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Graduate Diploma in Theology

Graduate Diploma in Theology

Program Structure

Preamble

The Diploma program in Theology is nested in the degree program comprised of 33 subjects and requiring the successful completion of 99 credit points of study. This is usually the first three years of the Bachelor of Theology program.

         The program is designed primarily to prepare ministers and other skilled pastoral personnel for service in the Adventist Church in the oceanic countries of the South Pacific.  It provides a foundation for ordination to pastoral ministry and also for later specialization and graduate studies. The program is structured to develop the potential of the student through a sequential series of studies and by providing a biblical/theological, pastoral and spiritual framework which will assist the student to be effective in professional pastoral ministry.

Pre-requisites

Academic

         Applicants will be considered according to the following:

∙        Fiji School Leaving Certificate with an aggregate of 240 or PSSC 14 or less or its equivalent.  A pass in English is mandatory.

∙        Passed Fulton College Foundation Studies with the GPA of 2.33 including a pass in English

∙        For those at least 22 years of age, a good pass in the Fulton College Mature Age Examination with an average of 65%.

Professional

         Applicants will be expected to show evidence of being a baptised Seventh-day Adventist of at least two years experience.  Applicants may also be expected to attend a personal interview where evidence of suitability for the ministerial profession will be assessed. 
(Interviews are held in late January at a time and place convenient to
all.)   Evidence, (in writing) from the applicant’s church pastor, outlining previous experience in the life and witness of the applicant’s home church is also required for an application to be processed.

Character

            Applicants will be expected to show evidence of a good Christian lifestyle from the applicant’s church Pastor, or local Mission Youth Director.  A current character reference and police clearance report will also be required.

 Sequence

The Bachelor of Arts (Theology) is offered in the following sequence:

 

 

Biblical Studies

Theological Studies

Historical Studies

Pastoral Studies

Electives

1

 

THTS101 Bible Doctrines

 

THPM101 Health & Family

THPM102 Homiletics

THRM101 Research Methods

BSCS124 Computer Awareness

 

THPR101 Pacific Ministry

2

THBS102 Pentateuch

THBS101 Gospels

 

 

THPM105 Spiritual Formation

THPM103 Local Church Admin

THWM101 World Religions

 

3

THBL201 Greek IA

THBS201 OT Early Prophets

 

THCH235 Early Church History

THPM201 Youth Ministry

General Psychology

 

THPR201  Church-Centred Evangelism

4

THBS204 OT Later Prophets

 

THCH236 Later Church History THCH203
  Adventist Heritage

THPM208 Teaching Skills for Pastors

THWM201 Church Growth & Lay Resources

 

5

THBS206 NT Early Epistles

THBS205 OT Apocalyptic

 

THCH204 Pacific Church History

THPM203 Evangelism

THWM202 Cross-cultural Ministry

 

 

THPR202  Public Evangelism

6

THBS207 NT Later Epistles

THBS205 NT Apocalyptic

THTS201 Adventist Theology

THCH205 EG White

THPM204 Pastoral Care & Psychology

 

 

SUBJECT DESCRIPTIONS

 Biblical Languages:

 

THBL201 Greek 1

Credit Value 3

This subject is the first stage of providing the student with the ability to use Hellenistic Greek as a tool for the New Testament study.  Following a thorough introduction to the grammar of New Testament Greek, some experience is given in the translation of simple texts from the Greek New Testament.

Biblical Studies

 

THBS101 Pentateuch

Credit Value 3

An introduction to the Pentateuch that examines different approaches taken in its study; gives an overview of each of its books; studies Pentateuchal theology, narrative and law; and conducts exegesis of selected passages in each book.

THBS102 Gospels

Credit Value 3

This subject is concerned with the study of the mission and message of Jesus Christ as recorded in the Gospels.  A quick survey of the religious, political and social backgrounds to the Gospels will precede the actual study of the life, teachings, death and resurrection of Jesus in the context of the plan of redemption.

THBS201 Old Testament Early Prophets

 Credit Value 3

A study of the historical backgrounds to, and the main messages of the pre-exilic Old Testament prophets.

Recommended Prerequisite: THBS102 Pentateuch.

 THBS203  Old Testament Apocalyptic Literature

 Credit Value 3

A study of the OT apocalyptic including passages from Isaiah, Joel, Ezekiel, Zechariah, plus a brief exegesis of the book of Daniel.  As well as being introduced to various Christian and non-Christian views, the student will be encouraged to critically confront the book for personal spiritual development.

 THBS204 Old Testament Later Prophets

 Credit Value 3

A study of the hermeneutics of OT predictions concerning Israel, followed by a book-by-book study of the later classical prophets in chronological order.  The emphasis is on historical backgrounds, literary structure, exegesis of selected passages, and theological message.

Recommended Prerequisites: THBS102 Pentateuch, THBS201 Old Testament Early Prophets.

 THBS205  New Testament Apocalyptic Literature

 Credit Value 3

A study of the NT apocalyptic including passages from the Olivet discourse, 1 Thessalonians, plus a brief exegetical survey of the book of Revelation.  As well as being introduced to various Christian and non-Christian views, the student will be encouraged to critically confront the book for personal spiritual development.

 THBS206 New Testament Early Epistles

 Credit Value 3

A study of the historical background and the main messages of the early Christian epistles (Galatians, Thessalonians, Corinthians, Romans) and their relationship to the development of the Christian Church in the setting of the Book of Acts.

Recommended Prerequisites: THBS101 Gospels, THBL201 Greek 1.

 THBS207 New Testament Later Epistles

 Credit Value 3

This subject consists of three parts.  The first part is an exegetical and theological study of the prison epistles in chronological order (Philemon, Colossians, Ephesians, and Philippians); the second part an exegetical and theological study of the pastoral epistles (I and II Timothy and Titus), and the third part is an exegetical and theological study of Hebrews.

Recommended Prerequisites: THBS101 Gospels, THBS206 New Testament Early Epistles, THBL201 Greek 1


Theological Studies:

 

THTS101 Bible Doctrines

Credit Value 3

A study of the major biblical teachings as understood by the Seventh-Day Adventists.

 THTS201 Adventist Theology

 Credit Value 3

A study of soteriology and distinctive Adventist doctrines, such as the Sabbath, second coming, judgment, sanctuary, eschatology, and anthropological conditionalism.

Recommended Co-requisites: THCH205 Ellen White: Life and Writings

Prerequisite: THCH203 Adventist Heritage

 

 

Historical Studies

 

THCH203 Adventist Heritage

Credit Value 3

A study of the heritage and development of the beliefs, practices, and organization of the Seventh-day Adventist Church tracing its roots in Europe and America, and highlighting the Adventist Movement as a continuation of the Reformation.  The subject will focus on: (1) early Adventist development history and theological concepts; (2) the role, function, and contribution of Ellen White; (3) it will be shown how old discussions and key historical insights and contextual understandings can help us reach valid conclusions today.

Recommended Prerequisites: THBS101 Gospels & THTS101 Bible Doctrines.

 THCH204 Pacific Church History 

 Credit Value 3

A study of the background, development, impact and prospects of Christian missions in the South Pacific region with a focus on the following mission agencies: the London Missionary Society, Anglican, Lutheran, Methodist, South Seas Evangelical Mission, Roman Catholic, and Seventh-day Adventist.

Prerequisite: THCH236 Later Church History, THCH235 Early Church History

 THCH205 Ellen White: Life and Writings

 Credit Value 3

A study of the writings of Ellen White in the context of her life and times, with the aim of developing a valid hermeneutic for understanding the writings and a framework for dealing with questions that have arisen concerning her life and work.

 Recommended Co-requisite: TS362.2 Adventist Theology

Prerequisite: THCH203 Adventist Heritage.

 THCH235 Early Church History

 Credit Value 3

A study of the major developments and controversies of the Christian church from apostolic times to the Renaissance, with emphasis on key personalities and theological trends. Topics examined include Trinitarian and christological debates, the pelagian controversy, the development of monasticism, the rise of the papacy, the crusades, the split between the church in the east and west, and the personalities and movements that foreshadowed the Reformation.

Recommended Prerequisites:  THBS101 Gospels & THTS101 Bible Doctrines.

 THCH202 Later Church History

 Credit Value 3

A study of the major developments and controversies of the Christian church from the Reformation to the twentieth century, with emphasis on key personalities and theological trends.  Topics examined include the immediate historical background of the Reformation, the classical reformers, the radical reformation, the Catholic counter-reformation, the English reformation, American revivalism, the rise of denominationalism, the fundamentalism-modernist split, and the impact of Vatican II and ecumenism.

Recommended Prerequisite:  THCH235 Early Church History.

 

Pastoral Studies

 

THPM101 Health & Family

Credit Value 3

A study of family dynamics and the mental, physical, spiritual and social well-being of the individual.  This subject covers such issues as inter-personal communication, conflict resolution, stress management, self-concept and lifestyle choices in the context of key life transition points and accompanying health issues.

 THPM102 Homiletics

 Credit Value 3

The theory and practice of both voice production and sermon preparation. As well as the techniques of speech delivery, study is given to various types of public presentation, ensuring both logical argument and edifying content.

 THPM104 Local Church Administration

 Credit Value 3

A study of issues in leadership, organisation, and administering of the local church, as outlined in the Seventh-day Adventist Church Manual.

 THPM105  Spiritual Formation

 Credit Value 3

This course focuses on developing the personal devotional life of the pastor, as various spiritual disciplines are examined and practised.  Different historical movements in the area of spirituality are noted, and the factors that lead to the spiritual development of children and youth are explored.

 THPM201  Youth Ministry

 Credit Value 3

A study of the theology of youth ministry.  The course will cover the need for a special ministry for youth, the organisation of youth in the church, developmental theory from the ages of 10-30 (particular attention is paid to faith development), small group theory, and how youth learn.  The assessment of youth needs and appropriate programming to meet those needs will be explored.

 THPM203 Evangelism

 Credit Value 3

The principles and practice of evangelism, with a focus  on evangelism as mandate and process, on evangelistic strategies, the similarities and differences between public and personal evangelism, the psychology of decision-making, the preparation of candidates for baptism, and on the integration of new members into the church.

Recommended Prerequisite:  THWM201 Church Growth.

 THPM204 Pastoral Care and Psychology

 Credit Value 3

A study of the role of the pastor-evangelist, with special emphasis on time management, pastoral psychology and counselling and including a study of the Manual for Ministers and special services of the church, such as child dedication, baptism, communion, youth and pre-marriage counselling, weddings, funerals and grief management.

Prerequisites: THWM201 Church Growth

 THPM208  Teaching Skills for Pastors

 Credit Value 3

A practical introduction to the teaching-learning process for pastors engaged in a variety of teaching responsibilities in the local church, school and administrative settings.  Individual differences in the learner will be explored as a basis for choosing a variety of teaching strategies. Basic teaching skills such as planning, reinforcement, explaining, questioning, variability and classroom management will be practiced. Students will also participate in a weekly teaching laboratory.

 THWM101 World Religions

 Credit Value 3

A survey of the history and beliefs of the main religions in the Pacific Region.  This includes the main Christian denominations, the Christian cults, and some of the main non-Christian religions of Oceania.

 THWM201 Church Growth

 Credit Value 3

The principles and practice of church-centred growth in the Seventh-day Adventist Context, with a focus on discipleship, spiritual gifts, the role of the laity, the principles of Christian worship, and the relationship between the church and its community, and the role of small groups.

 THWM202 Cross Cultural Ministry

 Credit Value 3

An introductory study of cultural anthropology, with emphasis on its pastoral and evangelistic implications for the South Pacific.  Topics covered include the role of worldview, the process of culture change, syncretism vs. and indigenisation, cross cultural communication, and socio-cultural systems across the Region.

Co-requisite: THCH204 Pacific Church History.

Practicum

THPR101 Pacific Ministry                                                                               Credit Value 3

This practicum is designed for students to work under the supervision of a pastor in the field.  It familiarises the student with a specific local church and all its operations and functions.  Regular reports are made on the basis of observations.  Leading out in any aspect of the local church is not a requirement but is an option.  The theory behind this practicum is all the first semester subjects.

THPR201 Church Centered Evangelism                                                        Credit Value 3

This practicum is designed identical to the requirements in Practicum I with the exception that students report on activities in which they have taken a leading role.  Subjects in the first 3 semesters are the theory behind this practicum.

THPR202 Public Evangelism                                                                           Credit Value 3

This practicum is designed and consists of a five week evangelistic campaign conducted under the supervision of a Theology Lecturer together with an evangelist.  Of the five weeks, one week is designed for preparation for the event, three weeks public evangelism, and one week as follow-up after the event.

CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT

To maintain the Bachelor of Arts in Theology degree program up-to-date and relevant, the following steps are taken:

∙        Survey of alumni

∙        Survey of employers’ expectations and satisfaction

∙        Feedback obtained annually from new graduates of the program and this information is used to improve the curriculum.

∙        Consultation with the External Advisors and Examiners

∙        A curriculum revision will be done every five years.