Program at a Glance

  • Program Credits

    20-24 credits
    • Major/Concentration: 20-24
  • Accreditation

    WSCUC

The missions minor equips students to reflect on the historical, theological, cultural and strategic realities that impact effective cross-cultural witness and service. As agents of the Great Commission, students are prepared to exegete Scripture and cultural context, avoiding the mistakes of the past while using the most effective means possible to advance the gospel.


Courses

Note: This list is intended to give you a quick glimpse into the program’s academic offerings, and should not be used as a guide for course selection or academic advising. For official program requirements, see the course catalog.

Core Courses

The nature of people in culture; worldview and perception; culture change; a study of the subsystems of cultures, including social organization, religion, language and related topics. Includes practical applications to global problems such as AIDS, human rights, etc.

Study of God's redemptive acts in Scripture on behalf of mankind, with application to the mission of the church today.

Exploration of foundational issues related to international and intercultural ministry, including foundational models of global Christian witness, mission formation, contextualization, and an overview of various global realities (poverty; international development; Islam; unreached peoples; urbanization; globalization; and peace, security and conflict) from a Biblical perspective. Career tracks in intercultural and global service are explored.

Exploration of the foundational issues related to global ministry, emphasizing church planting strategies for entering and leaving an area. A holistic approach to ministry designed to empower nationals for ministry and using teamwork with the investigation of spiritual gifts, skills and life experience.

A survey and analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of various church planting strategies. Emphasizing key factors which the church planter can implement in a given cross-cultural context with strategy for turning over the leadership to the local church.

This study moves beyond the classroom to actual urban church plants in the greater L.A. area. Visits and dialogues provide the practical ways pastors, lay people, parachurch people, and missionaries prepare themselves and their congregations for intentional church planting in ethnically diverse communities.

An examination of the theology and missiology of the "frontier missions" movement and the emphasis on "unreached peoples," including its historical background, leading proponents, anthropological conceptions, and strategic implications; the dynamics of pioneer church movements; contextualization in Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and Tribal societies; insider movements; and other models of mission breakthrough.

The historical development and spread of the Christian faith from the apostolic period until today. Emphasis is given to the modern era, especially growth dynamics in the Global South (non-Western world).

A study of the centrality of God's redemptive acts on behalf of mankind from both the Old and New Testaments, as well as theological issues related to the mission of the Church in modern times.

A basic understanding of evangelism and church growth concepts as related both to local congregations and to the task of worldwide evangelization. Attention is given to identifying receptive peoples, bringing them to faith, incorporating them into the church and multiplying more churches.

Elective Courses

An introductory survey of the Islamic world and its faith, and major themes in Muslim theology and doctrine from the Qur'an to contemporary Muslim thinkers. Topics include faith, practice, the daily life and spiritual world of Muslims; the systematic character of Muslim thought; theological, historical, political, social and cultural barriers and bridges between Muslims and Christians. Critical issues like contextualization, power encounter, church multiplication, the role of women, and contemporary Islamic thought including the emergence of Islamic fundamentalism and militant Islam.

A study of specific cultural areas with an emphasis on customs, social structures, religion, arts, and history. May be repeated with different course content. Areas of specialty may include:

  • History, People and Cultures of Latin America
  • History, People and Cultures of Sub-Saharan Africa
  • Peoples and Cultures of China
  • Peoples and Cultures of India
  • Women in Islamic Cultures
  • Peoples of the Islamic World
  • Native Peoples of America
  • Peoples and Cultures of Southeast Asia
  • Peoples of Europe

Exploration of the foundational issues related to global ministry, emphasizing church planting strategies for entering and leaving an area. A holistic approach to ministry designed to empower nationals for ministry and using teamwork with the investigation of spiritual gifts, skills and life experience.

A survey and analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of various church planting strategies. Emphasizing key factors which the church planter can implement in a given cross-cultural context with strategy for turning over the leadership to the local church.

This study moves beyond the classroom to actual urban church plants in the greater L.A. area. Visits and dialogues provide the practical ways pastors, lay people, parachurch people, and missionaries prepare themselves and their congregations for intentional church planting in ethnically diverse communities.

An introduction to the contemporary worldwide Christian movement, focusing on social, cultural and missiological issues; the translatability of the gospel; and non-Western missions and religious movements.

Preparation to effectively lead a short-term mission team (STM) and program, including team training and preparation, models of STM service, spiritual and cultural issues, analysis of the STM paradigm, and assessment of STM effectiveness.

An examination of the theology and missiology of the "frontier missions" movement and the emphasis on "unreached peoples," including its historical background, leading proponents, anthropological conceptions, and strategic implications; the dynamics of pioneer church movements; contextualization in Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, and Tribal societies; insider movements; and other models of mission breakthrough.

Exploration of historical and contemporary approaches to Muslim peoples, including an analysis of effective interactions and Muslim perceptions, and individual and organizational approaches like evangelism, apologetics, interfaith dialogue, evangelism, apologetics, education, development and compassion ministries, reconciliation, peace-building and the planting of transformational communities. This course will equip students with an understanding of the basic competencies needed to live and serve effectively among Muslim peoples in the name and spirit of Jesus.

Studies in selected issues pertaining to Islam, such as Islamic Theology; The Qur'an and Muslim Tradition; The Life of Muhammad; Muslim-Christian Relations; Islam in the 21st Century; Islam and State; The Anthropology of Islam. Conflict and Change in Islamic World or an in-depth study of a particular aspect of Islamic thought, practice or history.

A basic understanding of evangelism and church growth concepts as related both to local congregations and to the task of worldwide evangelization. Attention is given to identifying receptive peoples, bringing them to faith, incorporating them into the church and multiplying more churches.

The distinctive features of the historical ethnic religions, with special emphasis on their comparison and encounter with Christianity and their bearings upon missionary strategies.

The use of social science research techniques to learn about the people, needs and opportunities for living, working, and serving in the city. Special attention is given to researching people groups and the adaptations they make to urban contexts.

Analysis of the cultural institutions and values in tribal, peasant and newly emerging economies, with special consideration as to their openness or resistance to change.

The dynamics of women in missions and cross-cultural ministry; historical, social, cultural, psychological, physical, and spiritual issues. Special focus on challenges and opportunities in the contemporary world.

Explores various themes and topics of current interest in Intercultural Studies.

Directed reading, individual work, in-depth investigation of a topic under the guidance of the faculty using standard research procedures.

Topics in missionary preparation.