Course Descriptions

Below are course descriptions for the MATSIL program taken from the SBTS catalog.

At least half of the degree (24 hours) must be taken at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary’s main campus in Louisville, Kentucky. This rule is necessary in order to satisfy accreditation requirements.

All students must take Cooperative Program and if necessary, Written Communication (see Written Communication Requirements in the Academic section of the SBTS catalog).


Remedial/Pre-requisite Courses

31980 Written Communication (if required) (2 hours)
This course is designed to equip students to improve their writing style and develop a sense of confidence, a degree of competence, and a set of criteria for evaluating their own writing and the writing of others. The semester will include a review of the basic mechanics of writing (grammar, punctuation, etc.), a review of composition skills, and an introduction to specific needs for writing in the seminary. A non-credit course.

42490 Cooperative Program (0 hours)
A study of the history, character, and purpose of the Cooperative Program. We will reflect on such matters as the basis and structure of cooperation, the most effective means to accomplish the Great Commission, and the central role of the Cooperative Program in Southern Baptist missionary efforts. This course can be completed in 6-8 hours of work.

Scripture and Interpretation

20190 Survey of the Old Testament (3 hours)
This course will feature a survey of the Old Testament in English Bible, an exposure to relevant introductory issues, and some exposure to critical issues. Note: This course is for students enrolled in the MATSIL degree program only.

22100 Biblical Hermeneutics (3 hours)
A study of the history of the English Bible, the goal of biblical interpretation, the presuppositions involved in the interpretation, the means of arriving at the meaning of ancient texts along with its present-day implications, and the formation of the New Testament canon.

22190 Survey of the New Testament (3 hours)
This course will feature a survey of the New Testament in English Bible, an exposure to relevant introductory issues, and some exposure to critical issues. Note: This course is for students enrolled in the MATSIL degree program only.

Theology and Tradition

26200 The Southern Baptist Heritage (3 hours)
A study of cultural, theological, ethical and institutional factors which have shaped Southern Baptists.

27000 Survey of Systematic Theology (3 hours)
A survey of the whole corpus of systematic theology, covering the doctrines of revelation and Scripture, God, humanity, sin, Christ, the Holy Spirit, salvation, the church and last things.

Great Commission Ministries

30960 Intercultural Communication (3 hours)
Study of elements operative upon individuals, groups, organizations, and larger societal units as they attempt to communicate in an intercultural context. Emphasis is upon increase of fidelity and effectiveness of intercultural communication.

OR

33000 Cultural Anthropology (3 hours)
This course explores the various cultures of people groups and methodologies for understanding and interacting with them. It addresses areas such as ethnography, ethnology, animistic cultures and ethnicity issues within various societies. Included are in-depth studies of diverse manifestations of culture and cultural practices of various people groups. This course presents the important concepts, methodologies and theories in the field of cultural anthropology while considering a wide variety of cultures in various geographic and historical contexts.

32100 Personal Evangelism (3 hours)
A study of personal evangelism designed to equip the minister to train others in a variety of skills related to personal evangelism. This required course cannot be satisfied through transfer credit.

32960 Introduction to Missiology (3 hours)
An evaluation of missiological thought with a view to developing a contemporary theology of mission: the what, why, and how of missions.

Directed Electives
(Choose 24 hours from the following):

30960 Intercultural Communication (3 hours)
Study of elements operative upon individuals, groups, organizations, and larger societal units as they attempt to communicate in an intercultural context. Emphasis is upon increase of fidelity and effectiveness of intercultural communication.

32750 History of Christian Missions (3 hours)
An intensive study of the worldwide expansion of Christianity from apostolic times to the present.

32860 Biblical Basis of Christian Missions (3 hours)
A missiological study of the Old and New Testament, with special attention being focused on socio-human issues of justice and liberation, and salvific themes of redemption and spiritual renewal, as these relate to the mission of God, the mission of human societies, and the mission of the church.

32980 World Religions and the Christian Faith (3 hours)
An evaluatory study and appreciation of methods and approaches of third world Christians in their dialogical interaction with the missiological concerns for peoples of other faiths.

33000 Cultural Anthropology (3 hours)
A sociological study of the institution of culture. The purpose is to enable students to understand their own culture and prepare them to relate to persons of another culture and to share the Gospel therein.

33010 Communication in Oral Cultures (3 hours)
This course concentrates upon effective interaction with cultures of “primary oral learners”; i.e., preliterate people groups that are further characterized by a relational approach to life and non-linear, non-abstract thought patterns. The course seeks to prepare students to communicate with, teach, and interact with preliterate oral culture people groups in culturally appropriate ways utilizing narrative and oral tradition communication patterns.

33020 Leadership in Intercultural Contexts (3 hours)
A study of the nature of leadership, primarily in international contexts. Substantial attention is given to various character qualities and leadership competencies necessary for effectiveness in cross-cultural interaction. This course is also designed to deal with issues related to developing and equipping new leadership. It also deals with the processes and procedures related to advanced strategic planning and team work.

33060 Field Seminar in Church Planting (3 hours)
An off-campus learning experience in which students will participate in new church starts under the direction of a professor and a mentor on the field. The experience may be either in North America or abroad. As a component of this course, IMB students will complete Strategy Coordinator training. NAMB students must be involved in church planting work in North America.

33100 Principles and Practice of Missions (3 hours)
A study of the home and foreign missionary, qualifications for service, methods and types of mission work and contemporary developments and problems that affect Christian missions. This course is typically offered concurrently with FPO for IMB missionaries.

33150 Regional/Area Study in Missions (3 hours)
An analysis of the cultural environment, religious heritage, and the structure of Southern Baptist missions in a specific geographic region of the world. Emphasis will be given to needs and opportunities for missions service on this field.

33410 Language Learning for Missionaries (3 hours)
This course is a specialized course for students in intercultural ministries. The course will be field based, that is, the course will be taught on an international mission field. The course of study will be supervised by a member of the missions department, but the actual teaching will be provided by missionaries and nationals designated by the International Mission Board or other mission agency. The purpose of the course is to enable the student to speak at a basic level in the target culture. This course is exclusively for students starting the study of a new language.

33420 Cultural Acquisition for Missionaries (3 hours)
This course is a specialized course for students in intercultural ministries. The course will be field based, that is, the course will be taught on an international mission field. The course of study will be supervised by a member of the missions department, but the actual teaching will be provided by the International Mission Board or other mission agency. The purpose of the course is to teach students to function appropriately in their target cultures. This course is exclusively for students starting the study of a new culture.

33477 Studies/Topics in Missions (3 hours)
Selected studies in specialized areas within this discipline, as designed by a professor and offered with administrative approval.

33600 Major Living World Religions (3 hours)
A phenomenological and evaluatory study of African Traditional Religions, Native American Religions, the Religions of Southeast Asia, the Orient, and the Middle East, with attention to contemporary religious pluralism within the processes of modernization and secularization.

33820 Introduction to Church Planting (3 hours)
This course is a study of the principles of planting new churches, with a focus on planting churches in North America. The course will survey biblical materials pertaining to church planting emphasizing the practical implementation of these principles. Students will learn about various approaches to church planting and the resources available from associations, state conventions, and the North American Mission Board.

33830 Contextualized Church Planting (3 hours)
This course is a study of church planting in cross-cultural contexts. The course will expose the students to the anthropological, sociological, and missiological factors that affect church planting across cultures. Students will also be exposed to resources that aid church planters in their work.

33840 Models of Church Planting (3 hours)
This is an advanced course in church planting. The goal will be the integration of biblical, missiological, sociological, and anthropological insights and the application of these to the task of church planting. Class members will discover, develop, and present case studies of actual church planting situations. Prerequisite: 33820.

33860 Strategic Planning for Church Starts (3 hours)
This course is an advanced course in church planting. The goal will be the integration of biblical, missiological, sociological, and anthropological insights and the application of these principles to the development of a strategic church starting plan. During the class, members will develop and present a strategic plan for an actual church plant. This course requires personal participation in a church plant as pastor or core group member. The class is only offered in summer/January terms. Prerequisite: 33820. Students taking this course must be involved in or beginning their church planting work.

35040 Leadership and Family Ministry (3 hours)
This course provides an overview of congregational leadership and organization of ministries designed to evangelize and disciple families. Theological, cultural, and practical issues related to ministry to children, teenagers, college students, singles, married couples, and senior adults will be addressed, with particular attention to how each of these aspects contributes to an overall congregational strategy of effective family discipleship.

Students affiliated with the North American Mission Board must take the following 12 hours as part of their directed electives:

33060 Field Seminar in Church Planting (3 hours)
An off-campus learning experience in which students will participate in new church starts under the direction of a professor and a mentor in the field. The experience may be either in North America or abroad. Permission of the professor is required.

33820 Introduction to Church Planting (3 hours)
This course is a study of the principles of planting new churches, with a focus on planting churches in North America. The course will survey biblical materials pertaining to church planting emphasizing the practical implementation of these principles. Students will learn about various approaches to church planting and the resources available from associations, state conventions, and the North American Mission Board.

33840 Church Planting Methodologies (3 hours)
This is an advanced course in church planting. The goal will be the integration of biblical, missiological, sociological, and anthropological insights and the application of these to the task of church planting. Class members will discover, develop, and present case studies of actual church planting situations. Prerequisite: 33820.

33860 Strategic Planning for Church Starts (3 hours)
This course is an advanced course in church planting. The goal will be the integration of biblical, missiological, sociological, and anthropological insights and the application of these principles to the development of a strategic church starting plan. During the class, members will develop and present a strategic plan for an actual church plant. This course requires personal participation in a church plant as pastor or core group member. The class is only offered in summer/January terms. Prerequisite: 33820. Students taking this course must be involved in or beginning their church planting work.