KANSAS CITY – Midwestern Seminary announced last month the launch of the For the Church Institute—a free online training platform designed to provide accessible theological training to equip, encourage, and edify the local church and beyond.
Jordan Wilbanks, director of church partnerships at Midwestern Seminary, acknowledged that there is a growing movement in local churches, called “church-based theological education,” where regular church members are seeking out educational opportunities—such as classes typically taken in seminaries—from within their own churches.
In response to this need, Wilbanks said Midwestern Seminary has spent considerable time over the past year-and-a-half developing For the Church Institute, which provides solid theological training to local congregations through 10-week classes on foundational subjects like theology, church history, being a Christian, Old Testament, New Testament, and more.
“What we’ve aimed for in developing FTC Institute is to provide a curriculum consisting of shell versions of our core classes that are accessible for anyone from pre-teens to great-grandmothers,” Wilbanks said. “We want to remove the ivory tower image of a seminary in our dealings with churches. The fact is, we exist for local churches.
“Our primary goal is to strengthen the church from the inside out,” he added. “In these challenging cultural times, it’s imperative that our everyday church members know how to defend their faith and continue growing as a Christian.”
The FTC Institute, Wilbanks said, is a free resource built specifically for church members to learn from Midwestern Seminary’s world-class faculty—making the Bible come alive and enabling believers to grow in a deeper knowledge of Jesus Christ.
For the Church Institute’s initial offerings include Church History I, taught by John Mark Yeats, dean of students and professor of church history; Theology I, led by Owen Strachan, associate professor of Christian Theology; “Being a Christian” with President Jason Allen; and “The Story of Everything” led by Jared Wilson, author-in-residence and assistant professor of pastoral ministry.
Other courses to be developed in the future include Old Testament & New Testament Surveys and Interpreting the Bible.
To learn more about Midwestern Seminary’s For The Church Institute or to register your church for the program, visit www.ftcinstitute.com.