After my last MOOC I decided to bite off something a bit bigger.
Christianity Through Its Scriptures – Harvard/EdX
It’s a big course, and I paid up front a voluntary $49 to get tests marked, a final exam with certificate and a capstone project. You don’t have to pay but you don’t get marks, certificate and the other goodies if you only do it for free. As it’s such a big course I decided I would like the extras, and you do have to decide whether to pay or not up front – I don’t believe you can change your mind later (although I don’t actually know).
It is an academic Bible course, NOT a devotional Bible course. That means its not just for Christians and it does not assume that Christianity knows the ultimate truth about whether there is a God and that God being the Christian one with a Son called Jesus etc. It is academic enquiry about the sociological history of the Bible as it has developed since Christianity (as distinct from the Jewish period of its origins).
I decided this might be more interesting for me than a purely devotional Bible course at this time – although I might well want to do one of those one day. I have a strong academic background in the social sciences, so this influenced this decision also. I thought – and am finding as I am embarking on the course – that my (rusty) experience with sociological enquiry would help me understand the course and what is expected off me as a student in this milieu.
So if you are seriously interested in the Bible and the History of Christianity, from a serious social scientist’s point of view, and are up for a fairly long and challenging commitment to study, check it out!