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Welcome to Encounter Scripture

Welcome to the Encounter Scripture Web Site! Many features from the previous Bi 216 Exegetical/ Lectionary Resource site have been incorporated and improved upon in our new location. Our new face, as it were, starts with our new name “Encounter,” which is the focus of our dialogical venture.

From its inception this web site has existed to help pastors (and of course interested lay persons). Many contributors have themselves been pastors. An early formulation was: a site for pastors by pastors. This ecclesiastical focus continues in our new incarnation. We desire to serve the ends of substantive preaching and teaching; we are persuaded, moreover, of the ability of pastors to participate in the rich dialogue about meaning in scripture. “Professional scholars” are encouraged to join the dialogue if they are open to the homiletical and didactic concerns of the church. Our goal is simple: to cultivate a firsthand encounter with scripture through a dialogue shaped by the disciplined use of the historical-homiletical work method of listening to the text (described here in six steps). While in times past individuals have submitted solo contributions based on all six steps of this methodology, time constraints on the working pastor call for a modified team approach through a division of labor. We encourage participation of the latter sort in the hope that a larger number of visitors to the site will come with a “deposit,” so to speak, and not simply leave with a “withdrawal.” A true dialogue is a genuine exchange; we need your voice.

“Encounter” offers several improvements to our former content and layout. For one thing, we are now more user-friendly. Next, you will notice our new archival index. This supplement enables the user to access collected references from a biblical author independent of the lectionary strictures of a triadal cycle to the Christian calendar. Also, you will find a “feature of the month” designed to highlight a contributor of note or a topic of interest for the general edification of our constituency. Scrolling through the clickable options will also reveal a variety of tools and topics of interest...and there is more to come!

We solicit feedback at any and all levels of change. Please alter the bookmark on your browser and join us regularly in this encounter with scripture!

Peace to you,

John Alsup

News and Features

New Section: INTT
Encounterscripture is pleased to add a new section INTT, the Interpretation of New Testament Texts.   read more...


Welcome to the Students from Justo Mwale Theological College

Pictured above are the first year students, 2008, from JMTC in Lusaka, Zambia. As e-group members, we welcome them to active internet participation in this Falls New Testament Interpretation class at Austin Seminary. In June of this year at the invitation of Principal Dr. D. T. Banda, Dean Dr. Henk van den Bosch, and the staff at JMTC, Dr. Alsup and these students studied the Gospel of Mark together. The quality of their shared work and the bond between them were so extraordinary that they agreed to cultivate an in absentia dialogue with the Bi 216 class by means of the technology available to us all. This is an experiment that we hope will have ongoing consequences for all of us who seek to foster an improved international dialogue. We believe that the spatial separation between us can be overcome through email postings and subsequent exchange of thought. This may, indeed, prove to be a model for future interaction between us. The spiritual bond is real and growing day by day already as we realize our connectedness within the household of God. To God be the glory as we try to forge ahead.