Course Descriptions

The adult-friendly environment includes hybrid courses with classes held on alternate weekends (Friday evening and Saturday morning) at the Bryan College Chattanooga campus and required Internet activities between class meetings.

Required Courses (All Courses 3 Credits; 36-Hour Program)

CSM 511 Language Study Methods and Materials
CSM 513 Foundations of Biblical Interpretation
CSM 517 Cultural Contexts of the OT and NT
CSM 519 Christian Theology I
CSM 522 Worldview and Apologetics I
CSM 524 Ecclesiology
CSM 526 History of Christianity
CSM 520 Christian Theology II
CSM 531 Church Leadership
CSM 537 Vocation of Ministry
CSM 533 Worldview and Apologetics II
CSM 539 Capstone Seminar

Course Descriptions

CSM 511 Language Study Methods & Materials
This course is designed to 1) introduce the student to the most recent computer tools available for Bible study and interpretation together with the best internet resources for Bible study, and 2) introduce the student to how major schools of interpretation use Bible study methods to arrive at their particular interpretations of the Bible.

CSM 513 Foundations of Biblical Interpretation

This course will focus on foundational principles of biblical research and interpretation, covering various hermeneutical approaches and Bible study methods. Special attention is given to the importance of interpreting the Scriptures through the lenses of context, grammar, semantics, genre, canon, and theology.

CSM 517 Cultural Contexts of the OT and NT
This course will survey the cultural contexts of the Bible by focusing on the geographical, historical, social, political, religious, philosophical, linguistic, and literary backgrounds of the biblical books and authors. These contexts include the ancient Near East (Old Testament) and Second Temple Judaism and Greco-Roman culture (New Testament).

CSM 519 Christian Theology I
This course is intended to be a study of the science of God and His relations to the universe. Includes the major doctrines that have constituted the history of Christian thought, specifically: prolegomena, revelation and authority of the Bible, God, the Trinity, the person and work of the Father, creation, anthropology and sin.

CSM 520 Christian Theology II
This course is intended to be a study of the science of God concerning Christian thought on: the person and work of Christ, salvation, Christian life, Biblical Covenants, the church, and prophecy.

CSM 522, 533 Worldview and Apologetics I & II
This two-semester course is an in-depth study of the claims and dissonances of major worldviews, with an emphasis on the Christian theistic worldview. The students will learn a systematic, logical way to define and defend the Christian belief system. To this end, attention will be paid to various apologetic methods as tools for understanding and defending a Christian worldview. Contemporary social and cultural issues will be examined so that students will be better equipped to communicate the Gospel and minister in a pluralistic world. The course also involves thinking through a Christian value system and some ethical implications of the Christian worldview. It includes in-depth reading and writing from significant texts, journals, and popular literature in worldview and apologetic studies. The course will consist of two independent semesters, each addressing different issues in philosophy, theology, culture, and apologetics. 

CSM 524 Ecclesiology

An exegetical and theological study, this course will focus upon key passages from the New Testament and trace the development of the church's thinking about itself. Although the course will consider historical questions, it is primarily concerned with the understanding of the church as presented in the New Testament and how this ecclesiology might impact present conceptions of the church, worldviews and apologetics.

CSM 526 History of Christianity
An understanding of the history of Christianity will be developed using parallel themes: major historical events, and history of Christian thought. Students will read about and discuss selected writings from leading Christian thinkers from the second century through the twentieth century. Some of these are St. Augustine, Thomas Aquinas, Desiderius Erasmus, Martin Luther, John Wesley, John Wesley, Richard Hooker, Henry Ward Beecher, Walter Rauschenbusch, Amy Cartwright, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.

CSM 531 Church Leadership
This course is designed to trace the biblical, theological, and historical foundations of church leadership. Particular attention will be given to the various leadership roles within the church and forms of church government throughout biblical and contemporary history. Issues and matters related to the contemporary church will be examined and discussed, with specific focus being given to the role of church leadership related to such issues and matters.

CSM 537 Vocation of Ministry

This course is designed to deal with the issues regarding ministry as vocation from a biblical and practical framework as it relates to their individual ministry callings. Particular attention will be given to ministry as calling, cultivation and creation of culture in ministry, family and ministry, and specific tasks and roles of the individual minister. The student will describe a comprehensive ministry philosophy as part of this course.

CSM 539 Capstone Seminar
This course is designed to 1) allow the student to develop a project touching on an issue of interest to the current Christian community, and 2) bring to bear the skills acquired in the MA/CS program in order to analyze the issue and articulate a Christian approach to that issue.