Somerset Christian College

TH 205 Sin, Salvation and the Savior

Fall 2005   Fast Track 1

Academic Building Rm ***   Tue 6:00 – 9:30

Course Syllabus



Course Instructor


John Drury

215-971-5197 (cell)


The Movement of SCC’s Mission and Vision


The Upward Call: The Larger Story

A Leading Christ-centered College

Faithful to Evangelical Christianity

Grounded on God’s Word


The Inward Call: The Life of the Heart

Foster Intellectual and Character Development

Nurture Relationships with God and Others


The Outward Call: The Way of Grace and Freedom

Challenge People to Engage Culture

Serve Christ with Passion


Relevance of SCC Movement to Course Description and Goals


This course contributes to the student’s overall experience at Somerset by focusing on the climactic turning point in the Larger Story of God: the story of Jesus Christ.  Three key aspects of this narrative will be investigated in depth: the conflict (Sin), its resolution (Salvation), and the main character or “hero” (Savior).  Thus the primary contribution of this course will be its exploration of the Upward Call.  This course will also speak to the relevance of this story for our personal lives (Inward Call) and corporate mission to the world (Outward Call).


Course Description


“This course explores the Christian understanding of the nature of sin, the nature of salvation, and the saving work of Jesus Christ. The major theories & issues relating to the doctrine of atonement are the primary focus. Attention is also given to the practical applications of these doctrines for the work of ministry.” 


Course Objectives


By the end of this course you will …


1.      have increased your reverent appreciation of the person and work of Christ,

2.      have a grasp of the ideas, issues and history of the doctrine of atonement,

3.      have closely read and analyzed a classic text on the atonement,

4.      be able to intelligently contribute to a discussion concerning the atonement,

5.      know, love and enjoy God better by studying his story.


Course Requirements


1. Weekly Points: 10 weeks x 30 pts/week = 300 points


Each weekly session you can earn up to 30 points.  These points will be given based on assignments, reading, and active participation.  The primary means for earning these points will be your reading questions.  Each week you are required to e-mail three intelligent questions concerning the assigned reading to the professor.  They must be sent no later than midnight the day before class.  This will give the professor time to compile to questions to structure the discussion of the text.  So keep up and these points can be yours.


2. Reflection Paper Points: 3 reflection papers x 100 points ea = 300 points


Each student is responsible for three one-page reflection papers.  One paper must be handed in during each unit.  It is up to the student which of the three weeks within each unit he or she wants to turn in the paper.  Papers will not be accepted after the unit is completed.  These reflection papers may not exceed one page in length.  A reflection paper may be written on anything covered during the respective unit (scripture, assigned readings, lectures, discussion, relevant supplementary texts, etc).


3. Exam Points: 1 Exam x 400 pts = 400 points


There will be a final exam worth 400 points on October 18th.  It will be comprised primarily of essay questions


Points and Grading Scale


     300 Weekly Points

     300 Paper Points

  + 400 Exam Points

   1000 total possible points


1000 – 950  A

949 – 900  A-

899 – 870  B+

869 – 830  B

829 – 800  B-

799 – 770  C+


769 – 730  C

729 – 700  C-

699 – 670  D+

669 – 630  D

629 – 600  D-

599 –     0  F


Required Text


- St. Athanasius. On The Incarnation. Crestwood, NY: SVS Press, 1993.



Course Schedule


Aug 9th            Introduction & Overview


Unit One – The Prophetic Office of Christ


Aug 16th         Sin I: Idolatry

      • Read Athanasius, On The Incarnation §1-5 (ch. I; pg. 25-31)


Aug 23rd         Savior I: Revealer

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §6-10 (ch. II; pg. 31-37)


Aug 30th         Salvation I: Vocation

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §11-18 (ch. III; pg. 37-47)


Unit Two – The Priestly Office of Christ


Sept 6th          Sin II: Unrighteousness

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §19-25 (ch. IV; pg. 48-56)


Sept 13th        Savior II: Reconciler

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §26-32 (ch. V; pg. 56-64)


Sept 20th        Salvation II: Justification

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §33-40 (ch. VI; pg. 64-75)


Unit Three – The Royal Office of Christ


Sept 27th        Sin III: Death

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §41-45 (ch. VII; pg. 75-83)


Oct 4th             Savior III: Redeemer

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §46-53 (ch. VIII [pt. 1]; pg. 83-92)


Oct 11th          Salvation III: Sanctification

      • Read Athanasius, OTI §54-57 (ch. VIII [pt. 2] - IX; pg. 92-97)


Oct 18th          Final Exam



Instructional Resource Center Contact Information


The IRC at Somerset Christian College offers tutorial support services designed to help all students achieve their full academic potential and goals. The IRC, as a venue of both remediation and enhancement to the coursework requirements, offers materials and tutorials in study skills such as time management, organization, and learning or test strategies; in MLA format and style;  in writing assistance such as outlining, drafting, researching, and editing; and in computer skills and information access. Conveniently located in the AK White library on campus, the IRC works to provide students with materials and skill sets necessary to carry out information access, evaluation, and application effectively.   It also offers assistance in resume building and in reference letter requests. As a supplement to the regular classroom experience, the IRC promotes quality and excellence of all student endeavors to the glory of God.

For current hours of operation, you may email the director, Dr. Beverly Busch at or call  732-356-1595, ext. 1126;  you may also call the library direct at 732-356-1595, ext. 1120; or check the SCC web page (Academics, IRC) as these hours are subject to change throughout the academic year. Blessings to you all as you follow Christ!   

Attendance Policy


In an effort to ensure that students experience the greatest return from their studies at SCC and to maintain a sense of community between and among students and faculty, the following policy about student attendance has been established:


SCC recognizes that extenuating circumstances will necessitate students missing class on occasion. Therefore, students are allowed to miss one block session (unexcused) per three credit-hour course without question and without academic penalty. A block session constitutes one class meeting (2 ½ or 3 ½ hour session) per week.


Unless approval is obtained from the instructor in advance, students missing 2-4 classes will have their letter grade lowered one full letter for every block class missed (e.g. students missing 2 block classes would have his/her grade lowered from A to B; 3 absences would reduce the letter grade from A to C, etc.). Students who accrue more than 4 absences will be assigned a grade of "F" for that course. In all cases, students have the right to appeal. Appeals must be made in writing to the instructor and the Academic Dean.


In all cases, including unexcused absences, students must make up all assignments and tests missed during any absence through arrangement with their instructor(s) in order to receive academic credit.


Snow and Other Emergency/Class Cancellation Policy


In case of inclement weather or other emergency conditions, students, staff and faculty should consult the Somerset Christian College website, voice mail, and/or STAR 99.1 for up to date information.  Faculty may also organize a phone chain to communicate with students.  Call 732-356-1595 or 1-800-234-9305 and press 9, the college information line, for up to date information on class cancellation. 



Somerset Christian College Official Style Guide


SCC requires that all research papers conform to the style guide as outlined by the MLA (Modern Language Association).


Gibaldi, Joseph.  MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers. 7th ed. NY: MLA, 2003.


Four important rules to remember in order to avoid plagiarizing something:

  • Your instructor is your best resource if you have any questions regarding whether or not your information is documented accurately.
  • Put an in-text citation at the end of any idea or fact which you found in a book or article, whether or not you change the words.
  • Exact quotations should either be put in quotation marks or indented and an in-text citation should be used to indicate the source
  • When in doubt, go ahead and document the source.

*Important note: Documenting sources helps your reader find more information as well as helping you avoid plagiarism.

Gannon, Jack. The Week the World Heard Gallaudet. Washington, D.C.: Gallaudet University Press, 1989. (modified BB 1/05).


Grading Scale



The grading scale is listed below with the respective grade point values. The unit of credit is defined as one 50 minute session per week for one semester of 15 weeks or the equivalent. Academic standing is defined as the ratio of total grade point values to the total semester hour credits. The 4.0 point system is used to compute the grade point standing. The grading system is as follows:



Grade Point    Grade, Num. Score/%

A         4.0            A             95-100

A-        3.7            A-            90-94

B+       3.3            B+           87-89

B         3.0            B             83-86

B-        2.7            B-            80-82

C+       2.3            C+           77-79

C         2.0            C             73-76

C-        1.7            C-            70-72

D+       1.3            D+           67-69

D         1.0            D             63-66

D-        0.7            D-            60-62

F          0.0            F               0-59

The following grades are not counted in the calculation of the GPA (grade point average):

W        Withdrawn

WP      Withdrawn Passing

WF      Withdrawn Failing

NC      No Credit


To remain in good academic standing, a student must maintain a 2.0 cumulative grade point average. Transfer credit hours are not counted in calculating academic standing. To graduate a student must complete at least  60 hours of academic credit for the two-year Associates degree with a cumulative GPA of 2.0 on all credits attempted at Somerset Christian College.





Course Attendance Policy


Because of the significant amount of participatory learning, attendance is assumed and required in all Drury classes.  The syllabus clearly shows that there are points at stake in every class session.  Thus absences jeopardize not only the student’s learning but also his or her grade.  Bottom line: come to class.


Nevertheless, absences are inevitable.  The Somerset Christian College attendance policy outlines the penalty for excessive absences (see catalogue and/or above).  The following policy supplements the official policy by indicating the protocol for earning “weekly points” in the case of absence.


Excused Absences


An absence is considered excused when the student is too sick to come to class or has experienced a death in the family.  Other instances will be reviewed on a case by case basis.


To be eligible for make-up work, the student must notify the professor by email ( or by phone (215-971-5197) by the beginning of the class session to be missed. 


In order to receive credit, the student must hand in any missed assignments or take any missed quizzes or tests by the end of the next class session in order to receive credit.  It is the student’s responsibility to find out any relevant information, collect class notes, and arrange make-up quizzes or tests in consultation with the professor.


Unexcused Absences


An absence is unexcused in any case that is not illness or death in the family. 


To be eligible for make-up work, the student must notify the professor by email (, by phone (215-971-5197), or in person by the end of the class session previous to the class session to be missed.  Otherwise, all weekly points are forfeited.


If the professor is notified accordingly, the student must send in any assignments by the regular due date in order to receive credit.  Assignments may be sent in with another student, dropped off at the SCC front desk, or emailed to the professor.  The student is responsible to inform the professor of his or her method of sending in assignments.  Quizzes and tests must be taken by the end of the class session following the absence.  It is the student’s responsibility to find out any relevant information, collect class notes, and arrange make-up quizzes and tests in consultation with the professor.

Course Bibliography


All of the following works deal with the atonement in detail.  The selection is intentionally broad.  Thus the views found within are not necessarily endorsed by the professor.  If you have any questions, don’t be afraid to ask the professor.


     Athanasius, On the Incarnation
     Anselm, Cur deus homo
     Aulen, Gustav, Christus Victor
     Baillie, D. M., God Was In Christ
     Balthasar, Hans Urs von, Mysterium Paschale
     ________, Theo-Drama Vol. IV.

     Barth, Karl, Church Dogmatics, IV/I, 3-357, IV/2, 3-377.
     Bonhoefffer, Dietrich, Christ the Center.
     Brock, Rita Nakashima, Journeys By Heart
     Brunner, Emil, The Christian Doctrine of Creation and Redemption, 271-321.
     ________, The Mediator, 399-619.
     Calvin, John, Institutes lI. xv-xvii.
     Gregory of Nyssa, Address on Religious Instruction [Hardy ed., 268-325]

     Gunton, Colin, The Actuality of Atonement
 Harnack, Adolf von, History of Dogma, Vol.I- VII
     Hill, Charles and Frank James, eds., The Glory of the Atonement
Irenaeus, Against Heresies

     Kelly, J. N .D., Early Christian Doctrines
     Lohse, Bernhard, A Short History of Doctrine
Luther, Martin Selected Writings, ed. John Dillenberger

     McLeod Campbell, John, The Nature of the Atonement
     Moltmann, Jurgen, The Crucified God
     Owen, John, The Death of Death in the Death of Christ

     Pelikan, Jaroslav, The Christian Tradition, Vol. 1-5
     Ruether, Rosemary Radford, Sexism and God-Talk
    Ritschl, Albrecht, Justification and Reconciliation, Vol.III
     Schleiermacher, Friedrich, The Christian Faith, pp.377-475
     Schussler-Fiorenza, Elizabeth, Jesus, Miriam's Child
     Seeberg, Reinhold, History of Doctrine

     SölIe, Dorothee, Christ the Representative
     Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae 3a.I-59 (Blackfriars ed. Vols.48-55)
     Tillich, Paul, Systematic Theology, Vol.2
     Torrance, T. F., The Trinitarian Faith
________, The Mediation of Christ
     Turretin, Francis, The Doctrine of the Atonement
Weaver, J. Denny, The Nonviolent Atonement
     Wesley, John, Sermons


Points Tally                                                  NAME:


Aug 9th        _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/30



Aug 16th      _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/60



Aug 23rd      _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/90



Aug 30th      _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/120



                         _____/100 Unit One Reflection Paper                  Total = _____/220



Sept 6th       _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/250



Sept 13th     _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/280



Sept 20th     _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/310



                         _____/100 Unit Two Reflection Paper                  Total = _____/410



Sept 27th     _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/440



Oct 4th         _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/470



Oct 11th       _____/30 Weekly Points                                         Total = _____/500



                         _____/100 Unit Three Reflection Paper               Total = _____/600



Oct 18th       _____/400 Final Exam                                            Total = _____/1000