Christian Life and Thought


This area of study is concerned with the rich legacy of the Christian centuries and the creative application of Christian minds to the problems of today. Courses in church history survey the rise and development of traditions, practices, doctrines, and polity during expansion of the Christian movement through the centuries, with specific attention given to the spiritual movement called Baptists. Courses in theology seek to clarify the vital doctrines of the Christian faith as they are set forth in the Bible and in the light of Christian experience and philosophical inquiry. Courses in philosophy seek to clarify the ways in which the Christian community has both influenced and responded to intellectual and cultural development. Courses in Christian ethics seek to articulate an understanding of appropriate behavior in harmony with the teachings of the Bible. These courses emphasize the relation of Christianity to its environment in order to equip the student for effective ministry.

Church History

L1111 Church History I: Beginnings to the Reformation
Chun, Durst, Waggoner/3 hours
This course presents an interpretive overview of the history of Christianity from the first century to the eve of the Reformation with the purpose of providing insights into the past that will enhance the student’s growth in ministry leadership in the present and future.

L1112 Church History II: Reformation to the Present
Chun, Durst, Waggoner/3 hours
This course presents an interpretive overview of the history of Christianity from the eve of the Reformation to modern times with the purpose of providing insights into the past that will enhance the student’s growth in ministry leadership in the present and the future.

L1113 Baptist Heritage and Practice
Chun, Durst, Waggoner/2 hours
A study of Baptist origins, development, doctrines, confessions, polity, leaders, and current trends.

L1114 Ethnic Southern Baptist History
Faculty/2 hours
A study of the history of ethnic Southern Baptist churches and ministries within the United States from 1845 to the present. Special attention is given to African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American, and Native-American histories. Prerequisite: L1113.

L2110 The Early Church Seminar
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of the growth and development of the Christian movement from the second through the fifth centuries. Attention is given to the organizational, theological, and literary development of Christianity within the Graeco-Roman environment of the period. Students will engage in research, writing, discussion, and reporting based on primary sources. (Identical to L4110). Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2111 Women in Church History
Faculty/2-3 hours
A survey of the role and contributions of women in the history of the church.

L2112 The Reformation
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the Continental Reformation of the Sixteenth Century in its Magisterial, Radical, and Catholic expressions. Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2114 The Lutheran Reformation Seminar
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of the background, ideas, leaders, events, and impact of the Lutheran phase of the Reformation of Germany. Special attention will be given to the role and influence of Martin Luther and his pilgrimage to Protestant convictions. (Identical to L4111.) Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2115 The Radical Reformation Seminar
Faculty/2 hours
A seminar designed to study the key persons, events, and movements within the Radical Reformation. Specific attention will be focused on the primary documents that emerged during the period. (Identical to L4115.) Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2117 Christian Biography
Faculty/2 hours
This course is a study of the life and work of selected significant leaders in the history of Christianity through focused reading, research, writing, and discussion of biographies and autobiographies. Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2121 American Christianity to the Civil War
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the nature and development of American Christianity from its European origins to the Civil War. Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2122 Contemporary American Christianity
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the nature and development of American Christianity from the Civil War to the present. Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2125 Roman Catholicism: The Latin American Experience
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of Roman Catholicism within the context of Latin America. Special attention is given to Catholicism's historical significance and its influence as a major shaper of the contemporary Latin American culture. (Identical to I2121.)

L2131 Classics of Christian Devotion
Chun/2-3 hours
A historical and interpretative study of selected devotional literature of the Christian church with some reflections on their contemporary implications for the modern Christian. Prerequisite: L1111 and L1112.

L2132 History of the English Bible
Kuykendall/2 hours
A study of the English Bible from its beginnings to modern English translations. (Identical to S2512.)

L2141 Historiography
Faculty/3 hours
A seminar designed to assist students in developing the ability to use the principles and techniques of historical methodology. Students will read and analyze both classical and contemporary church histories and engage in individual historical writing based on primary sources. (Identical to L4141.) Prerequisite: L1111 and L1112.

L3100 Special Studies in Church History
Faculty/1-3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities and meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are classes taught by visiting professors, reading courses, individual study, and special projects.

L4100/L5100 (Historical studies) Special Studies in Historical/Theological Studies (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities to meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are seminars taught by visiting professors, programs of independent study, reading courses, special projects, and field education experience.

L4110/L5110 The Early Church Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of the growth and development of the Christian movement from the second through the fifth centuries. Attention is given to the organizational, theological, and literary development of Christianity within the Graeco-Roman environment of the period. Students will engage in research, writing, discussion, and reporting based on primary sources. (Identical to L2110.)

L4111/L5111 The Lutheran Reformation Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of the background, ideas, leaders, events, and impact of the Lutheran phase of the Reformation in Germany. Special attention is given to the role and influence of Martin Luther and his pilgrimage to Protestant convictions.

L4113/L5113 Old Testament History Seminar (THM and PHD)
Arbino, Watson/3 hours
An advanced study of selected aspects of the history of ancient Israel and Judah in the context of the physical, social, cultural, political, and literary environments of the ancient Near East. Special attention will be given to the integration of the theological focus of the biblical material into these aspects of the ancient world. Permission of the professor required. (Identical to S4112).

L4115/L5115 The Radical Reformation Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
A seminar designed to study the key persons, events, and movements within the Radical Reformation. Specific attention focuses on the primary documents that emerged during the period. (Identical to L2115.)

L4141/L5141 Historiography Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
A seminar designed to assist students in developing the ability to use the principles and techniques of historical methodology. Students will read and analyze classical and contemporary church histories and engage in individual historical writing based on primary sources. (Identical to L2141.)

Historical Theology

L2241 Patristic Theology
Faculty/2-3 hours
An introduction to the development of Christian doctrine from the close of the Apostolic Age to Augustine in the West and John of Damascus in the East. Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2242 Anabaptist Theology
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the theology of key personalities related to the Radical Reformation with particular attention to the thought of “Biblical Anabaptists.” Prerequisites: L1111 and L1112.

L2243 Modern Theology
Durst, Shouse/2-3 hours
An introduction to the major theological thought and movements of the 19th and 20th centuries. Prerequisites: L1211 and L1212.

L2244 History of Baptist Theology
Durst, Waggoner/2-3 hours
A history of Baptist thought, including a survey of the contributions of its more formative theologians, an account and an evaluation of its more influential doctrinal controversies, and an examination of its principal confessional statements. Prerequisite: L1113.

L2245 Historical-Theological Integrative Seminar
Durst, Shouse/2 hours
A historical and theological study of a selected movement within Christian history with the goal of assisting students in enhancing their analytical and interpretive skills for understanding the processes of how and why theological developments emerge from specific historical contexts. Prerequisite: L1111, L1112, L1211 and L1212.

L2246 The Theology of Christian Leadership: A Case Study Approach
Durst/3 hours
A historical-theological examination of Christian leadership for its effects in the life and mission of the churches. The study develops a historical and pastoral theology of leadership based on New Testament materials and on primary sources and biographies from the patristic, medieval, reformation, modern, and contemporary periods of church history. Students will be trained to apply a case study approach to selected leaders from church history. Case studies developed will blend primary source analysis and contemporary pastoral leadership concepts. (Identical to L4246)

Christian Theology

L1211 Christian Theology I
Durst, Shouse, Waggoner/3 hours
An introduction to Christian Theology focusing on its nature, task, method, and application followed by a survey of the doctrines of Revelation, the Triune God, Creation, Humanity, and Sin.

L1212 Christian Theology II
Durst, Shouse, Waggoner/3 hours
An introduction of Christian Theology surveying the doctrines of Christ, Salvation, the Spirit, the Church, and Eschatology including an additional focus on the ethical implications of Christian thought and practice.

L1213 The Professional’s World View: Theology in Global Perspective I
Durst, Shouse, Waggoner/3 hours
An introduction to systematic theology incorporating a focus on selected major doctrines of the Christian faith. (Identical to L1211.)

L1214 The Professional’s World View: Theology in Global Perspective II
Durst, Shouse, Waggoner/2 Hours
A continuation of the focus on major doctrines of the Christian faith. Prerequisite: L1213. (Identical to L1212.)

L2211 The Doctrine of Christ
Shouse/2-3 hours
An examination of the person and work of Jesus Christ in light of the Biblical witness, conciliar formulations, historical developments, and contemporary insights.

L2212 The Doctrine of Salvation
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the doctrine of atonement, with special reference to the Old Testament background, a detailed analysis of New Testament passages relating to the work of Christ, and an evaluation of historic theories of the atonement. Prerequisites: L1211 and L1212.

L2213 The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the doctrine of the Holy Spirit in biblical thought, in Christian history, and in recent theology. Prerequisites: L1211 and L1212.

L2214 The Doctrine of the Church
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of the doctrine of the church and the ordinances in biblical thought, in Christian history, and in recent theology. Prerequisites: L1211 and L1212.

L2215 The Human Predicament
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study designed to familiarize the student with the basic Christian doctrine of humanity from the perspective of biblical studies, systematic theology, and church history. The student will critically examine the anthropological data found in the secular setting in light of the Christian doctrine of the image of God and original sin and will explore the wider context of human existence in terms of their psychological, social, and hermeneutical dimensions.

L2216 The Doctrine of Creation
Yang/2-3 hours
A field experience in conjunction with California High Adventure. The course involves a 10-day backpacking trip across the Sierras. Lectures on creation, worship experiences, and community living are part of the learning experience.

L2217 The Doctrine of Prayer
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of prayer using Old and New Testament sources, theological reflection, and class participation. An extra hour of credit will be given to those choosing to participate in a 24-hour silent retreat.

L2218 The Doctrine of God
Shouse/2-3 hours
An examination of the doctrine of God in light of the Biblical witness, historic confessions, and contemporary conversation. Special attention is paid to an examination of the doctrine of the Trinity.

L2221 Contemporary Theological Readings
Durst, Shouse/2-3 hours
A seminar designed to develop the student’s capacity to think theologically and to evaluate major theological themes. Several contemporary theological works are studied to allow students to analyze and assess how theology is being done today. (Identical to L3221.)

L2223 Theology and Imagination
Shouse/2-3 hours
This course will examine the character of the imaginative capacity of the human spirit, the role imagination might have in a theological anthropology, and significant ways in which the imagination has been and might be used in the theological enterprise in general and the expression of Christian faith in particular. Special attention will be given to theology and literature, theology and film, and theology and the visual arts. Prerequisites: L1211 and/or L1212.

L3200 Special Studies in Theology
Durst, Shouse, Waggoner/1-3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities and meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are classes taught by visiting professors, reading courses, individual study, and special projects.

L3225 Theology and Pop Culture
Waggoner/2 hours
As an introduction to the relationship between theology and pop culture, this course will focus on both Christian interpretation of and dialogue with culture. Attention will be given to interpretive paradigms biblical, traditional, and contemporary as well as cultural elements demanding the attention of Christians.

L4200/L5200 (Theological Studies) Special Studies in Historical/Theological Studies (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities and to meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are seminars taught by visiting professors, programs on independent study, reading courses, special projects, and field education experience.

L4212/L5212 Old Testament Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
Arbino, Watson, Yang/3 hours
A study and discussion of the major issues involved in defining and researching theology as found in the Old Testament and appropriated by the Christian community. Attention will be given to both the texts and contexts of the theological enterprise through a variety of interpretive methodologies. Permission of the professor required. (Identical to S4111).

L4213/L5213 Pauline Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
R. Melick, Veteto, Faculty/3 hours
An exegetical and theological examination of the writings of Paul with the goal of discerning that coherent faith which undergirds and unites the content of his epistles. A variety of scholarly perspectives regarding the background, the unity and diversity, and the organizational center of Paul’s proclamation of the gospel is also surveyed. Permission of the professor required. (Identical to S4315.)

L4214/L5214 The Theology of the Synoptic Gospels Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
As an investigation of the distinctive emphasis and contribution of the first three Gospels, this course gives special attention to the contemporary discussion on the compositional strategy, historical reliability, and purpose of the Gospels (Identical to S4319).

L4215/L5215 Seminar in Theological Method (THM and PHD)
Durst, Shouse, Faculty/3 hours
The course surveys and analyzes significant theological methodologies of the modern and contemporary period. It encourages and facilitates the development of theological vision and the strengthening of theological voices.

L4221/L5221 Selected Topics in Christian Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
Durst, Shouse, Faculty/3 hours
Topics covered at the foundational level as part of the MDIV curriculum are targeted and addressed more intensively at an advanced graduate level. Subjects such as the Doctrine of God, the Doctrine of Christ, the Doctrine of the Holy Spirit, the Doctrine of the Church, Soteriology, Eschatology, and Theology and Imagination may be addressed.

L4231/L5231 Selected Figures in Christian Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
This course facilitates the intensive study of one or more theological figures. The corpus of theologians such as Karl Barth, Jürgen Moltmann, Wolfhart Pannenberg, Jim McClendon, Reinhold Niebuhr, or Stanley Hauerwas, for example, can be chosen to be the focus of the semester's investigation and research.

L4241/L5241 Contemporary Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
Durst, Shouse/3 hours
A seminar designed to develop in students the capacity to think theologically and to approach and evaluate major theological themes. The works of one or more contemporary theologians are studied in order to analyze and assess the current theological scene. (Identical to L2221.)

L4244/L5244 Reformation Theology Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of the significant theological streams that emerged from the Protestant Reformation. The focus of the seminar is centered on primary documents prepared by the chief leaders within the various camps of the Reformation.

L4245/L5245 Theology of the Early Church Seminar (THM and PHD)
Faculty/3 hours
An examination of theological developments during the patristic period of church history. Selected primary sources drawn from significant theologians who wrote during the second through the fifth centuries are studied. Students engage in theological reflection and writing based on their research.

L4246/L5246 The Theology of Christian Leadership: A Case Study Approach Seminar (THM and PHD)
Durst/3 hours
A historical-theological examination of Christian leadership for its effects in the life and mission of the churches. The study develops a historical and pastoral theology of leadership based on New Testament materials, primary sources, and biographies from the patristic, medieval, reformation, modern and contemporary periods of church history. Students will be trained to apply a case study approach to assigned leaders from church history. Case studies developed will blend primary source analysis and contemporary pastoral leadership concepts. (Identical to L2246.)

Philosophy

L1311 Christian Philosophy of Religion
Faculty/2 hours
An introduction to a Christian philosophy of religion. The course will introduce and focus on several key issues inherent in the philosophy of religion.

L2311 Modern Philosophical Problems in Religion
Faculty/2-3 hours
An examination of significant issues in the philosophy of religion for contemporary Christians. Key areas of concern will include religious knowledge and the problems of evil, religion, and ethics. The formulation and development of a viable Christian apologetic will be attempted. Prerequisite: L1311.

L2313 Responding to the New Age
Faculty/2-3 hours
An introduction to New Age thought with special emphasis upon defining the phenomenon, understanding the background of the movement, and developing a response to New Age ideas.

L3300 Special Studies in Philosophy
Faculty/1-3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities and to meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are classes taught by visiting professors, reading courses, individual study, and special projects.

Christian Ethics

L1411 Christian Ethics
Faculty/2 hours
A study of the biblical presuppositions and principles of Christian ethics and their application to major social institutions and problems.

L2412 Peacemaking and the Church
Faculty/2-3 hours
An investigation of the church’s historical attitudes towards war and peace, an analysis of the changing nature of war, and a discussion of the church’s role as peacemaker in the nuclear age. Prerequisite: L1411 or permission of the professor.

L2413 Current Issues in Christian Ethics
Faculty/2-3 hours
An assessment of current ethical thought on crucial issues facing the church today.

L2414 Biomedical Ethics
Faculty/2-3 hours
A course introducing students to the study of biomedical ethics. Various ethical methodologies are examined as well as contemporary issues in biomedical ethics.

L2415 Sexuality, Marriage, and Family
Faculty/2-3 hours
A study of biblical teachings on human sexuality, marriage, and family relationships. Special attention is given to ethical issues related to singleness, roles within the marriage, divorce, homosexuality, and family relationships.

L3400 Special Studies in Christian Ethics
Faculty/1-3 hours
A flexible program designed to take advantage of unique opportunities and to meet the specialized needs of certain students. Among the possibilities are classes taught by visiting professors, reading courses, individual study, and special projects.
catalog