Are Church Bible Colleges any better than diploma mills?

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by Plain Old Bill, Nov 18, 2004.

  1. Plain Old Bill

    Plain Old Bill
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    Seems like every little Baptist church on the planet is starting thier own Bible college.
     
  2. Squire Robertsson

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    Not neccessarily, I have in mind International Baptist College and Grad School in Tempe, AZ which is a ministry of Tri City Baptist and Calvary Baptist Theological Seminary which is a ministry of Calvary Baptist of Lansdale, PA. There are no doubt others I don't know of.
     
  3. gb93433

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    Don't you know their theology and practices are better than anyone else?
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    Most are ludicrous and pathetic shams of a real college, designed to keep $$ and WORKERS in the church and not off at a real school somewhere.

    Most seminaries grew from large church ministries. Most real colleges were collective programs of churches that realized the futility of everyone trying to have a "college" (and failing) of their own and instead worked together.
     
  5. Todd

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    What gets me is that a vast majority of the Independent Baptist brethren have received quasi-doctoral degrees from such institutions. I think there is great danger in these little non-accredited schools popping up everywhere. It is my opinion that someone could go through those schools, receive maybe even a doctoral degree, and never even be exposed to such thinkers as Francis Shaeffer, Norm Geisler, Wayne Grudem, and a host of others. Very sad.
     
  6. Pennsylvania Jim

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    Another big danger is that the anti-intellectualism that is rampant in Baptist circles will be further promoted.
     
  7. Todd

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    Jim, I agree with you. There is a tendency among some of the Independent brethren to label anything that doesn't belong to them as ecumenical and liberal. And you're right, that does tend to breed an "anti-intellectualism" that will lead one's education to be more concerned with personal bias than with quality academics.
     
  8. Pennsylvania Jim

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    That's why a person can be saved, and study hard for years as a layman (or even in many "real" Bible colleges), and think that anyone who is not a Dispensationalist is an apostate liberal.

    I'm not complaining about Dispensationalism per se, but I highly resent that for years I was mislead to think that it is the only possible position for anyone who truly loves Christ and His Word.

    But from another angle...

    My profession is in a highly technical field. That means that witnessing on the job is often to fairly intellectual people, and sometimes to atheists or agnostics (they seem to like math :confused: ). Our churdh had our annual
    Bible conference, and the speaker was a professor of music from a very conservative seminary. I was interested in discussing with him the possibility that the very existence of music is proof of a creator. I think it's very interesting, and would be a good discussion point with an atheist. His reply was that it's a waste of time to discuss things like that, just "give them Scripture and let it up to the Holy Spirit".

    Now, that sounded real spiritual. I don't want to minimize the necessity of God's Word and the power of the Holy Spirit to use it. But, I also am smart enough to know that if I simply drop a piece of "scripture candy" on my co-workers desk, he'll eat the candy, read the verse on the wrapper, and throw it in his trash can.

    If it were so simple, we don't need "professors" of music, or professors of anything else for that matter.
     
  9. Todd

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    PJ, well said, and quite funny too! "Scripture candy"...I'm still laughing.
     
  10. aefting

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    I think that professor of music was wrong. Paul used appeals to general revelation in his confrontation with unbelievers and I think your idea to discuss how music implies a creator is a great idea. I'm surprised that a music professor would not entertain such an idea. Eventually, you will need to get to Scripture but God has designed General Revelation to point to Himself -- no need to ignore it.

    Andy
     
  11. Pete Richert

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    What is your profession Pennsylvania Jim? I have found my different work enviorments to be very similar.
     
  12. Pennsylvania Jim

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    Pete,

    I work in electronic engineering, specifically RF and microwave device design.
     
  13. Pennsylvania Jim

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    Andy, thanks for the reply. Sometimes I think I must be nuts. I thought that of all people, a professor of music would welcome a chance to discuss this subject. Not so, in this case.
     
  14. pastorjeff

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    back to the topic. I am in favor of local churches training and sending out ministers. I have no problem with Bible Colleges and Seminaries, but it does not give us the excuse to leave out descipleship because we can send someone else to do the job. I am being trained both through the local churchand a Bible institute. I am pleased with the church I have been sent out of to take there charge to teach and train up young men in the faith seriously.
     
  15. Johnv

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    IMO, Bible Colleges are great.... so long as they are adequately accredited. However, they are not necessarily better or worse than other good accredited institutions.
     
  16. pastorjeff

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    I agree with other accredited institutions being of value, but accredidation does not make a school good. Going to an accredited school does not automatically make someone fit to lead the church. I am in favor of Formal education, but it is not the only means God uses to train up those He chooses for the ministry.
     
  17. Charles Meadows

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    Our church has a Bible study curriculum. One gets a certificate in biblical studies when he/she finishes it.

    I see nothing wrong with little "church bible colleges" as long as they are just that - programs to help the average believer in his/her study. The same with "degree mills". What's wrong with someone getting a diploma in biblical studies? Nothing. Good for him/her.

    I do have a problem with these types of institutions offering advanced degrees - because clearly they cannot have the academic rigor necessary for advanced study. But for some eager believers these little institutions are all they can afford.
     
  18. pastorjeff

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    Why would they not be able to have the " academic rigor necessary for advanced study."

    Does this automatically come with accredidation?
     
  19. Charles Meadows

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    Academic rigor...

    A doctoral degree should involve advanced study of an area. That doesn't just entail reading books by those of similar beliefs. A PhD in theology should have read extensively and interacted with current and recent scholarship - including the more liberal stuff. How can one have a comprehensive knowledge of theology and not have read some of Barth, Aquinas, Bultmann etc? Most little bible colleges won't even use any material that isn't strictly inerrantist in viewpoint.

    Now don't get me wrong - PhDs don't make one better or more Godly. I don't think the PhD degree is really tailored for pastors anyway. But still to get a doctoral degree one must do the work!

    And if a school cannot get accreditation that kind of implies that perhaps it isn't felt to be equipped adequately for offering a particular degree.
     
  20. Plain Old Bill

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    I agree with Charles Meadows.I think the form of recognition for achievement in thier studies is incorrectly applied.There should be some way to recognize the study and effort in a different way.

    First I think they should call themselves Bible Institutes and not colleges or seminaries.Second they should issue diplomas and not degrees.Once that is done it is just a matter of assigning the different levels of recognition at the institute level.
     

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