For good reason discipleship courses speak more and more about a passion for developing “head, heart, and hands.” The imagery communicates that biblical instruction ought to enrich our minds with knowledge of Christ, expand our hearts with love for Christ, and equip our hands for the works of Christ.
It is important to remember that we’re learning about a person (the Lord Jesus) more than a topic; therefore our learning will be personal. We don’t trust Christ just because he makes the best argument or has the best facts but because we know him and he is trustworthy. Facts, arguments, and proofs factor into our trust of him, but the Person of Christ comes before, during, and after these facts. Ultimately, “the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith” (1 Timothy 1:5 NASB).
In light of all this, the Advance Theology Course adopts a particular shape to help express and reinforce our values of word, Spirit, community, and multiplication:
The content of this course centers on the Scriptures with everything revolving around their teachings. Expect to read, meditate on, and study the scriptures constantly.
We believe the Spirit must instruct and apply any truth we come across. He turns it from information into revelation and devotion. Expect to pray, sing, minister, and walk in the Spirit.
This course is intentionally designed for the group to grow together in Christ. Expect to pray for one another, discuss the material, and work together toward growth.
We receive the gospel freely and are expected to freely give it away to others. Consider this course an activation point for giving away what you will be learning. Expect to communicate the truths you learn, to contribute to the development of the course, and to bring others into the discipleship journey.
Who is the course for
The intended audience of this course is current or potential leaders, elders, or church planters. The purpose is to provide biblical and theological foundations to support you and your church’s efforts to strengthen the church and gather the lost.
This course is currently only run in conjunction with Advance partner churches. Interested churches must have at least 2 individuals who will participate, in order to satisfy the course elements which encourage group learning.
Length and format of the course
The course includes 7 modules, each requiring 10 weeks to complete. The course can thus be completed in 2 years, factoring in annual breaks.
There is an optional assessment track available, where participants submit a brief written response to a discussion question for review by a course tutor. The tutor then provides feedback to the student.
The course includes the following modules:
- The Pentateuch
- Conquest to monarchy
- Division to exile
- Exile and return
- The Gospels
- The Church age
- Scripture to Theology