Philosophy of Education
Faith Baptist Bible College recognizes truth as absolute. Through the educational process the faculty recognizes its responsibility as Christian leaders, under the ministry of the Holy Spirit, both to impart truth and to train students to discover truth. The recognition of truth involves proper rational processes based upon valid presuppositions. It occurs when the natural world is studied as God's creation and when Scripture is studied as God's revelation to the human race, setting forth truths that mankind would not otherwise discover.
The faculty recognizes its responsibility to help students make necessary personal life adjustments in properly relating themselves and their lives to those truths so discovered. Ultimately, it is the Holy Spirit Who must impart spiritual truth to a student. Thus, the educational process should be a living, vital experience leading to the establishment and realization of valid goals.
The educational process should help students develop specific skills that enable them to enter a particular calling or ministry in life under God's direction.
Because of our mission, goals, purposes, and philosophy of education, Faith Baptist Bible College seeks to be characterized by
1. Faculty who are highly qualified in their respective academic disciplines, who have an unswerving commitment to the doctrinal and positional convictions of the institution, and who excel in their passion and dedication to their teaching ministries as a part of preparing people for effective Christian ministry.
2. An institutional commitment to a Bible college philosophy of education which strives to
a. prepare students for Christian ministry;
b. recognize the importance of Biblical and theological training and doctrinal convictions;
c. emulate a heart and passion for the Lord and for ministry; and
d. encourage faculty members to serve as role models to their students in life and in their respective areas of study.
3. Challenging instruction which promotes learning and provides opportunities for research along with appropriate resource support.
4. Curricular offerings which provide the means for preparing people for effective Christian ministry. These offerings will include specialized ministry education programs and courses in a variety of areas, as well as structured opportunities to learn through observation and practice.
5. Graduates who have basic competencies in Biblical/theological knowledge; who have the social graces and the spiritual and character qualifications for Christian leaders; who have an understanding of and appreciation for the world in which they live; who are able to communicate effectively; and who are committed to ministry goals, high academic standards, developed ministry skills, life-long learning, and above all faithfulness to Christ.
This statement is the institutional philosophy of FBBC&TS. It is not intended to be a model for any individual, church, or organization.
We believe that music is a gift from God to be used for His glory (Colossians 1:16). Music is important in our culture, in the church, and in the believer's life. It is a language with which we can communicate with God and with each other. Music influences us in many ways: physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually (I Samuel 16:23).
As a language for the Christian, music should express that which is pure and wholesome. Since there are over 500 references to music in Scripture, we conclude that God considers music to be an important aspect of the Christian life about which we should make wise, discerning choices. We believe that a godly Christian testimony necessitates a guard against music that might dishonor the name of God or lessen the Christian's influence in the world. We desire to honor God in our music philosophy and practice as we seek to prepare men and women to serve the Lord in local, fundamental Baptist churches.
Our policies stem from Biblical principles upon which the institution is founded. We are seeking to instill in the lives of our young people a passion for that which is excellent as commanded in the Scriptures (Philippians 1:9, 10). We believe that music expresses morality and is not amoral. The Bible is clear that we are to be different from the world, set apart unto the Lord, and living a Christ-like life (Romans 12:1, 2; Philippians 2:5; 1 John 2:15-17). We believe that a Christian's music should be an expression of this separation.
Great music through the years has been based upon an appropriate, skillful organization of melody, harmony, and rhythm. This organization is not merely the product of a particular cultural preference but is rooted in the natural order of created things, reflecting the image of God in man (Genesis 1:27; 1 Corinthians 14:33, 40). We believe good music is based primarily upon appealing melody, is enhanced by harmony, and is supported by appropriate rhythm. There is a wide variety of acceptable styles available to the believer in both sacred and secular realms. Our music emphasis is directed to help students acquire a taste for God-honoring music about which there is no question. In this way, we hope to encourage students to grow and expand their knowledge and understanding of music and to honor God in the use of music both in practice and performance.
We further believe that music is a vital part of the life of our student body, and it is our desire to help them in this area to be fully equipped for the ministry. Most importantly, we want to help our students conform to the image of Christ and to be an accurate reflection of Him. This is a primary goal of all our Christian education programs.
To achieve the above, we believe basic guidelines are needed for making decisions about the choice of music which students listen to or perform. The following are in keeping with that principle:
1. In the area of vocal music, special attention should be given to insure that the text is appropriate to a godly testimony. This includes both content and literary style (Colossians 3:16; Ephesians 4:29, 5:4).
2. Performance techniques should reinforce the message of the song and should avoid sensuality or the glorification of the performer (1 Corinthians 10:31).
3. While enrolled at Faith, students should refrain from listening to or performing rock, rap, country and western, new age, and jazz, as well as any "Christian" music that borrows these styles (1 John 2:15).
4. Songs or styles, which are strongly identified with unbiblical movements or worldly practices, should be avoided (Romans 12:1, 2). We do not wish to lead students toward music which is questionable or which might violate believers' consciences. However, we do wish to "follow after the things which make for peace and things where with one may edify another" (Romans 14:15-19).
We believe in the verbal, plenary inspiration by God of the original manuscripts of the Old and New Testament Scriptures, and that they are inerrant and infallible in all matters.
We believe the one true and living God is one in essence, existing as three eternal persons Who are revealed to us as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, equal in every divine perfection, yet executing distinct but harmonious offices.
We believe that Jesus Christ was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary; that He is One Person possessing two natures and thus is true God and true man; that He lived a sinless life and gave Himself as a perfect substitutionary sacrifice for the sins of all humanity; that He arose bodily from the grave, ascended into Heaven where He is seated on the right hand of God interceding for His people and will return to the earth in keeping with His promises.
The Holy Spirit
We believe that the Holy Spirit is the third Person of the Triune Godhead; that He has been and will continue to be active throughout eternity; that, in gracious dealing with humanity, He has inspired the writing of the Scriptures; that He is in the world today convincing men of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment; that He is calling out a people for God among the Jews and Gentiles; that He regenerates those who believe, places them into the Body of Christ, indwells them and produces in them the fruit of the Spirit; and that He calls individuals to Christian service and empowers and directs them in that service.
We believe that God established the church upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Himself being the cornerstone, and that He confirmed the apostolic message with signs and wonders in that era. Having served their divine purpose, the revelatory and sign gifts of the Spirit, including tongues, prophecy, and the gift of healing, have ceased. We believe that God continues to hear and answer prayers for the sick and afflicted according to His sovereign will.
We accept the Genesis account of the six days of the creation week as a historical record and believe that the universe with all that is in it was created by God; and we affirm that living creatures were made according to their kinds and were not produced by some process of evolution.
We believe that marriage was divinely ordained to be the lifelong and exclusive union of one man and one woman, and we affirm that the Scriptures command that sexual intimacy be reserved for this Biblical marital relationship alone, condemning all other forms as sexual immorality. We believe that God created both male and female, and that He designed gender distinctions between men and women, including the Biblically-defined and distinctive roles of husband and wife. Since gender distinctions are rooted in divine order, changing or disguising one’s inherited sex (and correlated gender) reflective of this order transgresses God’s design. We believe in the sanctity of life of all human persons, including the unborn, ailing, and aging.
The Spirit Realm
We believe that God created an innumerable company of sinless beings known as angels; that many of these continue in their holy state and are the ministers of God; that an angelic leader now known as Satan (or the Devil) and many others rebelled against God; that these fallen angels, though defeated in the cross of Christ, still continue to oppose God and His work; that they will ultimately be judged by God and cast into the Lake of Fire to suffer everlasting punishment, which is their righteous due.
We believe that human beings, male and female, were originally created in the image and after the likeness of God; that through uncoerced disobedience Adam fell from his original state, became totally depraved in nature, was separated from God and came under condemnation and the sentence of death; that because of the unity of the human race and the natural headship of Adam, all humans (Jesus Christ only excepted) are born with sin natures and have come under the same consequences of sin.
We believe that salvation is all of grace through the substitutionary work of Jesus Christ Who paid the full redemptive price and fully satisfied God's righteous demands by suffering the death penalty for humanity's guilt, and that He imputes His righteousness, thus reconciling sinners to God; that salvation is made effective only upon the exercise of personal faith in Jesus Christ, which faith is not a meritorious work but possible only by the grace of God. We believe that salvation includes justification, regeneration, adoption in to the family of God, sanctification (positional, progressive, and final) and glorification; that one who is truly born again will be preserved by divine grace, being kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.
We believe that every saved person is positionally in Christ, completely set apart for God; that in experience the saved person retains a sin nature, which is not eradicated in this life, and thus a believer's present state is no more perfect than daily experience; that there is a progressive sanctification wherein the saved person is to grow in grace and into Christlikeness by the unhindered power of the Holy Spirit; that when Christ appears the saved person will be fully sanctified with personal state conforming to positional standing. We believe that progressive sanctification involves separation not only from ungodly living but also from ungodly teaching; that though we love all individuals and seek their salvation, there are areas in which we cannot have fellowship with unbelievers; that, in areas of ecclesiastical fellowship, it may be necessary to separate even from other believers in Christ, if they in turn maintain fellowship with unbelievers.
We believe that the dispensations are not ways of salvation, which has always been by grace through faith, but are stewardships by which God administers His purpose on earth through humanity under varying responsibilities; that changes in dispensational dealings depend upon changed situations in which humanity is found in relation to God due to human failures and God's judgments; that, though several dispensations cover the entirety of human history, only three of these are the subject of extended revelation in Scripture; that these three (Mosaic Law, Grace, and millennial Kingdom) are distinct and are not to be intermingled or confused.
We believe the Church which is Christ's body is composed of all true believers (those who have been born again through a personal acceptance of Christ as Savior) from Pentecost to the rapture; that this Church was brought into being on the day of Pentecost by Spirit baptism, placing into one body all who were believers at that time; that on the day of Pentecost and since that time others have been and are being added to this church; that at the rapture this Church will be complete and will be caught up to be united with Christ as His Bride never to be separated from Him.
We believe that local churches are gatherings of professing believers in given communities, organized for the purposes of united worship, fellowship, administration of the ordinances (baptism and Lord's Supper), edification, discipline and effective promotion of the work of Christ throughout the world; that such local churches should be limited in membership to those who are born again, desire to follow Christ in obedience and have been immersed; that Christ is the supreme Head and every member has direct access to Him and is responsible to seek His will; that the two New Testament offices recognized in such churches are to be those of pastor (also known as bishop or elder) and deacon, both referencing qualified, godly men; that government is congregational with every member responsible to vote in keeping with his or her understanding of the will of Christ; that each local church is responsible directly to Christ and not to some other local church or organization; that there is value in fellowship and cooperation with other local churches of like convictions.
We believe that civil government was instituted by God and is still His means of maintaining peace and order among humans; that believers here on earth are responsible in the area of civil government and should participate in it to promote and preserve good order in human society; that civil governments and churches (and fellowships of churches) are distinct from each other, must be organizationally separated from each other and neither must seek to control the other.
Things to Come
We believe that the Scriptures foretell certain events among which are the following:
• Rapture of the Church We believe that Jesus Christ will return to the atmosphere of this earth; that the dead in Christ will rise first, then believers who are still living will be caught up together with them to meet the Lord in the air and to ever be with the Lord; that the rapture is the next event on the revealed calendar and that no prophecy need be fulfilled before this occurs.
• Tribulation We believe that the rapture of the Church will be followed on earth by Israel's seventieth week; that, though there will be salvation, this will be a time of great judgments, the latter part being known as the Great Tribulation.
• Second Coming We believe that following the tribulation, Christ will return to the earth with His glorified saints to establish the millennial Kingdom; that during the 1,000 years of peace and prosperity Satan will be bound and Christ will reign with a rod of iron; that at the end of the Millennium Satan will be released for a short time, deceive many and lead them in final rebellion, but be destroyed with his armies.
• Eternal State We believe that the unsaved of all ages will be resurrected and together with the evil angels will be finally judged and condemned to everlasting conscious punishment in hell; that all the saved of all ages in glorified bodies will enjoy everlasting blessing in the presence of God.
Institutional Goals and Purposes
Faith has expectations that its students grow and develop in the following three areas:
• Content: what the student knows and understands (including convictions),
• Character: what the student is and is becoming, and
• Competencies: what the student is able to do.
The following goals and purposes reflect these expectations.
1. The student should evidence a comprehensive working knowledge of the Bible and of the great systematic truths of Scripture by
a. successfully completing required courses in Bible and theology;
b. evidencing acceptable progress in Bible and doctrinal content exams;
c. demonstrating the ability to apply Scripture in life's situations and in Christian service
opportunities, practicums, and internships; and
d. successfully completing Bible-related capstone exams or experiences.
2. The student should evidence an understanding of and appreciation for our Baptist heritage, including a thorough knowledge of the history and distinctives of fundamentalist Baptists by
a. successfully completing the course A History of Baptist Faith and Practice;
b. accurately responding to relevant questions in Senior Seminar or Systematic
c. aligning with and becoming involved in a fundamental Baptist church.
3. The student should evidence an awareness of and commitment to God's worldwide program of fulfilling the Great Commission by
a. successfully completing required courses in evangelism, missions, and
b. being consistently involved in evangelism and ministry to people;
c. supporting local church programs for world evangelism;
d. gaining exposure to a variety of cross-cultural settings, including (when possible),
short-term, cross-cultural ministries; and
e. participating in missions prayer groups, the Missions Conference, and other
missions-related activities on and off campus.
4. The student should evidence an understanding of general education content as it relates to life and ministry and the ability to evaluate it according to Biblical truth by
a. successfully completing required general education courses;
b. articulating within these general education courses principles that relate Biblical truth
and human knowledge;
c. incorporating and applying knowledge gained to work situations, ministry, and
interpersonal relationships, as evidenced by successful completion of Christian
service, practicums, and internships; and
d. demonstrating successful competency levels on capstone exams related to studies
in the general education component.
5. The student should evidence ability to serve Christ effectively by
a. successfully completing required professional courses (i.e., courses from his field
b. successfully completing required courses in oral and written communication;
c. successfully completing required Christian service, practicums, and internships; and
d. satisfactorily responding to ministry-related scenarios on the program capstone exam.
6. the student should evidence a Christian value system that is reflected in Christian character, attitudes, decisions, and actions by
a. demonstrating a servant's attitude that is positive, responsible, supportive, and
edifying, as determined by Christian service participation, practicums, and internship
b. responding to scenarios, such as those found on the Defining Issues Test, in ways
that reflect moral judgments and values desired for Christian leaders; and
c. responding satisfactorily to ministry-related scenarios on the program capstone exam.
Definition and Direction Statement
Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education to disciple vocational Christian workers and leaders for local churches throughout the world.
1. Faith exists as a Bible college.
In 1893, at the Chicago World's Fair, William H. Jordan heard Evangelist D. L. Moody speak about the importance of training Christian workers for the ministry. Deeply impressed by Moody's comments, Jordan developed a burden to establish a school to carry on that vision. Years later, Dr. Jordan started a small, nondenominational Bible school known as the Omaha Bible Institute (OBI) in Omaha, Nebraska. Classes began at OBI in the summer of 1921, and they continued for many years with Dr. Jordan as President of the institute. In the mid-1950's, under the leadership of Dr. John L. Patten, the institute aggressively sought the approval and support of Baptists, and so it changed its name to Omaha Baptist Bible Institute (OBBI). During the late 1950's the curricula expanded, and the institute became a four-year college. In 1960, its name changed to Omaha Baptist Bible College (OBBC). The college soon outgrew its Omaha facilities, and in 1965 the Board of Directors decided to relocate the college's campus to Ankeny, Iowa. This move was accomplished during the summer of 1967, and Faith Baptist Bible College (FBBC) opened for classes that October. The history of the Ankeny campus evidences faith in God for the supply of funds to build the campus buildings. Over the years, the Lord has blessed Faith with beautiful facilities that enhance its ministry as a Bible college.
Meanwhile, Denver Baptist Bible College had been established in 1952 by Dr. Sam Bradford, pastor of Beth Eden Baptist Church in Denver, Colorado. Denver added a seminary program in 1972. Faith and Denver had much in common, and the Boards of both schools decided that a merger was advisable. This was carried out during the summer of 1986.
The mission of FBBC is to provide an intensive biblical, vocational, and general education on the college level with the goal of preparing students to minister effectively in Christian service through leadership positions in and through fundamental Baptist churches and other organizations of like convictions.
As a Bible college, Faith purposes that its students evidence a comprehensive working knowledge of the Bible and of the great systematic truths of Scripture. We insist that all of our four-year graduates complete a Bible major. At Faith, we firmly believe that this Bible major is at the heart of the college curriculum and that it should be taught by the core of the college faculty. We believe in the sufficiency of Christ and of the Scriptures for Christian living, ministry, and a worldview. We stress the need for a biblical and doctrinal ministry instead of mere personal and relational wholeness. We celebrate the gospel of Christ as the great message of the Bible, and so we desire to share this good news with the lost and invite them to make a personal decision to trust Christ as Savior. We hold to traditional dispensationalism and to a non-charismatic position. We interpret the Bible literally, and we believe that God created the heavens and the earth and all that is in them in six days (Exodus 20:11). We value our daily chapels and annual Bible conferences because they provide additional opportunities to enhance the biblical education of our students. We believe that the Bible is inspired by God and inerrant, and so we seek to indoctrinate our students in its truth because the Bible is divine in its origin and truthful in its content.
2. Faith exists as a theological seminary.
In 1982 FBBC expanded its five-year Th.B. program into the Master of Arts (M.A.) degree in pastoral studies. Then in January of 1986, the Board of Directors established Faith Baptist Theological Seminary (FBTS), transferring the graduate program from the College to the Seminary. The school added two more M.A. programs, in biblical studies and in theological studies. During these early days of the Seminary, the Board of Directors began talks with Denver Baptist Bible College and Seminary to merge the two schools. The merger took place during the summer of 1986, and in the fall of that year, the Seminary began with thirty students in its three M.A. programs and in its three-year Master of Divinity (M.Div.) degree program.
The mission of FBTS is to provide an advanced biblical, theological, and ministerial education at the graduate level with the goal of preparing Bible expositors to serve effectively in Christian ministry through leadership positions within Baptist fundamentalism.
FBTS recognizes the truths of God as absolute. Therefore, through the educational process, the faculty members recognize it to be their responsibility, as Christian leaders under the ministry of the Holy Spirit, both to impart truth and to train students to discern truth from error. This includes training in the proper principles of hermeneutics, in the study of the languages in which the Scriptures were originally written, and in the major systems of Christian theologies. We delight in compelling, expositional preaching; and we desire our graduates to preach with conviction from the Bible. We believe in the primacy of the ministry of the Word, and we desire our graduates to evidence this same priority. We view the M.Div. degree program as our primary programmatic offering since it is the professional degree program for ministry. We have designed our M.Div. program to train people to lead by personal example and the teaching and preaching of the Bible. Without detracting from our M.Div. program, the faculty and Board of directors reaffirms its inceptive desire to add the Th.M., D.Min., and Th.D. degree programs in the future.
3. FBBC&TS Exists as an institution of higher education.
As an institution of higher education, we have built a faculty that is composed of highly qualified professors who are actively developing and assessing academic programs and policies. We champion academic freedom on the part of our professors so that they might teach, research, and publish within the parameters of the institution's doctrinal, professional, and positional standards. We appreciate our library which is suitable for our instructional needs and is growing in its ability to facilitate theological research. As an institution of higher education we insist on the transmission of Western culture and critical thinking skills that are characteristic of broadly educated people. Our curriculum, however, is not one wherein the Bible is taught apart from the liberal arts. Instead, we seek to integrate the Scriptures into every academic pursuit so that we might inculcate a truly biblical world-view. We desire that our graduates should evaluate the changing mores of their cultures in light of the immutable truth of Scripture, and so we teach music, literature, history, science, communication, and mathematics toward this end. We also value the contribution of technology to the teaching and learning process.
As an institution of higher education, we seek compliance with accepted standards of institutional integrity, and we value outside, objective assessments by accrediting agencies at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.
We have invested millions of dollars to develop a fine residential campus complete with classrooms for face-to-face instruction, with a library suitable for our purposes, with a cafeteria and bookstore, with residence halls, athletic facilities, and a student center, etc. At the same time, we desire to see strategic planning and resource allocations focus more and more on ways to further enhance the educational experiences of our students.
4. FBBC&TS exists as an institution of Christian higher education.
As a Christian institution, we believe in the truth of the Christian gospel, that Jesus Christ died vicariously and that He rose from the dead. We also believe in the exclusivity of this Christian gospel; and so we, together with our graduates, aspire to do the work of evangelism.
As a Christian institution, we not only seek compliance with accepted standards of institutional integrity as revealed in the 66 books of the Bible, we go beyond this, and we desire to display Christian virtue in all personal and institutional dealings. We also hold that Christian faith, rather than mere human reason or experience, leads to understanding because the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
5. FBBC&TS exists as a Baptist institution of Christian higher education.
As a Baptist institution, we believe in the primacy of Scripture over creeds and the formulations of councils. We consider the New Testament, especially the Epistles, to be foundational for faith and practice. We hold to the two ordinances: communion as a memorial of Christ's death and believer's baptism by single immersion as a public testimony to the truth of the gospel. We believe in the New Testament origin of the Church and so we distinguish between the Church and the nation of Israel. In our dealings with our constituencies, we stress the centrality of local churches in God's plan for this Age in contrast with His work through parachurch institutions and agencies such as our own. We do believe, however, in the independence of our institution from external control. We champion the separation of church and state, the priesthood of the believer, saved church membership, individual soul liberty, local church autonomy, congregational government, and the two church offices of pastor and deacons. As a historic regular Baptist institution, we seek to indoctrinate our students so that they will live and teach these Baptist distinctives.
6. FBBC&TS exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education.
As an institution, we expect nothing less than complete allegiance to our doctrinal statement, historic position statement, music philosophy statement and other position papers. This expectation extends to the Board of Directors, to the administrators, to the members of the faculty, and to the staff personnel. We are not a fundamental institution that merely believes in the fundamentals of the faith; we are a fundamentalist institution that earnestly contends for the fundamentals of the faith as they were articulated by the apostles: the inspiration of Scripture and its inerrancy, the virgin birth and deity of Christ, His substitutionary death and physical resurrection, and His literal return to the earth.
We value traditional expressions of worship and music in our chapel services, and we try to inculcate this value in our students as they develop biblical convictions concerning worship and ministry. We reject pragmatism as a philosophical basis for ministry. We refuse to cooperate in ecumenical endeavors with apostates and with believers who work with apostates.
We want to avoid activities that appeal to the old sin nature, that conceal the presence of Christ in the life of the believer, and that compromise the Christian testimony of the individual and of the institution. So, we yearn for the abundant life in Christ, for a life of submission to the will of God, for a life that is awakened to righteousness, for a life of holiness and reverence. Therefore, we are careful about what we wear (clothing being modest and appropriate), what we see and hear, what we do with our bodies and our minds, and how we spend our time. We do not want to be conformed to this world, but we want to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. We do not seek to produce our own self-righteousness, but we desire that Christ may be at home in our hearts.
Our fundamentalist position should not give rise to an attitude of belligerence or pride. Instead, we seek to glorify God for He alone is worthy of praise. Our fundamentalism stems from our fear of God, our submission to Christ, our commitment to the truth, and our love for people.
7. FBBC&TS exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education to disciple.
Jesus Christ commanded His followers to make disciples of all the nations (Matthew 28:19), and we take His great commission seriously. Faith exists, therefore, as an institution for advanced discipleship. For this reason, we are convinced that Board members, administrators, faculty members, and staff personnel should all model authentic Christian lives before our students. We must all lead as servants, and we must all show what it means to take up our crosses and make sacrifices daily. Students should see Christ in us as they see His transformational power and His virtues. They should desire to know Christ as we know Him. They should follow us even as we follow Christ.
Every building on campus should be a place for discipleship, and every event on the calendar should be an occasion for discipleship. Discipleship should take place in the classroom, in the cafeteria, in the gym, on the athletic field, in the residence halls, in ministry team vans, and during music lessons. Discipleship should take place before, during, and after chapel. As administrators, faculty members, and staff personnel serve in the local churches in the area, they should see how they might seize those opportunities to enhance the Christian service experiences of the students who are working with them.
When we select faculty members, we do not only look at their academic credentials and professional standing, we also look for their passion to train disciples. We expect faculty members to spend time with students outside the classroom so that the educational experiences of our students are not merely cognitive but profoundly affective. We not only want to fill the minds of our students with knowledge, we want them to follow Christ.
At Faith we purpose to provide a campus environment that, like a greenhouse, is conducive for Christian growth. We want to nurture maturity, biblical discernment, personal responsibility, self-discipline, social graces, and good decision-making skills. We have developed a student handbook that governs much of student life, but we do not want to trust in the handbook to produce disciples of Jesus. Instead, as students faithfully follow the handbook, this results in an institutional culture that should encourage Christian growth. For this reason, our philosophy of student discipline is mainly corrective and formative and restorative (i.e., utilitarian and restitutive) rather than punitive (i.e., retributive). Without a handbook, we might encourage our students to adopt a relativist world-view and to live according to the will of unregenerate humanity (1 Peter 4:3); but, on the other hand, with a heavy-handed approach to student discipline, we might encourage our students toward a legalistic view of sanctification. We know that many of our students are young and impressionable, and so we want to disciple them by providing them with discipline, direction, and opportunities for decision-making within the boundaries of the institutional standards. It is our desire that our graduates would apply the unchanging truth of the Bible to the specific situations that they will face during the rest of their lives, with the intended purpose that the prudent principles of Faith's standards of conduct will provide them with good examples of how this is done.
We firmly believe that discipleship takes place as the mentor models the life of Christ before the disciple. For this reason, although we are open to the possibility that a limited number of courses and certificates might one day be offered through online instruction, we resist the possibility that we should offer entire degrees exclusively through online instruction. Disciples must spend some face-to-face time with their mentors, and this is the pedagogical opinion of the faculty and Board of Directors.
8. FBBC&TS exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education to disciple vocational Christian workers and leaders.
Faith stands committed to pressing the claims of Christ upon our students. We want our students to consider vocational Christian service, and we view such a calling as a sacred trust and a high honor. Annually, members of the Board of Directors, the administration, the faculty, and the staff reaffirm their support for the school's objective, as mentioned in the "Historic Position Statement," to train men and women for leadership roles in Christian service within fundamentalism. This is in keeping with our nature as a Bible college and seminary. The College requires a Bible major for all of its four-year graduates, and a second major in an area of vocational ministry (e.g., pastoral studies, missions, local church ministries, sacred music, Christian school education, etc.). All of these other majors are ministry majors because we exist to train vocational Christian workers and leaders.
Without a doubt, church ministry is multi-faceted, and it requires both vocational and volunteer workers; therefore, FBBC&TS prepares people for both vocational and volunteer (or lay) ministry. However, Faith exists to prepare vocational leaders and workers. For example, the Christian School Program graduates teachers who are eligible for licensure to teach in the public schools of Iowa, and some of our graduates are led by God to teach in the public schools. We rejoice with them that they are following God's leading in their lives, but we do not exist to train students to teach in the public schools. The fact that some of our graduates teach in public schools testifies to the credibility of our program and to the submission of our graduates to the will of God for them. While it is true that many of our students have no intention of entering vocational ministry, we know that we can still be of great assistance to them because a Bible education is beneficial for everyone. It is valuable for those who want to serve Christ full-time and for those who do not want to enter vocational Christian service. Some students come to Faith not knowing God's will for their lives. But after studying the Scriptures in classes, sitting through daily chapels, and attending Bible conference or missions conference, they discover God's will for their lives. In this way, too, Faith's Bible education is beneficial. However, even though Faith can be beneficial for future lay workers, the school exists to train vocational workers and leaders. By holding fast to its reason for existence, Faith actually enhances its ability to assist those who attend for reasons other than its main purpose. When the Bible and theology core curriculum and the ministry majors are strengthened, this provides benefit for all who attend.
FBBC&TS does not merely exist to enroll students; we exist to train and educate them. If we existed to enroll students, we might indiscriminately add new degree programs simply to grow our enrollment without any regard for our mission as a Bible college and seminary. We will resist this temptation. We might be bigger if we had broader course offerings, but we want to be faithful to our mission more than we want to have a large enrollment. We exist to train students to become vocational Christian workers and leaders, and so the more students we have, the more we will be able to train and educate. Student tuition payments help to meet our financial need so that we might fulfill our mission as a Bible college and seminary; viewed in this way, tuition funds are a means to an end and not the end in itself. We believe that as we are faithful to our purpose, God will send us students that we might train them. We believe that God is able to take care of us and that we can have a premier Bible college and seminary without being the largest college and graduate school. We may not be the biggest, but we do want to be among the very best at training Christian workers and leaders.
9. FBBC&TS exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education to disciple vocational Christian workers and leaders for local churches.
As Baptists, we believe that the local church is at the center of God's program for this Age. Therefore, we exist to train and educate workers and leaders who will primarily serve in and through local churches. This means that while the Bible and theology courses are at the core of the College's curricula, next to them stand the courses that teach the leaders for the churches (pastoral studies and missions). Next come the courses that prepare assistants to the leaders (local church ministries, sacred music, and secretarial studies). Next come the courses that train graduates to serve in ministries that are sponsored by local churches (i.e., Christian school education in the areas of elementary education, music education, and secondary English education).
The faculty and members of the Board have concluded that before new programs are added, the institution should first review and strengthen its existing programs, beginning at its core (Bible and Theology). As an institution we look forward to adding new degree programs, and we have determined that before any new major is added it must first meet the following criteria: (1) Does this major correspond to the required Bible major? (2) Will the addition of this major and the hiring of the requisite new faculty diminish the prominence of the Bible and theology core faculty? (3) Does this major prepare graduates for vocational Christian service in or through local churches?
Because Faith exists to disciple vocational Christian workers for local churches, we require ministry apprenticeships of all of our B.S., B.A., M.A. in pastoral studies, and M.Div. graduates. We also require all of our resident students, except for first semester ones, to participate in Christian service opportunities in local churches throughout central Iowa.
In addition, we rejoice that our board members, administrators, faculty members, and staff personnel become involved members in their local churches. We require our employees to be involved in local church ministry because we know that this involvement enhances the discipleship process that we have with our students. Faculty members who are deeply involved in the ministries of their local churches, especially in local churches that are similar in philosophy to that of Faith, can work with their students in the practical aspects of local church ministry. This joint effort of ministry, faculty working with students, is an integral part of the discipleship process because when service in the churches coincides with lectures in the classrooms, it makes for a more profound and lasting discipleship experience. In addition, faculty members who, for example, are pastors, or who lead ladies' Bible studies, or who are involved with evangelistic outreaches in the churches will teach at Faith with a greater degree of realism and practicality. This is a good thing, and we value it highly.
10. FBBC&TS exists as a Fundamentalist Baptist institution of Christian higher education to disciple vocational Christian workers and leaders for local churches throughout the world.
Faith's motto is "With the Word to the World," and we are known as a missions-minded institution. Our graduates are serving Christ in many different countries. Currently, a large number of our students participate in cross-cultural ministry experiences (e.g., in our ARRBIA! program, in missionary apprenticeship programs, in ESL ministries, etc.). We envision the day when every college student will be required to obtain a passport before matriculation and is also required to participate in at least one cross-cultural ministry experience as part of his or her collegiate training. We look forward to the day when the school will be able to offer a summer language institute since language is an essential component of a culture, and cross-cultural ministry is enhanced with second language acquisition. We may be a small college, but we have a wide view of the world, and we would like for this growing reality to become one of our distinguishing characteristics. We insist that our graduates be communicators. Therefore, we expect our graduates to be able to write, to speak, and to be able to use technology in communication. We value the "writing across the curriculum" program and similar programs in speech communication and technology application in the college.
Matt Williams, veteran Christian educator, has joined the Faith team to assist in church relations and leadership development. Read More
Mrs. Norma Shipp, wife of former Faith president Dr. Gordon Shipp, entered the Lord's presence on January 4, 2016. Read More