We want to be able to offer training to everyone in your church, from the brand new follower of Jesus to the aspiring church planter. Therefore, we have broken up the training into the two following categories:
Flexible short courses for church members, small group leaders, interns, and elders who want to keep being equipped for discipleship and ministry.
A competency-based curriculum completed in the context of the local church. This training is designed for church planters, aspiring church leaders, specialist ministry leaders or those desiring to go further with theology and practice.
Our Foundation material is flexible short courses for church members, small group leaders, interns and elders who want to keep being equipped for discipleship and ministry. The Foundation courses give you an understanding of how the Bible affects heart change in the context of community and mission, as you develop a ‘gospel instinct’ for everyday life.
All courses are recommended to be taken with a Study Group. If you need to take it as an individual, please contact us.
The Foundation material is composed of 28 modules:
Traditionally, men and women have left the local church to go to a seminary in order to be trained for vocational ministry. While this approach has helped the church to arrive where she is, we believe that there is a significant partnership that can be made between the seminary and the local church.
This program trains Christians to live on mission, enabling them to plant a church or be a fruitful member of a church planting team or church. Students undertaking this competency-based education will receive formation in understanding, character, and skills. The program is designed around competencies identified by Acts 29 as essential to church planters, yet is flexible enough to prepare Christians for pastoral or other types of vocational ministry. This program is also implemented in context, so students can continue to serve their churches and communities while being trained. The entire process can be completed three years part-time.
This sequential version of the program lays out the training pathway so that students acquire and demonstrate competencies starting from those all Christians should have, up through those needed for small group leaders, for elders, and lastly for those who will work in vocational ministry (such as church planting).
Furthermore, students can earn a Masters of Arts in Biblical Leadership from Northwest Seminary by completing this program with all necessary requirements. You will receive an academic coach and a pastoral coach as you walk through this program.
For more information on this option please contact us.
Here is a summary of the twelve courses:
Spiritual vitality is God’s gift of a new heart made in the image of Christ, a new heart that presses the Christian into a new way of life. This course draws on biblical signs of that new life to shape the student toward a strong, stable, and close relationship with God. Such a relationship is a necessary precondition of leading others toward knowing the Lord. Students will gain an understanding of their relationship to the Holy Spirit, and will acquire habits of studying God’s word, praying regularly, fasting, showing love to others in practice through the Spirit, and more.
Disciple making is the process by which followers of Jesus teach others to obey Jesus’ commands and thereby take on his image. This process is an essential task of all Christians in leadership positions. This course will help students to grasp how the gospel connects to all of life, and will lead students to develop a workable system for developing disciples and to prove its efficacy in practice.
Marriage and family relationships are healed, strengthened, and protected by the grace of God given in the gospel, so that Christian homes can reflect the relationship God wants to have with his people as a whole, the church. This course will give students a gospel-centred understanding of what a redeemed Christian marriage and family looks like, as well as practice in living out that vision in areas such as personal interactions, finances, and even spiritual warfare.
A missional lifestyle is a way of living such that sharing the good news of Jesus with non-Christians occurs naturally and regularly. This lifestyle flows out of an understanding of the church as having a mission by its nature, and of the context such that the gospel can be communicated in an understandable way. It also will naturally influence others toward living the same kind of lifestyle. This course is designed to help students understand the missional nature of the church and their own context, and to start living this kind of life in practice.
Maturity is the state of being fully developed, and Christian maturity means being stable in doctrine, emotions, and purpose, through finding identity in Christ and the gospel. This course will give students opportunities to become more fully developed in their Christian identity by growing in an understanding of the character qualities of elders, carrying out leadership responsibilities, giving and receiving challenge, as well as through other practical tasks and disciplines.
Relationships characterised by love, unity, and humility are the inevitable fruit of God’s saving act in human hearts. They are essential to formation into Christ’s likeness, and they are a sign of God’s reality to the world. This course will teach students what these types of relationships should look like, how to care for each other in different and difficult circumstances, and it will give students opportunities to make these truths regular practices in their lives.
Theological clarity is the understanding of God given through the revelation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This course provides students with the knowledge of who God is, how he saves us, and how these doctrines relate to their context and to their practical lives. Students will learn about theology proper, Christology, soteriology, eschatology, and practice how to teach in a manner consistent with the gospel, leading to transformed lives.
The ability to teach is the capacity, through dependence upon the Holy Spirit, to make others understand the Bible as centred on Christ. Elders especially must have this capacity, but all Christians must also be able to understand the scriptures and at times communicate their meaning to others. This course will give students an understanding of how to properly interpret the Bible, of what its contents are, of how to teach it in an objective-based and Spirit-dependent way, and of how to adapt the delivery of the message to different audiences.
Leadership of others requires an understanding of how to organize people and resources effectively. For a Christian in leadership, these activities will flow from belief in the gospel and its implications for life. This course will help students to steward resources as gifts from God and serve others in practice, to design and implement a leadership development system, and gain experience in church services as well as with the financial, legal, and administrative supports to gospel ministry.
Entrepreneurial aptitude is the ability and tendency to innovate, enabling effective leadership in changing circumstances. In a Christian context this means being apt to find new ways of carrying out the mission and ministry of the church. This course will give students an introduction to the principles and methods of entrepreneurship, and opportunity to put these into practice numerous times and for an extended period of time.
Conviction is the strong confidence in the truth about God that compels gospel proclamation and ministry. Commendation is others’ recognition that a person’s professed conviction to carry out that ministry is truly from God. This course gives students the opportunity to learn how to express their conviction in a persuasive and strategic way such that they will be commended by others toward their ministry.
Leadership of others requires finding a vision and the ability to motivate others toward its realization. For a Christian in leadership, these activities will flow from belief in the gospel and its implications for life. This course will help students to grasp a gospel-centered understanding of leadership, to actually develop and cast a vision that others find compelling, and to lead toward a vision despite obstacles.