“What is your church doing to help equip its Bible class teachers?” “What external resources does your church provide to help members dig deeper in their understanding of the faith?” How would you answer those questions? When I ask church members and leaders such questions, the response is almost always silence. The vast majority of churches, especially smaller churches or autonomous congregations, don’t seem to have a clear plan for teaching their teachers and those who need more than what is typically offered in a Sunday school class.
Why is that? Why don’t churches give more attention to preparing teachers and the next generation of Christian leaders? Is it because there is no discernible need? No. In fact, I have not heard any Christian leader deny that there is a great need for more and better training in biblical literacy, theological understanding, ethical and spiritual formation, and thoughtful worship. In reality, churches often don’t provide the resources because it’s hard work, and most don’t know where to turn for reliable and faithful teaching.
The Center for Christian Studies exists to be part of the solution to this need. One of the ways we do this is through video learning modules. These short video courses are streamed from our website. Each video series introduces an important topic and helps viewers dig deeper. We have produced these video series for the specific purpose of helping believers move on, as the New Testament puts it, to adult food (1 Cor. 3:1-2; Heb. 5:12-14) and to maturity of understanding and knowledge (1 Cor. 14:20; Eph. 4:11-16).
The best thing a church can do to provide the needed resources right now is to subscribe to the CCS video library.
It is true that there are a lot of resources on the internet. But, as you might imagine, they are not of equal quality. So why these videos? What sets the CCS resources apart?
• Reliable information: CCS learning modules are taught by teachers who are true experts on the topics they are presenting. To put it plainly, these teachers have advanced degrees in the relevant field from accredited universities, and they teach or have taught regularly in higher education. CCS teachers are true scholars. The presentations are original and the information the teachers provide is reliable—not something they found on an internet search.
• For the church: In addition to being top-notch scholars with academic credentials, CCS teachers are devout believers who love God and the church. These topics are not merely for academic interest. They are chosen and taught in such a way to help strengthen faith and help disciples grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ.
• Orthodox but non-denominational: Although they value their own ecclesial connection to the Churches of Christ, CCS teachers do not have a denominational ax to grind. These videos are informed by Scripture and by the many important voices throughout the historic Christian tradition.
• Variety of uses: These videos can be used for teacher training in churches or as a basis for classes and study groups for any Christians who want to enrich their knowledge of their faith. They can even be used by individuals or families. Each video is about 20 to 30 minutes long. Videos are accompanied by discussion questions, readings, and sometimes activities and assignments, enabling students to pursue their learning as far as they want to take it.
• Accessible and affordable: These videos are intended primarily for interested believers who have had no advanced training in the topics presented. The videos are easy to access. Churches can affordably subscribe for the use of an entire congregation.
A Church Subscription provides access to the entire CCS video library for 12 months. Licensing is provided for all church members, so subscription rates are based on the size of the congregation. Individuals or families may also subscribe to individual series for 12 months, with licensing for up to 6 viewers.
As I write (December 2021), the first learning module is online and ready to stream. It is a series of 12 videos on “Understanding the Bible.” We plan to roll out six more series over the coming year:
Story of the Old Testament
Story of the New Testament
How We Got the Bible
Teaching the Bible
Faith and Reason
Churches with a valid subscription will have access to all the new series as they become available.
And CCS will not stop with these learning modules. The goal is to build the best video library for equipping disciples in their understanding of Christian faith and practice.
Because the content is still being produced and on the way, CCS wants to offer an incentive to churches that want to subscribe now. We will discount the standard pricing to 70% off for the first five churches that subscribe. Again, when churches subscribe, they will get 12 months of access to the videos that are online now and that will be going online in the upcoming months.
So when someone asks, “What is your church doing to help equip Bible class teachers and church members for growth in knowledge and understanding?” have something to say. Talk to your church leaders about making these video resources available to your church. Start getting the training and preparation you need to deepen your knowledge of the faith and pass it on to others in your home, your congregation, and your neighborhood.
See sample videos at our YouTube channel.
Subscribe at discounted pricing here, for a limited time.