Bible and Theology Program
The Bible and Theology program at Asbury University is for anyone with a passion for Jesus Christ, a desire for a deeper understanding of God’s Word and a heart for service to others.
Biblical and Theological Studies span a range of disciplines. These include Old Testament, New Testament, hermeneutics (the art and science of interpretation) and theology (including biblical, systematic, historical and pastoral theology).
Programs of Study
Bible and Theology major
(Emphasis in Pre-Seminary or Pre-Ministry)
Bible and Theology minor
Bible and Theology students have gone on to pursue vocations in ministry, missions, medicine, law, social work, counseling, business, communications, among others.
- Gain a deeper knowledge of the Scriptures.
- Develop a clear understanding of the historic Christian faith and the ability to think theologically.
- Lay the foundation for spiritual growth and ethical living.
- Arrive at a mature sense of Christian identity and calling.
Biblical and theological studies faculty at Asbury have a Ph.D. in their respective areas of expertise. Together, these scholar-teachers have more than 100 years of teaching experience. More importantly, they have a heart for students that extends well beyond the classroom.
Our programs are reasonably sized: Pre-Ministry (49 credits); Pre-Seminary (43 credits); Minor (18 credits). It is easy for students to pair Bible and Theology with nearly any other major or minor, such as:
- Media Communication
- Creative Writing
- Ancient Languages
- Christian Ministries, Missions & Youth Ministry
Asbury University's Bible and Theology degree program provides personal attention and outstanding opportunities for putting what you learn in the classroom to work. The program boasts an outstanding classroom teaching faculty that is actively involved in ministry, research and writing, from involvement in local churches to virtually every facet of University life. Our graduates leave campus well prepared, answering calls to a wide variety of ministries throughout the world.
Students in the Bible and Theology (BTH) program have opportunities to participate in academic events such as the biennial Wesleyan Heritage Conference held on campus. The university hosts a wide array of speakers and performances that enrich students' educational experience, and all BTH majors are encouraged to participate in lectures by visiting scholars hosted by nearby Asbury Seminary. Bible and Theology students have full libary privileges to the B.L. Fisher theological library at Asbury Seminary in addition to the resources of Kinlaw Library at the university.
Bible/Theology majors may expect to find exceptional travel and study opportunities. BTH faculty have led study tours of Bible lands for which students are able to earn academic credit. Destinations include Israel, Jordan, Turkey, Greece, and Rome.
Before they leave, they participate in numerous activities, from department forums twice each semester (featuring papers or presentations by our own faculty members or outside speakers) to the Ministerial Association, an on-campus organization usually sponsored by a member of the department. Our faculty have led study tours to Israel, Jordan, Greece, Turkey, and Rome. Each spring the department professors host the graduating seniors at a dinner, and once a year professors hold a social for all majors and minors. Periodically the department sponsors outstanding Christian leaders who speak to students in chapel and special forums.
At Asbury University, you'll develop the analytical, research and communication skills necessary for graduate school and/or ministry. This leads to a variety of careers in pastoral ministry, teaching, missions, counseling and outreach ministries. More than 75 percent of our graduates attend seminary within 10 years of graduation. Some of our Bible and Theology graduates are chaplains in various branches of the military. Others have gone on to law school or earned a Ph.D. degree.
Every full-time Bible and Theology faculty member has attained a Ph.D., and they represent a variety of specialties. You will benefit from their years of experience and education, as they hold degrees from universities like Brandeis, Drew, Johns Hopkins, London School of Theology, and Marquette. They stay current by writing and publishing full-length books, chapters in books, articles in journals and contributions to encyclopedias, commentaries, study Bibles, and other works. All of our faculty members belong to national academic organizations and regularly attend conferences, both on the national and local level. Several have delivered papers at conferences. All of our professors who are eligible have been awarded sabbaticals for research, writing, course revision, or teaching at other institutions.
Asbury University awards the Bachelor of Arts degree in Bible and Theology, providing an in-depth exploration of biblical content and theology. You may choose one of two emphases:
- The Pre-Seminary emphasis equips students for graduate-level theological study. You will develop the necessary skills in writing and research to succeed in seminary or graduate school. In addition to gaining a firm biblical and theological foundation through classes such as Pentateuch, Growth of the New Testament Church, and Historical Theology, you'll examine and discuss critical issues in current biblical and theological studies.
- The Pre-Ministry emphasis is designed to prepare you to enter ministry directly following college. In addition to gaining an understanding of the Bible, you'll take courses in preaching, pastoral theology, biblical interpretation, and Christian ministries. These classes will help you become as equipped as possible to enter ministry without going to seminary. If you hope to become ordained in your denomination, we recommend checking with your church's officials to see if graduate school is necessary to meet ordination requirements.
Both the Pre-Ministry and Pre-Seminary emphases facilitate an understanding of the Bible in its historical and cultural context and provide the tools to apply biblical principles to ministry and everyday life. In addition to studying individual books of the Bible, students explore the rich historical and theological legacy of the church and its implications for today.
The Bible and Theology program encourages not only intellectual growth, but also personal spiritual growth. You'll be urged to grow in your commitment to and relationship with Jesus Christ. You'll find an on-campus atmosphere that fosters spiritual growth through chapel, accountability and discipleship groups, mission trips and hall prayer meetings. You can also sign up to be a small-group leader or a spiritual-life coordinator. In fact, more than half of Asbury University's student body serves the community in some way.
All Bible and Theology majors with a Pre-Ministry emphasis are required to complete a ministry internship course, in which they experience pastoral ministry firsthand. Other Bible and Theology majors student-pastor at local churches, volunteer as youth leaders, or lead worship at their church or in chapel. Others volunteer at nursing homes. There are many ways to get involved in ministry at Asbury, both on and off campus. The only problem is choosing from among so many options.