Overview

For graduation with a Master of Divinity degree, a student must complete a minimum of 78 semester credits and maintain at least a C (2.0) average. In addition, the following requirements must be met by all candidates for a degree: complete supervised ministry requirements, including the assessment and evaluation program; and clearance of financial accounts. Failure to meet the deadlines indicated in the calendar will incur forfeiture of candidacy for a year. However, graduation is not automatic when academic requirements have been met. Since the seminary aims to graduate qualified Christian leaders, the faculty and staff will, on an ongoing basis, evaluate a student’s readiness in terms of spiritual, developmental, doctrinal, and professional standards as well as academic standards.

The Master of Divinity program is designed to guide students in a process of growth through cognitive studies, skill courses and experiences, self-assessment measures, counseling, and community life that leads to self-understanding and spiritual maturity. The degree is designed to prepare persons for professional ministry in the church and other organizations through positions such as pastor, missionary, chaplain, denominational minister, or parachurch leader. It seeks to graduate people who have knowledge and experience of the Christian faith, who show evidence of emotional and spiritual maturity, who relate to others with integrity, who possess skills for ministry, and who meet the educational requirements for ordination. Specifically, it seeks to develop whole and holy leaders who demonstrate to the satisfaction of the faculty and ministry supervisors the following:

  1. A comprehensive understanding of biblical content, a discerning approach to biblical interpretation, and theological reflection informed by historical traditions;
  2. Growth in emotional, spiritual, and relational health resulting in observable love for God and neighbor;
  3. The capacity and skills for effective ministry leadership;
  4. Intercultural competence for the purpose of advancing the Gospel of Jesus Christ; and
  5. Intentional integration of faith, learning, life, and practice.

Campus and Delivery Options

  • St. Paul: Face to Face
  • San Diego: Face to Face
  • Fully Online

Language Tracks

Preaching the biblical Gospel is central to Christian ministry. Therefore, Bethel’s faculty believes that Master of Divinity students should learn the biblical languages and be required to take a biblical language track.

Single Language Track

Greek Track

In the Greek language track, students take Greek I: Beginning Greek (NT541), Greek II: Intermediate Greek (NT542), and Greek Exegesis (NT652). Students with sufficient knowledge of Greek may take a qualifying examination for advanced standing.

Hebrew Track

In the Hebrew language track, students take Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew (OT541), Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew (OT542),  and Hebrew Exegesis (OT652). Students with sufficient knowledge of Hebrew may take a qualifying examination for advanced standing.

Dual Language Track

The Greek and Hebrew Track is for students desiring competency in both biblical languages or who are required to take both languages by the denomination in which they seek to be ordained. Students in this dual language track take Greek I: Beginning Greek (NT541)Greek II: Intermediate Greek (NT542)Greek Exegesis (NT652)Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew (OT541)Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew (OT542), and Hebrew Exegesis (OT652)Students with sufficient competency in either language may take a qualifying examination for advanced standin

Master of Divinity: Single Language

Core Requirements
BT510Hermeneutics3
HS510Church History Survey3
NT516New Testament Survey: Narratives, Letters, and Revelation3
NT518New Testament: Exegetical Explorations3
OT516Old Testament Survey: Law, Prophets and Writings3
OT518Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3
NT541Greek I: Beginning Greek3
or OT541 Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew
NT542Greek II: Intermediate Greek3
or OT542 Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew
NT652Greek Exegesis1.5
or OT652 Hebrew Exegesis
TS512Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3
TS513Systematic Theology II: God the Redeemer3
TS516Christian Social Ethics3
Degree Specific Requirements
CP510Introduction to Preaching3
GC512Global, Cultural and Contextual Ministry3
HS512American Christianity1.5
ML506Discipleship in Community1.5
ML507Missional Outreach and Evangelism1.5
ML523Introduction to Transformational Leadership: Theory and Practice in Global Perspective3
ML527Leading Celebrations in the Christian Life Cycle1.5
ML615Organizational Leadership and Church Governance3
PC512Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling3
Professional Internship3
Concentration Courses and Electives12
Formation Course Requirements
GS780Senior Integrative Seminar3
SP510Introduction to Spiritual and Personal Formation3
SP610Spiritual and Personal Formation II: Relational Spirituality1.5
GS001Graduate Research Seminar0
SP001Formation Assessments0
or SP002 Formation Assessments
TL001Vocational Assessments0
or TL002 Vocational Assessments
Intent to Graduate Application
Total Credits78

A minimum of 78 semester credits is required for graduation in the M.Div. program. The student is responsible for meeting all graduation deadlines and requirements. 

Master of Divinity: Dual Language

Core Requirements
BT510Hermeneutics3
HS510Church History Survey3
NT516New Testament Survey: Narratives, Letters, and Revelation3
NT518New Testament: Exegetical Explorations3
OT516Old Testament Survey: Law, Prophets and Writings3
OT518Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3
NT541Greek I: Beginning Greek3
NT542Greek II: Intermediate Greek3
NT652Greek Exegesis1.5
OT541Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew3
OT542Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew3
OT652Hebrew Exegesis1.5
TS512Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3
TS513Systematic Theology II: God the Redeemer3
TS516Christian Social Ethics3
Degree Specific Requirements
CP510Introduction to Preaching3
GC512Global, Cultural and Contextual Ministry3
HS512American Christianity1.5
ML506Discipleship in Community1.5
ML507Missional Outreach and Evangelism1.5
ML523Introduction to Transformational Leadership: Theory and Practice in Global Perspective3
ML527Leading Celebrations in the Christian Life Cycle1.5
ML615Organizational Leadership and Church Governance3
PC512Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling3
Professional Internship3
Concentration Courses and Electives
Electives4.5
Formation Course Requirements
GS780Senior Integrative Seminar3
SP510Introduction to Spiritual and Personal Formation3
SP610Spiritual and Personal Formation II: Relational Spirituality1.5
GS001Graduate Research Seminar0
SP001Formation Assessments0
or SP002 Formation Assessments
TL001Vocational Assessments0
or TL002 Vocational Assessments
Intent to Graduate Application
Total Credits78


A minimum of 78 semester credits is required for graduation in the M.Div. program. The student is responsible for meeting all graduation deadlines and requirements.

Master of Divinity Concentrations 

Anglican Studies

  • San Diego - Face to Face
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

The Anglican Studies courses are intended primarily for Master of Divinity students seeking ordination in the Anglican Church of North America; however, these courses can be used as an Anglican Studies concentration in either the M.Div. program or the Master of Arts in Ministry program. Concentration courses include:

HS689Anglican Spirituality3
HS687Liturgy through the Ages3
ML679Worship in the Prayer Book Tradition3
ML674Ministry with the Sacraments3
Total Credits12

Biblical Studies

  • San Diego/St. Paul -Face to Face & Fully Online
  • M.Div., M.A. (Theological Studies)

The Biblical Studies concentration deepens students' understanding of the Bible’s history and its integrative themes, and equips them with additional skills for responsible interpretation of the biblical message. The concentration is also recommended as preparation for advanced degrees in biblical studies. Concentration requires 12 credits of courses in the Biblical Interpretation, Biblical Theology, Old Testament, and/or New Testament subject areas.

BI, BT, OT, or NT Course3
BI, BT, OT, or NT Course3
BI, BT, OT, or NT Course3
BI, BT, OT, or NT Course3
Total Credits12

Chaplaincy

  • San Diego - Face to Face
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

This program will enable chaplains and those preparing for chaplaincy to train for ministry in contexts such as healthcare services, educational institutions, businesses and corporations, correctional facilities, and the military. In addition to theological and ethical training, graduates of the program will be knowledgeable of the ways in which pastoral care is put into practice in non-church/parish settings. Concentration courses include:

PC729Chaplaincy in Contemporary Society3
MH656Crisis Intervention and Trauma Response3
MF629Community Mental Health3
MH655Chemical Dependency,Addictions, and Co-Occurring Disorders3
Total Credits12

Children’s and Family Ministry

  • St. Paul - Online with Intensives only
  • M.Div. only

This concentration is available in the InMinistry delivery format. Concentration requires students to complete 12 credits of courses in the Children's and Family Ministry subject area.

CF Course3
CF Course3
CF Course3
CF Course3
Total Credits12

Possible CF courses in this area include CF510 Introduction to Children’s and Family Ministry; CF620 Teaching and Learning Process; CF610 Ministry with Families through the Life Cycle; and CF612DE Global/Missional Perspectives of Children's and Family Ministry.

Christian Thought

  • St. Paul - Online with Intensives only
  • M.Div. only

This concentration is available in the InMinistry delivery system. A concentration in Christian Thought is designed to enable M.Div. students to focus on the intellectual exploration of the Christian faith and the intersection of Christianity and culture. It serves students who desire church ministry vocations in teaching, discipleship, and apologetics as well as students who may wish to go on for further graduate study in theological studies. Students participate in internships with the Office of Formation, Supervised Ministry, and Placement. Those who sense a call to teaching, outreach, or discipleship ministry using the concentration in Christian Thought may develop their internships with those ministries in view. Concentration requires 12 credits of courses in the Theological Studies and/or Philosophy of Religion subject areas.

TS, or PH Course3
TS, or PH Course3
TS, or PH Course3
TS, or PH Course3
Total Credits12

Church Planting

  • San Diego, St. Paul, Online
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

This concentration is available to all M.Div. and M.A.Min. students since all required courses are offered fully online. It is designed to provide foundational training for individuals seeking to plant a new church. Concentration completers will be prepared to develop a vision for a new church, organize teams and a support network to launch a new church, plan worship services and welcoming experiences, and create and implement systems to sustain a new church. Concentration courses include:

ML531DEChurch Planting Vision and Preparation3
ML533DECritical Worship Service Elements for Church Plants1.5
ML535DECreating Sustainable Church Plants3
Free Elective4.5
Total Credits12

Through a partnership with  Gateway Leaders, students can transfer the Cultivate church planting experience to Bethel for 9 credits, fulfilling ML531DE, ML533DE, ML535DE and 1.5 credits of free elective. Students seeking to take Cultivate must register for Cultivate through Gateway Leaders and, upon completion of Cultivate, request Gateway Leaders to send their transcript to Bethel Seminary.

Missional Leadership

  • San Diego - Face to Face
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

The Missional Leadership concentration is offered at Bethel Seminary San Diego. It is designed to equip participants to both lead and develop leaders who in turn can develop other leaders in rising generations. The curriculum is intended to produce individuals who are theological thinkers, missional activists, leadership developers, cultural architects, spiritual mentors, and relevant communicators. Concentration courses include: 

CM651Principles of Community Development1.5
CM652Practice in Community Development1.5
GC614Christianity and Culture1.5
GC659Implementing Change1.5
GC656Understanding Cults1.5
GC609Intercultural Communications1.5
ML Elective3
Total Credits12

Pastoral Care and Counseling

  • San Diego - Face to Face
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

This concentration enables students to prepare for the counseling tasks common in ministry settings as well as for preventive educational efforts in the church. The curriculum provides preparation in pastoral care and counseling that would enable those involved in local church as well as agency ministries to enhance health and wholeness in the variety of organizational and social contexts served by these ministries. Concentration courses include:

Choose course according to program3
Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling (For MAMin students only)
Principles of Counseling (For MDiv students only)
MF629Community Mental Health3
MF635Individual Development, Family Life Cycle, and Aging3
MH656Crisis Intervention and Trauma Response3
Total Credits12

Post-Christian Ministry (Gateway Church Partnership)

  • San Diego/St. Paul - Online
  • M.Div, M.A.Min.

Post-Christian Ministry is designed as an experience for individuals living in Austin, Texas, and working as interns with Eric Bryant. It is available through the Online delivery format and includes courses taken directly with Gateway Church. The concentration in Post-Christian Ministry is designed for pastors, church planters, teachers, writers, and church leaders who are serving in post-Christian environments or who feel called to reach those not being reached through traditional methods. The concentration emphasizes creating networks (missional communities) and Sunday gatherings where people can “come as they are.” After students complete the concentration, they will know how to engage with people and cultures that are unfamiliar with the Christian tradition, how to help people move from lost to leading, and how to invite skeptics to become Christ-followers who disciple and reach others. The concentration courses, with the exception of the required elective, are operated by Gateway Church. Students in this concentration must register for the concentration courses through Gateway Church and have transcripts sent from Gateway Church to Bethel Seminary to facilitate the transfer of credit. The Post-Christian Ministry concentration consists of the following courses: 

Introduction to Post-Christian Ministry 13
Missional Innovation 13
Leading Missional Organizations 13
Free Elective3
Total Credits12
1

 These concentration courses are operated by Gateway Church and are not offered at Bethel Seminary.

Theological and Historical Studies

  • San Diego/St. Paul - Face to Face & Online
  • M.Div., M.A. (Theological Studies)

This concentration acquaints students more fully with the theological resources of the Christian tradition and the church’s experience through the centuries. It provides opportunity to develop theological skills and to selectively appropriate from the Christian heritage what may be usefully applied to contemporary challenges and opportunities. The concentration is also recommended as preparation for advanced degrees in these fields. Concentration requires: 12 credits of courses in the Historical Studies, Theological Studies, and/or Philosophy of Religion subject areas.

HS, TS, or PH Course3
HS, TS, or PH Course3
HS, TS, or PH Course3
HS, TS, or PH Course3
Total Credits12

Transformational Leadership

  • St. Paul - Online with Intensives only
  • M.Div. only

The Transformational Leadership concentration is designed for individuals anticipating service as pastors of local churches. Recognizing the diversity of roles demanded of the pastor, the concentration’s primary focus is on development of the knowledge, attitude, and skills of an effective servant leader in the global church of the 21st century. The concentration requires 12 credits of courses in the Ministry Leadership subject area. 

ML Course3
ML Course3
ML Course3
ML Course3
Total Credits12

Young Life Youth Ministry (Young Life Partnership)

  • San Diego/St. Paul/Online
  • M.Div., M.A.Min.

The Young Life Youth Ministry concentration is intended for students who are concurrently involved in the Young Life organization. Young Life courses approved for transfer to Bethel Seminary to meet requirements for this concentration include DC635YL Foundations of Incarnational Youth Ministry; DC636YL Life of Christ: Communicating Christ to Adolescent Culture; ML612YL Leadership I, ML613YL Leadership II; and PC607YL Pastoral Counseling. The Young Life concentration in the M.Div. is comprised of any four of these courses taken in addition to the 63 credits of the M.Div. core, two free electives, Senior Integrative Seminar, and Supervised Ministry. The Young Life concentration in the M.A.Min. is comprised of any four of these courses taken in addition to all other degree requirements.

Academic Plan

The academic plans listed below serve as examples of what completing the Master of Divinity in the Face-to-Face delivery system in 3 or 4.5 years could look like. This plan is for illustrative purposes only. Variations in course availability will occur due to differences in delivery system, starting term, and other factors. Academic plans for Spring and Summer starts, and dual language are available by contacting the Bethel Seminary Registrar's office. 

St Paul: 3 Year Completion

First Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
BT510 Hermeneutics3Elective 1.5OT516 Old Testament Survey: Law, Prophets and Writings3HS510 Church History Survey3
SP510 Introduction to Spiritual and Personal Formation3 NT516 New Testament Survey: Narratives, Letters, and Revelation3SP610 Spiritual and Personal Formation II: Relational Spirituality1.5
ML523 Introduction to Transformational Leadership: Theory and Practice in Global Perspective3 PC512 Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling3 
Elective 1.5 Elective 1.5 
SP001 Formation Assessments0   
TL001 Vocational Assessments0   
 10.5 1.5 10.5 4.5
Second Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
OT518 Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3Elective 1.5TS512 Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3NT652 Greek Exegesis1.5
NT541 or OT 541 Greek I: Beginning Greek or Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew3TL001 Vocational Assessments0NT542 or OT 542 Greek II: Intermediate Greek or Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew3GC512 Global, Cultural and Contextual Ministry3
ML615 Organizational Leadership and Church Governance3 CP510 Introduction to Preaching3 
ML527 Leading Celebrations in the Christian Life Cycle1.5 ML506 Discipleship in Community1.5 
  TL561 Internship Readiness1 
 10.5 1.5 11.5 4.5
Third Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCredits 
TS513 Systematic Theology II: God the Redeemer3ML507 Missional Outreach and Evangelism1.5TS516 Christian Social Ethics3 
NT518 New Testament: Exegetical Explorations3HS512 American Christianity1.5GS780 Senior Integrative Seminar3 
Elective 3 Elective 3 
TL563A Professional Internship A1 TL563B Professional Internship B1 
 10 3 10 
Total Credits: 78

San Diego: 4.5 Year Completion

First Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
BT510 Hermeneutics3ML506 Discipleship in Community1.5OT518 Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3ML507 Missional Outreach and Evangelism1.5
OT516 Old Testament Survey: Law, Prophets and Writings3 SP510 Introduction to Spiritual and Personal Formation3 
TS512 Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3 TS513 Systematic Theology II: God the Redeemer3 
SP002 Formation Assessments0   
 9 1.5 9 1.5
Second Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
HS510 Church History Survey3HS512 American Christianity1.5GC512 Global, Cultural and Contextual Ministry3NT652 or OT 652 Greek Exegesis or Hebrew Exegesis1.5
NT541 or OT 541 Greek I: Beginning Greek or Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew3 NT542 or OT 542 Greek II: Intermediate Greek or Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew3 
  Elective 1.5 
 6 1.5 7.5 1.5
Third Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
CP510 Introduction to Preaching3Elective 1.5ML615 Organizational Leadership and Church Governance3ML527 Leading Celebrations in the Christian Life Cycle1.5
NT516 New Testament Survey: Narratives, Letters, and Revelation3 NT518 New Testament: Exegetical Explorations3TL565A Professional Internship0.5
  SP610 Spiritual and Personal Formation II: Relational Spirituality1.5 
 6 1.5 7.5 2
Fourth Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
PC512 Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling3TL565C Professional Internship0.5GS780 Senior Integrative Seminar3Elective1 1.5
Elective1 3Elective 1.5Elective1 3 
TL565B Professional Internship1 TL565D Professional Internship1 
 7 2 7 1.5
Fifth Year
FallCredits   
ML523 Introduction to Transformational Leadership: Theory and Practice in Global Perspective3   
TS516 Christian Social Ethics3   
 6   
Total Credits: 78
1

Dual Language MDiv students may take their second language courses for these electives. 

St Paul: 4.5 Year Completion

First Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
BT510 Hermeneutics3ML507 Missional Outreach and Evangelism1.5NT516 New Testament Survey: Narratives, Letters, and Revelation3HS510 Church History Survey3
ML523 Introduction to Transformational Leadership: Theory and Practice in Global Perspective3 TS512 Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3 
SP001 Formation Assessments0 Elective 1.5 
TL001 Vocational Assessments0   
 6 1.5 7.5 3
Second Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
TS512 Systematic Theology I: God the Creator3Elective 1.5OT516 Old Testament Survey: Law, Prophets and Writings3SP610 Spiritual and Personal Formation II: Relational Spirituality1.5
SP510 Introduction to Spiritual and Personal Formation3 PC512 Introduction to Pastoral Care and Counseling3 
Elective 1.5 ML506 Discipleship in Community1.5 
 7.5 1.5 7.5 1.5
Third Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
NT541 or OT 541 Greek I: Beginning Greek or Hebrew I: Beginning Hebrew3Elective 1.5NT542 or OT 542 Greek II: Intermediate Greek or Hebrew II: Intermediate Hebrew3NT652 or OT 652 Greek Exegesis or Hebrew Exegesis1.5
ML615 Organizational Leadership and Church Governance3TL001 Vocational Assessments0CP510 Introduction to Preaching3 
  TL561 Internship Readiness1 
 6 1.5 7 1.5
Fourth Year
FallCreditsInterimCreditsSpringCreditsSummerCredits
NT518 or OT 518 New Testament: Exegetical Explorations or Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3HS512 American Christianity1.5TS516 Christian Social Ethics3GC512 Global, Cultural and Contextual Ministry3
Elective 3 Elective 3 
TL563A Professional Internship A1 TL563B Professional Internship B1 
 7 1.5 7 3
Fifth Year
FallCredits   
NT518 or OT 518 New Testament: Exegetical Explorations or Old Testament: Exegetical Explorations3   
GS780 Senior Integrative Seminar3   
ML527 Leading Celebrations in the Christian Life Cycle1.5   
 7.5   
Total Credits: 78