Student Notebook- Includes student notes that follow the presentation slides, along with syllabus, case studies, scripture memorization sheets, and bibliography.
Class PowerPoint- Available for purchase and immediate download. The course PowerPoint presentation contains over 400 slides with extensive teacher's notes including session objectives, explanation of the slides, suggested illustrations, and in depth information concerning the subjects. The PowerPoint?s are primarily created for teachers, but can benefit the student as well. Learn more...
Vocabulary Quizzes- There are two vocabulary quizzes. Quiz 1 is to be taken at the end of session 6 and quiz 2 at the end of session 10. These are to be graded by teachers of The Theology Program in their home church setting. Self-study students may also take the quizzes on their own for personal enrichment.
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Watch classroom video lessons online...click on class session titles below for streaming video
What is God? How should he be defined? What is the difference between the Christian view of God and that of other religions? Often these pivotal questions are left unanswered, leaving no foundation for the rest of ones theology of God. During the course of this session, the student should be convinced of the need for believers to clearly define what the Christian conception of God is according to the theistic worldview. Much time will be spent comparing the theistic understanding of creation ex nihilo (“out of nothing”) to that of other worldviews. The student will come to an understanding that the Christian conception of God as the Uncaused Cause, Necessary Being, “That which nothing greater can be conceived” is rooted in philosophical theology that is necessitated by the reality of existence. Most basically, during this session the student will learn that all other worldview conceptions of God are not really “God” at all.
Can the finite comprehend the infinite? Can limited humans understand the unlimited God? Should we even attempt to study Him considering our limitations? There are many objections to the study of God. Many say that God cannot be known since He is infinite and we are finite. How can someone who is limited understand the unlimited God? Is this an endeavor in which the Christian should even attempt to embark? During this session, the student will learn the various objections given for the study of God. They will come to an understanding that while there are many things about God we cannot begin to understand or fathom, God can nevertheless be known. In other words, the student will learn that while we cannot come to know God fully, we can come to know Him truly.
Upon completion of this session, the student should have an understanding of the major arguments for the existence of God. The student will be challenged to answer the question “Why is there something rather than nothing?” learning that all responses other than “a self-existing God created all that there is” are insufficient and self-defeating. A detailed study of the cosmological, ontological, teleological, and moral arguments for God’s existence will be examined and critiqued. The student should also be convinced that the study of God’s existence is not merely profitable for apologetic purposes to those outside the faith, but is also profitable for discipleship purposes to those who already believe, making their faith grow stronger.
Session 4 - Incommunicable Attributes of God, Part 1
What makes God, God? What is the definition of God? What characteristics does God have that make Him worthy of the title God? Having now defined God philosophically as “that which above the arch,” this lesson will further examine what it means to be above the arch. The students will learn that God has attributes that necessarily are a part of “godness.” These attributes are often referred to as incommunicable attributes, since God cannot communicate them to man. Students should understand that God is God because of these incommunicable or necessary attributes, and that man cannot possess these attributes precisely because he is not God. Upon completion of this session, the student should be able to define what a philosophical definition of God entails. The student should also be convinced that any definition of God that lacks any of the characteristics/attributes that make God God fall short of qualifications demanded by an understanding of “the greatest conceivable being.”
Session 5 - Incommunicable Attributes of God, Part 2
Does God change? Can God change? If not, why does He change His mind in the Scriptures? Is God everywhere? If so, how is this different than pantheism? This session is a continuation of the last session on defining what makes God, God. Upon completion of this session, the student should have a better understanding of the incommunicable attributes of immutability, omnipresence, and aseity. The student will struggle through some challenging passages that seem to present God as changing according to circumstances. Is this a real change in God’s being (ontological change)? Or is it a change in reaction to people (functional or relational change)? The student will struggle with the common pantheistic view of God’s omnipresence held unwittingly by many in the Church today.
If God is love, can He also hate? If God is gracious, can He also be righteous? How do these characteristics relate to one another? Even more, if God is sovereign, how can man be free?Upon completion of these session, the student will have come to a better understanding of the concept of the communicable attributes of God. The attributes of omniscience, omnipotence, sovereignty, goodness, righteousness, love, and grace will all be defined and defended from Scripture. Particular attention will be given to the attribute or exercise of divine sovereignty, asking how God’s sovereignty affects man’s freedom. The session ends by giving a brief introduction to the Open Theist view of God as we wrestle with some of the text that are used by Open Theists suggesting that to God the future is “open,” not determined.
Session 7 - Doctrine of the Trinity: Historical Development
How can God be one yet thee? Did the early church believe in the doctrine of the Trinity? Was Christ created? The formal doctrine of the Trinity is a hallmark of orthodox Christianity. Like the Christian doctrine of salvation by grace through faith, this doctrine is totally unique to Christianity. Upon completion of the session the student will have struggled with the early Christians as the attempted to articulate what it means that the Father is God, Christ is God, the Holy Spirit is God, yet they all are not the same. The student will come to appreciate great Christians of the past and the ecumenical councils that attempted to defend this doctrine to skeptics. The student will become familiar with the common Trinitarian heresies of the past, understanding how they still affect peoples view of God in the present.
Session 8 - The Doctrine of the Trinity: Biblical Defense
Is the doctrine of the Trinity taught in the Old Testament? Is Christ God? What about when Christ said that the Father is greater than He is? What about when Christ is called the first born of all creation? Upon completion of this session, the student will have built a biblical foundation for the doctrine of the Trinity looking at the teachings of both the Old and New Testaments. The student will also learn a strong defense for the deity of Christ, recognizing that Christ was either a madman or the Lord of the universe. We will also struggle through some passages that seem to present problems to the doctrine of the Trinity and Christ’s deity. In short, the student should leave with a solid defense for the doctrine of the Trinity.
Session 9 - Christology: The Humanity of Christ in History
If Christ was man, how could He also be God? Was He part man and part God? Or was He a mixture of both? The answer to these question have defined Christological orthodoxy for the last two thousand years. Upon completion of this session, the student will struggled with the history of the Church as the attempt to understand exactly what it means that Christ is both God and man. The student will learn the various Christological heresies that arose in effort to reconcile the biblical teaching that Christ is God and man. The student will understand why Christ could not represent humanity if he was not fully man, and could not redeem humanity if He was not fully divine.
Session 10 - Christology: The Humanity of Christ in the Scriptures
What are the implications of Christ’s humanity in Scripture? Did Christ divest Himself of His divine attributes? If not, why didn’t He know the time of His coming? Could Christ have sinned? If not, were the temptations for real? These questions have caused great debate throughout the history of the Church. The student will enter into the struggle that these questions pose during the course of this session. Upon completion of this course, the student will be more aware of current issues in Christology.