Friday, March 21, 2008

Free online Bible Institute for Asia, Africa and Latin America

How to enroll and qualify for the Certificate of Merit; interim curriculum (Foundations: Articles of Faith and Biblical distinctives of Baptists; Christology; Apologetics; World religions and cults; Understanding secular religions; Leadership; Creationism; Homiletics; Bible Interpretation; Dispensationalism; Great Doctrines of the Bible); exam procedures; core values; doctrinal distinctives; using this ministry as a discipleship tool; participating Bible schools; and online, interactive review quizzes for (1) Articles of Faith and (2) Biblical distinctives of Baptists

It is estimated that some 62% of pastors around the world do not have any formal theological training. (There are two million plus evangelical Christian churches in Asia, Africa, the former Soviet Union and Latin America.) To help equip pastors, lay leaders, church workers and tentmaker missionaries from Asia, Africa and Latin America, we are organizing this free online Bible Institute in cooperation with some churches and Bible colleges in the Philippines (please see bottom portion of this post) . This Institute will have three essential interlocking parts:

1. This blog will contain a comprehensive listing by category or topic of all available resources on the Internet like commentaries, dictionaries, concordances. podcasts, Internet radio programs, devotionals, discussions on theological topics, etc.

2. Online teaching and mentoring by active and retired pastors, missionaries and resource persons on various areas, through e-mail or chat.

3. Lessons will be posted on this blog and made freely available as downloads. These lessons will be guided by the following concept:

If a person has only one year to prepare in becoming a tentmaker missionary, or a pastor, ministry leader, Sunday School teacher or worker of a small church, what are the Bible doctrines and truths, and practical skills he must learn?
There are already numerous relevant resources on the Internet but these are primarily written for Western audiences with a high educational background. We are envisioning some 300-plus lessons written in easy English (simple vocabulary and sentence structures) for Asian and Africans pastors, ministry leaders, church workers, and Sunday School teachers with a limited educational background.

Using this ministry as a discipleship tool by churches

This online Bible Institute can also be a discipleship tool for pastors and churches. Ordinary church members usually obtain their knowledge of the Bible through the preaching, Sunday School and Bible studies. The problem is that no examinations are required in these activities. Anyone can listen to Bible teaching or read a book, and think that he or she has mastered the subject matter. However, it is only by taking and passing a rigorous exam that can test his or her comprehension and mastery of the subject matter. Pastors can thus encourage their members to enroll in the "New Believers Curriculum" (more on this below) so that they can have a systematic study of the Bible.

Pastors can also require any church member who wants to become a trustee or deacon, a ministry leader, a Sunday School teacher, etc. to enroll in this Institute and pass the examinations.

Online Bible Institute now functioning; Lessons for the main curriculum and New Believer's Curriculum

This blog (which is the most visible aspect of this ministry) already contains numerous links to tools and resources on the Internet like commentaries, dictionaries, concordances. podcasts, Internet radio programs, devotionals, discussions on theological topics, etc. Anyone (pastor, missionary, Bible student, etc) can right now freely make use of these online resources and tools. More links to useful resources will be added on a regular basis.

Interim curriculum

It will take about two to three years to complete the research, writing and editing of the envisioned 300 plus lessons. We will post the lessons on a piecemeal basis in both HTML and PDF versions. For the currently available lessons, please look for the links in the left-hand sidebar or surf to the index of lessons.

In the meantime, the following (based on existing resources on the Internet) will serve as the interim lessons, divided into ten subject areas (
Foundations: Articles of Faith and Biblical distinctives of Baptists; Christology; Apologetics; World religions and cults; Understanding secular religions; Leadership; Creationism; Homiletics; Hermeneutics; Dispensationalism; Great Doctrines of the Bible):

[1] Foundations
Articles of Faith
Biblical Distinctives of Baptists

(Note: Online, interactive review quizzes and activities for the Articles of Faith and the Biblical distinctives of Baptists are now available; after completing any quiz, you can immediately check your answers and score)
[2] Christology, from Jesus: A Biblical Defense of His Deity (study guides and online quizzes are now available)
Click here Chapter 1: Jesus Christ Is God
Chapter 2: Jesus Christ Possesses the Names and Titles of God
Chapter 3: Jesus Christ Possesses the Attributes of God
Chapter 4: Jesus Christ Possesses the Authority of God
Chapter 5: God Became Man in Jesus Christ
Chapter 6: We Have the Witness of the Early Church
Chapter 7: What Are Some Common Objections to the Deity of Christ?
Chapter 8: Is Jesus Christ Your Lord?
Chapter 9: How the Authors Discovered New Life in Jesus Christ

[3] Apologetics, from A Ready Defense (with study guides)

Click hereOld Testament prophecy fulfilled in history; How can you believe the miracles in the Bible? What about all those contradictions? Is the New Testament filled with myths? Was Jesus born of a virgin? The historicity of Jesus Messianic prophecies fulfilled in Jesus; The resurrection of Jesus; The Trilemma: Lord, Liar or Lunatic? Is Jesus both Messiah and God? Hinduism; Buddhism; Confucianism; Shintoism; Judaism; Islam; Agnosticism, Atheism and Secular Humanism; Jehovah's Witnesses; Mormonism; Other Popular Cults; The Occult; Satanism and Demon Possession; Astrology; False Prophets; The Authority of the Believer; Questions About God; Questions About Faith and Reason; Is the Christian experience just a delusion? Did you hear what happened to Saul? Martyrs and Confessors; Still changing lives

[4] World religions and cults
Click hereHandbook of Todays Religions (study guides and online, interactive quizzes on terms and definitions from world religions with automatic scoring are now available)

What is a Cult? The Characteristics of Cults; The Beliefs of Orthodox Christianity; Hare Krishna; Jehovah's Witnesses; Mormonism; Transcendental Meditation; Theosophy; EST; The Unification Church/ "Moonies"; Christian Science; Unity; Astrology; Hinduism; Jainism; Buddhism; Confucianism; Taoism; Shintoism; Zoroastrianism; Judaism; Islam; Sikhism; The Authority of the Believer

Click hereUnderstanding Secular Religions (study guides now available)

Atheism, Agnosticism, and Skepticism; Marxism; Secular Humanism; Existentialism

Leadership, from Ken Boa’s Reflections Ministries (study guides now available)
Practicing the Leadership Traits of God; Accountability; Change and Innovation; Communicating Vision; Communication Skills; Conflict Management; Decision Making; Double-Loop Learning; Empowerment; Human Resources; Humility; Integrity; Justice; Leader Qualifications; Leadership Development; Long-Range Planning; Obedience to God; Priorities; Problem Solving; Purpose and Passion; Rewards; Self-Discipline; Situational Leadership; Stewardship; Stress Management; Structure and Organization; Systems Thinking; Team Building; The Learning Organization; Values; Vision; Wisdom
[6] Creationism, from (These articles are a bit technical. We have therefore prepared study guides which you can use in two ways: (a) Read the study questions first so you can have an overview of the article; and (b) After reading the article, try answering the questions to test your comprehension.)
Why Shouldn’t Christians Accept Millions of Years?

Couldn’t God Have Used Evolution?

Don’t Creationists Deny the Laws of Nature?

What About the Gap Theory and Ruin-Reconstruction Theories?

Doesn’t Carbon-14 Dating Disprove the Bible?

Could God Really Have Created Everything in Six Days?

Does Radiometric Dating Prove the Earth Is Old?

Was there Really a Noah’s Ark and Flood?

How Did Animals Spread All Over the World from Where the Ark Landed?

What Really Happened to the Dinosaurs?

Why Don’t We Find Human & Dinosaur Fossils Together?

Can Catastrophic Plate Tectonics Explain Flood Geology?

Don't Creationists Believe Some “Wacky” Things?

Where Does the Ice Age Fit?

Are There Really Different Races?

Are ETs and UFOs Real?

Does Distant Starlight Prove the Universe Is Old?

Did Jesus Say He Created in Six Literal Days?

How Did Defense/Attack Structures Come About?

Is Natural Selection the Same Thing as Evolution?

Hasn’t Evolution Been Proven True?

Did Dinosaurs Turn into Birds?

Does Archaeology Support the Bible?

Why Does God’s Creation Include Death and Suffering?

How Can I Use This Information to Witness?

How Can We Use Dinosaurs to Spread the Creation Gospel Message?
[7] Homiletics
The Power and Authority of Preaching

Homiletics: The Art of Preaching and Teaching, by Ptr. Vincent Sawyer, Faith Baptist Church (New York)

Lesson 1 - The Aim Of Preaching (download mp3)

Lesson 2 - Study Before You Preach (download mp3)

Lesson 3 - Basic Rules Of Hermeneutics (Bible Interpretation) (download mp3)

Lesson 4 - Pulling Principles Out Of The Text (download mp3)

Lesson 5 - Determining The Main Principle (download mp3)

Lesson 6 - Forming Your Proposition (download mp3)

Lesson 7 - The Main Points Of Your Outline (download mp3)

Lesson 8 - The Minor Points Of Your Outline (download mp3)

Lesson 9 - Adding ‘Meat’ to Your Message (download mp3)

Lesson 10 - Preparing Your Introduction, Conclusion, & Title (download mp3)

Lesson 11 - Outlining A Passage. Expository Textual & Topical Types (download mp3)

Lesson 12 - Tips For Effective Message Delivery (download mp3)

The Faith Bible Institute website is under construction; Pastor Sawyer’s original materials in print format are hosted on a different website.

(1) What is a Preacher? (2) What is so important about preaching? (3) What is the key to being a successful and effective Preacher? (4) What is Biblical Preaching? (5) What is the aim of preaching? (6) How do I prepare a message? (7) What format should I follow to outline? (8) What are the different types of sermons? (9) What are some tips for effective delivery of a message?

Expository preaching from “Preparing to Preach” workshops by Rev. John D. Brand at Harper Memorial Baptist Church, Glasgow

Session 1 Expository Preaching: What? (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 2 Expository Preaching: Why? (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 3 Expository Preaching: How? (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 4 Feeling the Flesh (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 5 Them Bones (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 6 Every Text has a Heart (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 7 The Brain and Heart of the Sermon (mp3, pdf, ppt)

Session 8 Setting the Bones (mp3, pdf)

Christ-Centered Preaching: Preparation and Delivery of Sermons, by Dr. Bryan Chapell

Notes: (1) Dr. Chappel is a Reformed Presbyterian and covenant theologian; his materials on homiletics however can benefit dispensational Baptists; (2) Registration (free) is required before you can download Dr. Chapell’s PDF and MP3 files.

Lesson 1 Word and Witness; Lesson 2 What’s the Big Idea; Lesson 3 Text Selection and Interpretation; Lesson 4 The Road From Text to Sermon; Lesson 5 Outlining and Arrangement; Lesson 6 Propositions and Main Points; Lesson 7 Introductions; Lesson 8 Exposition; Lesson 9 Sermon Divisions and Development; Lesson 10 Conclusions; Lesson 11 Classification of Messages; Lesson 12 Explanation; Lesson 13 Why to Illustrate; Lesson 14 How to Illustrate Part 1 and 2; Lesson 15A Application Part 1 and 2; Lesson 16 Transitions and Dialogical Method; Lesson 17 Methods of Sermon Presentation; Lesson 18 Voice and Gesture; Lesson 19 Dress and Style; Lesson 20 Old Friends in New Clothes; Lesson 21 Word and Spirit; Lesson 22 A Redemptive Approach to Preaching; Lesson 23 Developing Redemptive Messages; Lesson 24 Preaching Christ-Centered Application Sanctification; Lesson 25 Hearing the Application of Redemptive Principles

[8] Hermeneutics

A. Interpreting The Bible video blog series by Ptr. Jeff Kluttz, First Baptist Church Needville, Texas (download the PDF course notes)
Interpreting the Bible Vlog Course Begins Today
Interpreting The Bible Pt. 2 - Linguistic Principle
Interpreting The Bible Pt. 3 - Historical/Cultural Principle
Interpreting the Bible Pt. 4 - The Contextual Principle
Bible Interpretation Pt. 05 - Contextual/Theological Principles
Interpreting the Bible Pt. 6 - Resources
Interpreting the Bible - Part 7 - The Golden Rule of Interpretation
Interpreting the Bible - Part 8 - Applying The Golden Rule of Interpretation
Interpreting the Bible - Parts 9-10
Interpreting the Bible (Pt 11) - Double Reference (Pt. 2)
Interpreting the Bible 12 - Progressive Revelation
Interpreting The Bible 13 - The Law of First Mention
Interpreting the Bible 14 - The Law of Recurrence
Interpreting the Bible 15 - Hebrew Poetry
B. Basics of Bible Interpretation by Bob Smith, Peninsula Bible Church (especially the chapters titled “The Greeks Had a Word for It” and “Helpful Hints on Hebrew”)

C. Bible Interpretation, by David F. Reagan (from Learn the Bible University, Antioch Baptist Church, Knoxville, Tennessee)
Bible Interpretation I

Lesson 1 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 2 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 3 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 4 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 5 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 6 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)

Bible Interpretation II

Lesson 1 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 2 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 3 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 4 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 5 (listen to part 1 and part 2; download mp3 part 1 and part 2)
Lesson 6 (listen to audio; download mp3)
[9] Dispensationalism

A. Materials by Dr. Dan Botterbrodt, Independent Baptist Institute, Fort Dodge, Iowa

B. Materials from Learn the Bible University, Antioch Baptist Church, Knoxville, Tennessee

  • Dispensationalism I (Lesson 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6) Importance, definition, the seven dispensations, characteristics
  • Dispensationalism II (Lesson 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6) Definition, objections, Innocence, Conscience, Human Government, Promise
  • Dispensationalism III (Lesson 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6) Law, John the Baptist, The Gospel of the Kingdom
  • Dispensationalism IV (Lesson 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6) The Gospel of the Kingdom, divine healing, Spirit baptism, transitional changes in the Book of Acts, The church at Antioch, Grace Age gifts, ceasing of the gift of tongues
[10] Great Doctrines of the Bible courses (under construction; lessons based on the book by Rev. William Evans, Ph.D., D.D., and designed for college students and professionals). Each doctrine listed below is a separate course with a Certificate of Merit to be awarded for each course successfully completed. These courses will consist of online lessons, interactive quizzes and PDF materials. Please read the procedures for these future courses.
The Doctrine of God
The Doctrine of Jesus Christ
The Doctrine of the Holy Spirit
The Doctrine of Man
The Doctrine of Salvation
The Doctrine of the Scriptures
The Doctrine of the Angels
The Doctrine of Satan
The Doctrine of the Last Things
As we noted above, this ministry can also be used as a discipleship tool by churches. We have prepared a New Believer’s Curriculum which new believers (or even seekers) can enroll in.

Procedures for enrolling and qualifying for the Certificate of Merit

Any interested person can enroll either online by e-mail (please contact me at or physically (address to be provided later). He/she should indicate in the e-mail the desire to enroll, and provide some background information about himself or herself, church background, salvation experience and names and contact information of character references. He/she should also set personal goals for completing the course (for example, studying the lessons one or two hours a day, completing in one to two months a specific portion of the curriculum, and then taking the qualifying examination).

While reading through the interim lessons and the other provided materials, the student can communicate and interact with the online professors, other students, etc by e-mail or chat with regards questions they have about the subject matters.

The student can choose which specific subject area to enroll in. A Certificate of Merit will be awarded once the student passes the exam for that subject area. The student who enrolls in (either successively or simultaneously) and passes the exams for all five subject areas will be awarded a Certificate of Merit with Distinction”.

Exam procedures

To help the enrollees in studying the lessons, we are preparing online, interactive review quizzes. Please try the online review quizzes for Psalm 19 - easy level, and the Articles of Faith and the Biblical distinctives of Baptists - difficult level. After completing the quiz, you can immediately check your answers and/or score. An alternative way of using these online quizzes is to print them out and use them as guide or workbook for studying the lessons.

As soon as the student thinks that he/she is ready, he/she can take the examination either online or physically. The exam type will be fill-in-the-blanks, true or false statements, and with short essay questions.

The exam for any subject area will consist of 150 questions, with a time limit of four hours. The student will thus be forced to completely read and master the assigned material. Passing grade is 75%; with 150 questions, that translates to about 112 correct answers out of the 150 items. Oral examination through Yahoo Messenger and webcam may also be implemented later on.

BD OBI will send the questions via e-mail to the student. After the lapse of the allotted four hours for the exam, the student has to send back by e-mail his/her answers to the exam. Since BD OBI will not be able to watch over the student when he/she takes the written exam online, the student can only be held accountable by his/her Christian character, honesty and integrity in answering the exam questions without help from any other person. Besides, the student’s focus should not be on obtaining the certificate but on preparing and equipping himself to be a pastor, lay leader or worker of a small church, or as a tentmaker missionary.

For enrollees in the New Believers Curriculum, there will only be one 200-item examination with a time limit of three hours. Those who pass the examination will be awarded a Certificate of Merit with Distinction”.

Procedures for the Great Doctrines of the Bible courses: These courses will have two parts, namely, (1) written part where the student has to complete the PDF material, 60% of the grade; and (2) online oral examination of assigned Bible verses, 40% of the grade. Passing grade is 75%.

Upon enrolling, the student will receive by e-mail a PDF material containing the lessons for a specific doctrine. Each PDF material can be finished in about a week or two depending on the student’s schedule. The student then has to submit the complete material by e-mail for correction and grading. (Since the student can answer the workbook with an open Bible, it will be easy for him/her to get all the answers correctly. This means that the student can successfully complete 60% of the grade requirement before he/she takes the online examination.)

The PDF material also enumerates the Bible verses that the student must memorize for the online examination portion of the course.

The procedure for the online examination is as follows:

(1) The student will be asked to recite from memory Bible verses from the previously assigned list contained in the workbook. For example, the student can be required to recite two verses on God’s omnipresence. The student must begin reciting within ten seconds the question is asked.

(2) Every time the student is unable to recite the assigned verse, that is a minus point. Also, if the proctor helps the student by citing the reference, that is a minus of half a point. If the student fails to answer within ten seconds, that is a minus point.

(3) As stated above, the online portion of the course is 40% of the grade. For example, if the assigned number of verses for the lessons on a specific doctrine is 70, the student must be able to recite 28 verses correctly.

Based on their respective policies, the existing Bible schools which are partnering with this ministry (please see bottom portion of this post) may grant credit units if the student later on enrolls in any of these schools.

Core values

The guiding core values of this ministry are Scriptural Authority, Glorification of Christ, Biblical Worldview, Strategically Relevant, Learning and Training, Global Evangelism, and Historically Baptist.

Scriptural Authority
This ministry affirms God has provided absolute truth in Scripture; He did not leave mankind to find this truth on their own. The necessity of Scripture for all and the sufficiency of Scripture for all are foundational; as such the Scripture provides the framework for a Christian worldview. This ministry evaluates knowledge against that absolute truth. II Peter 1:3, II Timothy 3:14-17
Glorification of Christ
This ministry will have as its standard that one’s purpose is to glorify Christ in all things: in thought, conduct and motives. Jesus Christ is the standard and value of all things. Colossians 1:17 and 3:1-17, Philippians 3:7-14
Biblical Worldview
This ministry believes God's creation has purpose. That purpose is fulfilled in a person’s total obedience to Jesus Christ, conforming to His image. Romans 8:28-29, Ephesians 4:20-24
Strategically Relevant
This ministry will prepare those who desire to serve God to fulfill the ministry and work that is set before them. BD OBI will train its enrollees to communicate the gospel of Jesus Christ to divergent people groups of the world. Matthew 28:19-20, Romans 1:16-17, 1 Corinthians 9: 20-22
Learning and Training
This ministry will strive to provide the highest quality education for Asian and African pastors, lay leaders, church workers, tentmaker missionaries and church members. Education must have balance in theory and practice, providing the intellectual, practical, and spiritual skills necessary for one to be successful in ministry. The design and the purpose of this ministry are to address the question: “If a person has only one year to prepare in becoming a tentmaker missionary, or a pastor, ministry leader, Sunday School teacher or worker of a small church, what are the Bible doctrines and truths, and practical skills he or she must learn”? 2 Timothy 2:1-2,15, Proverbs 4:5-7, Deuteronomy 6:6-9
Global Evangelism
This ministry will recognize that all of mankind is in need of a personal relationship with Christ by faith and will commit itself to prepare students to fulfill the Great Commission. Matthew 28:18-20,1 Peter 1:13-25, John 3:16-21
Historically Baptist
This ministry holds fast to those historic Biblical teachings as reflected in Baptist confessions of faith. Acts 2:41-42
Articles of Faith and Doctrinal Distinctives

Besides our Articles of Faith, the following distinctives clarify this ministry’s position:
1. We are historic fundamentalists rather than neo-evangelical.
2. We are separatists rather than ecumenical.
3. We hold that revelatory and sign gifts have ceased (e.g. apostleship, tongues, and the interpreting of tongues).
4. We hold that Christ died for everyone and this atonement is unlimited.
5. We hold to classic dispensationalism as opposed to progressive dispensationalism.
6. We hold to a literal premillennial return to and reign of Christ on the earth and a pretribulational rapture as opposed to post-tribulationism or mid-tribulationism in our eschatology.
7. We are committed to the concept of a literal hell rather than the conditional, metaphorical, or purgatorial view of hell.
8. We hold to exclusivism (for someone to be saved, he/she must be exposed to the gospel) rather than inclusivism or pluralism. (Inclusivism holds that one can be saved without hearing the gospel. Pluralism holds that Jesus is one of many saviors.)
9. We are committed to a literal, grammatical, historical hermeneutic rather than a reader response hermeneutic.
Approved Bible Text

1. We agree that God inspired the Bible in its original languages.
2. By the 16th century, Wycliff and Tyndale had both translated the Bible into the English language. These were both considered acceptable translations.
3. Through the efforts of the King of England, a new English translation was placed into the hands of common man.
4. In time, the changes in word usage and punctuation necessitated several revisions.
5. We believe our students should be undergirded by an unshakable faith in the Word of God. We believe the King James Version is God’s Word kept intact for the English-speaking people.
6. This statement does not preclude the study of the individual Greek and Hebrew words in the original languages for the clarity of meaning.
7. The Textus Receptus is the approved Greek text of our curriculum.

Participating Bible schools, ministries and churches:

[1] Siegfred de Guzman Evangelistic Ministries (Church planting; Bible Institute training; open air crusades; revival meetings; Banner of the Cross Conference; God Save the Philippines Rally; Adult youth camps; sports evangelism; youth conference; Bible conference; leadership conference; Baptist Builders Rescue Mission); Events: FBC 18th Anniversary; GNBC Easter Cantata; GNBC Choir with E Three; GNBC Special Events; GNBC Baptisms; Missionary and Outreaches; Missionary Trip to Canada

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