This class provides an introduction to the first five books of the Old Testament. These books are known as the Pentateuch (Greek) or the Torah (Hebrew). There will be special reference to their background, history, contents, and major teachings. This class intends to highlight the abiding significance of these books as the foundation of God’s redemptive relationship with the world and the Law that Jesus came to fulfill not abolish. One cannot understand the New Testament without understanding the Old Testament.
Why study the Psalms? Of all Old Testament books, Psalms has been widely acknowledged as the heartbeat of the believer’s worship of his Creator God: “Saints of all ages have appropriated this collection of prayers and praises in their public worship and private meditations”; “And still more are they read and loved by God’s children, because they give so much comfort and help and describe the feelings and exercises of our hearts in such a blessed way.”
And as Henry A. Ironside reminds us, due to their place in the history of God’s progressive revelation, “. . . a great many of the prayers in the book of Psalms . . . imply a hidden God. But today God has come . . . our Lord Jesus, by His sacrificial death upon the Cross, has rent the veil and opened up the way into the immediate presence of God for poor sinners . . .” Wonderfully, as it speaks prophetically of this coming of the King Messiah, our Lord Jesus, the book of Psalms is quoted and alluded to in the New Testament more than any other Old Testament book.
In this course we conduct an expositional study of the 150 psalms that make up this book, according to their divisions into five sections that parallel the five books of Moses. Students will be encouraged throughout to thank and praise the Lord for messianic prophecies fulfilled, and to have confidence in the coming fulfillment of prophecies outstanding. For, as Jesus said, “. . . all things must be fulfilled, which were written . . . in the Psalms, concerning Me” (Luke 24:44b).
This course is a thorough-going study of the three so-called synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, which they wrote for Jews and Gentiles, all who would believe that Jesus is the prophesied Christ, the Creator God in human flesh. The Gospel writers record the LORD Jesus' first coming in the flesh to announce the Gospel of His Kingdom to Israel, and to establish the prophesied New Covenant for Israel and all nations with His blood.
Why study Acts and Paul’s letters? Acts is a critical book to study for the Christian’s understanding of the transition into the Church age: “. . . Acts marks the transition from the work of God provincially among the Jews to His establishment of the universal church. In a real sense the reader goes from Jerusalem to the uttermost part of the world in these 28 chapters.” As we conduct an expositional study through Acts, we will study six of Apostle Paul’s letters—1–2 Thessalonians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon—at the appropriate times as indicated by Acts.
Apostle Paul was the last apostle called by the Lord Jesus (1 Corinthians 15:8), yet he was perhaps the single most influential ambassador for Christ of the ad 1st century, and perhaps the single most prolific writer of the New Testament. According to the Scriptures, in Apostle Paul we are provided an exemplary model of the Christian life, so that we are commanded: “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1). Through this course, students will be exhorted to heed our Lord Jesus’ words through His Apostle Paul: “Brothers, join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern” (Phil 3:17).
This course prepares students to begin to properly understand, interpret, and apply the biblical books Joshua, Judges, Ruth, and 1 and 2 Samuel in their immediate and canonical context.
This class provides an introduction to the books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Lamentations. These books contain powerful messages originally given to the people of Judah as God’s method of calling a wayward people back to Himself. As people of God who still find ourselves “prone to wander” these books are applicable to our lives as we seek to walk ever more closely with God. Throughout these books, the seriousness of sin and its consequences will be seen. Lamentations also provides an example of an appropriate expression of grief over sin and its consequences.
Though these books contain warnings of judgment, there are also threads of hope running through each book. The hope that one day God will make all things right was the greatest hope of the original audience, and it remains our hope as we look for the glorious appearing of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
This course is a thorough-going study of the Gospel of John, which distinguishes itself from the other three Gospel accounts by taking the form of a doctrinal, theological treatise, as much as an historical account. Apostle John wrote his Gospel for Jews and Gentiles, the whole world, all who would believe that Jesus is the prophesied Christ, the Creator God in human flesh. He records the Lord Jesus' first coming in the flesh to announce the Gospel of His Kingdom to Israel, and to establish the prophesied New Covenant for Israel and all nations with His blood.
The final two weeks of the course are devoted to a similar study of Apostle John’s three letters to Jewish and Gentile proselyte believers in Jesus, living in the diaspora outside of the Land of Israel.
A detailed study of Paul’s letters to the Corinthians. The major themes will be explored and practical application will be made for the church and the individual believer.
This is the syllabus containing the requirements for 1st Corinthians section of the course. It will be updated when we have the requirements for the 2nd Corinthians section.
This class provides an introduction to the latter historical books of the Old Testament (1 Kings – Esther). These books document the spiritual decline of Israel following the kingship of David. This decline resulted in the defeat and exile of God’s people. From exile, God’s people turned back to him and he restored them to the land he gave them.
This class intends to highlight the longsuffering of God as he patiently deals with his rebellious people. God’s measure of a successful leader will be evident in the evaluations of the kings. An example of spiritual renewal will be examined in the books of Ezra and Nehemiah. And God’s abiding presence with his people, even in exile, will be seen throughout the books.
Why study Romans and Galatians? It was not long after the watershed Jerusalem Council of Acts 15 that Apostle Paul wrote his letter to the Galatians, containing “. . . a clear statement of justification by faith . . . [and] a defense of Christian liberty against any form of legalism.” Galatians’ key role in the Reformation caused this letter to be called, “the cornerstone of the Protestant Reformation,” because in it the Lord Jesus through His Apostle Paul emphasizes that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone.
Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans, written amid his third missionary journey, is considered to be an expansion on the doctrine in Galatians of salvation by grace through faith alone. In concert with the message of the letter to the Galatians, Romans expands on the imputed righteousness of God to the Christian, which cannot fail, being God’s work and not man’s work.
In this course we conduct an expositional study of Galatians and Romans, throughout which students are exhorted to follow Apostle Paul’s example (e.g. 1 Cor 11:1; Phil 3:17), as is the will of God in Christ for us: “[Let us] not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain” (Gal 2:21).
A chapter by chapter study of this first-century sermon. The student will consider the supremacy of Jesus and the dynamics of the persecution of believers in the first-century. The course will emphasize the applications of the truths of the completeness of our salvation in Jesus, and our responsibility to remain faithful to Him.
An introductory study of Hebrew poetry and the part it played in Old Testament life and literature. Emphasis also will be given to the major themes in Old Testament Wisdom literature.
The detailed study of these epistles will give students the opportunity to develop their own views on a variety of ministry-related topics. The format will allow students a choice in topics of concern, including: roles of leaders in the Church, role of women in ministry, and contextualization of the gospel.
This course provides the foundation for further theological thinking by introducing and delighting in God and his revelation to humanity, especially through the Bible.
The Bible presents itself as the Word of God, who is incapable of lying, in which He lays out the revelation of the history of His universe, from the Creation in the book of Genesis all the way to the future Consummation in the book of Revelation. In this course, students will be introduced to: the Bible as God’s Word; God’s self-interpretation of His Word; and the seven major dispensations and ages of biblical history that He reveals there, past, present and future. Thus, they will develop a biblical worldview.
The Bible is at the same time both the most loved and best-selling book of all time. It has been used wonderfully in many settings and poorly/inappropriately in others. Much of the less than stellar use of Scripture comes from misunderstanding how to interpret it and, therefore, apply it. This course begins the process of learning to interpret the Bible correctly, so it can be applied appropriately and taught accurately.
This course equips the students to think theologically about who they are as humans and what sin and salvation are so that they are able to apply these doctrines to their life and ministry.
A study of the Bible’s teaching concerning the nature, character and activity of the Church, and the teaching of the Scriptures regarding eschatology or “Last Things.” Emphasis is placed on the relevance of the Church and its involvement in preparation for the Last Days.
Christian Ministry Courses
This course helps students appreciate the majesty of the gospel and equip them to live in a confident faith which expresses itself in evangelism.
A study of the principles and problems of ethical decision making. This will include a survey of the history and variety of approaches to ethics. Biblical principles will be sought and emphasis placed on the application of these principles to contemporary ethical issues.
Leadership is at once a privilege and a daunting task not to undertake lightly. If one is to lead well, one must know his/her God, the Scriptures, the times, and the people one is to lead. One also must have attitudes that Jesus preached and modeled. Through an interactive classroom setting, the student will come away with practical ways of leading with character. As conflict is a regular part of church dynamics, a significant amount of time will be spent on this topic.
How and what a person communicates when given the attention of an audience will reflect the speaker’s character, experience, preparation, and skill in delivery. Over the course of the semester, all of these will be addressed, with lots of opportunity for the student to practice the craft of preparation and communication of the Word of God.
General Education Courses
This course will frame the idea of Spiritual Formation within the context of Romans 8:29, “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.” Within this context, this class will strive to understand the unique calling of spiritual formation – what challenges present themselves, how our personalities come to bear on our walk with Christ, and how we might include practices in our lives that coordinate with the Holy Spirit’s transforming presence.
When Jesus said, “You cannot serve both God and money,” He was saying this just as much to us today, as He was to the audience who first heard those words. Through a search of the Biblical texts on the topic of money/wealth (and there are many!), we will learn what God’s perspective on earthly wealth is. The goal is to internalize the Biblical principles so as to be able to make decisions about money/wealth for eternal purposes.
This course helps students understand, appreciate, and learn from their fellow members of the body of Christ who lived from Pentecost to 1500.
This course will equip students to better understand both the original (human) author and the original audience of the biblical text by introducing the geographical, political, and cultural background of the Bible and by assisting them in applying that knowledge to their study of the Bible.
Focusing on the many Biblical texts which teach God’s purposes and imperatives for the family, this interactive course encourages the student to learn, internalize, and practice His ways as it relates to building a family. It will be necessary to compare God’s ways to the ways of the world and see how and why the latter fall woefully short—with inherent consequences. We will also look at how the family is a symbol of our relationship with God.
Why learn biblical Hebrew? Of the sixty-six books of the Holy Bible, thirty-nine were written entirely (or mostly) in ancient biblical Hebrew. In addition, the twenty-seven New Testament books, despite being written in Hellenistic Greek, were heavily influenced in their composition by biblical Hebrew and Aramaic—grammatically, syntactically, and substantively. That is, learning to read biblical Hebrew is not only highly beneficial for understanding the Old Testament of God’s Book, but the New Testament as well. In this course, students will learn the basics of reading and translating the Hebrew Bible.
Practical Ministry Courses
A weekly student ministry program, involving the student in actual ministry and service opportunities, combined with written evaluations. It is designed to give the student experience, exposure, and the opportunity to develop skills in practical Christian ministry.
The Leadership Practicum is an opportunity for third year students to get more hands on ministry with greater responsibility in the area of leadership and discipleship, then their student ministry experience. Every effort is made to provide a ministry experience that connects to the student’s sense of direction in ministry in the future. An expectation for each practicum is that the student will serve in some leadership capacity and ‘taste’ first hand what it means to do that ministry as a team member and occasionally functioning as a team leader.
Individual music courses are offered at the student’s request, usually consisting of 1 hour per semester. Intermediate and Advanced music studies are available for advanced music students, including courses not listed below. These studies are tailored to the student’s skill level and personal goals in music studies. Contact the Academic Dean for information.
** MUSIC HISTORY & HARMONY will be offered if at least three students are at the same level of study.