Honors Bible Apologetics Syllabus Spring 2013

HONORS BIBLE: APOLOGETICS
PCA, Spring 2013
Instructor: Mr. John Ferrer

Aim: To equip the student with key elements of a Christian worldview that is fit for personal application, public defense and inter-personal ministry.

Objectives:
(1) Bible Study Portion: The New Testament Letters
Students will have read through and studied all of the New Testament Letters (Romans-Revelation)
(2) Systematic Theology Portion: Sin and Salvation
Students will have a deep understanding and ready application of sin and salvation.
(3) Life Skills Portion: Apologetics
Students will have interactive experience and exposure to key apologetics topics in the world today sufficient to give a basic defense for Christianity that is persuasive, gracious, smart, and loving.

Academics and Academic Integrity
Do not think of this class as a high school class. When you enter this classroom you will be treated as a college student. This is a college-prep course intent on equipping you, the student, with skills and knowledge for academic and spiritual success. Many of you are going to college though much of the collegiate and university world is ambivalent or hostile towards Christianity. Still, that educational world desperately needs what Christianity offers such as moral absolutes, truth, meaning, purpose, and not to mention, the historical Jesus Christ. Students coming from a Christian school have a disadvantage when they have absorbed a Christian worldview that is then attacked at college as primitive, narrow, and bigoted. College life is saturated with dangerous and ungodly ideas (like relativism, pluralism, and secularism). So if students are going to survive or thrive in college with their faith intact, they need the highest academic integrity and a profound commitment to think and live Christianly. Christian students need to be the best students just to have a fighting chance in college.

Consequently, I am not your parent nor your babysitter. You have outgrown your babysitter, and you do not want me as your mama. Students are to be independently motivated, ready and willing to work, prepared for class (ie: have all class materials for each class completing all required reading on time), with a good attitude, and never ever whining. Following these keeps the class positive, energetic, and fun. And the workload can stay light and interesting. Obvious or frequent failure in any of these is the quickest way to find more work and less grace.

You have every reason to give a good honest effort in this class since grades in this class go on your high school GPA just like any other class, and poor grades in this class can put you on academic probation from extra-curricular activities. Plus this class is a chance to grow in your faith, grow as a student, and grow as a person. And we can have some real fun in here. But if you are not willing to do the work, you are not wanting to grow, or you are not concerned to gain wisdom and skills to face future challenges, then do not take this class. Consequently, academic dishonesty is not tolerated. Also, students caught cheating (copying each other’s work, using cheat-sheets, etc.) or plagiarizing (deliberately presenting another person’s work as your own) can receive an F for the course. You cannot be scholars if you settle for being cheats.

Students suspected of accidental academic dishonesty may be asked to repeat the assignment or may receive a 0 for the assignment. Students suspected or guilty of intentional academic dishonesty may receive any punishment ranging from a 0 for the assignment to expulsion from the class and an ‘F’ for the course.

Academic dishonesty includes
1) Cheating—any intentional or unintentional dishonesty in regards to graded material wherein a student uses aids or assistance not otherwise permitted (such as looking on someone else’s test, using a cheat sheet, asking a neighbor, willfully disobeying instructions thus gaining an advantage, etc.).
2) Fabrication—inventing “facts” or lying about class material (such as, inventing sources, making up names, etc.)
3) Plagiarism—presenting other people’s ideas, words, or work as your own for a graded assignment.
4) Facilitating dishonesty—any knowing act or allowance of dishonesty among one’s classmates, especially active participation in their dishonesty (such as, having your homework copied or letting them look on your test).

Teaching Methods:
Participation (10% of total grade)
1. Students are required to attend a Christian denomination (Catholic or Protestant) church service 80% of the weeks (ie: 36 wk schoolyear = attending 28 services). Acceptable services include home groups, Bible studies, small group, conferences and most church related activities.
2. Acceptable proof of attendance is: a handwritten or typed sheet of paper (or half-sheet) stating the student’s name, the church, the date of attendance, the title or subject of the sermon or service, notes on the sermon including at least one thing you learned from the message or service.

Projects and In-class Assignments (20% of total grade)
1. In-class work will usually revolve around 2 major projects—one with the Conference, the other with the Mock Trial.
2. Other in-class assignments can include argument papers, Bible-book outlines, letters to the editor, group projects, apologetics blogging, debates, etc.

Reading Assessments and Quizzes (30% of total grade)
1. Bible Journals: Include journal entries for each chapter of the Bible, as assigned in the syllabus (Romans 1 through Revelation 22). Journals are to be submitted at the end of each 9 weeks.
2. Textbook Quizzes: Students can expect reading quizzes every 1-2 weeks once we start reading, The Case for Faith. Quizzes will typically be 5-10 questions that are fairly easy if one has done the reading.

Exams (40% of total grade)
1. There is a midterm-exam and a final exam/project. Exams can include any combination of oral, essay, multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, or matching questions designed to test the student’s assimilation of the year’s material.
2. The Fall Final Exam is a Mock Trial (the Trial is a final exam grade, but its preparation stages such as listing sources, practice trials, evidence gathering, etc. count towards “Projects and In-Class Assignments”).

Student Initiative and Lateness Policy:
1. It is the students responsibility to double-check grades, inquire about missed assignments, and check for due dates. Personal initiative and self-governance are your best bet at a good grade.
2. Students are responsible for monitoring their own grades, checking for any missed assignments, and making sure that all the credit earned has been properly recorded. This is the best way to make sure you do not end up with a poor semester grade for 2-3 easy but forgotten or misrecorded assignments.
3. Students who have an excused absence for a non-school related activity or otherwise unscheduled occurrence (sick, funeral, etc.) are to contact the teacher as soon as possible to make arrangements for makeup work. It is not the teachers responsibility to track down students
4. Students who have an excused absence for a scheduled event such as a family vacation or school related activity (baseball, TAPPS, etc.) are still responsible for submitting any and all assignments, projects, work otherwise due that day unless the student has prearrangements with the teacher for alternative work.
5. Students who have an unexcused absence should still meet with me to see if partial credit can be recovered.
6. Late work is not accepted from seniors. And for Juniors is eligible for 50% credit only if submitted the immediate school day after it was due (i.e.: if it was due Monday, it must be submitted on Tuesday).
Texts:
1. Lee Strobel, The Case for Faith. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2000 (1st edition). (hereafter CF)
2. The Holy Bible (preferably NASB, NKJV, ESV, or Holman Christian Standard)

Grading:
90-100% A Participation 10%
80-89% B In-class (Assignments/Projects) 20%
70-79% C Reading (Quizzes & Bible Journal) 30%
60-69% D Midterm Exam and Final Project 40%
0-59% F 100%

Schedule:
Schedule subject to change. Holidays are in italics, papers, tests & quizzes are bold, debates & other assignments are underlined

Wk 1-2: Introductions– Assignments
1/3 T Review Syllabus. Intro to Class/Review Grades from Last Semester…………………………………………..
1/4 F Work on Video Project—2-5min “Church History” video for Apologetics Conference………………………

1/7-8 MT Christian Basics and Bible Study/Video ProjectSubmit Notes: “Video Ideas”; Read 2 Thess 1-3
1/9-10 WTh Christian Basics and Bible Study/Video Project—Peer Contracts and Grading Criteria………….
1/11 F Christian Basics and Bible Study/Video Project—Peer Contracts and Grading Criteria………..

Week 3: Bible Study
1/14-15 MT Bible Study/Video Project:–Schedule & Planning…………………………………Read Through 1 Tim 1-3
1/16-17WTh Bible Study/Video Project:–Schedule & Planning…………………………………………………..…..……
1/18 Fri Professional Development (Half Day)/Video Project…..………………………………………………..……

Week 4: Defining “Faith”
1/21-22MT [Monday: MLK Day—No School] Bible Study/Video Project….1 Tim. Wkst; Due.Read Through 1 Tim 4-6
1/23-24WTh Defining “Faith”/Bible Study/Video Project……..Quiz on Strobel, 1-32
1/25 F Defining “Faith”/Bible Study/Video Project ……………………….………………..…..…………………….

Week 5-6: Problem of Evil
1/28-29MT Debate & Discussion: Problem of Evil………………………..Read 2 Timothy 1-2; Debate
1/30-31WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Problem of Evil………………………Quiz on Strobel 33-76
2/1 F Reading Day……………………….………………………………………………………..…………………..

2/4-5 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: The Problem of Evil …………….……………………..Read 2 Timothy 3-4
2/6-7 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Problem of Evil………………………………………………………………
2/8 F Discussion: Faith & Science/Reading Day………..……………………………………………………………

Wk. 7-8: Faith & Science
2/11-12 MT Discussion: Miracles and Science………………………………………………….………………… Read Titus 1-3
2/13-14 WTh Discussion: Miracles and Science……………………….…………………..….Quiz on Strobel pg. 77-119
2/15 F Professional Development (Half Day)/Work Day………………………………………….………………….

2/18-19 MT [Mon.:Pres.Day-No School] Discuss/Presentation/Video: Faith & Science. . Read Philemon, Heb. 1
2/20-21 WTh Discussion: Theistic Evolution and Issues in Evolution ……….………………….Quiz on Strobel 121-157
2/22 F Reading Day…………..………………….……………………………………………………………………

Wk. 9: Exam
2/25-26 MT Review for Exam……………………………………………………………………………Read Hebrews 2-6
2/27-28 WTh Midterm Exam…………………………………………………………………………………………………
3/1 Fri Work on Video Project…………………………………Church Attendance & Reading Journals are Due
*End of First Nine Weeks*

Wk 10: Apologetics Conference
3/4-5 MT Prep for Apologetics Conference/Video Project ………………………………………..…Read Hebews 7-10
3/6-7 WTh Prep for Apologetics Conference/Video Project ………………………………………………………………
3/8 F Apologetics Conference………………..…………………………………………………Video Project Due
———————————————Spring Break: March 9-17————————————-
Wk 11: Suffering of the Innocent
3/18-19 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: Suffering of the Innocents ……………………………..Read Hebrews 11-13
3/20-21 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Suffering of the Innocents………………………..Quiz on Strobel 159-201
3/22 F Reading Day…………………………………………………………………………………………….……

Wk. 12: Religious Pluralism
3/25-26 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: Religious Pluralism ……………….……………………..…Read James 1-5
3/27-28 WTh Discussion: Religious Pluralism……………..………………………………….….Quiz on Strobel 203-234
3/29 F Reading Day…………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Wk. 13: Problem of Hell
4/1-2 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: The Christian Gospel and the Problem of Hell….…Read 1 Peter 1-5
4/3-4 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Problem of Hell…………………………………Quiz on Strobel 235-270
4/5 F Reading Day …………………………………………………………………………………………………

Wk.14: Divine Hiddenness
4/8-9 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: Divine Hiddenness………………………………………….Read 2 Peter 1-3
4/10-11 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Divine Hiddenness ………………………………………….………………
4/12 F Reading Day ….……………………………………………………………………………….………………

Wk.15: Religious Violence
4/15-16 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: Religious Violence ..………………………………………..Read 1,2,3 John
4/17-18 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Religious Violence……………………………….Quiz on Strobel 271-309
4/19 F Reading Day……………………………………….…………………………………………………………..

Wk. 16-17: Cults, Occult, World Religions & Heresy
4/22-23 MT Discussion/Presentation/Video: Cults, Occult, and World Religions…..…Read Jude & Rev 1-3
4/24-25 WTh Discussion/Presentation/Video: Cults, Occult, and World Religions…………………………………………
4/26 F Reading Day………………………………………………………..………………………………………….

4/29-30 MT Discussion/Presentation: Cults, Occult, & World Religions/Doubt and Heresy..Read Rev. 4-9 5/1-2 WTh Discussion/Presentation: Doubt and Heresy/Prep for Mock Trial…..……..………Quiz on Strobel 311-364
5/3 F Prep for Mock Trial………………………………………………………………………………………….…

Wk. 18-19: Mock Trial
5/6-7 MT Mock Trial: Opening Statements……………….……………..….……………………………Read Rev. 10-16
5/8-9 WTh Mock Trial: Prosecution………………………………………….……………………………………………
5/10 F Mock Trial: Prosecution………………………………………….……………………………………………

5/13-14 MT Mock Trial: Defense……………………………………………………………………..…Read Rev. 17-22
5/15-16WTh Mock Trial: Defense; Jury Deliberations………………………………….…………………………………..
5/17 Mock Trial: Verdict…………………………………………………..………………………………………..
———————————————Trip Week (May 18-23)—————————————-
Wk. 20: End of School
5/24 F Last Day of School…………………………………………………………………………………………….
5/25 S Graduation……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

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