In an age of international travel and migration, we’re familiar with people who look, sound, eat, and believe differently than we do. In order to become friends, it’s helpful to understand where they come from and how they do things differently, or the same, as we do. In the same way it is necessary to understand someone who comes from a different place than we do, how much more necessary is it to understand someone who is from not only a different geographical place, but also a different time than we are? The Old Testament starts at the beginning of the world. This course will undertake the task of crossing the bridges of geography, climate, time, and a landscape unknown to us: ancient Israel. Throughout the course, David W. Baker will address aspects of life from our own culture and time, as well as family structure and societal systems from ancient Israelite life. As we learn more about the social world of the Old Testament, we will be struck not only by our differences, but also by our common humanity, sharing the same dreams, hopes, and fears as they did.