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Applying to Seminary 1 – Starting Again2 min read

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Five years ago, I applied to the M.Div. program at Gordon Conwell Seminary in Charlotte, NC. I took one course, and failed miserably because I had a new baby (or two) and a long commute, and could NOT manage the reading load.

Now, my three kids are in school and my wife is at home and not working, so I am starting up my education again. This time, however, I am applying to Fuller Theological Seminaryslightly more liberal than GC, but I really dig their statement of faith, which includes a really great discussion of inerrancy which I wholeheartedly agree with:

At times, some Christians have become unduly attached to the precise wordings of doctrine-whether of events in the last days, the meaning of baptism, or the use of a catch phrase like “the inerrancy of Scripture.” But it is well to remember that all our formulations of Christian truth must ultimately conform not to some preset statement but to the Scriptures, all parts of which are divinely inspired. Thus, sloganeering can never be a substitute for the careful, patient analysis of what God’s Word teaches, including what it teaches about itself.

Also, as it turns out, every M. Div. program usually comes with a choice of five or so emphases that you must choose from, and they differ somewhat. For example, here’s Gordon Conwell’s choices:

  • Educational Ministries
  • Youth Ministries
  • World Missions
  • Urban Ministries
  • Anglican Studies

Here are FTS’s choices:

  • Christian Ethics
  • Worship, Theology, and the Arts
  • Youth, Family, and Culture
  • Recovery Ministry
  • Children at Risk
  • International Development and Urban Studies
  • Islamic Studies

First, which seems more up to date and less antiquated? The FTS list is certainly more descriptive, and appeals more to me.  Second, despite the liberal use of the word ‘peace’ in the description, I found the classes for the Christian Ethics emphases surprisingly interesting:

  • ET 501 – Christian Ethics
  • ET 533 – Christian Discipleship in a Secular Society
  • ET 525 – Christian Ethics of Bonhoeffer
  • ET 520 – Biblical and Practical Peacemaking
  • ET 535 – Ethics of Life and Death
  • PH 514 – Topics of Philosophy of Religion
  • PH 543 – Philosophical Issues in Theology and Science
  • MC 500 – Church in Mission
  • MP 520 – Transforming Contemporary Cultures

I mean, I could not refuse such a great list. Comments?