Leadership Studies Major

The leadership major of the Masters of Divinity degree offers an additional focus in equipping leaders for the unique challenges of leadership within the church and parachurch. It equips leaders to develop healthy ministries and mobilize followers of Christ to impact their spheres of influence in society. Leaders are equipped in areas of pastoral leadership and care, organizational change, leadership communication, and multiplying leaders.

LS 500Research and Writing for Christian Leadership (2 credits)
This course is the foundation for effective research and writing at this level of professional excellence. It introduces students to the use of library and internet resources, and the mechanics of good writing, reading comprehension, note-taking, and paper formatting to help them produce quality assignments and ministry related presentations. It also serves as a foundation for those planning to take more advanced research courses.
LS 501Personal Spiritual Formation (2 credits)
This class seeks develop a model for spiritual growth and character transformation that is both theologically grounded and practically applicable to life. Drawing from various traditions of spiritual theology this class will strive to develop an approach to spiritual growth which considers both the internal issues of motivation, faith and character as well as the external practice of spiritual disciplines that help a person grow fully in his/her relationship with Christ. Students will have the chance to engage in a variety of spiritual exercises designed to help them grow in their own personal spiritual formation and to help them see how to help others in the same process.
LS 502Christian marriage (2 credits)
This class seeks to establish the biblical foundations for Christian marriage and singleness, examining the various challenges and obstacles that confront Christian couples and singles in the 21st century trying to live out God’s relational purposes for their lives. The class will also explore the implications of living out the biblical roles of husband and wife in a fallen world seeking to help a couple develop an effective strategy to grow in oneness and intimacy in their marital relationship. Likewise this class will investigate several areas such as communication, finances, in-laws and sex that often cause stress in a marital relationship.
LS 503Christian Parenting (2 credits)
Examines the role and responsibilities of parents from the biblical perspective in order to accomplish God’s original design for the family. This course also briefly surveys researches and scientific findings that affirm the crucial role that parents play in their children’s development and success. (Prerequisite: LS 502)
LS 510Servant-Steward Leadership (2 credits)
This course introduces the broad biblical concept of whole-life stewardship and the biblical rational for the servant-steward model of leadership. Practical application to personal management concerns and basic relational dimensions of team ministry makes this an effective introduction to biblical stewardship values. Interacting with traditional, cultural models of leadership, students are challenged to reexamine their assumptions, values and practices about ministry leadership. Students do various personal assessments to better understand their God-given capacity and growth needs as servant-steward leaders.
LS 511Team Leadership (2 credits)
Prepares students to lead and work effectively in ministry teams by exposing them to a real life team situation. In the team context, three team purposes/priorities are discussed and applied. Moreover, within each Team Leadership Practicum (TLP) team, four major team processes of teambuilding, decision making, conflict resolution, and leadership are explained and developed and eight critical team skills are practiced as part of cooperative team assignments in preparation for the TLP. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisites: LS 510, LS 550)
LS 512Transforming Leadership (4 credits)
Probes deeper into the underlying theology, theory, and skill set of the servant-steward leader, including how God develops spiritual authority in a Bible-centered leader. Students learn skills for finding and communicating God’s vision, leading high performance teams, managing organizational change and conflict, and finishing well. (Prerequisites: LS 511, LS 599)
LS 530Small Group Dynamics (2 credits)
This class prepares students to employ small groups in their ministries. Small group models and group dynamics are covered and discussed in the context of nurturing and equipping believers for leadership in their areas of influence: at church, at work and in the community. Students learn how to develop and facilitate small group Bible discussions. Special attention will be given to understanding the original and current audiences as a basis for determining needs, writing objectives, and preparing for the small group. Each student will have an opportunity to practice the skills in a real small groups setting using the Hook-Book-Look-Took method. Practical issues of making small group work effectively will be presented including creating learning in small groups, undertaking roles in small groups, nurturing in small groups, and multiplying small groups for the Great Commission. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite: BS 510)
LS 531Bible Teaching Methods (2 credits) Building on a foundation of Bible study, students learn to teach for life change by determining the central idea of a biblical passage, restating it as a teaching idea, developing it in light of student needs, structuring a lesson based on the text, teaching it in a class session, and evaluating the results. Trains students how to bridge the gap between the world of the Bible, their cultural setting, and the audience. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisites: LS 530 and NT 601 or NT 602 or BS 610)
LS 550Church Health (2 credits)
Introduces the church in God’s plan as seen through key biblical metaphors, biblical purposes, and essential biblical quality characteristics. The nature and role of the parachurch is also examined. Theology is given practical application in understanding the relationship between church health and growth in the Asian context. During the course, churches will be evaluated and implementation strategies considered in light of the eight key characteristics of church health. (Prerequisite or concurrent with: LS 510)
LS 555Expository Preaching I – Foundations (2 credits)
Examines the principles and practice of constructing practical, biblical messages. Emphasizes mastering the skills of preparing and delivering well structured, audience sensitive expository sermons from didactic/epistolary passages. Students prepare, deliver and evaluate their sermons. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite: LS 531)
LS 590-598Iron Sharpening Group (1 credit each)
Provides an opportunity to develop spiritual friendships among a group of students and a faculty leader. Each Iron Sharpening Group (ISG) meets weekly for prayer, sharing, and mutual encouragement. Involvement in an ISG helps students prioritize and deepen their walk with God, learn to build and live in community, and grow as servant-steward leaders.
LS 599Team Leadership Practicum (4 credits)
This program is designed to expose students to actual field ministry in the context of teamwork. It seeks to develop skills on relationship leadership and ministry. It is also an opportunity for students to grow in their faith as they trust God for the needed fund and results in the ministry. Team Leadership Practicum engages faculty teams who will mentor students. This mentorship includes evaluating each team in the area of achieving ministry goals and fostering harmonious team relationships. The program provides real life ministry environment that focuses on developing Christ-like team leadership skills of team building, decision making, and conflict resolution. (Prerequisites: LS 511, LS 530)
LS 620Strategic Planning and Management (2 credits)
Examines biblical principles for accomplishing a God-given vision through long term planning and implementation in Christian organizations. Course content interacts with issues of faith, contextualization, resourcing, and decision making. Skills in creative thinking, quality control, and problem solving are developed. (Prerequisite: LS 512)
LS 621Strategic Financial Development (2 credits)
Examines biblical principles of financial development and funding for ministry. Skills are developed for conveying God’s mission and vision for the ministry to which they are called, and to enlist others’ involvement in, prayer support for, and financial contributions to that ministry.
LS 630Creating Learning Environments (2 credits)
Examines learning principles needed to understand all kinds of learners, to engage these learners in dynamic learning, and to effectively lead educational ministries in general. Equips students to build a model of learning that is sensitive to the development of specific age-groups and relevant to one’s cultural context of ministry. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite or concurrent with: LS 531)
LS 631Designing Educational Programs (2 credits)
Focuses on the design and development of biblical instruction for formal and non-formal contexts. Involves practice in writing instructional objectives and designing curriculum for various instructional settings. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite: LS 630)
LS 632Teaching Educational Programs (4 credits)
Examines the spiritual dynamics of effective Bible teaching as well as the principles of learning, teaching, and developing lesson plans. Students practice creative classroom methods in an actual teaching experience. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite: LS 630)
LS 637Designing and Leading Youth Ministry (4 credits)
Explores the needs of youth (high school and college levels) as learners in their stage of development in a post-modern culture, and the principles needed to engage them in dynamic learning. Equips students to design and lead ministries specific to the needs of the youth in their cultural context at present and in the future. (Prerequisite: LS 630 or permission of professor)
LS 639Designing and Leading Adult Ministry (4 credits)
Explores the needs of adults (men, women, single adults, young adults, middle adults and the elderly) as learners in their stage of development, and the principles needed to engage them in dynamic learning. Equips students to design and lead ministries specific to the needs of the adults in their cultural context at present and in the future. (Prerequisite: LS 630 or permission of professor)
LS 650Pastoral Leadership (4 credits)
This class examines the calling, roles and function of a disciple-making church leader. The shepherding roles of leading, heeding (care) and feeding (developing) God’s people are explored. Various church ministries including worship leadership, visitation, baptism, weddings, funerals and church disciple are examined. Students develop the foundations for an integrated philosophy of church ministry. (Prerequisite: LS 550)
LS 651 Going Deep in Pastoral Leadership Issues (4 credits)
Further examines the spiritual life, self-understanding and heart of the pastor as leader. Probes the challenges of leading God’s people through tough issues of church life such as working with church staff and boards, church conflict, pastoral transitions, and reviving the older stagnant church. (Prerequisite: LS 650)
LS 655 Introduction to Preaching Narratives (2 credits)
Develops students’ ability to exegete and preach from a biblical narrative or story. The aim will be to harness homiletical skills for connecting with the audience while staying true to the meaning of the text. The course also focuses on developing students’ skills for greater audience impact through effective preaching techniques. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisites: LS 555, OT 510, or concurrent with NT 510)
LS 656 Expository Preaching II – Narratives (4 credits)
Building on the exegetical and homiletical skills learned in Expository Preaching I (Foundations), this class develops students’ ability to do exegesis and exposition in Old Testament and New Testament historical narrative genre. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisites: NT 510, LS 555, OT 510, OT 601 or 602)
LS 657 Expository Preaching III – Contemporary Models (4 credits
Further explores the impact of biblical literary genre on the exposition and preaching of the biblical text. Also examines the impact of postmodern thought on the preaching event, looking at options in narrative creativity and variety appealing to modern audiences. NT parables and textual-topical sermons will be prepared. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisite: LS 656)
LS 660 Designing and Leading Worship (4 credits)
Surveys the theology, historical traditions, and modern practices related to worship. Probes the impact of culture and societal trends on Asian worshipers today. The roles of the pastor, worship leader, and worship team are considered. Students develop a contextualized form of worship for their ministry situation. (Prerequisite: LS 550)
LS 670 Counseling in Ministry (4 credits)
Explores scriptural understanding of human design, behavior, and relationships. Biblical principles and practices of counseling as applied to ministry are examined, and related skills are learned and practiced. Students apply insights to their own lives for the purpose of self-awareness and to start the healing process. This class is not available for audit. (Prerequisites: TS 525, TS 530, TS 540, LS 501, LS 503)
LS 671 Marriage and Family Counseling (2 credits)
As an advanced counseling class, looks deeper into the counseling issues in marriage and family life and presents the principles and practices of intervention. Focuses on such issues as marital disharmony, managing adolescence, death in the family, infertility, as well as the effects of divorce, child abuse, and neglect. (Prerequisites: LS 670)
LS 672Crisis Counseling (2 credits)
Designed for pastors and others in discipling ministry, this class provides deeper understanding about different forms of crises and discusses practical and biblical strategies for intervention. This class deals with crises such as trauma, depression, grief, stress, and life transitions. (Prerequisites: LS 670)