Graduates of Grand Canyon University's Bachelor of Arts in Christian Studies with an Emphasis in Biblical Studies program will utilize biblical studies as the foundation, and an understanding of theology, philosophy and Christian history as the framework for communicating Christ to various audiences. In addition to spiritual formation and exegetical skills essential to Christian Studies, graduates will be able to employ communication, leadership and organizational skills necessary for effective ministry.
Those seeking a biblical studies degree are passionate about serving Christ and may be prepared for a variety of leadership positions. Successful graduates may find opportunities in working as a missionary, Bible school teacher, chaplain or worship coordinator.
In earning a BA in Christian Studies with an emphasis in Biblical Studies, you will examine the history of Christianity and the development of Christian values as well as gain a deeper understanding of major contemporary religions of the world. Students will study the major doctrines of the Christian religion and the basic disciplines of Christian discipleship. Students will learn about every facet of the Bible, from the Pentateuch to the Revelation, along with how to teach the Bible to a variety of audiences from a student group to a church congregation. Students will also explore teaching styles and methods to prepare them to give lessons and deliver sermons.
In completing a bachelor‛s degree with an emphasis in biblical studies, you will complete a set of specialized courses that will prepare for a variety of Christian leadership positions. Specialized Old Testament coursework will focus on the Hebrew Writings, the Old Testament Wisdom Literature, and the Old Testament Prophets while the New Testament specialized coursework will focus on the writing of Paul and John and the other letters to the Church. Having studied these major portions of the Bible in some depth, students will be equipped for teaching and leading in ministry.
General Education coursework prepares Grand Canyon University graduates to think critically, communicate clearly, live responsibly in a diverse world, and thoughtfully integrate their faith and ethical convictions into all dimensions of life. These competencies, essential to an effective and satisfying life, are outlined in the General Education Learner Outcomes. General Education courses embody the breadth of human understanding and creativity contained in the liberal arts and sciences tradition. Students take an array of foundational knowledge courses that promote expanded knowledge, insight, and the outcomes identified in the University‛s General Education Competencies. The knowledge and skills students acquire through these courses serve as a foundation for successful careers and lifelong journeys of growing understanding and wisdom.
|Competency||Requirements||GCU Course Options||Total Credits|
|University Foundations||Upon completion of the Grand Canyon University's University Foundation experience, students will be able to demonstrate competency in the areas of academic skills and self-leadership. They will be able to articulate the range of resources available to assist them, explore career options related to their area of study, and have knowledge of Grand Canyon's community. Students will be able to demonstrate foundational academic success skills, explore GCU resources (CLA, Library, Career Center, ADA office, etc), articulate strategies of self-leadership and management and recognize opportunities to engage in the GCU community. Students with fewer than 24 credits will fulfill the University Foundations requirement with a specified lower-division course. An upper-division selection will be made available to students that enter the university with more than 24 credits.||UNV-103/303, University Success: 4 credits||4 credits|
|Effective Communication||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to construct rhetorically effective communications appropriate to diverse audiences, purposes, and occasions (English composition, communication, critical reading, foreign language, sign language, etc.). Students are required to take 6 credits||ENG-105, English Composition I: 4 credits
UNV-104, 21st Century Skills: Communication and Information Literacy: 4 credits
|Critical Thinking||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to use various analytic and problem-solving skills to examine, evaluate, and/or challenge ideas and arguments. Students are required to take 8 credits of intermediate algebra or higher mathematics.||MAT-134, Applications of Algebra: 4 credits
MAT-260, College Geometry: 4 credits
|Global Awareness, Perspectives, Ethics and Humanities||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate a global perspective and an awareness and appreciation of the scope and variety of literary works as expressions of individual or broader human values. Graduates will demonstrate information literacy which will enable them to locate and analyze information from a variety of sources.||CWV-101, Foundations of a Christian Worldview: 4 credits
PHI-105, 21st Century Skills: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving: 4 credits
|Social Sciences||Graduates of Grand Canyon University will be able to demonstrate awareness and appreciation of and empathy for differences in arts and culture, values, experiences, historical perspectives, and other aspects of life, as well as examine social institutions and processes across a range of historical periods, social structures, and cultures.||SOC-100, Everyday Sociology: 4 credits
PSY-100, Psychology in Everyday Life: 4 credits
|General Education Electives||Minnesota students must complete TEN (10) more credits, which may be taken from any of the following content areas: Communications/English, Math/Natural Science, Humanities, Social Science||ENG-106, English Composition II: 4 credits
COM-231, Persuasive Theory: 4 credits
|Course #||Course Title||Course Description||Credits|
|BIB-104||Old Testament Historical Perspectives||This course is an introductory historical survey of the Old Testament. Attention is given to the study of the Bible itself, its institutions, its literature, and the history of the national life of the Hebrew people from earliest times to the close of the Old Testament period. The course also explores the impact of the Old Testament on the development of Christianity and Christian values.||4|
|BIB-105||New Testament Historical Perspectives||This course is an introductory historical survey of the New Testament, beginning with the interbiblical period. The main emphasis of this course is the Gospels and Acts, and the development of Christian faith and perspectives throughout this historical period.||4|
|INT-244||World Religions||This course is a study of the major contemporary religions of the world including Abrahamic religions, Eastern religions, and other religions. The course covers religious texts, historical background, and current beliefs and practices. Emphasis is given to the ideological foundations of a Christian worldview, a comparison of worldviews, and the application of worldviews within a global society.||4|
|PHI-305||Ethical Thinking in the Liberal Arts||This course considers the role that ethical thinking plays in the liberal arts. Topics are set in historic, literary, artistic, political, philosophical, religious, social, and scientific perspectives. The impact and contributions of leaders in these fields are also considered.||4|
|MIN-350||Spiritual Formation for Christian Leaders||This writing-intensive course is a study of the basic disciplines of Christian discipleship, focusing on the formation of character, values, disciplines, and habits, especially related to the inner development of spirituality. The study makes use of some of the Christian devotional classics. Beyond personal spiritual development, this course addresses students‛ preparation for being spiritual leaders, encouragers, and/or disciplers of others. Prerequisites: BIB-104 and BIB-105.||4|
|BIB-351||Moses and the Prophets||This course examines the tradition of the Pentateuch tradition and its elaboration in the prophetic tradition. The scriptural record of beginnings and of early Hebrew history, religion, and law is the foundation for the study, with corresponding attention given to Old Testament prophetic writings. Aspects of the prophetic study include the messianic element, the occasion of writing, authorship, content, and interpretation. Prerequisite: BIB-104.||4|
|BIB-354||Jesus and His Interpreters||This course focuses on the teachings and major events in the life of Jesus and the elaboration on those teachings in Paul‛s writings. Special attention is given to the person, teachings, and work of Jesus. Some pertinent issues in Pauline studies, such as the Judaizer conflict, the effect of Paul‛s conversion on his thinking and writing, and the sequence of his letters will be examined for their role in the development of the Gospel tradition. Prerequisite: BIB-105.||4|
|BIB-355||Biblical Interpretation and Application||This writing-intensive course helps equip students to understand and use basic principles of biblical hermeneutics, including an introduction to the nature of Bible interpretation and the application to contemporary issues. The majority of the course focuses on developing practical procedures and step-by-step skills in exegesis of Scripture. Prerequisites: ENG-105, BIB-104, and BIB-105.||4|
|BIB-365||Old Testament Writings||This course addresses the historical books of the Old Testament (Joshua, Judges, Ruth, Samuel, Kings, Esther, Ezra, and Nehemiah), giving special attention to the text with regard to its politics, culture, religions, geographical setting, literary genre, and theological themes. Prerequisite: BIB-355.||4|
|BIB-370||Hebrew Poetical and Wisdom Literature||This course is a study of Hebrew poetry and wisdom literature in the Old Testament. Attention is given to the development of the literature as well as an investigation of each book's composition and theological themes. Prerequisites: BIB-355 and BIB-365.||4|
|HTH-359||Systematic Theology||This course is a systematic study of the major doctrines of the Christian religion, including revelation and the Bible, the Trinity, the doctrine of man, the atonement, salvation and Christian growth, the church and it ordinances, and eschatology, examining the biblical foundation for these teachings and their development over time. The course also discusses the relationship between Christianity and other world religions and the relationship between Christian theology and philosophy. Prerequisites: BIB-351 and BIB-354.||4|
|HTH-379||History of Christianity||This course addresses the significant movements and turning points within the church from New Testament times through the Reformation and into modern day America and the world. Special emphasis is given to the ancient Christian church, the church fathers, heresies, monasticism, the Papacy, the practices and problems of the church, the Protestant Reformation, the Catholic Counter-Reformation, and the mission movement—both Catholic and Protestant. Attention is also given to the relationship between Christianity and culture, as Christianity in its geographical expansion through the course of history has interfaced with various cultures ranging from the Jewish world, to the Greco-Roman world, to the barbarian cultures of northern Europe, to the varying cultures encountered as Christianity spread to the New World and then to African and Asian cultures. Prerequisites: BIB-104 and BIB-105.||4|
|HTH-469||Contemporary Theology||This course begins with a brief background of the development of Protestant liberal theology starting with Schleiermacher. Then attention is given to the 20th century schools of theological thought: neo-Orthodox, existential, process, theology of hope, Latin American liberation theology, African-American liberation theology, feminist liberation theology, new Catholic theology, theological expressions of Christianity in Africa and Asia, narrative/post modern approaches to theology, and variations and popular expressions in Protestant theology particularly in America. Even as Christianity must be clothed in various cultures, so the various contemporary theologies attempt to relate theological truth in ways that are relevant to particular cultures or sub-cultures. In the process of studying each contemporary theology, attention will also be given to how that theology is expressed in cultural clothing. Prerequisite: HTH-359.||4|
|CHL-465||Christian Leadership in the 21st Century||This course is an examination of Christian leadership with an emphasis on ethics, community, the environment, and the intricacies of cross-cultural leadership. The course helps students identify administrative skills necessary for leading a successful organization, examine how their Christian values influence their actions and decisions as they live out their faith in their vocations and positions, develop a framework for practicing global citizenship, and initiate an informed dialogue concerning the nature of leadership in other cultures and in diverse situations. Prerequisites: BIB-351, BIB-354, MIN-350, and HTH-469.||4|
|BIB-380||Pauline Epistles||This course provides an overview of the Apostle Paul‛s letters to the early New Testament churches. Special attention is given to the nature of Paul‛s ministry; the theological, social, and practical issues he addressed; and how these texts are relevant for faithful Christian living. Prerequisite: BIB-355.||4|
|BIB-455||Hebrew Prophets||This course offers a critical study of the pre-exilic, exilic, and post-exilic prophets, with special consideration given to the social, political, and religious conditions of their times. Attention is given to the ministry and message of the prophets, in their day and today. Prerequisites: BIB-355 and 365.||4|
|BIB-465||The General Epistles||This course covers Hebrews, James, 1 and 2 Peter, and Jude as they relate to the theological and ethical content of Christianity. Students examine the nature, message, and historical context of the books. Prerequisite: BIB-355.||4|
|BIB-475||Johannine Literature||This course provides an overview of the New Testament texts of the Apostle John. Special attention is given to the nature of John‛s ministry; the theological, social, and practical issues he addressed; and how these texts are relevant for faithful Christian living. Prerequisite: BIB-355.||4|
|Required Course Total Credit:||72|
|General Education Requirements:||44|
|Open Elective Credits:||4 credits|
|Total Degree Requirements:||120 credits|
This program is offered in the following formats or locations:
The dynamic capabilities of GCU’s online curriculum offer considerable flexibility and convenience for career oriented professionals who are pursuing their educational goals. Full time faculty members, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Our small class sizes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Classes begin frequently.
* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.