ARTICLES

Elizabeth Backfish - "My God is a Rock in a Weary Land": A Comparison of the Cries and Hopes of the Psalms and African American Slave Spirituals

Despite the nearly three millennia that separate them, the psalms of the ancient Israelites
and the spirituals of the African American slaves are remarkably similar, reflecting
their communities' similar milieus, emotions, and convictions. In this article, Elizabeth
Backfish compares these musical manifestations of the heart, arguing that Israel's
subjugation in exile produced similar musical effects as did the African Americans' oppression
under slavery. Both communities found hope in corporately recounting God's
faithfulness throughout history, creating a solidarity that extends beyond the bounds of
ancient Israel and antebellum America to all of God's suffering people everywhere. Ms.
Backfish is a Ph.D. candidate and adjunct professor at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.

Rick Kennedy - Educating Bees: Humility as a Craft in Classical and Christian Liberal Arts

Modern discussion of the liberal arts has emphasized the development of the individual
critical thinker and not the art of thinking socially. Rick Kennedy summarizes
the four-step craft of social thinking that was long taught in the pre-modern tradition
of liberal arts. This intellectual craft was not specifically named by the ancients but is
evident in their use of honeybee imagery. In the New Testament, this intellectual craft
can be best seen in the term tapeinophrosune which can be translated as "humblethink."
This article is rooted in a lecture presented at Wheaton College in February 2010 that
was organized by Jill Peláez Baumgaertner and Kathryn Long. Mr. Kennedy much appreciates
their support along with other colleagues. He is professor of history at Point
Loma Nazarene University, a past-president of The Conference on Faith and History, the
author of A History of Reasonableness: Testimony and Authority in the Art of Thinking (2004),
and presently working with others on an edition of Cotton Mather's Biblia Americana.

Gretchen Schwarz and Jill Martin - Comenius: Dead White Guy for Twenty-first Century Education

Gretchen Schwarz and Jill Martin argue that contemporary Christian evangelicals often
perceive American public schools as evil, and many have retrenched into their own private
schools. These schools generally offer a highly traditional, narrow, even classical curriculum.
In contrast, Comenius, one of the Reformation era's outstanding scholars and educators,
developed a wealth of ideas that seem new even today. The ideas of Comenius on pedagogy
and curriculum, universal schooling, and the use of the media offer a positive educational
alternative to Christian educators, both in public and private schools. Ms. Schwarz is Professor
of Curriculum and Instruction at Baylor University and Ms. Martin is taking a break
from the academic world by concentrating on the birth of her next child.

 

REVIEW ESSAY

Brad A. Lau and Pamela Havey Lau - Popular Music in Conversation with Christian Faith—A Review Essay

Brad A. Lau is Vice President for Student Life at George Fox University, and Pamela Havey
Lau is a freelance editor.

 

FOR THE CLASSROOM

Katherine E. Loughead and Kevin R. den Dulk - For the Classroom: Honoring God in Red and Blue

Katherine E. Loughead is a student in the John Wesley Honors College, Indiana Wesleyan
University, and Kevin R. den Dulk is Paul B. Henry Chair in Political Science at Calvin
College.