|Freshman Level:||All 100 numbered courses|
|Sophomore Level:||All 200 numbered courses|
|Junior Level:||All 300 numbered courses|
|Senior Level:||All 400 numbered courses|
Com 3 Exploring Communication Models
Theory and experience in human communication. The course examines five forms of human communication: interviewing, public speaking, prayer, visionary presentations, and conflict recognition. Included are (1) techniques of field interviewing, public speaking, prayer, visionary presentations, and conflict detection, (2) training in the ability to interview, speak publicly, pray, cast a vision, and detect potential violent situations, and (3) interpreting non-verbal communication.
Understand principles of communication and public speaking.
Research, organize, and conduct interviews. Summarize the results in essays.
Apply and/or assess principles of public speaking in a religious presentation.
Research, organize, and compose a report assuming a leadership role.
Apply communication skills suitable to topic, purpose, and audience.
1. Explain the theoretical bases of various communication media.
2. Draw from communication theory principles that will help solve communication issues.
3. Write a clear, organized report on an activity to demonstrate competency in written communication.
Eng 1 English Comprehension
Grammar, vocabulary, reading comprehension, and sentence structure. The course is equivalent to that offered throughout the United States for students entering the university. It is not designed for students who know little or no English. The study offers an opportunity to build a stronger foundation for reading, speaking, and writing in the English language. Modules: (1) Grammar, (2) Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension, and (3) Punctuation and Sentence Structure.
Demonstrate how the components of English grammar function
Identify and define English vocabulary needed for reading at the university level
Demonstrate proper sentence and paragraph structure
1. Determine correct usage of English grammar
2. Demonstrate acquaintance with English vocabulary suitable for reading at the university level
3. Choose sentences and paragraphs with correct spelling and punctuation
Eng 2 English Composition
Effective writing technique. The course provides a beginning place for students who are not accustomed to formal writing in the English language. It also offers the native speaker an opportunity to build a stronger foundation and improve written communication skills. Course components include (1) the writing process, (2) formal writing, documenting sources, and (3) a step by step guide for writing a research paper.
Demonstrate elements of formal composition.
Describe types of formal essays.
Synthesize diverse research into a congruent essa
1. Write an essay that demonstrates good grammar and writing skills
2. Construct a personal letter or detailed e-mail message that follows proper use of English grammar and style
3. Compose a research paper using correct citations according to research writing standards
Grk 100 Biblical Greek I
The language of the New Testament, with illustrations of its usefulness in the study of Scripture. An introduction to the Greek language, biblical sources, and issues related to textual analysis. Modules: (1) The System, (2) Sources, and (3) Textual criticism. No credit allowed with former BRS 8.
Describe the Greek writing system
Analyze Greek transcripts of the New Testament
Evaluate Greek New Testament manuscripts through techniques of textual criticism
1. Explain the characteristics of the language of the New Testament
2. Analyze the sources that support the Greek New Testament
3. Judge the value of linguistic study for exegesis
Grk 200 Biblical Greek II
Greek grammar, vocabulary, translation, and application. An introduction to Greek grammar, vocabulary, and issues related to translation and exegesis of the New Testament. Modules: (1) Grammar, (2) Working with New Testament texts, and (3) Translation, Exegesis, and Application. Prerequisite: Grk 100. No credit allowed with former BRS 8.
Identify and analyze vocabulary and parts of speech in Greek
Apply the rules of grammar to translate Greek texts
Evaluate translations and exegesis of Greek texts
1. Recognize the basic structure of the Greek language
2. Demonstrate how to exegete Greek texts
3. Combine the tasks of exegesis and application
Heb 100 Biblical Hebrew I
The language of the Old Testament, with illustrations of its usefulness to a study of the Old Testament. An introduction to the Hebrew language, its basic grammar and vocabulary, and issues related to translation and exegesis of original biblical texts. Modules: (1) First Encounter, (2) Working with Hebrew Texts, and (3) The Dead Sea Scrolls. Credit not allowed with former BRS 9.
Describe the primary language of the Old Testament)
Discuss critical tools for working with a Hebrew text
Analyze the Dead Sea Scrolls
1. Explain the characteristics of the primary language of the Old Testament
2. Write an essay on critical tools for working with Hebrew texts
3. Evaluate the value of the Dead Sea Scrolls for Old Testament study
Heb 200 Biblical Hebrew II
Hebrew grammar, vocabulary, translation, and application. An introduction to Hebrew grammar, vocabulary, and issues of translation and exegesis of the Old Testament. Modules: (1) Grammar, (2) Working with Biblical Hebrew Texts, and (3) Translation, Exegesis, and Application. Prerequisite: Heb 100. No credit awarded with former BRS 9.
Explain the grammar of biblical Hebrew
Analyze the structure of a Hebrew text
Demonstrate the relationship of linguistic study to exegesis
1. Recognize the basic structure of the Hebrew language
2. Judge the value of linguistic study for exegesis
3. Demonstrate how to exegete Hebrew texts
Hum 220 Ethics
The formation of values. The course deals with moral principles or rules of conduct. The quest is concerned primarily with the content of different ethical systems and the foundation upon which each rests. Modules: (1) Introduction to Ethical Systems, (2) Biblical Ethics, (3) Buddhist Ethics, (4) Hindu Ethics, and (5) Islamic Ethics. No credit allowed with Hum 2.
Identify the principles and issues in four ethical systems
Demonstrate how to evaluate an ethical system
Compare and contrast Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, and Islamic ethical systems
1. Develop examples of multiple ethical systems
2. Express the significance of ethical questions
3. Compare the theoretical basis for Christian, Muslim, and Eastern ethical systems
Hum 230 Worldview
An overview of various outlooks on life, including the concept of God, human existence, and beyond death. The course proposes to equip the student with a better understanding of the attitudes and beliefs that shape one’s view of life. Modules: (1) Contexts for Creating a Worldview, (2) A Worldview Grounded in Myth, (3) A Worldview Grounded in the Natural Order, (4) A Worldview Grounded within Self, and (5) A Worldview Grounded in Revelation.
Conceptualize basic worldviews that underlie the way people think about themselves, others, the natural world, and ultimate reality
Contrast the foundational assumptions of different worldviews
Evaluate different worldviews for what they offer and the evidence for what they propose to deliver
1. Critique different worldviews
2. Analyze the foundations of contrasting worldviews
3. Craft a personal worldview
Hum 240 The Bible and Spirituality
How a spiritual dimension affects one’s values and relations. Modules: (1) Discovering Worth through the Loss of Dignity: Reflections from The Torah, (2) Discovering the Difference Commitment Can Make: Reflections from The Prophets, (3) Discovering Character in Non-Conformity: Reflections from The Writings, (4) Discovering Strength through Weakness: Reflections from The Gospels and Acts, and (5) Discovering Encouragement through Unusual Sources: Reflections from The Epistles and The Apocalypse.
Analyze biblical texts that relate to spiritual dimensions
Evaluate the incongruence between biblical principles and cultural expectations
Discover how others find comfort in times of despair, loneliness, or loss of freedom
1. Interpret biblical texts that relate to spiritual dimensions
2. Demonstrate an awareness of principles that lead to spiritual wholeness
3. Construct a personal plan to spiritually
Lit 215 Tanakh Literature
Formation of the Old Testament canon, the composition of the Old Testament books, and critical issues relating to Old Testament documents. The course assumes the student has a working understanding of the Old Testament. The task at hand shall be less concerned with content and theological meaning than with matters that enlighten the study of the biblical text. The study introduces issues which the modern student faces when reading the Old Testament. The investigation heightens awareness of the existence of extra-biblical material and alerts the student to the challenges of current Old Testament study. Modules: (1) The Torah, תּוֹרָה, (2) The Nevi’im (Prophets), נְבִיאִים, and (3) The Ketuvim (Writings), כְּתוּבִים. Prerequisites: BRS 121, BRS 123. Credit not allowed if the student has completed BRS 5.
Explain the diversity of literary genre in the Tanakh
Solve perceived textual problems located in the Tanakh
Apply literary analysis to interpret the content of the Tanakh
1. Demonstrate understanding of the Bible as a collection of varied literary compositions
2. Analyze the Tanakh, using its literary conventions to isolate particular concerns
3. Formulate essays that combine the elements of the Tanakh into a meaningful whole
Mat 1 The World of Mathematics
Making the connections: how and why mathematics affects the whole world. A basic understanding of the development and use of mathematics and its modern applications. Modules: (1) Mathematics History, (2) Pure in Mathematics, and (3) Applied Mathematics.
Identify major mathematicians and recognize their contributions to the development of mathematics
Recognize function of mathematics properties, mathematics logic, and advanced mathematics
Explain the relationship between pure math and applied mathematics
1. Relate the development of mathematics
2. Describe the functions of various branches of mathematics
3. Analyze and explain the relationship between pure math and applied mathematics
Sci 1 Discovering Your World
Plant and animal life forms in their physical environments. The study will integrate a basic overview of botany, zoology, and physical geography to examine how climatic factors shape plant and animal communities as they adapt to different landforms and topography. Modules: (1) Botany: Exploring the Plant World, (2) Zoology: Exploring the Animal World, and (3) The Physical Universe: Our Environment.
Differentiate between algae, fungi, mosses, ferns, gymnosperms (cone-bearing plants), and angiosperms (flowering plants)
Distinguish between arthropods (crustaceans and insects), fishes (cartilaginous fishes, bony fishes), amphibians (frogs, toads, salamanders, newts), reptiles (lizards, snakes, turtles, crocodilians), birds, and mammals (monotremes, marsupials, placental mammals).
Analyze the characteristics of the following biomes: desert, rain-forest, deciduous forest, coniferous (boreal forest, grasslands, savannas, tundra
1. Define biological and zoological classifications
2. Use the scientific method
3. Integrate scientific learning in practical living
Soc 200 Family
The formation of a wholesome marriage and a strong family. The key to a healthy marriage and family lies in the foundation on which the marriage rests. The course falls within the limits of the discipline of “sociology” but assumes a Christian perspective. It demonstrates how that perspective can contribute to a sense of contentment and fulfillment. Modules: (1) The Marriage Ideal, (2) The Husband, (3) The Wife, (4) The Children, and (5) Freedom and Fulfillment. Not open to students with credit for BRS 12 or Soc 1.
Summarize the forces that shape the dynamics of family life
Differentiate the different family roles
Appraise family member relationships with other people, institutions, and events
1. Formulate a scheme for solving family problems
2. Discriminate between Christian and non-Christian values as they pertain to family life
3. Apply principles that contribute to strengthening relationships
SSc 205 Ancient Near East Culture
Contextualizing the Old Testament. The course deals with archaeology, geography, history, and social life found among the people who dwelt in Mesopotamia, Anatolia, the Levant, and Egypt prior to the coming of Christ. The investigation raises awareness of extra-biblical material and demonstrates the value of the Near East culture to the study of the Old Testament. The course is organized in three modules. Modules: (1) History of the Ancient Near East, (2) Ancient Near East People Groups, and (3) The Social World of Ancient Israel. (May not be taken if credit has been earned for BRS 5 Old Testament Backgrounds.)
Interrelate primary areas to form a portrait of life in the Ancient Near East
Demonstrate the contribution of Ancient Near East culture to the study of the Old Testament
Evaluate the contributions of archaeology and extra-biblical written sources
1. Evaluate the influence of Ancient Middle East culture on the life and faith of Israel
2. Theorize as to the influence of Ancient Middle East sources on the Old Testament
3. Apply insights from Ancient Middle East culture to critical issues in the Old Testament
BRS 100 A Search for Spirituality
A consideration of spirituality. Laid out as a journey, the course explores that inquisitive spirit that causes one to look beyond the physical universe and claim the blessing that spirituality makes available. Beginning with the reasonableness of spirituality, the journey considers the connection of spirituality with the sacred and its actualization. The course is organized in five modules: (1) The Concept of Spirituality, (2) A Sense of the Sacred, (3) Spirituality Actualized, (4) A Spiritual Community, and (5) The Spiritual Life. A Spiritual Inventory is required before beginning the course.
Explain spirituality in terms of faith, reason, and emotion
Analyze the life of the spiritual person within the spiritual community
Evaluate how a spiritual person applies ethical principles to all aspects of his/her life
1. Recognize the foundational assumptions and concepts embraced by the term “spirituality”
2. Analyze the relationship of faith and reason
3. Formulate the components of sacred functions
BRS 121 The Hebrew Scriptures
Factual content of the Old Testament. The course introduces the people, places, and events found within the Old Testament, including a minimum of 100 personalities, major geographical sites, stories, events, and prophetic discourses. Moreover, an introduction to the different types of literary genres contained in the Old Testament will be given. Normally, this is the second course in an undergraduate certificate and/or degree program at NationsUniversity. The course is organized in five modules: (1) The Torah, (2) The Former Prophets, (3) The Latter Prophets, (4) The Writings: History, and (5) The Writings: Wisdom and Worship. 3 semester hours of undergraduate credit. No credit allowed with former BRS 1.
Relate people to geographical locations, events, and institutions listed in the Old Testament
Compare and contrast the different types of literary genre contained in the Old Testament
Arrange important Old Testament events in chronological order
1. Identify and evaluate the significance of Old Testament characters and sites
2. Relate events surrounding Old Testament characters and sites
3. Read the Old Testament with a sense of continuity and integration
BRS 122 The Greek Scriptures
Factual content of the New Testament. The course includes the people, places, and events found in the New Testament, including a minimum of 75 personalities, major geographical sites, stories, events, and discourses. Normally, this is the third course in an undergraduate certificate and/or degree program at NationsUniversity. Modules: (1) The Gospels, (2) Acts of Apostles, (3) The Pauline Epistles, and (4) General Epistles and the Apocalypse. BRS 121 is recommended as a prerequisite. If the student chooses to take BRS 122 before BRS 121, the obvious handicap will be a lack of Old Testament background to the New Testament.
Relate people to geographical locations, events, and institutions found in the New Testament
Recognize the unique qualities and roles of Jesus Christ
Demonstrate a sense of continuity and integration in the New Testament compositions
1. Identify and evaluate the significance of New Testament characters and sites
2. Relate events surrounding New Testament characters and sites
3. Read the New Testament with a sense of continuity and integration.
BRS 123 Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures
The story of the Old Testament in view of the activity of God. The study deals with core Old Testament concepts, where God is the central figure. Assuming a unified view of God, the course considers the function of Scripture, ways God works, and how God’s activity interfaces with culture. Included is the faith of Israel, essential elements of Old Testament theology, the theological relationship of the Old and New Testaments, and the relevance of the Old Testament to modern life. The three modules of the course are designed to increase the student’s knowledge of the basic elements of Old Testament theology and build on the student’s general acquaintance with the Scriptures. Moreover, the course further develops the student’s critical thinking and writing skills. Modules: (1) Discovery, (2) Themes in Old Testament Theology, and (3) Messianic Themes. BRS 121 and 122 are recommended prerequisites.
Formulate conclusions about the theological content of specific biblical texts
Appraise the theological relationship of the Old and New Testaments
Determine the application of Old Testament theology for Christians
1. Summarize fundamental theological themes in the Old Testament
2. Interpret passages that produce theological conclusions about the Old Testament
3. Analyze the significance of theological topics
BRS 124 Theology of the Greek Scriptures
The story of the New Testament in view of the activity of God. The study deals with core New Testament concepts, where God is the initiator of spiritual blessings which he brings to the world in Jesus Christ. While BRS 122 deals with the people, places, and events of the Greek Scriptures, BRS 124 carries the student beyond the particulars of the text and searches for meaning. Modules: (1) The Greek Scriptures and Theology, (2) Core Content, (3) God and Man. BRS 121, 122, and 123 are recommended prerequisites.
Formulate conclusions about the theological content of specific biblical texts
Appraise the theological relationship of the Old and New Testaments
Determine the acts of God and man’s expected response
1. Summarize fundamental theological themes in the New Testament
2. Interpret passages that produce theological conclusions
3. Apply theological insights in modern day situations
BRS 125 Exegesis of the Hebrew Scriptures
Principles for responsible interpretation of the Old Testament. The primary task of the course is to determine how select texts of scripture should be studied in order to understand the author’s original intent. BRS 125 assumes the student has a working knowledge of the nature and content of the Old Testament. Modules: (1) Interpreting Old Testament Literature, (2) Narrative and History, (3) Law, (4) Prophetic Announcements, and (5) Lament, Praise, and Wisdom. Prerequisites: BRS 121 and 123.
Formulate the mechanics of biblical interpretation
Apply rules of interpretation to biblical literature
Recognize, evaluate, and use rules of interpretation in various literary genre
1. Relate key factors in interpreting Old Testament literature
2. Analyze the role of literary genre in interpreting the Bible
3. Apply principles of interpretation to biblical passages
BRS 126 Exegesis of the Greek Scriptures
The principles for responsible interpretation of the New Testament. BRS 122 deals with the people, places, and events of the Greek Scriptures and BRS 124 asked, “What do these things mean?” This course in exegesis is concerned with the student’s own ability to interpret New Testament texts. The need to do personal interpretation presupposes that spiritual maturity rests upon good interpretation. In turn, the course contributes to a goal of the B.R.S. program by preparing the student to handle the biblical text responsibly. The course moves beyond theory to the techniques of independent study. May not be taken if student has credit for BRS 21. BRS 126 assumes the student has a good understanding of the nature and content of the New Testament. The task here is to select samples of biblical texts and consider how they should be studied and what application can be made for the present day. Modules: (1) Interpreting the New Testament, (2) Matthew and Mark, (3) Acts and the Modern Church, and (4) The Book of Revelation.
Recognize the nature of New Testament compositions
Identify rules, vocabulary, and principles for interpreting New Testament genres
Apply New Testament texts to contemporary situations
1. Recognize the literary genre of biblical passages
2. Compose an exegesis of a biblical passage using standard rules
3. Demonstrate the relevance of the New Testament for modern application
BRS 216 New Testament Backgrounds I
Problematic concerns related to New Testament studies. This course examines a variety of topics, such as the formation of the New Testament canon, the New Testament compositions, and critical issues relating to the New Testament documents. Modules: (1) The Gospels and Jesus, (2) Acts and the Early Church, and (3) The Epistles and the Apocalypse. No credit available with former BRS 6.
Analyze the uniqueness of the Four Gospels
Describe the setting of the New Testament documents
Compare the New Testament compositions
1. Synthesize the accounts in the Four Gospels
2. Demonstrate the connection between New Testament compositions and background settings
3. Evaluate the value of non-biblical sources and critical analysis for New Testament studies
BRS 217 New Testament Backgrounds II
Surrounding environment of the New Testament. The course examines the historical and social setting of the New Testament, the geography of Bible lands, archaeological contributions, and special groups. Modules: (1) Historical Background, (2) The World of the New Testament, and (3) Pharisees, Scribes, and Sadducees. No credit with the former BRS 6.
Describe New Testament events against the history of the Greek and Roman empires
Evaluate the relationship between the gospel and Roman culture
Compare Jewish groups and institutions with Jesus and the early church
1. Assess New Testament events against the history of the Greek and Roman empires
2. Analyze Roman culture in light of the gospel
3. Compare Jewish groups and institutions
BRS 225 The Minor Prophets
This course introduces students to the period of Jewish history from the Divided Kingdoms to approximately 400 years B.C.E. Students will survey characters and events that were relevant to Israel’s history, successes, and failures and assess their implications for modern Christianity. The course is composed of four modules: (1) Introduction, Joel, Jonah, Amos; (2) Hosea, Micah, Nahum; (3) Zephaniah, Habakkuk, Obadiah; and (4) Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi. Credit: 3 semester hours of undergraduate credit.
Identify characters, places, events, issues, and themes noted in each of the twelve minor prophets
Describe God’s interaction with his chosen people and the countries surrounding them
Assess the implications of God’s actions and interactions for modern Christianity (obedience, sacrifice, justice, mercy, wrath, discipline, lovingkindness, etc.)
1. Demonstrate an awareness of the content and meaning of the biblical canon
2. Apply the tools of sound exegesis
3. Critique and use information from a wide range of sources
BRS 311 Church History to 1500
The story of the church to the Protestant Reformation. Modules: (1) Without Roman Recognition, (2) From Recognition to the Crusades, and (3) From the Crusades to Reformation. It addresses challenges faced by the church and the church’s response to its challenges. Church fathers, apologists, and significant thinkers are introduced, along with theological reflection and the emergence of the Protestant Reformation. No credit with former BRS 11.
Trace the development of the church in various global venues during its first fifteen centuries
Discuss significant personalities (church fathers, apologists, teachers, political figures, etc.)
Identify major challenges faced by the church and describe the church’s response
1. Demonstrate understanding of personalities and their significance
2. Illustrate the value of the study of church history by examining an historically-developed issue or doctrine
3. Analyze central doctrines and events
BRS 312 Church History since 1500
The story of the church during and after the Protestant and Catholic Reformations. Modules: (1) The Reformation, (2) The Church and the Age of Reason, and (3) The Church in the Age of Revolution. It addresses challenges faced by the church and the church’s response to these challenges from 1500 to the present.
Identify major challenges faced by the church and the church’s response to its challenges
Locate reformers, theologians, and secularists who have impacted the church according to time periods
Evaluate significant thinkers and doctrines advanced throughout the last six centuries
1. Trace the general story of the church in the Western Hemisphere from 1500
2. Describe the development of central doctrines
3. Evaluate the effect of Enlightenment
BRS 313 The Church of the First Five Decades
Understanding the early church. The course is an analysis of the sources that reveal the history and nature of the church from its inception in about 29 C.E. to the end of its fifth decade, 79 C.E. It deals with events that surrounded the formation of the church, the essential theological concepts contained in New Testament documents, and responsible application of the content found in the New Testament. Modules treat the church by decade: (1) The 30s, (2) The 40s, (3) The 50s, (4) The 60s, and (5) The 70s.
Analyze the features of a true Christian community
Explain how disputed issues faced by early Christians were resolved
Appraise the theological significance of early Christian practices
1. Develop a synthesis of how expectant Christian behavior functions within a secular environment
2. Judge how New Testament teaching and practice are applicable in a modern age
3. Explain the significance of the roles of apostles, elders, deacons, prophets, and teachers, and the implication of these functions beyond the 1st century
BRS 323 Theology in Law, Wisdom, and Psalms
Meaning in Old Testament law, wisdom, and psalms literature. The study deals with principal theological concepts found in three different kinds of Old Testament literature: legal, wisdom, and praise. The course considers essential elements in the covenant God established with Israel at Sinai and the relevance of those elements to modern life. The three modules of the course are designed to increase the student’s knowledge of the basic elements of Old Testament theology and build on the student’s general acquaintance with the Scriptures, especially those covered in BRS 123. Moreover, the course further develops the student’s critical thinking and writing skills. Modules: (1) Theology in Law, (2) Theology in Wisdom, and (3) Theology in Psalms. BRS 121 and 123 are recommended prerequisites. Not open to students with credit for BRS 3.
Formulate conclusions about the relevance of law, wisdom, and praise to the Sinai covenant
Synthesize theological elements that appear in the Old Testament
Determine the modern application of theological concepts found in the Hebrew Scriptures
1. Summarize theological ideals that relate to the Sinai covenant
2. Determine the theological implications of Old Testament passages
3. Apply theological ideas in modern situations
BRS 324 Theology of the Greek Scriptures II
Outcome of the activity of God. The study deals with core New Testament concepts, where God is the initiator of spiritual blessings which he brings to the world in Jesus Christ. BRS 324 carries the discussion of theological concepts beyond that of BRS 124. Modules: (1) Jesus Christ, (2) The Holy Spirit, the Christian Life, and Ethics, and (3) The Church, the Future, and Scripture. Prerequisite: BRS 124. Credit may not be earned with credit for BRS 4.
Analyze the person and mission of Jesus
Examine the role of the Holy Spirit
Demonstrate how ecclesiology and eschatology relate to God’s act of redemption
1. Analyze various approaches to creating New Testament theology
2. Interpret fundamental theological themes in the New Testament
3. Apply theological insights in modern day situations
BRS 351 Christian Theology I
The use of theological inquiry in constructing a view of reality. BRS 351 and 352 are junior-level courses that move beyond the foundation courses in theology of the Hebrew and Greek Scriptures (BRS 123 and 124). BRS 351 and 352 treat familiar themes but deepen understanding of these themes. They aim at equipping the student to analyze and evaluate modern speculative concepts relative to these themes. Modules: (1) Scripture and Theology, (2) God, and (3) Man. Prerequisite: BRS 21/126. No credit awarded with former BRS 14.
Detect the coherency between the Old and New Testaments
Reflect on the nature and acts of God from a biblical point of view
Consider the nature of man and his spiritual needs
1. Appraise theological inquiry
2. Analyze the human attempt to understand God and his acts
3. Formulate a theological statement that reflects the coherency of biblical content
BRS 352 Christian Theology II
The use of theological inquiry in constructing a view of reality. BRS 352 is an extension of BRS 351. Like its predecessor, BRS 352 treats familiar themes but deepens understanding of these themes. It aims at equipping the student to analyze and evaluate modern speculative concepts relative to these themes. Modules: (1) Christ, (2) Fullness of Life, and (3) The Kingdom of God. Prerequisite: BRS 351.
Interpret the biblical portrayal of Jesus Christ
Explain the fullness of life that rests in Christ
Describe the Kingdom of God
1. Demonstrate the relationship between Jesus, the fullness of life, and the Kingdom of God.
2. Evaluate expectant Christian behavior and attitudes against human tendencies to act otherwise.
3. Analyze the Kingdom of God against modern concepts
BRS 401 Comparative Religion: Eastern
A survey of Eastern religious faith systems including history, beliefs, and analysis. Modules: (1) Hinduism, (2) Buddhism, and (3) Other Eastern Religions. Credit will not be awarded if the student has completed BRS 17.
Discover the origins, history, and spread of select Eastern religions
Detect common underlying themes of Eastern religions
Contrast Eastern religious systems
Analyze essential tenets of Eastern religions
1. Differentiate between major Far Eastern religions
2. Analyze and synthesize Far Eastern religions
3. Discuss the basic assumptions upon which Far Eastern religions rest
BRS 424 Comparative Religion: Abrahamic Faiths
History, beliefs, and analysis of the three faith systems that claim connection with Abraham. Modules: (1) Judaism, (2) Christianity, and (3) Islam. Credit will not be awarded if the student has completed BRS 17.
Discover the origins, history, and spread of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Detect common underlying themes of the Abrahamic faith systems
Analyze essential tenets of the Abrahamic faith systems
1. Explain the theological foundations of each Abrahamic faith
2. Evaluate diverse ideologies when formulating a personal worldview
3. Compare and contrast religious thought found in the Abrahamic faiths
BRS 431 Exegesis: Torah and Prophets
Exodus, Joshua, Judges, Isaiah, and Obadiah. The overarching goal for this course is proficiency in applying exegetical and hermeneutical principles with reference to books of The Torah and The Prophets. Primary attention is given to historico-grammatical exegesis and underlying theological and historical significance of select biblical books. The course is intended for upper division B.R.S. students. Modules: (1) Exodus, (2) Joshua and Judges, and (3) Isaiah and Obadiah. Prerequisite: BRS 125 Exegesis of the Hebrew Scriptures. Not open to students with credit for BRS 20.
Analyze a selection of Old Testament books with a view toward establishing their unique contributions to the corpus of scripture
Employ sound exegetical and hermeneutical principles to analyze the significance of select Old Testament compositions for Israel and for modern Christians
Demonstrate the impact of culture, politics, religion, and social practices on the life of Israel
1. Interpret the Old Testament in keeping with fundamental guidelines
2. Demonstrate through writing an awareness of critical issues related to Old Testament material
3. Delineate application appropriate to a Christian setting
BRS 432 Exegesis: Job, Ruth, and Chronicles
The texts of Job, Ruth, and Chronicles. The overarching goal for this course is that the student will attain proficiency in applying exegetical and hermeneutical principles and use those skills in the future. Primary attention is given to historico-grammatical exegesis and underlying theological and historical significance of select biblical books. Modules: (1) Job, (2) Ruth, and (3) Chronicles. The course is intended for the upper division B.R.S. student. Prerequisite: BRS 125 Exegesis of the Hebrew Scriptures.
Analyze a selection of Old Testament books with a view toward establishing their unique contributions to the corpus of scripture
Employ sound exegetical and hermeneutical principles to analyze the significance of select Old Testament compositions for Israel and for modern Christians
Demonstrate the impact of literary criticism on the study of select biblical compositions
1. Appraise the unique contributions made by the authors of select Old Testament compositions
2. Interpret Old Testament compositions in keeping with fundamental guidelines
3. Demonstrate through writing an awareness of critical issues related to select Old Testament material
BRS 433 New Testament Exegesis I
The text of Acts of Apostles. Primary attention is given to discovering the message of Acts of Apostles through historico-grammatical exegesis. Modules: (1) Acts 1:1-9:31, (2) Acts 9:32-18:22, and (3) Acts 18:23-28:31. Credit not allowed with BRS 21.
Utilize the principles that govern the interpretation of Acts of Apostles
Relate the personalities, places, and events pertinent to the content of Acts
Analyze the primary message and underlying themes of Acts
1. Explain the content of Acts of Apostles
2. Recognize people, places, and events in Acts
3. Construct a set of guidelines for interpreting Acts and for making modern application
BRS 434 New Testament Exegesis II
The texts of Luke, Romans, Galatians, and the Epistles of John. Primary attention is given to discovering the message of The Gospel of Luke, the Epistles of Paul to the Romans and Galatians, and the Epistles of John through historico-grammatical exegesis. Modules: (1) Luke, (2) Romans and Galatians, and (3) The Epistles of John. Credit not allowed with BRS 22.
Utilize the principles that govern the interpretation of a Gospel and select New Testament Epistles
Relate the themes that are pertinent to the Gospel of Luke and select New Testament Epistles
Decide how New Testament Scriptures apply today
1. Explain the content of Luke, Romans, Galatians, and the Epistles of John
2. Recognizing the literary genre of biblical passages, compose an exegesis of a biblical passage using standard rules
3. Demonstrate the relevance of the writings of Paul and John.
BRS 435 The Prison Epistles
The New Testament epistles of Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon. The course analyzes the four epistles commonly called “The Prison Epistles,” because they were written by the apostle Paul while he was imprisoned for his faith. Concentration is on introductory matters and exegesis. Modules: (1) Ephesians, (2) Philippians, and (3) Colossians and Philemon.
Explain and analyze issues, themes, events, characters, purposes, occasions for writing, and places in connection with the history of the New Testament church
Synthesize the teaching in the Prison Epistles
Assess the value of known background for exegesis and application
1. Explain the purpose and theme of each epistle included in the course
2. Discuss the teaching and intended application of the letters for believers today
3. Demonstrate the connection between the Prison Epistles
BRS 443 Foundations of Ministry
Insights into Christian ministry. The course analyzes of the concept and forms of ministry within the context of the New Testament against its Jewish background and post-apostolic activity. The study offers critical analysis for ministry in today’s world, identifies models of ministry from the Scriptures, explains the purpose and mission of the church and the dynamics of church life, presents the biblical basis of the priesthood of believers in the development of people toward Christian maturity and ministry, and notes how the church comprises the people of God–gifted, divers, commissioned, and Christ-centers. Modules: (1) Background to Christian Ministry, (2) Ministry in the New Testament: Overview, (3) Ministry in the New Testament: Detail, (4) Ministry in the Ante-Nicean Church, and (5) Theory and Practice of Modern Ministry. No credit allowed with BRS 23.
Compare leadership organization found in the Old Testament, ancient times, and Jewish institutions
Analyze the concept of ministry by function, organization, roles, and purpose
Evaluate the development of ministry in the Ante-Nicean period of church history
1. Describe how different manifestations of ministry developed in the early church
2. Identify New Testament principles that define ministry for a modern church
3. Explain how the purpose and mission of the church are connected to the dynamics of church life
BRS 444 Worship
The awe of praise. Explores the concept of worship and introduces the student to the awesome activity of offering honor to God. No matter how much one may know of the Bible’s content or develop the skills of ministry, unless the spiritual dimensions of awe and praise are present, one’s energies may be spent in vain. BRS 444 Worship assumes the student has a good understanding of the nature and content of the New Testament. The task is to capture the spirit of worship and observe its place in the life of the redeemed. The leading question is, What does God ask in terms of adoration in appreciation of his gracious acts? Modules: (1) Worship in the Old Testament, (2) Worship in the Early Church, (3) Worship as Adoration, (4) The Essence of Worship, and (5) Implementation. Succeeds the former BRS 24; therefore, double credit is not allowed.
Describe the foundation for true worship as articulated in the Bible and compare the practice of worship in the Old Testament with that of the early church
Evaluate the influences of theology and history on worship, demonstrating the relationship between praise, tradition, ethics, and evangelism
Apply worship ideals in a contemporary situation
1. Analyze Christian worship from a biblical perspective
2. Evaluate the impact of culture and historical theology on Christian worship
3. Create a worship service that reflects New Testament concepts
BRS 450 The Pastoral Ministry
This course introduces undergraduate students to the foundations of pastoral leadership in the context of Christian ministry. The pastoral ministry can be complex depending on the size of the congregation and ministry staff. However, the three key elements included in this course are deemed essential to effective Christian ministry and pastoral leadership. This course is divided into three modules. Module 1 discusses the scriptural foundation of discipleship. Module 2 addresses basic concepts of pastoral care and provides the student with a broad range of topics and scriptures needed. Module 3 discusses the tasks of leading a growing church. In all modules, students will assess their current setting, personal views, and practical knowledge. (Prerequisite: BRS 443 Foundations of Ministry).
Understand the fundamental principles of discipleship from evangelism to assimilation.
Effectively communicate biblical concepts to provide pastoral care to members.
Evaluate personal and community factors inhibiting and contributing to effective Christian ministry.
Develop a personal action plan for improving knowledge, skills, and attitudes needed to effectively lead a church or ministry.
1. Develop Christians’ abilities to make life decisions through all stages of discipleship
2. Provide effective Christian leadership to congregations and individual members
3. Assess personal, congregational, and community factors related to Christian ministry and spiritual growth
|Foundations/Spirituality||(MRS 622, 633)||The Greek Scriptures||(MRS 300s)|
|General Foundations||(M 1–M 4)||Church History||(MRS 400s)|
|Research Foundations||(M 11, M 17)||Theology||(MRS 500s)|
|Ministry||(M 12–M 606 )||Comparative Religion||(MRS 700s)|
|Biblical Backgrounds||(MRS 100s)||Final Project Courses||(MFI 5, M 14)|
|The Hebrew Scriptures||(MRS 200s)|
M 1 Critical Introduction to the Old Testament
The content of the Old Testament and pertinent issues in Old Testament studies. The course lays the foundation for an in-depth study of the Old Testament by exposing the student to the people, places, events, and ideas that contribute to its makeup. Modules: (1) The Torah, (2) The Prophets, and (3) The Writings. No credit with discontinued MRS 001. Recommended prerequisite: MRS 622 A Search for Spirituality.
-Identify leading characters and events within a sequential timeline
-Analyze the assumptions underlying critical study of human encounters with the Bible
-Explore defensible decisions regarding critical issues such as documentary hypothesis, creation and flood, dating the exodus
1. Compare Old Testament characters and sites
2. Analyze the Old Testament with a sense of continuity and integration
3. Demonstrate through an essay a critical analysis of how the Old Testament may function in today’s world
M 2 Critical Introduction to the New Testament
The New Testament in context. The course lays the foundation for in-depth study of the New Testament by surveying its contents, identifying pertinent issues in New Testament studies, and analyzing the relevance of the New Testament in a modern world. Emphasis is on original source material. Modules: (1) Biblical Studies, the Gospels and Acts, (2) The Epistles and The Apocalypse, and (3) Message, Response, and Interpretation. No credit with discontinued MRS 006. Recommended prerequisite: M 1.
-Identify characters, issues, events, places, and themes noted in the New Testament
-Judge underlying assumptions in the critical study of the New Testament
-Analyze New Testament content for application to contemporary life
1. Relate New Testament characters and sites
2. Analyze the New Testament with a sense of continuity and integration
3. Demonstrate through an essay a critical analysis of how the New Testament may function in today’s world
M 3 Biblical Theology
A synopsis of biblical themes and teaching. The study deals with core Old and New Testament concepts, where God is the center and the initiator of spiritual blessings, which he brings to the world in Jesus Christ. It shall be assumed that the student is acquainted with the general content of both the Old Testament and the New Testament. The task here is to inquire of the meaning of this factual knowledge. Modules: (1) Theological Inquiry, (2) The Divine Encounter, and (3) Salvation, the Church, and Last Things. No credit with discontinued MRS 004 and 009 or a former course with the name Systematic Theology. Prerequisites: M 1 and 2.
-Define the processes of biblical theology
-Investigate topics such as the nature of God, humanity, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, salvation, the kingdom of God, the church, and end times
-Develop an intellectual understanding of the Christian faith and deepen spiritual awareness
1. Use theological tools
2. Discuss major theological themes
3. Demonstrate awareness of the Christian faith
M 4 Biblical Hermeneutics
Exegesis and the skill of applying the message of biblical scripture. The course introduces techniques for studying the Old and New Testaments in view of application to current life. It assumes the student has a working knowledge of the nature and content of the Old and New Testaments. The primary task is to determine how select texts of scripture should be studied to understand the author’s original intent. Modules: (1) The Art of Interpretation, (2) Interpreting the Hebrew Scriptures, and (3) Interpreting the Greek Scriptures. Prerequisites: M 1 and 2.
-Analyze texts by applying rules of exegesis
-Apply appropriate principles, tools, and methods to interpret a biblical passage
-Construct principles and tools for interpreting biblical passages to modern situations
1. Explain the theoretical bases of various literary genres and illustrate them
2. Recognize the literary genre of biblical passages
3. Demonstrate exegetical skills for achieving the intended meaning of biblical scripture and modern application
M 11 Critical Analysis in Biblical Studies
Applying critical thinking in the study of the biblical text. The course is a “capstone” type course in that it aims to measure the student’s ability to demonstrate critical thinking with respect to biblical content and theology. It is a “bridge” to the M.T.S. and M.Div. programs. The course consists of discussion of the idea behind critical analysis and discourse on predispositions that can hinder objectivity when undergoing biblical studies. Finally, the course considers the application of ancient biblical texts to today’s world. Modules: (1) A Critical Thinking Approach to Religion, (2) Perspectives on the Authority of Scripture, (3) Authority and Tradition, (4) Text and Message, and (5) Theology and the Modern World. Prerequisites: MRS 622, M 1, 2, 3, and 4. This is the first course after a student has been formally admitted to the M.Div. program.
-Discover the techniques of analysis
-Demonstrate how traditional predispositions filter interpretations of biblical texts
-Synthesize the content of the foundation courses
1. Demonstrate how critical analysis functions in biblical studies
2. Analyze the Gospels in view of their nature and application
3. Construct a personal theology
M 12 Ministry
An historical, biblical, and analytical survey of the history of ministry. The course examines various biblical and non-biblical references which deal with the concept of ministry/leadership among Jews and Christians. From this foundation, the student is guided in application through live ministry. Modules: (1) Ministry within a Biblical Context, (2) Ministry within an Historical Context, and (3) Ministry within a Contemporary Context. Following completion of the third exam, the student shall undertake a three-month-long supervised field project, which shall culminate in a written report. The course may be taken if the student completed BRS 23, but not if the student has taken discontinued M 603. This course is a Supervised Ministry Experience. The student is responsible for finding a local supervisor. Open only to M.Div. students.
-Explain the function, organization, roles, and purpose of ministry from contextual and biblical perspectives
-Examine the development of ministry in the Ante-Nicean period of church history
-Relate the mission of the church and the dynamics of church life to modern situations
1. Discuss the form and function of ministry as it appears in the early church
2. Critique the emerging forms of ministry in the post-apostolic church
3. Apply ministry ideals and forms in the modern age
M 13 Worship
The awe of praise. The course cultivates an awareness of worship and offers training in how to create positive worship experiences. This advanced course assumes the student has a good understanding of the nature and content of the New Testament. Modules: (1) Worship from a Biblical Perspective, (2) Christian Worship in Historical Development, and (3) Implementing Worship in the Modern Church. This course is a Supervised Ministry Experience. The student is responsible for finding a local supervisor. Open only to M.Div. students.
-Appraise the nature and practice of worship in the Old Testament and in the early church
-Recognize the influences of theology, biblical backgrounds, and history on worship
-Synthesize the relationship between praise, tradition, ethics, and evangelism
1. Describe Christian worship as it appears in the New Testament
2. Recognize and articulate underlying assumptions relative to Christian worship
3. Plan and execute a worship service that reflects
M 14 M.Div.Final Project
Application of theology and ministry in the real world. M 14 M.Div. Final Project is the second of two concluding courses in the Master of Divinity program. Prior to beginning the M 14 project, students must
complete the project proposal as part of the first concluding course, MFI 5 Church and Society. This course consists of a project that demonstrates your understanding of the interchange between the theological and
practical elements of ministry. M 14 begins where MFI 5 ended and requires the student to engage in three separate tasks: implementation, assessment, and writing. The syllabus outlines three actions described in
three modules: (1) Implementation, (2) Evaluation, and (3) Concluding Paper. 3 graduate semester credits. This course is a Supervised Ministry Experience. The student is responsible for finding a local supervisor. Prerequisites: Open only to M.Div. students who have completed MFI 5.
Implement a ministry project based on an identified need and a prepared ministry plan.
Evaluate the processes and outcomes of the ministry project.
Use self-evaluation to provide insights into future ministry.
Write a comprehensive concluding paper that details the project from planning to evaluation.
1. Implement and manage a service project plan that involves multiple people
2. Evaluate the processes and outcome for both the project and the student
3. Write a project report using a Concluding Paper Template
M 15 Communicating the Gospel
Connecting truths inherent within biblical scripture with a contemporary audience in a manner that is consistent with the intent of scripture. Modules: (1) The Science and Art of Communicating the Gospel, (2) Preparation, and (3) Presentation. The first module provides a theoretical foundation for a variety of means appropriate for communicating the gospel. Module 2 works on crafting formal presentations. Module 3 is given to field experience. Credit may be applied to the M.Div. degree only.
-Examine the theoretical foundations of religious communication
-Utilize basic principles relating to effective oral presentation of religious communication
-Engage in planned communication relative to spiritual issues
1. Explain the theoretical foundations of religious communication
2. Develop a planned religious message suited to a modern audience
3. Communicate a religious message effectively
M 16 Family Counsel
The formation of a wholesome marriage and a strong family. The key to a healthy marriage and contented family lies in the foundation on which the marriage rests. Since a spiritual relationship with God is the only basis for meaning, the marriage must reflect the ideals God established for marriage and family life. The course assumes a Christian perspective and demonstrates how that perspective can contribute to a sense of contentment and fulfillment. Modules: (1) The Marriage Ideal, (2) Husband and Wife, (3) Children, Freedom, and Fulfillment. Open to M.Div. students only.
-Lay the foundation for healthy family life through an evaluation of Christian and secular family values
-Differentiate the different family roles
-Recognize the need for balance between freedom and responsible Christian behavior
1. Understand the foundation blocks for a good marriage
2. Appreciation principles involved in family building
3. Possess the skill to assist others to have a healthy family
M 17 Research and Writing
A venture in research and writing on a religious topic. The research and writing course allows a student to explore topics of personal interest. The research part of the course provides the student an opportunity to explore a single topic in some depth. The writing assignment develops the student’s skill in making a coherent presentation of research findings. Research shall focus on an issue or problem related to religion. It shall be serious, exacting, and based on credible sources and conducted in keeping with accepted standards of data gathering and reporting. The project will require access to resources that provide essential information demanded by the endeavor. Methodology, assumptions, evidence, and conclusions shall be reported in a formal paper of 30 double-spaced typewritten (computer generated) pages. Prerequisites: MRS 622, M 1, 2, 3, and 4. This course is the first course required of all M.T.S. students upon formal admission. M.Div. students without an equivalent course in another graduate degree must take M 17 in the first nine hours.
-Refine research techniques
-Analyze the components of a research topic and the evidence to support a conclusion
-Synthesize primary and secondary sources
1. Evaluate the usefulness of data in view of the objectives of research
2. Solve problems by applying acquired data through research methodology
3. Present research findings in a coherent original written presentation
M 606 Missions
A field-based course that encompasses planning, execution, and evaluation of mission activity. Designed for the Master of Divinity student, the course can be adapted to fit (1) the formation or reformation of a local church missions committee, (2) the development of a new church, or (3) a projected individual or team mission effort. Modules: (1) The Christian and the World, (2) Mission Strategies, and (3) Undertaking Missions. Following completion of the third exam, the student shall undertake a project that is designed to bring the course to a synthesis.
-Evaluate the use of dialogue and service in missions
-Identify the strengths and weaknesses of cross-cultural evangelism
-Analyze the relationship between evangelism, education, worship, and counseling
1. Discuss the concept of missions as it appears in the early church.
2. Critique the emerging forms of missions in the post-apostolic church.
3. Apply mission ideals and forms in the modern age
MFI 5 Church and Society
Identifying the challenges of ministry within contemporary culture.
MFI 5 is the first of two concluding courses, followed by M 14 M.Div. Final Project, in the Master of Divinity program. The work in the two courses will culminate in a single Final Project Paper. Through the use of live NationsUniversity Catalog personal interview techniques, the course aims at extracting specific information that can yield useful analysis and learning about contemporary ministry. The study is area-specific and relates
to the way the modern church responds to its environment. The three modules of the course are organized into three activity blocks. These are titled (1) General Ministry, (2) Ministry and Society, and (3) Ministry Project Questions. Each block includes three independent topics and consists of research preparation, research activity, and a research summary. Each activity block requires 20 interviews; thus 60 interviews will be conducted for the completion of the course.
Each block is a different topic but uses the same methodology. At the end of the course, the student must prepare a project proposal to be implemented in M 14 M.Div. Final Project. Open only to M.Div. students who have completed all coursework and who have passed a final comprehensive examination. 3 credits: may apply only toward completion of the M.Div. degree.
-Determine the environment (nature and form) of your interviewees’ church life.
-Identify the perceptions of your interviewees on the specific topics.
-Identify how the interviews’ perceptions are influenced by or are a product of their society.
-Compare your findings with scripture to determine discrepancies, needs, and insights for ministry focus.
-Develop recommendations for ministry in which you use the findings of your research to create a better church environment.
-Develop a project proposal for a ministry project to be implemented in M 14 M.Div.
-Project. M 14 M.Div. Project will begin with the implementation of the project you propose at the end of this course.
1. Effectively use research techniques to develop “best practices” in ministry.
2. Demonstrate competency in developing and evaluating interpersonal relationships.
3. Evaluate and communicate complex ideas through the use of oral and written communication.
MRS 101 The Ancient Near East
Opening the world of the Ancient Near East. The course focuses on the economic, geographical, literary, political, religious, and social environment in which the events recorded in the Old Testament transpired. Included is a synopsis of early civilizations: Sumerian, Akkadian, Amorite, Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, Hittite, Hurrian, Israelite, Kassite, and Persian. Modules: (1) Mesopotamia, (2) Beyond Mesopotamia, and (3) Palestine and Israel.
-Recognize major personalities and events within a geographical and historical framework
-Analyze ancient sources and the role of archaeology in understanding the history of the Ancient Near East
-Compare Ancient Near Eastern history with the biblical record
1. Compare ancient Near Eastern societies
2. Judge the value of ancient Near Eastern history and culture to biblical study
3. Demonstrate in writing a critical analysis of ancient Near Eastern religion
MRS 140 New Testament Environment
The political, religious, and social circumstances that surrounded the events described in the New Testament. Modules: (1) Early Christian Backgrounds, with units on the political and social world, the religious world, and philosophy and Christianity, (2) Jewish Backgrounds of the New Testament, with units on crisis and response in Intertestamental Judaism, Judaism, and religious thought in Intertestamental Judaism, and (3) Archaeology and the New Testament, with units on the setting, Herod and the ministry of Jesus, and archaeology and the church.
-Show cultural aspects of the ancient Greco-Roman world that benefit New Testament studies
-Recognize the significance of the history and thought of Judaism for New Testament studies
-Apply insights gained from archaeological finds to the study of the New Testament
1. Analyze the ancient Greco-Roman and Jewish world in relation to Christianity
2. Synthesize archaeological findings with the New Testament considering limits and contributions of the science of archaeology
3. Using the New Testament environment as a prototype, construct principles along with a rational for determining how the tenets of the gospel should interact with the modern environment
MRS 200 The Torah
Interpretation and application of the texts of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The course is given to historical-grammatical exegesis but includes an added element related to fitting application in a modern setting. Modules: Introduction to The Torah and (1) Genesis, (2) Exodus, (3) Leviticus, (4) Numbers, and (5) Deuteronomy.
-Analyze the relationship between the biblical text and cultural, political, religious, and social contexts
-Formulate a paradigm for interpreting and applying The Torah
-Evaluate the Torah in relation to the New Testament.
1. Interpret the books of The Torah
2. Evaluate The Torah in relation to the New Testament
3. Differentiate the general content and major themes in the books of The Torah
MRS 226 Biblical Hebrew
The language of the Old Testament, with illustrations of its usefulness to a study of the Old Testament. An introduction to the Hebrew language, its grammar and vocabulary, and issues of translation and exegesis related to working with original biblical texts of the Old Testament. Modules: (1) First Encounter, (2) Grammar, and (3) The Hebrew Scriptures and Modernity. Credit not allowed with undergraduate BRS 9/Heb 100, 200.
-Explain the grammar and structure of biblical Hebrew
-Discuss critical tools for working with a Hebrew text
-Demonstrate the relationship of linguistic study to exegesis
1. Recognize basic structure and vocabulary of the Hebrew language
2. Write a well-organized paper on critical tools for working with Hebrew texts
3. Judge the value of linguistic study for exegesis
MRS 240 The Writings
Interpretation and application of the Writings: Ruth, Lamentations, the Song of Songs, Ecclesiastes, Esther, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Daniel. The course is given to historical-grammatical exegesis but includes an added element related to fitting application in a modern setting. Modules: (1) The Five Scrolls, (2) Job, Psalms, and Proverbs, and (3) Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, and Daniel.
-Distinguish the contents of each composition included in The Writings
-Synthesize The Writings as to purpose and themes
-Interpret the books of The Writings
-Judge the value of The Writings for Christian use
1. Describe the general contents of each composition included in The Writings
2. Synthesize the purposes and themes of individual compositions within The Writings
3. Evaluate The Writings for Christian use
MRS 250 The Prophets
Interpretation and application of the Former and Latter Prophets. The course is given to historical-grammatical exegesis but includes an added element related to fitting application in a modern setting. Modules: (1) The Former Prophets, (2) Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, and (3) The Book of the Twelve.
-Analyze Israel’s condition in relation to the covenant with Yahweh and cultural, political, religious, and social contexts
-Distinguish the contents of each composition included in The Prophets
-Judge the value of The Prophets for Christian use
1. Demonstrate how cultural, political, and social backgrounds affect the study of The Prophets
2. Determine how messages of The Prophets apply today
3. Interpret any of the books belonging to the Former or Latter Prophets
MRS 306 The Gospel of John
That you may have life. A study of the Fourth Gospel, including purpose, interpretation, authorship, literary composition, and general content. The course is organized in three modules, which are further divided into three units each. Modules: (1) Introduction to the Gospel of John, (2) John 1-10, and (3) John 11-21.
-Describe critical matters that pertain to the Fourth Gospel
-Explain the text of the Fourth Gospel and its theological message
-Demonstrate how the message the Fourth Gospel applies today
1. Use principles of exegesis to interpret the text of John
2. Analyze key theological concepts of the Gospel
3. Apply the message of the Fourth Gospel to a modern audience
MRS 319 Hebrews, James, Peter, and Jude
The New Testament epistles of Hebrews, James, Peter, and Jude, with concentration on exegesis and application. Modules: (1) Hebrews, (2) James and Jude, and (3) 1 and 2 Peter.
-Discuss the intended audience, purpose of writing, and setting for each composition
-Recognize key theological concepts of the compositions and how the writer applied them
-Analyze the meaning of each literary work for both original and later audiences
1. Describe the key theological concepts of specific biblical compositions
2. Evaluate Christian behavior in view of biblical precedent
3. Demonstrate contemporary applicability of specific biblical compositions
MRS 320 The Apocalypse
The Book of Revelation, with concentration on introductory matters and exegesis. The student shall be able to apply the content of Revelation to personal and church situations where there is a need to strengthen faith. Modules: (1) Interpreting the Apocalypse, (2) Revelation 1-3, and (3) Revelation 4-22.
-Identify the audience, intent of writing, nature of the genre, and overall message of the Book of Revelation
-Analyze the historical and present meaning of the letters to the seven churches
-Analyze the meaning of the apocalyptic visions in the body of Revelation
1. Evaluate various modern approaches used to interpret The Apocalypse
2. Formulate a viable construct for interpreting The Apocalypse in view of its literary genre and connectivity to other biblical Scripture
3. Apply the Book of Revelation to modern situations by applying hermeneutical principles and tools
MRS 323 Pauline Epistles I
The New Testament epistles of Romans, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon, with concentration on introductory matters and exegesis. Modules: (1) Romans and Galatians, (2) Ephesians, and (3) Philippians, Colossians, and Philemon.
-Summarize the audience, purpose of writing, date and place of composition, the setting of each church studied in the course
-Relate key theological concepts of each epistle and how the writer applied them to situations in the lives of the Christians reading the letter
-Analyze the meaning of each epistle
-Evaluate the meaning of the letters for modern life
1. Synthesize information from epistles that have a different purpose and audience
2. Describe and evaluate modern issues related to select Pauline epistles
3. Apply the content of the Pauline Epistles to modern life
MRS 324 Pauline Epistles II
Thessalonians, Corinthians, and the Pastorals. A study of the New Testament epistles of 1 and 2 Thessalonians, 1 and 2 Corinthians, 1 and 2 Timothy, and Titus, with attention to introductory matters, exegesis, and application. Modules: (1) The Thessalonian Correspondence, (2) The Corinthians Correspondence, and (3) The Pastoral Epistles.
-Analyze the historical setting for each epistle
-Exegete each epistle within its historical setting
-Construct an appropriate rubric for applying the content of the epistles
1. Demonstrate an awareness of the historical setting and content of seven Pauline epistles
2. Use sound exegetical principles to draw the intended message from a New Testament epistle
3. Develop and use guidelines for interpreting problematic passages
MRS 325 Acts of Apostles
An introduction to the study of Acts of Apostles, with attention given to exegesis and background material. Module 1 concentrates on exegesis. Module 2 is given literary features in view of other relevant ancient compositions. Module 3 examines Palestinian and Diaspora settings for Acts and addresses culture, Roman policy, geography, names, synagogues, population personalities, proselytism, and Jewish diaspora communities. Credit may not be earned in this course if the student has taken its predecessor—MRS 315.
-Analyze the text of Acts of Apostles with respect to purpose, structure, content, issues, and themes
-Recognize the significance of the literary and cultural background of Acts
-Evaluate Acts for modern application
1. Describe and evaluate the life of the early church
2. Formulate a model for the church in the modern age
3. Predict the impact of cultural and political forces on the church under various circumstances
MRS 326 Koiné Greek
The language of the New Testament, with illustrations of its usefulness to study of the New Testament. This course includes an introduction to the Greek language, its basic grammar and vocabulary, and issues of translation and exegesis related to working with original biblical texts of the New Testament. Modules: (1) The System, (2) Grammar, and (3) Sources, Translation, Exegesis, and Application. May not be taken if the student has credit for BRS 8 or MRS 321.
-Introduce the structure of Koiné Greek
-Explain Greek grammar
-Demonstrate the relationship of linguistic study and exegesis
1. Demonstrate acquaintance with Greek grammar
2. Describe the tasks of translation and exegesis
3. Synthesize the acts of translating, exegeting, and applying the Greek New Testament
MRS 411 The Reformation
The Protestant Reformation and the Catholic response: causes, events, distinctive theology, and personalities. Modules: (1) Historical Survey, (2) Insights into the Reformation, and (3) Consequences of the Reformation.
-Analyze the factors that led to the Protestant Reformation
-Recognize distinctive marks of the various reform movements
-Appraise the effect of the Protestant Reformation
1. Discern causes relative to the development of the Reformation
2. Judge the impact of the Reformation
3. Formulate a plan for handling Scripture amid divergent historical interpretations and practices
MRS 417 Christianity in Africa
Major forms of Christianity on the African continent. An historical and analytical survey of the history of Christianity in Africa, including missionary endeavor and the indigenous form of Christianity that arose in Africa following the Colonial Period. Modules: (1) Christianity in North Africa, (2) Christianity in Sub-Sahara Africa, and (3) The Contemporary Scene.
-Examine the spread of Christianity in Africa
-Identify significant personalities in African church history
-Recognize the character of African Christianity
1. Relate the history of Christianity in Africa
2. Compare present and past forms of Christianity in Africa
3. Describe the state of African Christianity
MRS 418 Christianity in Asia
A review of Christianity in Asia and its subsequent history. The course addresses the history, theological underpinnings, and attitudes that have shaped the church in the East from inception to the present and concludes with observations regarding future evangelistic activity. The Modules: (1) Christianity in Asia to 1500, (2) Christianity in Asia 1500-1900, and (3) Christianity in Asia Since 1900.
-Identify and evaluate theological issues in early Christian missions in the East
-Analyze the political, social, and religious environment in Asian missions
-Discuss issues in modern Asian missions
1. Evaluate theological issues in Asian missions
2. Analyze the political, social, and religious environments that affect Asian missions
3. Synthesize New Testament teaching with a viable mission strategy for Asia
MRS 419 North American Religious History
Christianity in North America. An overview of religion on the North American continent from the Native American period to the present. Modules: (1) Beginning to the Mid-19th Century, (2) The Mid-19th Century to the Present, (3) Protestantism and Catholicism in North America.
-Relate the story of Christianity in North America
-Identify characters, issues, events, and theological concepts found in the history of Christianity in North America
-Contrast the current state of Christianity in Canada, the United States, and Central America
1. Evaluate currents in North American Christianity
2. Analyze the political, social, and religious environments that affect North American church history
3. Synthesize New Testament teaching with a viable mission strategy for North America
MRS 420 Latin American Religious History
Native religion, Christian endeavor, and the current religious scene in South America. Modules: (1) Native Religion in Latin America, (2) The Changing Face of the Church in Latin America, and (3) Protestants, Pentecostals, and Catholic Renewal.
-Relate the story of Christianity in Latin America
-Identify characters, issues, events, and theological concepts found in the history of Christianity in Latin America
-Contrast the current state of Christianity in Latin America
1. Evaluate currents in Latin American Christianity
2. Analyze the political, social, and religious environments that affect Latin American church history
3. Synthesize New Testament teaching with a viable mission strategy for Latin America
MRS 440 Early and Medieval Church History
The church during its first fifteen centuries. Modules: (1) The First Six Centuries, (2) The Medieval Church, and (3) The Crusades and Intellectual Religious History.
-Analyze the force of significant thinkers, monastic culture, and Scholasticism
-Explain issues faced by the church during its first fifteen centuries and the results
-Summarize the major crusades
1. Explain changes in belief and practice in the church through the Middle Ages
2. Construct intellectual developments across the Middle Ages
3. Evaluate the goals and results of the Crusades
MRS 491 Independent Study in the Stone-Campbell Movement
The independent study in the Stone-Campbell Movement. This course is designed to provide students interested in the Stone-Campbell Movement with the opportunity to do personalized, in-depth study on several important points in the movement.
This course is further designed to assist students seeking U.S. Military Chaplaincy endorsement with the Chaplaincy Endorsement Commission who need a course on the Stone-Campbell Movement. Completion of this course does not guarantee endorsement but will provide, as part of the M.Div. program, the necessary coursework to apply for endorsement. The final decision to endorse a candidate is completely within the purview of the Chaplaincy Endorsement Commission (www.cec-chap.org).
The independent study course is structured around five key elements of the Stone-Campbell Movement: (1) key personalities, (2) key theological perspectives, (3) hermeneutical principle, (4) practical concerns, and (5) contemporary challenges to the historical movement. In each of these five elements, the student will do independent research following the guidelines below. Five papers representing these five elements will be submitted throughout the duration of the course. Each paper will represent 20% of the course grade. Credit: 3 graduate credits. Prerequisites: Open to M.Div. students only.
-Understand the historical roots of the Stone-Campbell Movement
-Evaluate the contribution of key figures in the Stone-Campbell Movement
-Critically assess the theological and practical decisions made from its inception to the present
-Defend and apply the Stone-Campbell Movement’s philosophies to modern church challenges
1. Students will be able to justify the social-historical-grammatical approach to biblical interpretation
2. Students will be able to evaluate the philosophical assumptions underlying interpretive variations in major biblical texts
3. Students will be able to appraise opposing arguments regarding the existence and implications of spirituality
4. Students will be able to summarize the history, philosophies, and doctrines of major world religions
MRS 520 Roman Catholic Theology
Characteristics of the Roman Catholic Church. The course addresses the Catholic view of authoritative sources and critical theological themes such as God, Jesus, revelation, church, liturgy, morality, and spirituality.
-Explain the Catholic approach to sources of authority
-Identify distinguishing marks of Roman Catholicism
-Discuss critical issues in Catholic theology
1. Demonstrate an awareness of Catholic teaching
2. Analyze assumptions that underlie Catholic theology
3. Evaluate Catholic theology in relation to a single source—the New Testament
MRS 530 Old Testament Theology
Basic theological concepts found in the Old Testament. Beginning with God as the center, the course introduces the student to a unified view of God, scripture, and God’s work. The person and activity of Yahweh as revealed to Israel provides the focus of attention. The course also deals with how God’s activity interfaces with culture. Modules: (1) Introduction to Old Testament Theology, (2) The Life and Faith of Israel, and (3) Old Testament Theology: Israel’s Gospel.
-Describe the methodology of Old Testament theology as it relates to interpreting Scripture in a contemporary context
-Examine theological concepts that appear in the Old Testament
-Appraise the Old Testament’s diverse theological contours with respect to unity
1. Interpret Old Testament theological concepts
2. Formulate a coherent, cohesive theology of the Old Testament
3. Judge the usefulness of Old Testament theology for the present age
MRS 540 The Church to 120 C.E.
Understanding the early church. An analysis of the sources that reveal the history and nature of the church from its inception in about 29 C.E. to the end of its ninth decade, 119 C.E. The course focuses on the history of the church, the events that surrounded its formation, theological concepts and application of the content found in New Testament documents. Modules: (1) The Church from 29-59, (2) The Church from 60-89, and (3) The Church from 90-119.
-Relate the story of the church through succeeding decades from 29-120 C.E.
-Evaluate the impact of the political, social, and religious environment on the early church
-Analyze challenges to the church as it spread across the Roman world
1. Demonstrate knowledge of the church from 29-120 C.E.
2. Judge the role of the New Testament in formulating church doctrine and practice
3. Formulate a position paper that describes how underlying assumptions influence application of the New Testament to modern church life
MRS 541 The Church from 120-209
Understanding the early church from 120 to 209. An analysis of the sources that reveal the history and nature of the church during the ninety year period from 120 through the year 209. The course presents the political, social, and religious environment, the general condition of the church, and theological positions. Modules: (1) The Church from 120-149, (2) The Church from 150-179, and (3) The Church from 180-209. Prerequisite: MRS 540.
-Describe the political, social, and religious environment in the Roman Empire
-Summarize the issues that impacted the church and relate these to appropriate personalities
-Recognize the points of continuity and discontinuity with respect to the preceding decades
1. Show how insights derived from the 2nd century church can benefit the 21st century church
2. Demonstrate how the church’s past experiences inform the modern church relative to persecution
3. Analyze the continuity and discontinuity of the modern church with the characterization drawn from the New Testament
MRS 622 Encountering Biblical Spirituality
The course defines spirituality in the context of reality and makes application that reflects the Christian worldview. Students will explore and encounter biblical spirituality at the metaphysical, biblical, and personal levels. The course is organized in five modules: (1) The Concept of Spirituality, (2) The Nature of Spirituality, (3) Spirituality Actualized, (4) Embracing Spirituality, and (5) Spirituality in Christian Living. (Students who took MRS 622 A Search for Spirituality may not take this course.) 3 semester hours of graduate credit.
-Explain spirituality in terms of faith, reason, and emotion.
-Analyze the life of the spiritual person within the spiritual community.
-Evaluate how a spiritual person applies ethical principles to all aspects of his/her life.
1. Develop a personal spiritual worldview
2. Appraise opposing arguments regarding the existence and implications of spirituality
3. Defend the rationality of seeking a mature spiritual life
4. Commit to personal spiritual formation and development
MRS 633 Being Christian in a Secular Society
Living as a Christian within the environment of unspiritual forces. Drawing upon theological concepts of Scripture, the course aims at presenting the case for the Christian life within a secular environment. The Christian life is described in ideal terms and then set against the background of common society. The course is also a culminating experience for those in the two graduate degrees offered by NU in self-evaluation of spiritual growth. Modules: (1) The Foundation for Spiritual Formation, (2) A Brief History of the Search for Spirituality, (3) Applied Spirituality, and (4) Spiritual Outlook. Prerequisite: MRS 622 and M 17.1.
-Analyze the foundation for spiritual formation
-Determine influences of one’s environment on a quest for spirituality
-Model ways to meet challenges to spiritual formation
1. Recognize God’s intentional relationship with humanity from biblical scripture
2. Evaluate mankind’s attempts to encounter God
3. Evaluate spiritual formation in view of a personal environment
4. Create action plans to meet challenges to spiritual formation
5. Justify the Christian worldview associated with spirituality
MRS 701 Traditional Religion
Worldview concepts in Traditional Religion. “Comparative religion” usually implies that two or more religious systems are described and analyzed, without reference to value judgment. This course provides both description and analysis, but it will take a decidedly different path. Systems of Traditional Religion will be analyzed in view of the gospel of Jesus Christ as presented in the Bible. Hopefully, the points made will represent each system fairly.
The course offers an opportunity to the student to become more conversant with Traditional Religion, especially in contrast with the Christian belief system. Included are some historical background and missiological methods for interacting with Traditional groups in the interest of the gospel. Modules: (1) Worldview and Traditional Religion, (2) African Traditional Religion, and (3) Divination in Traditional Religion.
-Evaluate the common beliefs and practices in Traditional Religion
-Recognize the nature of spiritism and the importance it has in Traditional Religion
-Compare and contrast points of view between Traditional Religion with Christianity
1. Recognize and articulate the foundational assumptions of Traditional Religion
2. Recite the general worldview found in Traditional Religion
3. Contrast Traditional Religion and Christianity in at least five different areas of belief and/or practice
MRS 710 Buddhism and Christianity
A comparative study. A survey of the history of Buddhism, including beliefs, practices, and scriptures, along with a comparison to basic Christian ideals. Modules: (1) The History of Buddhism, (2) Buddhism: Belief and Practice, and (3) Sacred Writings.
-Summarize the general history of Buddhism, along with its spiritual, socio-historical, and ethnocentric dimensions
-Assess key issues essential to understanding the distinctions between Buddhism and Christianity
-Compare and contrast the sacred scriptures and specific concepts of Buddhism and Christianity
1. Articulate the foundational assumptions of Buddhism
2. Evaluate the Buddhist worldview
3. Assess key issues essential to understanding the distinctions between Buddhism and Christianity
MRS 712 Hinduism and Christianity
Major tenets of Hinduism, with comparisons to the Christian faith. The course provides both description and analysis of the Hindu faith system. Modules: (1) The Essence of Hinduism, (2) The Vedas, and (3) Analyzing Hinduism.
-Summarize underlying assumptions, and major tenets of Hinduism
-Contrast concepts of God and human destiny within Hindu and Christian faiths
-Evaluate the contrasting beliefs and practices found in Hinduism and Christianity
1. Recognize the foundational assumptions, beliefs, and practices of Hinduism
2. Explain differences in concepts of God and human destiny within Hinduism and Christianity
3. Identify key issues in a comparative study of Hindu and Christian worldviews
MRS 718 Islam and Christianity
A comparative study. The course identifies and analyzes key issues in the encounter between Christianity and Islam. Modules: (1) Foundations for Comparative Study, (2) Foundations for Encounter, and (3) Theological Issues.
-Apply critical analysis in a comparative study of Islam and Christianity
-Explain foundational elements in Islamic history and doctrine
-Recognize concepts that distinguish Islamic and Christian doctrine relative to God, Jesus, and salvation
1. Recognize and articulate the foundational assumptions of Islam
2. Judge the logical consistency of comparisons and contrasts between Islam and Christianity
3. Formulate a written synopsis of Islam’s central concepts in relation to the central concepts of the Christian gospel