Theological Symposium

32nd Annual Theological Symposium

Sept. 20-21, 2022

Search the Scriptures: Finding Christ and Ourselves in the History of Exegesis

“You search the Scriptures … it is they that bear witness about me” (John 5:39 ESV).

Throughout the centuries, the church has read and interpreted the Scriptures with the confidence that these very Scriptures are both about Jesus Christ and written for us. Figurative and mystical meanings, allegories and typologies, the three-fold spiritual sense — these were the common reading practices for the majority of the church’s history. During the last 250 years, biblical scholarship abandoned these practices in favor of methods tied more closely to the Bible’s language and history, thoroughly reshaping and enhancing the church’s understanding of the biblical texts. How has this affected the meaning and relevance of our interpretations? What insights have we gained — and what have we lost? What is the goal of exegesis and how does it relate to preaching, teaching and the church’s contemporary encounter with Christ and the Word of God?

In this symposium, plenaries and sectionals will compare and contrast ancient and modern exegetical methods and approaches, grapple with the Bible’s meaning and relevance, examine a variety of Scripture passages and explore several types of interpretations. By doing so, we hope to deepen our love for the Scriptures, inspire biblical preaching — and hear anew the Word of God which, in the end, interprets us.

Registration

In-person: $160 (Early bird $140)
Online only: $120 (Early bird $100)
Early bird registration available through: July 17, 2022
Registration deadline: Aug. 31, 2022

Register
 
If you have any questions, please contact Continuing Education at 314-505-7286 or ce@csl.edu.


Symposium Highlights

Plenaries presented by:

  • Dr. David Maxwell, the Louis A. Fincke and Anna B. Shine Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Dr. Paul Raabe, Professor in Biblical Studies at Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, Ariz., and Professor Emeritus, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo., and Dr. Timothy Saleska, Professor of Exegetical Theology and dean of Ministerial Formation Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Dr. Bruce Schuchard, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Chairman of the Department of Exegetical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo., and Dr. Joel Elowsky, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Advanced Studies and Coordinator of International Seminary Exchange Programs, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Dr. Glenn Nielsen, Director of Vicarage and Deaconess Internships, Director of Certification and Professor of Practical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo., and Dr. Erik Herrmann, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Theological Research and Publication and Director of the Center for Reformation Research, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
  • Presented by Dr. James W. Voelz, the Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

Golf outing sponsored by LCMS Foundation


Plenaries

Dr. David Maxwell

Dr. David Maxwell

The Exegetical Elephant in the Room

The Bible has been interpreted for thousands of years, but not always in the way that we interpret it today. In recent past, we have tended to ignore the exegesis of the early church, assuming that they did not know how to read the Bible. This presentation simply says, “Let’s talk about that.” What are the main differences between a patristic and a modern approach to exegesis? What is gained and lost in each approach? How might the patristic approach enrich the life of the church today? These are some of the main themes that will be considered and developed throughout the symposium.


Dr. Paul Raabe

Dr. Paul Raabe

Dr. Timothy Saleska

Dr. Timothy Saleska

In Sacred Page and Winged Word: Prophets and Poets for Israel and the Church

The church fathers read the Old Testament in ways that can look strange to modern eyes. In their sermons, they use biblical texts in ways that would not normally occur to us. What accounts for the differences between ancient and modern reader? What can we learn from them? How might they shape our own interpretation and use of the Old Testament? In this plenary, we will compare our own interpretive practices with the practices of select church fathers in order to explore some answers to these questions.


Dr. Bruce Shuchard

Dr. Bruce Shuchard

Dr. Joel Elowsky

Dr. Joel Elowsky

Taste and See that the Lord is Good: Interpretations of the Wedding Feast at Cana

The Gospel of John describes the miracle at the wedding feast at Cana as the beginning of Jesus’ “signs.” But a sign of what? That Jesus is the Christ (John 20:31), to be sure, but how so? How was it a sign for the disciples? How is it a sign for us that we too may believe? These are the kinds of questions that both ancient and modern interpreters of the Bible ask but often answer differently. Using the wedding feast at Cana as a test case, this plenary session endeavors to explore the interpretive principles and ways of reading that are behind these differences. Professor of Historical Theology Dr. Joel Elowsky will present various ancient readings, while Professor of Exegetical Theology Dr. Bruce Schuchard will present modern readings. During the exploration of both the strengths and weaknesses of these various approaches, the presenters hope to encourage a way of faithful reading that awakens faith today.


Dr. Glenn Nielsen

Dr. Glenn Nielsen

Dr. Erik Herrmann

Dr. Erik Herrmann

In Principio … Sermo: The Preacher as Exegete

In the beginning was … the sermon? Both Martin Luther and the modern Lutheran preacher work with the foundational assumption that preaching is not just biblical but is, in truth, the Word of God. How does this theological conviction about the nature and purpose of preaching inform the preacher’s exegesis of the Bible? What role does the context of the hearer of this Word play in such biblical interpretation? How does one reconcile the exegesis of the academy with the exegesis in the pulpit? Professor of Practical Theology Dr. Glenn Nielsen, a long-time homiletician, will reflect on the exegetical scope of the preaching task, while Professor of Historical Theology Dr. Erik Herrmann, will explore how Luther fundamentally reshaped both the history of exegesis and of preaching.

Sponsors












Schedule

Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022

TIME EVENT DESCRIPTION
8 a.m. Vendor Fair Sieck Hall 201/202
8-8:30 a.m. Registration Open Coffee and Refreshments
Chapel Plaza (In case of rain, Sieck Hall)
8:30-9 a.m. Chapel Service of the Word
Dr. David Peter, Dean of Faculty and Professor of Practical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus
9-9:45 a.m. Coffee and Refreshments Sieck Hall
9:45-10 a.m. Introduction Welcome and Introduction
Dr. Thomas J. Egger, President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, and Erika Bennett, Director of Continuing Education, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium
10-11:30 a.m. Plenary The Exegetical Elephant in the Room
Dr. David Maxwell, Louis A. Fincke and Anna B. Shine Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium
11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Lunch (included with paid registration)
Wartburg and Koburg Halls
1:30-3 p.m. Plenary (Old Testament) In Sacred Page and Winged Word: Prophets and Poets for Israel and the Church
Dr. Paul Raabe, Professor in Biblical Studies at Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, Ariz., and Professor Emeritus, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Dr. Timothy Saleska, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Dean of Ministerial Formation Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium
3-3:15 p.m. Coffee Break Sieck Hall Foyer
3:15-4:15 p.m. Sectionals 1 (see below)
4:15-5:15 p.m. Sectionals 2 (see below)
5:30-6:30 p.m. Dinner Reception Kristine Kay Hasse Memorial Library
7-8:30 p.m. Lecture Annual Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Lecture in New Testament Theology
Dr. James W. Voelz, the Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium

8 a.m.
Vendor Fair
Sieck Hall 201/202


8-8:30 a.m.
Registration Open
Coffee and Refreshments
Chapel Plaza (In case of rain, Sieck Hall)


8:30-9 a.m.
Chapel
Service of the Word
Dr. David Peter, Dean of Faculty and Professor of Practical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus


9-9:45 a.m.
Coffee and Refreshments
Sieck Hall


9:45-10 a.m.
Introduction
Welcome and Introduction
Dr. Thomas J. Egger, President of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, and Erika Bennett, Director of Continuing Education, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


10-11:30 a.m.
Plenary
The Exegetical Elephant in the Room
Dr. David Maxwell, Louis A. Fincke and Anna B. Shine Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


11:30-1 p.m.
Lunch
(included with paid registration)
Wartburg and Koburg Halls


1:30-3 p.m.
Plenary (Old Testament)
In Sacred Page and Winged Word: Prophets and Poets for Israel and the Church
Dr. Paul Raabe, Professor in Biblical Studies at Grand Canyon University, Phoenix, Ariz., and Professor Emeritus, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
Dr. Timothy Saleska, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Dean of Ministerial Formation Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


3-3:15 p.m.
Coffee Break
Sieck Hall Foyer


3:15-4:15 p.m.
Sectionals 1
(see below)


4:15-5:15 p.m.
Sectionals 2
(see below)


5:30-6:30 p.m.
Dinner Reception
Kristine Kay Hasse Memorial Library


7-8:30 p.m.
Lecture
Annual Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Lecture in New Testament Theology
Dr. James W. Voelz, the Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium

Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022

TIME EVENT DESCRIPTION
8 a.m. Vendor Fair Sieck Hall 201/202
8-8:30 a.m. Coffee and Refreshments Chapel Plaza (In case of rain, Sieck Hall)
8:30-9:30 a.m. Chapel Service of the Word and Holy Communion
Dr. David Maxwell, Louis A. Fincke and Anna B. Shine Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus
10-11:30 a.m. Plenary (New Testament) Taste and See that the Lord is Good: Interpretations of the Wedding Feast at Cana
Dr. Bruce Schuchard, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Chairman of the Department of Exegetical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Dr. Joel Elowsky, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Advanced Studies and Coordinator of International Seminary Exchange Programs, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium
11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Lunch (included with paid registration)
Wartburg and Koburg Halls
1-2 p.m. Sectionals 3 (see below)
2-3:30 p.m. Plenary (Preaching) In Principio … Sermo: The Preacher as Exegete
Dr. Glenn Nielsen, Director of Placement, Director of Vicarage and Deaconess Internships, Director of Certification and Professor of Practical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Dr. Erik Herrmann, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Theological Research and Publication and Director of the Center for Reformation Research at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium
3:30-4 p.m. Closing Wrap Up and Itinerarium
Dr. Erik Herrmann, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Theological Research and Publication and Director of the Center for Reformation Research at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Rev. Paul Sieveking, Campus Chaplain, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


8 a.m.
Vendor Fair
Sieck Hall 201/202


8-8:30 a.m.
Coffee and Refreshments
Chapel Plaza (In case of rain, Sieck Hall)


8:30-9:30 a.m.
Chapel
Service of the Word and Holy Communion
Dr. David Maxwell, Louis A. Fincke and Anna B. Shine Professor of Systematic Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus


10-11:30 a.m.
Plenary (New Testament)
Taste and See that the Lord is Good: Interpretations of the Wedding Feast at Cana
Dr. Bruce Schuchard, Professor of Exegetical Theology and Chairman of the Department of Exegetical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Dr. Joel Elowsky, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Advanced Studies and Coordinator of International Seminary Exchange Programs, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


11:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Lunch
(included with paid registration)
Wartburg and Koburg Halls


1-2 p.m.
Sectionals 3
(see below)


2-3:30 p.m.
Plenary (Preaching)
In Principio … Sermo: The Preacher as Exegete
Dr. Glenn Nielsen, Director of Placement, Director of Vicarage and Deaconess Internships, Director of Certification and Professor of Practical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Dr. Erik Herrmann, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Theological Research and Publication and Director of the Center for Reformation Research at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


3:30-4 p.m.
Closing
Wrap Up and Itinerarium
Dr. Erik Herrmann, Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Theological Research and Publication and Director of the Center for Reformation Research at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Rev. Paul Sieveking, Campus Chaplain, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis
Werner Auditorium


Sectionals 1

Dr. Dale A. Meyer

Dr. Dale A. Meyer

President Emeritus, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

Our goal to be faithful to “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27) centers on Jesus Christ. What does “Christocentric” mean in preaching, teaching, and in devoted daily lives? This sectional will reflect on how we present Christ in the church year and lectionary, in reading and preaching the Old Testament, and in the practical task of preparing Christocentric sermon outlines.

Werner Auditorium

Dr. Charles Schulz

Dr. Charles Schulz

Assistant Professor of Theology at Concordia University, Ann Arbor, Mi.

In contrast with modern Christian teaching and preaching, the church fathers had a general predilection to cite Ps. 82:6, “I said, You are gods, sons of the Most High, all of you.” The first six centuries of the Christian exegetical tradition evidence about 300 citations of the passage, fairly evenly divided between Greek and Latin sources. The accompanying interpretations varied. The named “gods” may be identified as angels or humans, as judges or priests or prophets or all the godly or even all Christians, as those in the past or the present or the future. Alongside this diversity of thought, what is striking is the way that Origen anticipated so much of the tradition that followed. Writing in the first half of the third century, this early father, later deemed to be of questionable orthodoxy, held an oversized influence over what was to follow. But is this phenomenon indeed a consequence of influence or simply of one author boldly spinning out the full potential intertextual logic of the Scriptures themselves? In some instances we might go so far as to trace a lineage of teachers and students. In others, we might simply posit that similar circumstances and similar concerns gave rise to similar applications of the text.

Presidents Room

Sectionals 2

Dr. James Voelz

Dr. James W. Voelz

The Dr. Jack Dean Kingsbury Professor of New Testament Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

Before parishioners can profitably deal with and understand the Scriptures in real depth, they must have some acquaintance with basic principles for interpreting those writings. Dr. James W. Voelz recently completed a manuscript, entitled "Principles of Biblical Interpretation for Everyone," that is designed to do just that. Not simply a reworking or a simplifying of What Does This Mean?: Principles of Biblical Interpretation for the Post-Modern World (a seminary-level hermeneutics textbook), this is a completely new effort, written from the ground up, designed to entice laypeople to delve into the riches the Scriptures and to begin to interpret them "for all they are worth." In this session, Voelz will describe the scope of this project and the unique set-up of the book, and together with the participants, will take a detailed look at one of the chapters.

Werner Auditorium

Dr. Kevin Golden

Dr. Kevin Golden

Associate Professor of Exegetical Theology, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

The Apostle Paul teaches that Christ’s resurrection on the third day was in accord with the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:4). It was common among the early church fathers to read Hosea 6:2 as one of those Scriptures that is full of Gospel hope. Yet when Hosea is read in its eighth century BC context, condemnation of Israel’s sin abounds rather than hope of the coming Messiah. Can this impasse between the interpretive move of the early church and current hermeneutical practice be resolved?

Presidents Room

Sectionals 3

Dr. Joel Elowsky

Dr. Joel Elowsky

Professor of Historical Theology, Dean of Advanced Studies, and Coordinator of International Seminary Exchange Programs, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.

The beginning of the Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture (InterVarsity Press) was based on a lie and deception. As the operations manager and editor of this highly acclaimed and successful series, Dr. Joel Elowsky will take attendees on a behind the scenes look at some of the developments with the commentary series, sharing a few stories that may not be so well known and also looking toward what lies ahead.

Werner Auditorium

Dr. Andrew Chronister

Dr. Andrew Chronister

Associate Professor of Patristics and Ancient Languages, Kenrick-Glennon Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.

The fathers of the church are famous (or perhaps infamous) for their interpretations of Scripture. In contrast to many modern hermeneutical methods, the fathers often focused on the spiritual senses of Scripture, seeking to discern, for example, connections between the narratives of the Old Testament and the mysteries of the Christian faith. Yet, the fathers also were deeply interested in the literal sense of Scripture and sought to discover its meaning. In light of this, it is worth exploring how the fathers went about interpreting Scripture. In this presentation, Dr. Andrew Chronister will focus on St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430) and discuss some of the exegetical principles he employed to interpret Scripture. Key questions for this examination include: How does one identify the meaning of the literal sense? To what degree is the church's faith an important hermeneutical guide for the exegetical process? What are the spiritual senses of Scripture? Why should one interpret Scripture via the spiritual senses?

Presidents Room

Sectionals

Rev. John Perling

Pastor, Faith Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Robert, Mo.
A SWOT analysis of Second-Generation Wittenberg Exegetical Theory and Practice


Dr. Jason Soenksen

Professor, Theology at Concordia University Wisconsin, Mequon
The Mountain and the Messiah: Patristic and Modern Interpretation of Micah 4 and 5


Dr. John Tape

Guest instructor, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
Toward a Robust Political Theology for the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod


Rev. Andrew Johnson

Pastor, Christ Lutheran Church, Milford, Mich.
Homiletic Transition: Origen of Alexandria as a Transitional Figure in Homiletics


Rev. Timothy Prince

Pastor, Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Troy, Wis.
‘Messiah will be cut off’ in Dan. 9:26: Christ Crucified or Christ Removed?


Rev. Jacob Hercamp

Pastor, St. Peter’s Lutheran Church, LaGrange, Mo.
Assessing the Return to Christological Readings of Scripture


Rev. Richard Davenport

Pastor, Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, Fort Smith, Ark.
Plumbing the Depths: The Lost Art of Sacramental Typology


Rev. Paul Landgraf

Pastor, Pilgrim Lutheran Church, Freedom, Mo., and Saint John Lutheran Church, Drake, Mo.

The Structure of the Gospel According to John as a Very Special Word of Exhortation (For You!)


Rev. Ryan McDermott

Pastor, Our Savior Deaf Lutheran Church, Madison, Wis.
What Have You to Do with Me? Lutheran Hermeneutics in Africa: A comparative study of Johann Gerhard and Elizabeth Mburu


Andrew Bloch

Ph.D. student, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
Interpreting the Life of Christ with Irenaeus


Rev. Mark Squire

Pastor, Immanuel Evangelical Lutheran Church, Saint Ansgar, Iowa
Land of the Living Ones: Confessing the Resurrection of the Body and Life Everlasting with the Psalter


Rev. Matt Moss

Senior Pastor, St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church & School in Corcoran/Maple Grove, Minn.
But the Psalms Do That: Proof-texting Innovations for Worship


Rev. Chuck Paulson

Pastor Emeritus
A Caleb Hypothesis


Rev. Tim Koch

Pastor, Zion Lutheran Church, Linn, Kan.
Door-to-Door Evangelism: A Neglected Congregational Asset


Rev. Brian Kachelmeier

Pastor, Redeemer Evangelical Lutheran Church, Los Alamos, N.M.
Cyril of Alexandria's Interpretation of the Minor Prophet, which Depicts Jesus as the One Who Justifies


Rev. Matthew Rosebrock

Pastor, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Lindenwood, Ill.
Art in the Heart of Biblical Reading: The Biblia Pauperum and Cranach’s 1550 Law and Gospel Painting


Rev. Joshua Vanderhyde

Pastor, Faith Lutheran Church, Carbondale, Colo.
Ascent and Vision in Patristic Reading of Scripture


Dr. Thomas Pearson

Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, Edinburg, Texas
What is a Biblical Interpretation, Anyway? An Imaginary Dialogue between Martin Luther and Paul Ricoeur


Benjamin Vanderhyde

Ph.D. student, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Mo.
Treasure Hidden in a Field: Sacramental Exegesis in Augustine of Hippo and John Chrysostom of Antioch


Rev. Kyle Fittje

Pastor, Immanuel Lutheran Church, Lockwood, Mo.
Reading the Song of Songs Christologically: A Defense of Allegory


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