Bible--Romans

MATURING CHRISTIAN DISCIPLESHIP THROUGH TIMES OF SUFFERING: A STUDY IN AN AMERICAN MIDWEST CONGREGATION - NEW HOPE CHURCH; ADEL, IOWA

Author
Thomas Hein D.Min.
Abstract
The project identifies some of the ways Christians grow in maturity during times of suffering. During these times some Christians grow in maturity, while others experience a setback in their spiritual growth. This is a pastoral study, meaning that it is primarily concerned with observation and analysis of the discipleship process in the lives of Christian believers. The project evaluates true and false beliefs about God and spiritual life that occur during the process of suffering in the lives of New Hope Evangelical Free Church (Adel, Iowa) adult believers. Fifty-seven church members answered questions in a quantitative survey inquiring about their spiritual life before and after their time of suffering. Interviews were conducted with fifteen of the survey participants for more in depth evaluation of their spiritual disciplines, attitudes, and beliefs.

The study evaluated some false beliefs about God and spiritual life that Christians may develop during times of suffering. In addition, the study evaluated what true beliefs about God and spiritual life sustained believers during times of trial. Finally, the study evaluated what spiritual disciplines helped people move toward greater spiritual maturity during a season of suffering.

The practical application outcome of the study is a small group workbook entitled, A Journey through Suffering: Processing the Painful Experiences of Life. This resource is designed to be an exegetical devotional guide to help people reflect on their suffering in the context of a biblical metanarrative. Prayerful reflection will potentially lead toward maturing discipleship that glorifies God.

RESPONDING TO OUR HEMORRHAGING FAITH IN CANADA BY EXPLORING A FAMILY-INTEGRATED CHURCH MODEL AS A SOLUTION IN THE GREATER TORONTO AREA

Author
Michael Thiessen D.Min.
Abstract
The purpose of this project was to respond to the identified crisis in disciple-making by exploring the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats of a Family-Integrated-Church ministry model.
To accomplish this SWOT analysis, there were four steps to this research project: A literature review, Biblical research on the family, twelve semi-structured interviews with FEB pastors, and an elders’ review of our FIC model at Grace Baptist Church in Alliston, Ontario. By doing this research project, I hoped to understand this ministry model better and sought to focus our local church disciple-making practices.

The information gleaned from this research project confirmed for me some of what I already knew anecdotally; there is a crisis in children’s and young adult ministry of which the family is a key part of both the problem and solution. The next generation needs to be able to follow their parents, who are worshipping, praying, and serving before them, in order to be made into passionate disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ.

EXPOUNDING ROMANS 6-8 TO ADVANCE GREAT COMMISSION OBEDIENCE IN THE LEADERSHIP AT MAYFIELD MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH, FORT WORTH, TEXAS

Author
Larry Hall D.Min.
Abstract
The writer is the pastor of a Missionary Baptist congregation. In a self-appraisal survey, congregational leaders ranked Great Commission obedience low among ministry priorities. This project investigated the question: Can a pastoral approach in expounding Romans 6-8 be effective in developing a Great Commission theology and in advancing Great Commission obedience for select leaders at Mayfield Missionary Baptist Church, Fort Worth, Texas. The project pursues two goals: 1) to develop the theology of the participants and 2) to develop pastoral preaching effectiveness.
The research design combined both the qualitative and quantitative method. The writer designed seven sermons from Romans 6-8 in a series entitled Gospel Assurance, a Motivation to Great Commission Obedience. The writer expounded selected doctrinal themes from the Biblical text to develop elements of a Great Commission theology in the participants. Using a pastoral approach, the writer selected eight congregational leaders to participate in a small group to give feedback on the preaching effectiveness. In addition, the participants completed a pre and post project questionnaire to indicate theological understanding, opinion surveys, and interviews. The writer assessed the participants’ awareness, attitudes and actions in relation to the Matthew 28:18-20 mandate to make disciples.
The writer diagnosed the participants’ gain in theological understanding and simultaneously increased pastoral preaching effectiveness through small group feedback. The writer and participants advanced toward Great Commission obedience.

A college course on Romans integrating missiological and theological perspectives

Author
Kevin S McWilliams
Abstract
Integration is a critical issue in theological education today. Specialization often controls the curriculum in Bible colleges and seminaries. The apostle Paul was a missionary; he labored in a missionary context; he was "doing mission" as he wrote his epistles. This major project explores the integration of these missiological realities with the theological in a Bible college course on the Book of Romans. Following the development and teaching of the course, a multiple-method approach to evaluation confirmed its effectiveness in increasing student understanding of mission in Romans and appropriate integration of missiological insights, issues, and application with the theological content of the book.

A strategy for non-sequential, expositional preaching of lengthy biblical books using the book of Romans

Author
Timothy J Bowman
Abstract
Preaching expository book series over lengthy biblical books is arduous because of internal, calendar, and cultural challenges. One strategy is intentionally to preach these long books in multiple series with significant calendar breaks. This is motivated by a commitment to the inspiration, inerrancy, and authority of the Scriptures and to regularly preaching expositional series. This project involved preaching Romans as a model of this non-sequential strategy. In addition, twenty-six preaching pastors were surveyed and multiple group evaluations were held as Romans was preached. The strategy was then evaluated for strengths, weaknesses, and its potential in preaching other lengthy biblical books.

Leading church deacons in discovering spiritual gifts through a weekend retreat

Author
Edward M Smith
Abstract
This project was an attempt to lead the local church in discovering its primary spiritual gifts and how they could express these particular gifts in service and ministry. The biblical context was primarily limited to the sixth chapter of Romans. The method used to arrive at final conclusions were small group sessions with multiple inventories and other evaluator means. Those participating in the study felt that they had developed a better understanding of themselves, their giftedness and their purpose and place in ministry.

The koinonia of the cross: Jesus Christ as basis and pattern for unity in a heterogenous Christian community

Author
G Alan Crandall
Abstract
Christian community cannot be based on either the homogenous unit principle or its opposite cultural theological pluralism. Justification by faith is a social event that joins believers to one another in the saving death and resurrection of Jesus, enabling them to "welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you". Reconciliation between the strong and the weak in Romans illustrates the way in which Christ's sacrifice is to be a paradigm for suffering love within the diverse body of Christ. The writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer also suggest that Christians are united not by nature but by grace.
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