Biblical and Theological Studies Concentration
The Bible is God’s written word, his special revelation about himself, his world, and how we are to live in it. A biblical perspective thus profoundly shapes everything else we study at Providence, and this means that students must know the Bible and what it teaches. The four semesters of Old and New Testament Studies in the Core enable students to study the entire Bible, its historical background, theological teaching, and relevance for living in today’s world.
With a Biblical and Theological Studies Concentration, students are able to build on this foundation and pursue in-depth biblical study, as well as systematic and historical theological study, drawing in particular on the riches of the Reformed heritage. Students also study hermeneutics, that is, the principles and history of biblical interpretation. This concentration equips students to rightly handle the word of truth, to meet contemporary challenges, and to understand the difference theology makes for our service in the church and the world. Most of all, we seek by this study to know God better, and thus to be better ambassadors for Christ in a broken world.
A concentration in Biblical and Theological Studies equips students to effectively and faithfully serve the Lord in many different callings in the church and society. The ability to think carefully with biblical principles is crucial for entrepreneurial careers in the business world. The concentration provides the biblical and theological foundation necessary for Bible teaching, missions, counseling, social work, international relief and refugee work, as well as for graduate study in those fields.
The mission of the Biblical and Theological Studies department is to equip students with the content of the Bible, its historical context and proper methods of interpretation, and the Reformed theology which summarizes its teachings. Students also learn to apply this biblical content and theology to contemporary life and culture, and to their own personal lives, leading to spiritual growth and ministry in the church and the world. Students also develop the skills to communicate this biblical and theological reasoning and conclusions effectively in both speaking and writing.
Concentration Learning Outcomes
Students who complete the biblical and theological studies concentration are able to:
- Demonstrate a knowledge of the entire Bible, including its historical, cultural, and literary contexts as well as a knowledge of the systematic teaching of Scripture, especially with reference to the theology of the orthodox creeds and the Reformed tradition, as well as an ability to evaluate fairly alternative perspectives. This knowledge will be demonstrated through students’ communication of the process and conclusions of biblical and theological study in both oral and written venues.
- Employ proper methods of interpretation in their study of Scripture (hermeneutics), including critical and analytical reasoning, contextual exegesis (grammatical-historical), and theological (comparative scriptural, canonical), as well as make use of the appropriate tools for this study.
- Apply this teaching to our contemporary context, culture, and concerns (in terms of the biblical and Reformed framework of creation, fall, redemption, and consummation), and apply it personally, leading to spiritual growth and ministry within church and society.
Representative Classes Can Include
- Apocalyptic Literature
- Special Topics in Biblical Studies
- Johannine Literature
- Doctrine of Revelation
- Survey of World Religions
- History of Christianity I
- History of Christianity II
- Sociology of Religion