site” theological studies through BSK’s distance learning program.
Terry Maples, coordinator of CBF Virginia, said the study will help participants see the “unfettered power of the Spirit to change lives and systems.”
“The writers not only help us better understand the context in which the passages were written, but they challenge us to welcome difference, to reimagine the life of faith from the perspective of others, to call us to defend the ’tilted’, to join the Spirit in challenging the forces that limit access to the gospel, address the ‘sick social imagination’ of white Christianity, and disentangle the good news from cultural values,” he said. Explain.
Mark Snipes, Associate Coordinator of CBF Virginia, said the resource illustrates the fruits of the partnership between CBF Virginia and BSK.
“Our budding partnership with BSK has already breathed new life into our organization, and this new series of Bible studies gives Virginia congregations a practical and theologically sound resource that we could not have produced on our own,” said he declared. “That’s the power of partnership.”
Snipes will become CBF Virginia coordinator Oct. 1 after Maples retires.