Broad Minds and Big Hearts

Desiring God | 2/21/2019 | Joe Rigney
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At Bethlehem College & Seminary, where I teach, the primary goal for our students’ education is not technical or professional, is not merely career or skills oriented, but is rather aimed at shaping a certain kind of person for a lifetime. To that end, we teach not only Scripture and theology, but also history, literature, and philosophy.

One way to express the vision for our college, and liberal-arts programs like ours, is this: We aim to educate students who graduate as mature adults rooted in the Scriptures, enriched by the humanities, and passionate for God’s global glory in Christ. Or, to put it another way, the aim of our college is Christian discipleship, the formation of mature Christian adults.

Arts - Humanities - Scripture - Education - Lordship

Why emphasize the liberal arts and humanities alongside Scripture? Because a liberal-arts education, received under the lordship of Christ, uniquely prepares students to live as broad-minded, big-hearted Christians in the home, the church, and the world.

Begin with the individual student. In an age of extended adolescence, a liberal-arts program like ours does not aim to entertain boys and girls but to establish stable men and women in faith through challenge. Generally speaking, most incoming students at Bethlehem College have a good grounding in Christian belief and practice. While they are by no means perfect in either, most of them tend to come from good Christian homes and churches that have done a decent job of grounding them in the faith before they arrive at our doors. Thus, our college students tend to have assumptions about Christian belief and practice that we largely, if not completely, agree with.

Education - Effects - Curriculum - Students - Assumptions

What then do they gain from their education? One of the effects of our curriculum on students is to challenge many of their (good and biblical) assumptions. In other words, the aim is to subject the students’...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Desiring God
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