My 5 Favorite Southern Seminary Courses

As I graduate with my Phd from Southern Seminary today, I’ve reflected on my five favorite courses during my time in Louisville. Here’s the list with a brief explanation of why I enjoyed them:

  1. Christian Preaching with Russell Moore and David Prince: This course transformed both the way I understand the Bible and the way I understand the task of preaching. It opened my eyes to the centrality of Christ in the biblical narrative and the necessity of declaring the Christ-centered message of every biblical passage. Added bonus: The stories of preaching highlights and lowlights from this course have provided many laughs over the years.
  2. Christian Ethics with Russell Moore: This course taught me how to think through ethical issues from a Christ-centered, kingdom-oriented holistic perspective. The hypothetical situations we wrestled with in class discussion provoked me to evaluate my viewpoints on a variety of topics in ways that practically shaped me for ministry in the future. Added bonus: The final exam on whether to baptize a cyborg launched the trajectory of legendary ethics final exams by Dr. Moore in future semesters.
  3. Theology of Marriage with Albert Mohler: This course provided a holistic examination of the biblical, theologial, and practical dimensions of marriage. The chance to take a course from our President on one of his best subjects in my first semester on campus was too good of an opportunity to pass up. This course made me a better husband and a better minister of the gospel because of the way it shaped my view of marriage. Added bonus: The abundance of reading in this first semester course made the reading list for all future masters level courses seem like child’s play.
  4. Biblical Foundations for Spirituality with Tom Schreiner: This course honed my exegetical skills as we translated the book of Ephesians while making practical application of the text to issues of church-related spirituality and personal piety. Having a New Testament master such as Schreiner be our tour guide through the biblical text transformed how I approach the Bible in its original languages. Added bonus: The paper I wrote for this class had a fundamental impact in clarifying the topic of my dissertation.
  5. Eschatology with Russell Moore: This course shaped my understanding of the Christ-centered nature of the end times. As the first class of my PhD program, it also established my expectations of what rigorous doctoral-level discussion should look like. Added bonus: I’ll never forget the first day of class (which started at 7 AM) when Dr. Moore banned laptops because he didn’t want technology to inhibit our discussion and engagement.

As I look back on my 6 years at Southern Seminary, I am thankful for all that I’ve learned and the faculty who have personally impacted my life. Today’s graduation is a day of personal rejoicing for my family.