From raising a family to navigating challenging conversations at work to seeking opportunities to serve in the community, the reasons behind your actions make a difference.

In Matthew 7, Jesus shares a story of two builders. The wise builder built his house on rock, the foolish builder on sand. And as he shares, the outcomes of both houses are dramatically different.

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
Matthew 7:24-27

In this closing passage of his powerful Sermon on the Mount, Jesus speaks to the power of a strong foundation in his teachings. Transformation can take place when we move from hearing about God’s word to applying it in our relationships, in our work and in our communities.

Through an associate degree in biblical studies, you can set that foundation for powerful transformation, wherever God calls you to lead and serve. Whether you are currently in ministry or aspire to follow God’s lead into new opportunities, gaining new insight in biblical knowledge can equip you to make a difference as a leader.

As you seek to pursue your educational journey, you’ve got options. How are you to know if pursuing biblical studies is the right path for you? Here we share five important things you should know to determine if an associate of science in biblical studies is for you.

1. Grow Your Biblical Foundation

To lead others in knowledge and understanding of the Bible, you’ll need to be equipped yourself. Courses in Cornerstone’s biblical studies program incorporate strong biblical knowledge to add to your own understanding and interpretation. Move from Genesis to Malachi and Matthew through Revelation in Old and New Testament Survey courses. As you journey through each book, you’ll discover significant historical perspectives that deepen your understanding and bring new opportunities for spiritual application in your life.

In addition to robust survey courses, you’ll also explore an introduction to the Bible course that amplifies the value of biblical study for tackling real-world issues from a resolute Christian perspective. Spiritual disciplines like engaging in God’s word can deepen your own personal development and relationship with God.

These courses help to lay the framework for continued growth and development in biblical study for leadership and influence. And with a focus on practical application, you’ll discover new ways to transform your communities by sharing God’s word and its power to change lives.

Is it for me? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I interested in deepening my understanding of biblical study and application?
  • Do I want to empower others with biblical understanding?
  • Am I passionate about moving from biblical study to applying what I learn to transform my community?

2. Continue Your Leadership Journey

Whether you’re currently in your dream position or are still discovering what God has in store for you, you have a calling. Your “calling” means more than audibly listening for a message telling you where to go or what career to choose. It goes beyond just what you do to incorporate how your life reflects what God has planned for you. Author Frederick Buechner describes God’s calling in his book “Wishful Thinking” as “the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

It’s a calling only you can fulfill in the way God intends you to live out your purpose and glorify Him in all you do. With an associate in biblical studies, you can move forward as a servant leader in ministry.

In this program, you’ll engage in practical application of core biblical courses and versatile and relevant leadership courses. Through each assignment and discussion, you’ll uncover key skills and experiences you can apply in your church, non-profit, small group, classroom or whatever ministry setting you find yourself in.

Grow in confidence as you engage in meaningful discussions with your peers, complete real-world and practical assignments and share your thoughts and experiences through presentations. Whether you’ve been leading others for years or are looking for your next opportunity, a degree in biblical studies can help further your influence for God’s purpose.

Is it for me? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I interested in learning how to lead others well in a variety of settings, including ministry?
  • Do I want to grow in confidence and communication skills?

3. Develop Your Transferable Skills

In a foundational associate program, you learn more than practical content in your field of interest. You also enhance your transferable or soft skills that are applicable to any situation you may find yourself in.

These transferable skills are varied and fall into categories such as people skills, technical skills, communication skills and others. They include things like public speaking, listening, conflict resolution, note-taking, reading and many more. The power of these skills comes in their versatility and opportunity to be applied in any situation. Whether you’re an entry-level employee in retail or a CEO of a large corporation, the ability to communicate well, manage your time and strengthen interpersonal relationships is essential.

Through courses like digital literacy, writing and research, current social issues and general psychology, you’ll deepen your versatile skills as you continue to build a foundation to advance your influence in the world for Christ.

Is it for me? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I interested in developing transferable skills to apply to my desired field?
  • Do I desire effective communication skills to apply to conversations with my family, staff, clients and managers?

4. Serve Wherever You’re Called

The calling you feel placed on your life may be clear and focused right from the start. Or, it may change and adapt as you navigate through the complexities of life. Either way, God has a plan. With a degree in biblical studies, you’ll cultivate a foundation in biblical knowledge and application that equips you to serve in a variety of fields.

You may be in a church setting, leading a congregation or ministry. Your biblical understanding that you share with others from the stage or in small groups can inspire their own learning and transformation.

You may be in a missional setting, whether local or international. Your anchor on biblical principles and the implications of contemporary culture can inspire you to encourage your team and groups you partner with to discover and deepen their own faith.

You may serve in a non-profit environment that is passionate about meeting the needs of your community. Growing in practical leadership techniques and versatile skills can help you create lasting transformation through your determination to see others grow closer to God.

Wherever God calls you, you can be equipped to serve.

Is it for me? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Am I passionate about a people-focused career that allows me to work with and serve others?
  • Do I want to grow in versatile knowledge and understanding that can be applied in a variety of contexts to meet the needs of wherever I am called?

5. Continue Your Education in Ministry Leadership

In pursuing God’s calling in life, there’s always more ahead of us. We can continually grow, learn and cultivate opportunities to serve God and fulfill who we’re called to be.

With the foundation of a degree in biblical studies, continuing your education with a bachelor’s degree is seamless and convenient. At PGS, you can easily move into a bachelor’s in ministry leadership to deepen your influence as a servant leader. You can also explore programs in psychology, business administration and management.

As an associate program sets the base for further opportunities, a bachelor’s program builds upon that foundation and elevates your leadership and transformative potential as you lead and serve where God has called you. Moving forward in your education also opens doors for graduate education in degrees such as a Master of Divinity and many others.

Is it for me? Ask yourself these questions:

Am I interested in continuing my education after developing a solid foundation gained through an associate program?
Am I looking to continue on in my educational journey to qualify for higher-level roles in ministry leadership?
Do I believe that being better equipped to serve through education can help make me more effective at meeting the needs of those around me?

Is a Biblical Studies Program Right For You?

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus was clear about the difference between a wise builder who put his words into practice and a foolish builder who didn’t put them into practice. When biblical knowledge turns into action, that’s when real transformation can happen—in your family, community, ministry or workplace.

Discover a degree program in biblical studies that’s designed to meet your needs where you’re at. By taking just one course at a time all online, you can join with fellow ministry leaders as you pursue your unique calling.

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