How to Interpret and Explain Difficult Passages Workshop (2 units)
Have you ever had difficulty understanding certain passages in the Bible? Did you have to rely on commentaries and other people to figure it out? We appreciate the help others can give us, but when we can “figure it out” and “connect the dots” ourselves as students of the Bible it gives us a new confidence to be able to explain God’s word to those who ask us. As Peter instructed us, we should “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15). This course will help you learn how to interpret and explain difficult passages in the Bible. Once you can do that, everything becomes easier in your quest to understand and teach the Bible. You will learn how to understand, interpret, and explain in clear and concise ways the passage you are studying. You will be ready to answer questions people ask you about what any passage in the Bible means. Finally, you will be able to refine your communication and teaching skills. Can’t wait to take this adventure with you!
Character Development – 1 Corinthians 13 Love (2 units)
God is love (1 John 4:8) and He designed us for love. All that is within us cries out for love, and yet it seems so hard to find. The problem is that we seek to be loved. We want others to accept us, meet our needs, make us feel good, forgive us, and give us freedom to be and do whatever we want. God’s love is not about getting but about giving. If we can learn to love others as God loves us, we will experience the love we so desperately desire in return. We will be healed of our deep hurts. In giving we will receive. How? Well, that’s our subject this quarter.
Character Development is a series of topics on the most important quality of a Christian – character. It’s how Jesus said to be a wise man who builds his house upon the rock (Matthew 7:24), and the very opposite of the hypocrisy Jesus condemned in the religious leaders of His day. God wants us to walk in victory and become like His Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 8:28-29). Learning all about the Lord and the Bible is great. Learning to minister in power is wonderful. But if we do not develop His character we will eventually get shot down by the world, the flesh, or the devil. God has definite steps to achieve victory in each area of our lives and the twelve Character Development courses are where you’ll learn them.
The Messiah (2 units)
Jesus Christ, the Messiah, the centerpiece of all history, the “desire of all nations” (Haggai 2:7), has come. And He will soon come again, and “from His mouth comes a sharp sword, so that with it He may strike down the nations, and He will rule them with a rod of iron; and He treads the wine press of the fierce wrath of God, the Almighty” (Revelation 19:15). In this practical course you will learn the prophecies that He fulfilled so you can witness right out of the Old Testament. And you will learn how to know and present Him in power to the world today—the world that will soon witness His mighty return to rule and reign. An incredible course.
Leadership Strategies of the Hebrew Prophets (2 units)
As we follow the Lord, many times we face seemingly overwhelming difficulties, obstacles and opposition. In those times, how do we overcome and advance? How do we lead people into victory and maturity? In answer to that, James wrote, “Brothers and sisters, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord” (James 5:10). So in this course we will study the leadership strategies of Isaiah, Ezekiel and Daniel. They faced immense opposition from Assyria, Babylon and even their own people of Israel, yet they continued to advance personally and lead others to overcome as well.
Lectures in Theology (2 units)
In this course, we will center on foundational truths contained in both the NT and OT. We will examine various biblical doctrines (essential and peripheral) and their supporting passages discussing their importance and application for us today, including creation, attributes of God, sin, aspects of salvation, man’s pre-saved spiritual state, Christ in the OT, Trinity, etc. In this course, we will also address popular questions such as, Is Hell eternal? Was the atonement limited or universal? Will people who never heard the gospel be saved? How could a loving God allow bad things to happen to children and godly people? How can we trust the Bible when so many men have translated it so many times since the first century? (and many others). Further, we will deal with some of the most controversial passages in the Bible and look at some of the more “difficult sayings” made by Christ and the apostles. This interesting course will certainly edify one’s personal faith and enhance one’s knowledge of biblical doctrine. Although this course will have marginal reading requirements, grades will be based on attendance and class participation.
1 & 2 Thessalonians (2 units)
What are the characteristics of a thriving church? What kind of a ministry results in a healthy church? How should we prepare for Christ’s return? Paul’s first and second letters to the Thessalonians are filled with encouragement, affection, hope, love, and tough advice. Paul understood how difficult it is to live out the Christian faith in the face of opposition and many distractions. Paul exhorts his friends as a father would his children to grow in love for one another, to live holy lives, to refute false teaching, and to stand fast in the Lord. He reminds them of their great hope in the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ and to not be falsely alarmed at rumors that the Day of the Lord had already come. Your study of these letters should give you assurance for the future, encouragement in witnessing and walking with the Lord, comfort in the loss of Christian loved ones, and stability in a world that appears to be careening out of control.
Evangelism (2 units)
The word “evangelism” means taking the good news about salvation through Jesus Christ to other people. Jesus came to preach the gospel to the poor, and He is still doing that today through us, because we are His body (1 Corinthians 12:27). How do we learn to evangelize? Mainly by doing it. This is a “field experience” course, which involves witnessing for at least one and a half hours a week, turning in weekly lists of the people witnessed to, reading a missionary book (supplied) and writing five pages of notes on it.
Saturday Seminar – To be announced (2 units)
In a one-day seminar on a Saturday, 10AM–4PM. Date and topic to be announced.