Who are the prospective students for The Gospel Institute?
The Gospel Institute (TGI) is intended for active Christians who seek to devote their time, energy, and finances to deepen their love for God in the gospel. These Christians can be lay servants, high school students, college students, Church leaders, prospective missionaries, prospective vocational ministry leaders, and retired Christians. These specific groups of Christians are living at points in their lives where they specifically need to learn about God’s plan, gain a foundation in true theology, and be prepared to interact with other cultures and peoples.
How does The Gospel Institute training compare with college and seminary education?
TGI seeks to provide training that engages the mind like seminary education, but requires students to invest their time outside of class, similar to college. TGI recognizes that students working full time and serving in their churches have limited time to invest in outside work. TGI will be like graduate education in the way it challenges students to think, assess, value, and apply what they are studying. However, the expected workload will be tailored to a student body that is comprised of working people who are actively serving in their local church.
How does The Gospel Institute fit with discipleship?
TGI is a great tool to deepen and advance discipleship at a personal and corporate level. Personally, this training will equip students to better interpret, understand, and apply the Scriptures in their own lives. Corporately, this is a great way for groups of Christians to gather for instruction and then work on the homework together. As students meet and share their lives around theological education, it will bring about the fruit of greater obedience to all that God has commanded us.
Are the courses accredited or transferable to a degree?
The courses currently offered at TGI are not accredited and not intended for direct transfer into other degree programs (e.g. Mdiv, ThM, etc.)
Is The Gospel Institute planning to expand its class offerings in the future?
As the Lord continues to lead and direct the ministry, we do plan to offer more ministry-specific courses in the future. At the start we want to pursue excellence in teaching the core classes before introducing other offerings. We also believe that the six core classes form a critical foundation that will be applied in areas of teaching, church leadership, missions, and counseling in the future.
Is this in any way linked to the Lincoln Seminary partnership with Illinois Central College?
No, we do not currently have any partnership with Lincoln or ICC.
Can I register for more than one class per semester?
Given the rigorous nature of the classes and the workload required, we are limiting class participation to one course per semester.
How much time will classwork take each week?
The time of homework will vary depending on the student’s background and previous experience, skills, and the weekly material for each course, though we strive for two to five hours per week. Our desire is to provide work that will cultivate worship in the heart of students but not overwhelm them with their other roles and responsibilities in life.
What level of commitment should I expect to make if I participate in The Gospel Institute?
There are two costs that are worthy of counting for anyone considering The Gospel Institute:
- Time: Between the classroom and homework, this training asks between five and ten hours from you each week
- Energy: students are expected to put forth effort both in class and at home.
Students are to make this training a priority by attending every class session with a desire to engage and interact with the class material and completing their homework in a worshipful manner.
How will The Gospel Institute benefit the other ministries in which I am involved?
Our understanding and thinking about God and what He has revealed in Scripture drives how we live and how we approach ministry. This particular training is designed to drive students deeper into the gospel in order to grasp its beauty and fullness. As the gospel transforms and shapes our lives, it will have a profound impact on us personally and also in the way that serve others.
Is there a particular sequence that students should follow in taking classes?
The class offering have been designed to follow two different tracks: Theology and Bible. The offerings follow a continuity through these tracks, though you are free to take these classes in any order.
What should I expect for homework?
Assignments vary from week to week and also from class to class. However, typical homework will include reading, reflection questions, application questions, group projects, research papers, and application papers.
How does grading work in The Gospel Institute?
The purpose of grading in TGI is to provide each student with constructive feedback regarding their learning process. The grading scale may follow a typical “A" through “F” scale, or a Pass/Fail approach where work is more subjective in nature. Regardless of the measurement used, the goal is to work with students and help them assess the quality of their learning experience and practices. As a result, students will be better equipped to perform self-assessments of their own work, and make the necessary adjustments to improve personal growth and spiritual development.
What resources or equipment are necessary for this training?
The essential resources for each class will be a Bible, a pen, and paper. Students may seek to use laptops or tablets as their primary tools in study, note-taking, and homework. All of the classes will be designed to accommodate students with a diverse range of resources at their disposal.
How the classes at The Gospel Institute relate to my Church family?
Every student will be encouraged to establish a mentor relationship with someone from their church family. The goal is to have the student meet at least a few times throughout the semester with their mentor to discuss how the training is impacting their lives and how it relates to ministry in their local church. We believe this is a crucial element of being Great Commission-Focused so that this training strengthens local churches throughout the area.