We know Jesus commissioned us to “make disciples.” But what did He mean? Did He envision a well-organized church program, an organic approach, or was He asking us to do something completely different? Today, church goers have different ideas of what Jesus had in mind. Is our modern expression of discipleship really what Jesus wanted?
Because of the Great Commission, each Christian has a responsibility to carry out this command of discipleship. To equip Christians and ministry leaders for effective, Christ-centered discipleship, Baptist Bible Seminary is offering an online course this summer: “Disciple-Making in the Church.”
This Doctor of Ministry course will be led Dr. William Higley, vice president for academics at Clarks Summit University. With academic depth and pulls from his own personal time in church ministry and discipleship, students will be challenged to think about this important mandate and answer questions related to the “why” and “how” of discipleship in the church. Even more, students in this online class will learn what biblical discipleship looks like on a personal and corporate level.
“We will examine ‘why?’ questions, which will establish a foundation on which to build our discipleship ministries in the church,” explains Higley. “As we spend time on the ‘how?’ questions, we recognize that it is contextual. Programs and events may be the product of a commitment to discipleship in the local church, but the more important conversation we will have is addressing why we are doing what we do and what we are trying to produce.” He says students will get to examine questions from a theological standpoint, and then, when appropriate, add individual and practical applications.
Because today’s ministry leaders have packed schedules and non-traditional work hours, students are able to study in a flexible, online or modular format. They can choose to take this singular class for personal enrichment or as part of the pursuit of a doctoral degree.
Students will experience engaging lessons and a community of interaction with their classmates and professor. They can expect to learn from both BBS course material and a unique partnership with Discipleship.org. Students will also complete a spiritual formation project throughout the course, which will engage each one personally in the discipleship process. “The goal of this project is plain and simple—growth,” emphasizes Higley. “You will be stretched by it.”
“Disciple Making in the Church” will be offered completely online for a 12-week session, running May 4–July 26, 2020. Current BBS students can register for this and other summer courses by emailing registrar@ClarksSummitU.edu. To register for this course for personal enrichment, new students can email admissions@ClarksSummitU.edu. To learn more about earning a BBS Doctor of Ministry, request information through Discover.ClarksSummitU.edu
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