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Exodus: Freedom & Formation with Christine Roy Yoder


Have you or your community experienced a foundational event? Can you name a moment that is so significant to your self-understanding that you interpret everything beforehand as leading up to it and everything afterward as arising from it? The Exodus was just such an event for ancient Israel.

Nestled between the stories of the ancestors (Genesis) and the people’s entry into Canaan (Joshua and Judges), between the time of God’s promises and the epoch of their fulfillment, is this birth narrative of “a priestly kingdom and a holy nation” (Exod 19:6). So potent was the Exodus for God’s people that later prophets and poets time and again evoked its power and imagery to encourage and remind Israel that they were once slaves in Egypt, that God saw their brutal oppression, and that God came down to set them free so that they might worship and find new life.

The story is no less compelling now. Come and explore the biblical narrative in detail and consider its significance for Jewish and Christian believers from ancient times to today. We will pay particular attention to what Exodus reveals about God and God’s work in the world, the participation of Moses, Miriam, and others in God’s activity, the hallmarks of empire and the strategies of Pharaoh, the experience of being “let go” yet wandering in the wilderness, the Sinai event, and what it means to live as a covenant people. 

We will consider the roles of worship, ritual, and prayer—from the guttural cry of the Hebrew slaves that prompts God to take notice of their suffering, to the intercessions by Moses to keep God and Israel together. Finally, participants will reflect on how this foundational event may resonate and challenge their own journeys of faith. 

Registration is open now for Exodus: Freedom and Formation, September 18-21, led by Dr. Christine Roy Yoder, Professor of Old Testament Language, Literature, and Exegesis. This course is part of the Certificate in Spiritual Formation program, but is open to everyone.

For more information:
Debra Weir
Associate Director, Spirituality and Lifelong Learning

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