Monday, April 11, 2011

Theological Education

My last few posts have dealt with the training and equipping that believers receive in their discipleship process to be prepared to be the ministers that we have all been called to be. In each of these post I have stated that I am not against seminary training as I am currently pursuing an M.Div, but I recognize that it is not for everyone and do not believe it is for the majority.

Rather I am in agreement with Ralph Moore, http://www.ralphmoorehawaii.com/, who believes "seminary" training should be happening through the local church for all people, but in particular for church planters and pastors. Moore points out that out of the seminary students that make it to graduation, only a small percentage lasts in pastoral ministry more than two years.

Now, I am not sure where Moore got his statistics, but that is a sad reality. The majority of people that I talk with at seminary are there for a minimum of three-five years. So this tells me that the majority of people in seminary spend more time training for pastoral ministry than the amount of time that they are actually in pastoral ministry.

I cannot help but think that Steve Addison might be on to something here when he says, "Theological education in its current form creates barriers to enter into ministry." Since my own time pursuing theological education many believers have pursued me because I am the one in "ministry," but in reality we are all in ministry as disciples of Christ, but the church at large has failed at both communicating that and training their people as ministers.

The below link is a video of John Piper answering the question, "Should churches train their own ministers or be sent to seminary?"
http://www.desiringgod.org/resource-library/ask-pastor-john/should-churches-train-their-own-ministers-or-should-they-be-sent-to-seminary

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