Intensive to hear the prophetic voice

Intensive to hear the prophetic voice

The role that prophecy played in the Old Testament is the subject of an upcoming intensive at United Theological College.

The Prophetic Literature, THL 308, will delve into how the church is to best understand the Old Testament prophets in their own context.

Rev. Brian Kolia will deliver the course. Rev. Kolia is a PhD candidate at Melbourne’s University of Divinity. He has previously taught Old Testament at Malua Theological College in Samoa.

Rev. Kolia told Insights that the course will offer, “ample opportunity for conversation and dialogue. This is so we can help relate the content more to the world around us, and to discuss how we can evince our own prophetic voices within our contexts.”

“People can expect a genuine survey of prophecy in the Old Testament, with a focus on who the prophets are according to Christian and Jewish canons, and the messages that are conveyed within the various prophetic contexts,” he said.

“In lieu of the unique characteristics and styles of the different prophets, the intensive will give students the opportunity to see what sort of contexts bring about these messengers, and how they respond to crisis/crises.”

Rev. Kiola is currently working on his dissertation, which looks at Ecclesiastes, “with a view to how attitudes of scepticism may point towards Qohelet (the author) being located in the diaspora.”

“As such, I re-read Ecclesiastes with a diasporic lens as an Australian-born Samoan,” he said.

With more people experiencing isolation as a result of COVID-19, there has been some more interest in the prophetic literature.

“Most of the Hebrew Bible prophets lived in isolation, both in a physical and sociological sense,” Rev. Kolia said.

“They lived in isolated spaces, but also were isolated members of society, as they faced constant hostility and contempt from their own people. This resonates with the COVID experience, as we are not just isolated in our homes, but also isolated from our families and loved ones. The intensive will definitely engage with these realities in conversation with the prophets.”

The Prophetic Literature THL 308 runs from 18-22 January 2021 at United Theological College, and is also available via Zoom. For more information, visit the UTC website here.

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