I noticed that you have a degree in theology from Harvard and I thought you might be a good person to ask about majoring in Religious Studies at a state university. I am very interested in Comparative studies, apologetics, history, etc. But I heard that it may not be a good idea because the religious teachings at this state school might be "confusing." I already have one degree, but I am really interested in religious studies. At the same time, I don't want to waste my time if it wouldn't be a smart spiritual decision. Would you recommend majoring in Religious Studies? Thanks for any advice. -- A sister in Christ

It is a little hard for me recommend your taking a certain course of studies when we have not met, so let me give some general advice. I think you will find a state school will not support your faith that the Bible is the Word of God. Some of what you would learn would be skewed towards a strongly secular interpretation. At Harvard, I mainly took classes where unbelief has little effect: world religions and biblical languages, for example. Over the span of four years you will be influenced by the prevailing theology of the institution at which you study. (This is unavoidable.)

If you will permit me, let me ask a few questions, the answers to which will help me advise you:
* How many years have you been a Christian? (The more years the better.)
* How many times have you read the entire Bible? Which translations? Have you studied any Greek or Hebrew? (Intimate familiarity with the Bible is, I would say, absolutely essential if you are going to embark on a course of theological studies.)
* Do you usually read at least a book a week of a spiritual nature outside the Bible? Two books a week? (Ideally you would already be conversant with the major areas of theology before commencing a university level course.)
* What sort of grades have you had in the past? (I ask this because, if you are not a natural student, it may be difficult to find the time to do the extra study that will be required where you encounter interpretations that run counter to God's word. And you certainly will encounter these interpretations!) I hope this reply is thought-provoking.

And her response:
I do feel that I am somewhat of a natural student (quick learner, good memory, high GPA), but I do not read a book a week (other than the Bible) and I have not read the whole Bible through from beginning to end. I have read most all the Old Testament books and of course the New Testament books (many times) in my three years of discipleship. I haven't even touched the Hebrew or Greek languages.
Thank you for your questions to me. They have definitely helped my perspective on secular teaching. I do think four years of instruction by unbelieving people would not be in my best interest. I want my faith and belief in the Bible to be pure and untainted from secularism. Thanks again; hope all is well with you.

Qualifying note: While I do not believe theology school (or seminary) is for most Christians, there are some who might benefit from such a course of study.

We also now have available the ability to offer a two-year course of Bible training. Look at the information contained in the info document after you click on AIM on the homepage.

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