By: Raymond Billy
Students who have completed the Bible Core Course say it not only enhanced their knowledge of Scripture, but their faith as well. The course — held twice yearly at Port YWAM — just completed its spring program. Recent participants said the program changed the way they approach the Bible and Christianity.
“Really, this class is all about giving you the tools and then sending you out on your own to study the Bible with the necessary steps that need to be taken for you to establish your basis of faith according to the Bible,” said Lukas Perez, 24, of Colorado.
Amanda Rosiere, of Oklahoma, said she sees God from a very different perspective after taking course.
“I’ve read the Bible a lot, but it was just like a book of rules to me. As I did the BCC, I was seeing not so much more rules and how to live. I feel like I already had the ‘dos and do nots’ down. What became more apparent was God’s character,” Rosiere, 20, said. “When I read the Bible before, I would only see ‘Do this,’ ‘Don’t do this.’ When I took myself out of the picture and read the Bible as a story, then God’s character was really highlighted. That was where the growth was for me.”
Morgan Keach, who led the BCC in April and will do so again this fall, said any Christian would benefit from the course, regardless of whether they seek a career in ministry.
“The idea is that, no matter what we’re called to do, we’re all called to be missionaries. Whether you’re a chef or a businessman, knowing God’s word is key to that. Knowing how to study the Bible yourself and really know what it says and how can I apply it in the situations in life is important,” said Keach, 32, of California.
The Bible Core Course helps students understand Scripture from the perspective of the original reader. They use the inductive study method — reading the text carefully while trying to abstain from injecting meaning into it that isn’t explicitly written. Students write interpretation papers to demonstrate their understanding of what the writer intended to communicate to his audience. Students are guided through a third of the books of the Bible by classroom instructors and read another 15 outside of class as part of homework assignments. It is a 12-week, full-time course.
Chatelier Ebio, who participated in BCC in 2013 as well as an outreach with the school, said it was gratifying to share the inductive study method with others. In fact, she was able to help train church elders on the Micronesian islands in the method.
“It was amazing to see their faces light up when they saw how simple it was to figure out what a passage is specifically talking about and to construct a sermon out of that passage. It was incredible to see the outcome,” said Ebio, 19, of California. “People were coming up to me and thanking me saying ‘I never knew how to even read the Bible in a way that was comprehensive to me.’”
Perez said the course keeps students busy outside of the classroom, but the insights they gain can also keep them engrossed in the Bible.
“If you really take your time, through all the effort, you’re going to get everything that you ever wanted out of the course in just those three months. So, as far as the workload goes, as long as you’re eager to learn everything God is speaking through the Bible and through the text, then the workload is going to be a lot of fun and really easy.”
Keach said completing the course would greatly enhance anyone’s ability to use their lives for divine purposes.
“If you feel called and you want to be an influence for God in the world, you really need to know the Bible. This is a really good course that will help you study the Bible the rest of your life and will allow you to bring answers to people who might be searching.”
Keach said the school is looking for more staff. He said students are best served if the student/staff ratio is no greater than 4-to-1. Qualification for staffing is to have completed either BCC or the nine-month School of Biblical Studies.