Seminary for 2016 – New Testament

Another school year approaches, and another year for Seminary Students to learn, grow, and be taught logic and critical thinking via the church.  As such I continue my seminary evaluation:

In addition to accomplishing these aims, you are to help students be faithful to the gospel of Jesus Christ and learn to discern truth from error.

Get kids to the temple, but also help them be faithful while discerning between truth and error.  I’m going to focus on “truth”; I think that teaching people to be faithful to a creed or religious concept is going to frequently be in opposition to “truth” so I’ll focus heavier there.

Students may have questions about the Church’s doctrine, history, or position on social issues. You can prepare students to address such questions by helping them to “seek learning, even by study and also by faith”

And there it is… by learning but also by faith.  Then it gives places to send kids to get faithful answers.  I’d rather that we focus on how to know truth; actual truth, and let kids believe in what they have come to conclusions on by testing.  “How we know what we Know” is pretty key.  If any student thinks that one can “Know things by faith” I encourage them to go into any other subject using only faith to know things and see how far that gets them.  “Learning with faith” is what they recommend, but this isn’t terribly different from “Confirmation bias” as a concept.  You should learn through skepticism; that is the difference between pre 1800’s knowledge, and things we know now, is we try to prove ourselves wrong until there is no other answer left.  It’s key to actual knowledge vs. treating people with leeches.

In this course, the New Testament is your primary text as you prepare and teach.

Bold of them to say so; but I bet that if it comes down to what Joseph Smith said, and what the New Testament actually says, they’re going to go with Joseph; and the teacher will learn that from this manual.  If the New Testament was truly the primary text, we would definitely let it stand for itself to resolve disputes such as when Christ says that in heaven no one is married.

Seek to understand the context and content of the scripture block, including the story line, people, places, and events. As you become familiar with the context and content of the scripture block, seek to identify doctrines and principles it contains, and decide which truths are most important for your students to understand and apply

We’ll do this.

“President Packer has often taught, in my hearing, that we first adopt, then we adapt. If we are thoroughly grounded in the prescribed lesson that we are to give, then we can follow the Spirit to adapt it”

Ah, well if President Boyd Packer says it, then it must be so!  This serves two purposes, to make teachers who don’t feel comfortable teaching more dependent on the manual and to make those who teach more likely to rely on the umpteen years of correlated Sunday School the teacher went through with all of its biases.  So if I point out flaws in Sunday School manuals on the topics, I think it will be relevant to the lessons given.

During your lesson preparation, you might choose to use the Notes and Journal tools on or in the Gospel Library for mobile devices. You can use these tools to mark scriptures, conference addresses, Church magazine articles, and lessons

I think it is fair to point out they don’t cite a single source that is non-LDS.  No history websites.  No historical documentaries.  No seminaries or sermons from all of Christianity.  Do you understand?  They wanted truth on topics investigated by individuals over thousands of years and then limit it to “approved materials”… that maximizes bias.

Scripture Mastery

The 25 scripture mastery passages found in the New Testament are highlighted in context in the lessons in which they appear

The 25 scripture mastery passages found in the New Testament are highlighted in context in the lessons in which they appear

We’ll reference NoCoolNameTom’s blog on these topics as they arise.

Home-Study Seminary Program

As a homeschooling family, I find this section really fascinating… you can’t set up a homeschool that is unofficial.  There is no such thing as homeschooling seminary in the church:

Under the direction of local priesthood leaders and the S&I representative, home-study seminary classes can be organized in places where students cannot attend a daily class because of distance or other factors (such as a disability)

So here we go… another year of top-notched bias-maximizing lessons all about Jesus.  Can’t wait.

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Last edited by Mithryn on August 21, 2016 at 7:49 pm

2 Responses to Seminary for 2016 – New Testament

  1. Diana says:

    I’m a little confused- I thought they were dropping scripture mastery in favor of Doctrinal Mastery. Are they doing both?

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