An introduction to the view of Righteousness in the Hebrew Scriptures and Jewish life through exploring two interrelated definitions of the word “Righteous”
Achievement-Based Objective: By the end of this unit you will have …
- Watched an informative video on “Righteousness”
- Discovered other examples of the relationship between Righteousness and Shalom, of Righteousness as an activity
- Watched the beginning of a “Diagram of Pauline Theology” in a Chalkboard Chat
- Looked through your own life for moments evocative of “Shalom-iness” and described them in a strong paragraph that can be shared with others.
Est. Time to Complete: 2 hours + 2-3 weeks!
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Materials Available for This Unit
- Your Course Journal
- PDF of All Learning Tasks
- A PDF Checklist for Learning Tasks
- Readings and Bibliographies
- Wiles, Making Sense of Paul., pp. 23-31. [The linked file includes all of the Wiles reading for this current module. For this unit you need only to read pages 23-31. — AND: You read these pages for the last unit, M3U2: Shalom. It might do you well to read them again. Hey, it’s just 9 pages!]
- Recommended Reading — for when you have the time:
- Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze, Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now (Oakland, CA: Barrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc., 2011). This is a great read! You will feel like more is possible in this world than you knew! These folks are living Righteousness, with strong “social imaginaries.”
- Audio/Video/Quizzes & Exercises
- Video: “Righteousness” — (35:52) which includes:
- Video: A Chalkboard Chat: A Diagram of Pauline Theology, Stage 1 (1 min)
Note: You may download the video and/or audio files by right-clicking on the relevant items and saving to your computer.
Learning Tasks for M3U3
Outline of Learning Tasks for Unit
Learning Task #1: Watch the Video: “Righteousness” (35:52)
Learning Task #2: Righteousness Is an Activity (15 min)
Learning Task #3: A Chalkboard Chat (10 min)
Learning Task #4: “I See Shalom!” (2-3 weeks)
Learning Task #5: OPTIONAL: Concordance Time! (1 hour)
Respond to the following questions in your Course Journal.
M3U3-Learning Task 1: Watch the Video: “Righteousness” (35:52)
Watch the video.. It’s long, and there are quiet moments included. Breathe. Breathe. Life is more than cognition. Let it be a meditation …
M3U3-Learning Task 2: Righteousness Is an Activity (15 min)
In the video on Righteousness, there are two examples of Righteousness as an Activity, rather than a trait:
God is Righteous
God acts to bring about Shalom
This, then is Righteousness: Act -> SHALOM
I am a Teacher (This is term 1)
I act to effect Learning (This is term 2)
Teacher is an ACT: Act -> LEARNING (This is also term 2)
Can you come up with four more examples … like the “Teaching/Learning” example? If someone refers to you as a MINISTER, what would it mean if the word “minister” was an activity, not a job title? Can you follow the format above and find four examples of using a word as an activity towards an end, rather than a job title or personal trait. Here’s the “formula”:
I am __(term 1)__ (note: you may use someone else as the subject–“Sherri is __(term 1)__.“
I act to effect __(term 2)__
__(term 1)__ is an ACT: An Act that effects or results in –> __(term 2)__
M3U3-Learning Task 3: A Chalkboard Chat: A Diagram of Pauline Theology, Stage 1 (10 min)
Watch the video (1 min)
Now, just for fun–take the four examples of “Righteousness as an Activity” you completed in Learning Task 3, above, and draw the diagram (Stage 1) four times, but this time swapping out the terms SHALOM and Righteousness in the drawing for the words you use in your four examples. So, for instance, I would place “LEARNING” in the place of SHALOM, and Teaching in the place of Righteousness. SHALOM=”term 2″ / Righteousness=”term 1.”
M3U3-Learning Task 4: “I See Shalom!” (2-3 weeks)
- STEP 1: Watch your world over the next week or two (or three): Where do you see something that looks like Shalom, that looks, “Shalom-y” if I can invent an expression.You don’t have to make a declaration: This Is Shalom. – But what do you see – on a playground, or in the supermarket, or online, or at home, or in a hospital, or on the street – that makes you think: Now that has elements of shalom: of diversity, of creativity, of power and engagement, of relationality, of growth and of energy and newness and … How would you describe it? Over the next couple of weeks I want you to find at least THREE such “moments” or “events” in your world. Write them down. Briefly describe them to yourself.
- STEP 2: Pick one of those “moments and write a strong paragraph – in a way that captures the beauty and energy and Shalom-iness of the moment or event. (I’m going to ask you to share this description with each other.) Give the paragraph an evocative title. When you’re happy with your paragraph and the title, send it in an email to Dr. Wiles. She will compile all your descriptions of “Shalom-iness” and make the compilation available to everyone.
- STEP 3: Now, ask yourself this question about those events: What kind of imaginary — (political/economic/family/education/industry/legal/criminal justice – pick one or more) — might you construct or build, might you imagine proposing or working toward, something that could turn that single event you described into a larger experience for more people, for more of God’s creation? What might it look like to extend this one small moment of God’s Shalom? What ‘in-this-world’ change of system or structure might such a vision demand of us, of you?
Please go ahead and click through to Unit 4 and work forward
while you’re completing this Learning Task!
M3U3-Learning Task 5: OPTIONAL: Concordance Time! (time)
Using either an old-fashioned Concordance (by which I mean, a book with paper pages) or an online tool such as Bible Gateway — look up the words “Righteousness” and “Righteous” in the Old Testament and the Apocrypha — What do you discover? Do you learn anything by how that word is used in different parts of the Old Testament and the Apocrypha? Is the word frequently found with the same words around it? Take notes on what you discover. [Note: If you search at Bible Gateway in the RSV, your search can include the Apocrypha.]
If you have completed all the Learning Tasks with good intent
you may “Mark Complete” and move forward!