This course explores the parables of Jesus a) within their settings in the Gospels, b) as the vehicles for Jesus’ evocation and depiction of the empire of God, and c) as they might be used in the life of the church today. This course will focus especially on the problems and possibilities for preaching and teaching posed by the parables that occur in the Revised Common Lectionary, most of which come from Matthew and Luke. We will also give attention to related Jewish story forms. This course will begin online on Monday, June 19, 2017 with work spread gently over the three weeks preceding the on-campus portion of the course, July 10-14, 2017. Final course assignments will be completed online during the week of July 15-21, 2017 following the on-campus portion of the course.