Getting a Masters in Theology

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by mattjtayl, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. mattjtayl

    mattjtayl
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    Right now my girlfriend and I are studying the bible daily and for the amount of time and effort I have put in it I probably could get a masters in theology. I been thinking recently why not be more productive with my time and actually make something of all this added knowledge. I already am in a masters program to get a masters in Special Education, but I spend most of my leisure time studying the bible and maybe only 10% of my time actually being committed to my classes and I been getting A's in Grad school so I don't see how pursuing two masters at the same time would hurt. I was working as a computer programmer, but now I am substitute teaching to get teaching experience and as a substitute teacher taking evening classes or adjusting my schedule when need be is no big deal.

    I really don't have plans to be a minister right now, my goal is to to be a full time Special Education teacher someday and continue to do contract computer programming jobs on the side for extra cash. If I did any ministering it would probably be on a volunteer basis occasionally when I had the time for it. It might be helping with a youth group or a support group. I was thinking pursuing an online masters program in theology would be my better option then trying to take theology classes at another college. This wouldn't conflict with my current classes I am taking now. Online would also probably be cheaper and more flexible.

    Does anyone know of any online masters programs in theology they would recommend?
     
  2. Plain Old Bill

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    MTh programs vary in length and content. The good programs are 4 years and heavy in languages.
    Most good schools will limit the amount of language studies you can do off campus.
     
  3. preachinjesus

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    While I applaud your study time, I did have to chuckle a bit at the credulity of your statement. A Masters in Theology is a serious research degree.

    Are you called to pursue a ThM or is it a sudden proclivity?

    One might suggest the greatest lesson from the Scriptures is the humility that comes with education and personal study. How have you been applying the teachings you've been studying? How have they impacted your life?

    Personally I'd suggest the B.H. Carroll Institute for you. You seem to have the drive and desire to put your efforts towards academics and it is a great institution. (I sat under a great number of their faculty and know they are world class educators)

    If you want a super cheap route (i.e. free) check out iTunesU and the free seminary courses from Reformed Theological Seminary, Corcordia, and others. Really good stuff there...but no course credit. :)
     
  4. blackbird

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    Matt

    I am moving this thread to the Pastoral forum

    You will get a better response from there

    By the way------try Luther Rice Seminary for your Masters-------all online

    www.lru.edu
     
  5. Plain Old Bill

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    Luther Rice has no language studies BA thru DMin,:praying:
     
  6. EdSutton

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    The aforementioned Luther Rice, Liberty, and Southern Evangelical are three institutions of good repute that all have degrees that are partially (or fully) available on-line. In this day and age, there are some others, as well, I'm sure.

    And depending on where you actually are in IN, you might even want to consider "on campus" studies at either Southern Baptist Seminary, in Louisville, or Grace College and Seminary in Winona Lake. Or you might check out Taylor University, as well. I'm not sure what they have, along these lines, but do have a close friend that is the Men's Basketball Coach and AD for one of their campuses. Incidentally, they happened to win the National Title in Basketball, a couple of years ago in their Division..

    As with the on-line institutions, there are likely more, that are worthwhile here, that I am not aware of.

    Let me suggest you save yourself the effort and expense of trying to do this "on the cheap", however. There are many out there that truly "would be cheap at half the price" and the identities of which pop up on these pages, on a fairly regular basis.

    If you are merely doing this for some 'personal enjoyment' that might not be as applicable, however.

    Ed
     
    #6 EdSutton, Feb 24, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 24, 2009
  7. TomVols

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    Bumped to appropriate forum
     
  8. EdSutton

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    To my recollection, this is the first time I've seen a thread moved two different times. :tongue3:

    And we're not off page one, no less! :laugh: :laugh:

    Ed
     
  9. webdog

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    Say something sexual in nature, and we can make it 3! :)
     
  10. Siberian

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    A ThM is a Master of Theology, and I doubt that is what the OP had in mind with Masters in theology degree - but probably a masters degree in a theological/biblical studies field.

    To the OP: There are plenty of good online Master programs out there, such as MACS, etc.. As others have said, check out Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary and/or Luther Rice. They are the two most affordable options and their programs are strong.
     
  11. mattjtayl

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    Hey great idea thanks !

    I am not looking for the cream of the crop academic institution for a MS in Theology or seminary studies. This isn't a career, just something extra I want to do for fun. So doing it cheaply, at home, and at my convenience is much more important to me then how highly praised the institution is. I realize there is a little difference in curriculum depending if it is a masters in Divinity vs a masters in Theology. Both look great to me and will get me what I am looking for. I am not planning to become a pastor or change careers with this. This is really just something on the side and later in life I might help on a volunteer basis with a youth or an adult ministry group in the church. How Stellar the curriculum or institution is the least of my concerns. Just as long as it is credible and I can learn something from it.
     
  12. webdog

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    Have you looked into Nations University? $100 a year if you live in the US
     
  13. Havensdad

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    And what a ridiculous rule. There are dozens of famous theologians I could name, that taught themselves Greek, Hebrew, and even Latin, without the benefit of technology that we have today. The idea that somehow wasting your time sitting in a classroom, socializing, instead of diligent study, is in any way helpful, is just nuts.

    These kinds of rules are made by a bunch of older men, who are stuck in their ways, and dislike change. With communication technology being advanced as it is (E-mails, cell phones, teleconferencing, etc.) there is no reason why degrees should not be completed from Bachelor's to Doctorate, completely through distance ed.
     
  14. paidagogos

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    More to education.................

    There is much more to a seminary education than just academics. How does one compensate for the personal interaction with the class and professor via DE? There are character and spiritual dimensions here as well. Did not Christ speak of a pupil being like his teacher? Was he speaking of the academic factors or something else? I'm not sure that we have found a way of communicating this personal, intangible aspect of the teacher-student relationship via DE. There are things that technology cannot replicate from the face-to-face teaching. So, this is a rather naive view.
     
  15. Havensdad

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    Actually, scripturally speaking, your own is the naive view. YES, Seminary is just academic. In regards to character, spiritual dimensions etc., where does the Bible say you are supposed to be getting this from? seminary? Nope.

    We get this from our local Pastor and Deacons/elders/Sunday school teachers, fellow Christians, etc. As a professor friend of mine, who was mentoring me (now currently a Pastor), who holds a doctorate from Golden Gate told me, you do not learn anything about being a pastor from seminary. You learn how to study scripture, including the languages, etc. He said, and I quote, "Everything I learned about being a pastor, I learned from my pastor". That's how it should be.

    Biblically, that is where our spiritual development, fellowship, etc. should be coming from. "Interaction" in seminary, can hinder you FAR more than it can help. I cannot count the number of young men who have had their faith left in shambles from the so-called "interaction" in seminary.

    This is ESPECIALLY true of academic degrees such as MTh DTh, etc. The argument you make, is the same one made against home-schoolers: yet time and again, the home-schoolers out perform their "interacting" counterparts, usually by quite a bit.

    There is NO reason that a doctorate from a distance ed. school is in an way inferior, and in fact, in some cases, it is superior.
     
  16. TCGreek

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    I quite agree.

    Yes, several professor friends of mine have argued the same. Btw, professors from noteworthy seminaries (I know how picky we are around here).
     
  17. Siberian

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    Well said.
     
  18. Martin

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    mattjtayl,

    First I think you need to consider "why" you want to get a graduate degree. Why not just study the Bible and maybe teach a Bible study or Sunday School class? Both of those ministries are worthy and neither require a graduate degree.

    Second if you are really interested in earning a graduate degree in theology I would suggest you do Liberty University's Master of Arts in Theological Studies. It is only a 36 hour degree program (far less than the M.A.R. or MDiv). Liberty offers this degree online: CLICK HERE.
     
  19. PilgrimPastor

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    All good posts. As someone who possesses the degree I would highly recommend one of Liberty's on line M.A.R. Degrees. They now offer more than just the Church Ministry concentration that I earned with them on line. The above suggestion for the M.A.T. degree from Liberty might be the way to go. If you ever did decide to pursue ministry this would be a good foundation for earning the M.Div. or in many settings the M.A. would be very much adequate.
     
  20. paidagogos

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    Bad information............

    It would appear that emotion conflicted with rationality and I'm not sure what to credit to what. First of all, it is pretty much an inanity to say, "Actually, scripturally speaking, your own is the naive view." This is repartee, not rational argument. Why? How do you know? I called your view "naive" because it was overly simplified and generalized. Furthermore, it does not square with sound educational theory, practice and experience. The discussion over DE delivery has been long and intense. The issues that I raised have been thoughtfully considered, discussed, and debated since the beginnings of the alternative education movement in the 1960-70's. To brush them away with generalizations and opinion is to show ignorance and lack of understanding. Hence, I used the term "naive."

    Secondly, you are speaking and making absolute statements about generalities, which are almost sure to be wrong with numerous exceptions. For example, you are wrong about home schooling. As a professional educator, I know a few shining home-school successes, but I can cite many times more home-school failures in matters of academics and personal/spiritual growth and development. You are repeating something that simply is not true in the real world. (Furthermore, if you are depending on Dr. Ray's supposed research, I can categorically say that it's a piece of trash--it's pseudo-research.) I am not opposed to home schooling but most practitioners just don't have it down pat.

    Thirdly, regarding DE degrees, one part of education, IMHO, is the ability to articulate, discuss, and defend one's ideas in a forum of peers. How is this accomplished in DE with no colloquiums or other face-to-face meetings? Texting and messaging is not quite the same spontaneous exchange of face-to-face and person-to-person. On the other hand, I am very much pro-DE (it is one areas of my work and interest) but I recognize the limitations and problems. I have been reading, studying, and thinking about this for three decades. One just can't brush away the relative weaknesses with glowing generalities.


    Also, your take on seminary is a stereo-type of a liberal, unbelieving seminary. It depends on the the seminary. A good Fundamental Baptist seminary does not destory a young man's faith, it enhances it. I've heard the old wives tales too, but I've been out there and know that these are not true. There are good Bible-believing seminaries.

    Finally, you are attributing some teachings to Scripture that just aren't there. By invoking Biblical authority, you must demonstrate that this is what the Scripture actually teaches. How do you know? Saying it doesn't make it so. There is no clear Biblical teaching, to the best of my knowledge that precludes spiritual and personal growth from the seminary classroom. This is your own idea, not God's. You are on thin theological ice here.


    I am not trying to be quarrelsome, but I can't let bad reasoning and wrong information fly unchallenged.

    Thank you for your time. I trust that you are not offended by the hurly-burly of grownup debate. No rancor on my part................
     
    #20 paidagogos, Feb 27, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 27, 2009

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