Philosophy of ministry

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Evansville, Indiana U.S.A. © Copyrights Reserved

Graduate Program Course Study Guide

Professor: Dennis D. Frey, D.Min., D.B.A.

Three (3) Credits


  • Pray for God’s guidance before you begin this course, and each time you work on it.

  • Become totally familiar with the Master's Online Digital Library, and make ample use of its resources throughout this course. The address is: You will need your student ID# and password (contact Master's if you have forgotten these).

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  • The total length of time required to complete this course is different for each person, with subject background, previous education, and personal situation all having a major role in personal study habits and ability. However, on average each course credit usually requires between 35-40 clock hours of study. Therefore, a two credit course will require about 85-90 hours of work, likewise a three credit course between 130-140 hours. Since you are not restricted by classroom hours, the average student might expect to complete a three credit course in about nine weeks by devoting four study hours per day only four days per week (i.e. two hours morning and evening).

  • When you have completed your course, send it to Master's for grading (do not send it directly to your course professor). From the time you submit your course, until it is returned to you (graded) will vary, but generally courses sent by postal mail will require as much as two weeks in transit (to and from), and another two weeks to get through the recording and grading process. Email submission generally requires about two weeks. These are averages, and your course may take slightly more or less time. While you are waiting, make good use of your time by beginning your next course, but if this is your final course, then enjoy the rest…you have earned it!

  • May God bless you as you study, as you follow the timeless encouragement given by the Apostle Paul to Timothy as recorded in II Timothy 2:15.


Course Purpose:
To introduce and expose the student to the study of Christian ministry as a calling and a

life of service so that he/she acquires a basic and introductory knowledge of ministry, and is able to identify and describe the essential principles of Christian ministry in light of biblical data and a personal and professional stance.

Course Objectives:
1. To introduce the basic features of the ministry process so that the student can identify the essential principles vital for successful implementation in effective ministry.
2. To encourage the student to explore, interpret, and apply the Scriptural, practical

and academic basis for Christian ministry.

3. To enable the student to explain, illustrate, and integrate the essential backgrounds

for ministry with practical applications to present ministry roles.

4. To provide the student an opportunity to utilize a basic knowledge and understanding of ministry by relating these to concrete ministry situations.
5. To challenge the student to develop and to formulate her/his own philosophy of ministry by relating these to concrete ministry situations.

REQUIRED PRINTED MATERIALS: (Purchased from Master's by the student)
The Master's Plan for the Church, by John MacArthur, ISBN 0-8024-7841-7, available through the Master's Bookstore.
Brothers, We are Not Professionals, by John Piper, ISBN 080542620-5, Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2002.

This Study Guide contains questions and written assignments that are related to the materials. These are referred to as Course Projects.

Part One: Read the textbooks and write a one-paragraph affirmation that you have read both of the required textbooks. Put your signature on this document.
Part Two: Assume that you are asked to write a Book Review of the required textbooks for a magazine. Write your review, as both a synopsis and a critique of the content. Use not less than 500 words for each book.

After reading both textbooks, write a paper describing your own personal ministry leadership philosophy. Include in this paper: the importance of the role of the Holy Spirit in this process; the place of prayer and Bible study as tools for personal development; and how you as a Christian leader plan to remain connected to the power of God in an age of competing philosophies. Use not less than 1,000 words.
After reading both textbooks, answer the questions printed at the end of this Study Guide. Use only as many words as is necessary to provide a concise answer to each question (touching only on the salient point(s) in your reply).
This is the final project, and must be completed only after you have all of the other projects. Write a summary of the entire course. Include in this summary how this course has impacted your understanding of the subject; has helped you in your ministry to others; and how this understanding has changed the way you think and react in matters related to the subject of the course. Use not less than 750 words.


QUESTION #1 A. How should various leadership theories and technological innovations be incorporated into one's overall philosophy of ministry?

B. What is your idea of a "right" philosophy of ministry.
QUESTION #2 A. Briefly discuss each of the following descriptions of what a ………New Testament minister should be: servant, godly man, ………student of the Word, disciplined person, evangelist, and ………spiritual leader.
B. Discuss in detail the supernatural and human side of the "call to ministry."
QUESTION #3 A. Briefly discuss the gift of ministry.
B. List and discuss the ultimate goals (spiritual ideals) for the ministry.
QUESTION #4 A. What should be the purposes of sermons?

  1. Discuss preaching, the church, and the power of God.

QUESTION #5 A. Discuss the following statements:

The preacher must humble himself to proclaim God's Word.

The sinner must humble himself to receive God's Word.

B. Discuss why any philosophy of ministry that glorifies God must

include the power of the Word of God, the Cross of Christ, and the Holy Spirit.

QUESTION #6 A. Discuss at least three ways of defining biblical leadership.

B. In what (at least three) ways should ministers today be identified? Briefly discuss each, using Scripture to enhance your answers.

QUESTION #7 A. Do you believe it is important for pastors to understand ………management and leadership principles? Use Scripture to ………substantiate your position.
B. How are vision, industry, and perseverance important to a God

honoring philosophy of ministry?

QUESTION #8 A. How is ministry a divine-human and a human-human ………cooperative? Include biblical models in your answer.
B. Explain how biblical leadership is to be radically different from all other forms of leadership.
QUESTION #9 A. Discuss motives as they relate to implementation of a plan and ………accomplishment of a goal. Be sure to include the ways that ………motives can be godly or worldly, as part of your answer.
B How does teamwork help the pastor/organizational leader move from the theory of planning to the actuality of planning?
QUESTION #10 A. Discuss what you believe is giving rise to the widespread ………concept (and acceptance) of the “professional pastor.”
B. How are problems in ministry related to the idea of the “professional pastor”?
QUESTION #11 A. Discuss some of the biblical principles that will allow us to ………bridge barriers and satisfy interpersonal communication.
B. Do you believe good self-management is critical to a successful philosophy of ministry? Why or why not?
QUESTION #12 A. Discuss in detail the concept of self-examination in the ………minister's life.
B. Discuss what you believe is the root cause(s) of the wide-spread break up of so many marriages among the ranks of the clergy.
This completes the Projects for this course.

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