Biblical and theological studies courses
- Christian Story I: Biblical Tradition
This course presents an overview of and orientation to the Bible, focusing on its content, character, role in the Christian faith, and covenant themes of creation, fall, redemption, and new creation. This course begins the development of theological thinking for academic study in the liberal arts and equips students for the task of integrating faith and learning in their academic work. Students should complete this course by the end of their second semester. (4 credits) Note: Does not count toward a religion major or minor.
- Christian Story II: Theological Tradition
This course presents an overview and orientation to Christian theology focusing on its formation, content, role in the Christian faith throughout Church history, and its interpretation of key biblical subjects such as God, Christ, creation, sin, redemption, church, and new creation. This course completes the Christian Story sequence and prepares students for a lifetime of critical thinking and faithful living from a biblical-theological perspective. Students should complete this course by the end of their fourth semester. (4 credits) Prerequisite: REL150. Note: Does not count toward a religion major or minor.
- Christian Ethics
A biblically based, theologically and historically informed study of bothpersonal and social moral issues from a Christian perspective. (2 credits,offered at the discretion of the department, consult department)
- History of Christianity
A survey of the development of Christianity from the apostolic period to thecontemporary world. Themes examined will include the separation of Churchand Synagogue, Christianity in the Roman Empire, ecumenical councils,missionary expansion of the church in Europe and Asia, monasticism, thechurch in the High Middle Ages, the Protestant and Catholic Reformations,Confessionalism and the Wars of Religion, Puritanism, Pietism, TheEnlightenment, Christianity and European Colonialism, Revivalism, Modernismand Evangelicalism, modern missionary expansion, the ecumenical movement,and Christianity as a global religion. (4 credits)
- Christian Witness and Community Development
This course is an examination of Christian witness as verbal proclamation(evangelism), reasoned defense (apologetics), as a distinctive lifestyle andas social action (justice). Students will explore the meaning of the gospel,in the context of a biblical theology of God's holistic plan of redemption,and various models of evangelism, apologetics and justice, especially themodel of Christian community development. (4 credits) Prerequisite: BTS250or permission of instructor.
- Introduction to Christian Missions
A general overview of the biblical foundations and historical evolution ofChristian mission, with special emphasis upon the modern development ofmission theory and practice. (2 credits) Prerequisite: BTS250.
- Intercultural Communication
Christian ministry and mission is essentially an ongoing process ofinteracting effectively with others in ways appropriate to one?s message andglobal/local contexts. By providing a progressively integrated understandingof intercultural issues, this course will enable students to applyprinciples of communication through their particular vocation or ministry sothat they connect theory with models and practice to appropriatelycommunicate the Gospel message across cultures and micro-cultures. (2credits)
- Christian Spirituality
A study of the meaning, purpose and practices of Christian spirituality asthis has been understood in the Christian tradition. The course emphasizesthe practice of spiritual disciplines and the relevance of spirituality inour contemporary world. Prerequisite: BTS250. (2 credits)
- Topics in Old Testament Studies
A study of a single book or larger section of the Old Testament or a current area of critical inquiry concerning the Old Testament. Possible topics include, but are not limited to, the Pentateuch, the Historical Writings, the Prophets, and the Poetic and Wisdom books. Note: May be taken more than once provided a different topic is studied. Prerequisites: BTS150 and sophomore class standing. (2 credits)
- Topics in New Testament Studies
A study of a single book or larger section of the New Testament or a currentarea of critical inquiry concerning the New Testament. Possible topicsinclude the Synoptic Gospels, the Book of Acts, the Johannine Literature,the Epistolary Literature, and the Apocalypse. (2 credits) Note: May betaken more than once provided a different topic is studied. Prerequisite:BTS150 and sophomore class standing.
- Biblical Interpretation and Theology
An examination of the past and present methods and proposals for BiblicalInterpretation and Biblical Theology. The course will analyze and critiquevarious models for hermeneutics and theological interpretation and alsoassist students in constructing exegetical methods that are biblicallybased, theologically informed and culturally relevant. In this WritingIntensive course for Religion and CE/YM majors, students will developresearch and writing skills that will benefit them in a variety ofvocational paths within the field of religion.Prerequisite: BTS150. (4 credits) (Writing intensive)
- Theology and Church Ministry
In this course, students will explore the identity of the church by engagingbiblical, historical, cultural, and missional perspectives, grounding thelife and ministry of the church in God?s ministry to the world in JesusChrist. More specifically, this course will focus on the nature and role ofyouth ministry as an expression of this ministry as students are called toenter into the experiences of young people within contemporary Westernculture. (4 credits; alternate years, consult department) Prerequisite:BTS250. Cross-referenced in Christian education.
- Theology of Worship
The purpose of this course is to thoughtfully examine the biblical,theological, and historical foundations of Christian worship, as well as thecontemporary issues facing pastors and worship leaders in the 21st century.An important part of this discussion will be the exploration of worshipskills and practices through reflection and participation, as well as thecreation of liturgies for a variety of worship services. Prerequisite: BTS250. (4 credits; alternate years, consult department)
- Theology and Popular Culture
This course explores the relationship between Christian faith and culture.It will begin by establishing a biblical and theological approach tocultural engagement, as well as a brief historical survey of how theChristian community has engaged issue of faith and culture in differenthistorical and cultural moments. An important part of this course will beinterdisciplinary exploration of the fields of "cultural theory" and"popular culture", specifically focusing upon what they have to contributeto different forms of Christian ministry. Finally, this course will provethe opportunity for students to begin to articulate what it means to livefaithfully with a diversity of cultural contexts. Prerequisite: BTS250. (4 credits; alternate years, consult department)
- Calvin and Calvinism
A study of John Calvin's INSTITUTES OF THE CHRISTIAN RELIGION, as well as asurvey of other varieties of Reformed theology, including later Calvinism. Prerequisite: BTS250. (4 credits; alternate years, consult department)
- Topics in Theology
A study of one or more standard areas of theology, (such as the doctrines ofRevelation, God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, Humanity, Salvation, the Church,and Last Things) from a classical as well as a contemporary perspective. Note: The course may be repeated for credit provided a different topic isstudied. Prerequisites: BTS150 and BTS250. (4 credits; alternate years, consultdepartment)
- Religion in America
Focusing on the Christian tradition, this course will examine theindividual, institutions, movements and faith traditions which have shapedand contributed to the American religious experience. To understand both thevariety of and unity within the pluralist religious landscape, the coursewill seek to evaluate the interrelationship between religion and the broadersocial, cultural and political aspects of the American experience. (4credits)
- Topics in the History of Christianity
A historical study of a religious group, theological movement or importantleader in the history of the Christian church. Note: This course may be repeated for credit provided a different topic isstudied. (2 credits, offered on demand or discretion of department, consultdepartment)
- Topics in Religion
A study of an interdisciplinary area of religion, not sufficiently coveredby other courses, in response to student or faculty interests. Note: This course may be repeated for credit provided a different topic isstudied. Prerequisite: BTS250 or permission of instructor. (2-4 credits; alternateyears, consult department)
- World Religions
The major religions of the world are examined in the light of the Christianfaith. This course emphasizes the interaction of religion and culture with aview to cross-cultural understanding. In-depth research into a specifictopic related to world religions is required. (4 credits) (NWCore optionunder Cross-Cultural Engagement)
- Topics in Missiology
A topical and selective study of major missiological themes, permitting students to read and reflect intensively upon the nature and challenge of Christian mission. Topics will vary from year to year. Sample topics might include Religious Conversion, The Finality of Christ in a Pluralistic World, Interfaith Dialogue, Contextualization, Women in Mission Yesterday and Today. Note: This course may be repeated for credit provided a different topic isstudied. Prerequisite: BTS294 or permission of instructor. (4 credits, alternateyears, consult department)
- Directed Study
(2 credits may apply toward the major)
- Topics in Christian Community Development
This is an interdisciplinary course that will analyze a major topic in Christian community development related to relocation, reconciliation and redistribution. There will be significant biblical and theological content integrated with the given topic. A service learning component, consisting of at least 20 hours of student engagement in meeting an identified community need, is required. Students will integrate course materials and various disciplines with their service learning and any past Christian community development experiences. Students will also explore questions and issues raised in this area. This course features the writing and presentation of a major integration paper, discussions, analysis and critique of research. Prerequisites: BTS290 and senior class standing. (4 credits)
- Bible, Theology and Vocation: Exploring Texts and Contexts
This disciplinary capstone course fulfills both the NWCore Senior Seminar (SR) requirement and a requirement for Religion and CE/YM majors. Building on the basic FYS questions (Who am I? Who are my neighbors? How will we live in the world?), this course will explore the intersection of biblical theology with one's vocation in light of scripture and Christian theological reflection. Students will complete weekly writing assignments, participate in seminar leadership through presiding and lecturing, and complete a major final paper in which they reflect on their college curricular and co-curricular experiences, engage biblical and theological texts in light of a variety of ancient and modern cultural contexts, and reflect on their faith development and sense of vocation. Prerequisites: BTS150, BTS250 and senior class standing. The course is opento students of other majors.
- Foundations of Practical Theology
This course examines the issues involved in Practical Theology. We beginwith the biblical / philosophical/theological foundations of ministry, andmove into such practical issues such as discipleship, small groups,leadership, administration, dealing with difficult issues, and planningactivities. The goal is to equip students to begin formulating a vision forministry as they prepare to enter into leadership positions in churches andother organizations. (4 credits)
- Spiritual Formation, Discipleship and Youth
In this course students will explore the identity of the church byengaging biblical, historical, cultural, and missional perspectives,grounding the life and ministry of the church in God?s ministry to the worldin Jesus Christ. More specifically, this course will focus on the nature androle of youth ministry as an expression of this ministry as students arecalled to enter into the experiences of young people within contemporaryWestern culture. Prerequisite: REL 250. (4 credits)
- Philosophy of Adolescent Ministry
An investigation and formulation of a philosophy of ministry to and withadolescents. Various theoretical issues will be examined which will informand assist students in the development of a philosophy which is biblicallygrounded, developmentally sensitive, culturally relevant, and theologicallycontextualized to the world of contemporary adolescence. (4 credits;alternate years, consult department) Prerequisite: Junior or senior class standing.
- Special Topics in CE/YM
This course provides an opportunity to focus on different topics in a morespecific and in-depth way. The topics will relate to contemporary issues ineither Christian education or youth ministry and adolescent studies. (2 or 4credits; non-yearly, consult department)
- Integrated Field Experience I
The focus of CEY401 and CEY402 is intentional exposure to various aspects ofpractical ministry in either Christian education or youth ministry in alocal church or para-church organization, for two consecutive semesters. Thepractical experience must be under supervision of an on-site supervisor andthe professor of Christian Education. Weekly seminars for discussion andreflection on ministry and preparation for the writing of a major paper onthe philosophy of ministry are conducted on campus. (2 credits)Prerequisites: Senior class standing and permission of instructor.
- Integrated Field Experience II
The focus of CEY401 and CEY402 is intentional exposure to various aspects ofpractical ministry in either Christian education or youth ministry in alocal church or para-church organization, for two consecutive semesters. Thepractical experience must be under supervision of an on-site supervisor andthe professor of Christian Education. Weekly seminars for discussion andreflection on ministry and preparation for the writing of a major paper onthe philosophy of ministry are conducted on campus. (2 credits)Prerequisites: senior class standing and permission of instructor.
- Intermediate Biblical Greek and Culture
This course is designed to facilitate the acquisition and retention of Greekgrammatical, exegetical, and interpretive skills through the reading ofancient Greek texts. Primary focus will be on the Gospel of Mark and itscontext. (1 credit; alternate years, consult department) Prerequisite:GRE102LA.
- Intermediate Biblical Greek and Culture
This course is designed to facilitate the acquisition and retention of Greekgrammatical, exegetical, and interpretive skills through the reading ofancient Greek texts. Primary focus will be on the Letters of Paul andselections from other Greco-Roman authors. Students will also be introducedto the sub-discipline of Textual Criticism. (1 credit; alternate years,consult department) Prerequisite: GRE201
- Elementary Biblical Hebrew and Culture
This course will focus on learning the basics of biblical Hebrew (vocabulary and grammar) and the cultural and linguistic backgrounds of the Old Testament. Readings from the different types of literature in the Hebrew Bible will be incorporated into the course work. The Old Testament writings will be studied against the historical and social backgrounds of the ancient Near East.(4 credits, alternate years, consult department)
- Elementary Biblical Hebrew and Culture
(4 credits; alternate years, consult department)(IGE option under Languageand Culture) This course will build on the foundation laid in Hebrew 101 by equippingstudents to grasp the basics of biblical Hebrew grammar in light of itscultural and linguistic background. Readings from the different types ofliterature in the Hebrew Bible will be incorporated into the coursework asstudents develop confidence in speaking Hebrew and interpreting thesewritings. As a course that satisfies the IGE Language and Culturerequirement, students will also explore what it means to read biblicalHebrew with sensitivity toward scholarship, culture, and faith. Prerequisite: HEB101.