We have partnered together with various ministries in many countries, to provide an opportunity for the pastors of a particular region near them, to spend time together over a period of days, working through issues that have hindered them from truly functioning together as the body of Christ. Held over a period of two or three days, the Co-Laboring Together Seminar is focused on looking together as pastors, deeply at what it means to apply Scriptures such as Ephesians 4, Romans 12, I Corinthians 12, Philippians 2, in practical ways, as the church of an entire region.
What is in the Name?
Heartland – Dictionary Definition:
1. The central or most important part of a country, area, or field of activity.
2. The center of support for a belief or movement.
Biblical Leadership – Defines both the goal of raising up solid leaders of godly character to fill the many leadership functions modeled in the scripture; and the characteristics modeled in how the training is facilitated -- building up the local church regionally, as leaders intentionally work to strengthen and equip one-another. - 2 Timothy 2:2 - Ephesians 4:11-16
Seminary – Dictionary Definition:
1. A college that prepares students to be ministers.
2. A place or thing in which something is developed or cultivated.
We hear from pastors regularly, who share with us the many challenges that they face personally, raising up leaders and in desiring to grow themselves. We want to see these challenges met!
Challenge - Many pastors, church planters, evangelists and other church leaders do not feel that they have the adequate training needed for the work of the ministry that they have been called to.
Challenge - Many potential leaders do not feel they will be fully able to achieve the vision that God has given them without first getting a seminary education.
Challenge - Great leaders often leave their fruitful ministries in order to pursue a seminary education, sometimes allowing their current ministries to diminish, or even shut down. This stunts the rate of multiplication in church planting.
Challenge - The cost of relocating (especially if a leader has a family), along with the costs of tuition, can be prohibitive to their pursuit of a ministry education.
Challenge - Statistics show that
8 out of 10 leaders who leave their homeland for training, never return.
Challenge - There are many areas of the world that the internet is still not available
or strong enough for on-line educational opportunities.
The Intent behind HBLS, is to be able to adapt to the situation and needs of leaders in their local context.
To Insure that HBLS is operating in a way that is beneficial to the local church within it's surrounding culture, in each region a Regional Counsel is established.
HBLS's Governing Counsel monitors the classes being offered to insure that they meet the biblical and academic standards in each topic of study.
The Regional Counsel helps determine what format will work best for making each course available. It also works to identify topics that may be of special need, or subjects that may be most pressing to cover.
Topics include, but are not limited to:
- Old Testament Survey
- New Testament Survey
- Inductive Bible Study
- Systematic Theology
- Church History
- Preaching & Teaching
- Church Planting
- Regional Church Development
- Leadership Development
- Community Development
- Strategic Missions
- World Religions and the Cults
- and more
- "With so many on-line schools available, is there really a need for HBLS?"
There are a lot of great ministry training on-line courses, and other opportunities out there, and we encourage you to look into them to see what may best fit your needs. HBLS is not in competition with them. We feel that there is a great benefit though, to ministry training that is received in your own cultural and ministry context. This is the need we focus on.
- "What difference does it actually make where I take classes? The focus is still the same."
In many ways you are right. And the Lord has definite reasons that He leads some to attend school in distant places. But we believe this should be because God leads you in this way, and not because there was no other choice for you. The opportunity to study and apply your studies immediately, in the location you are called to long-term, has large advantages for any pastor or leader.
- "What makes HBLS unique in it's approach?"
Many of the approaches to providing classes that HBLS uses, are not unique to HBLS. What is unique, is the way HBLS functions as a partnership of various ministries working together, and the variety of ways we can work with individual students to meet their needs.
- "Does HBLS primarily focus on local church pastors?"
Our goal is to provide well rounded biblical ministry training for pastors, church planters, evangelists, teachers and other church leadership. We pray that God will use HBLS to strengthen the Church as a whole in each region that it functions.