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Q 16. Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?
A. The fall brought mankind into a state of sin and misery.

Name: Mike
Location: California, United States
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Tuesday, November 15, 2005


At Biola there was a Seminary Fair today. Several of the big name schools were out and about looking to recruit. I came away with about 4 pens and a host of resources. However, at the end of the day, I still feel no closer to knowing what school I want to attend. Here is a brief list of some of the schools that I am considering.

Westminster Theological Seminary (Picture on Right)

This school has fantastic faculty and is known for producing top-notch scholastics. The school holds very strictly to the Westminster Confession of Faith (which can be viewed here). The school seems to be very rigorous which is something that attracts me. One concern is that Westminster is located in Philadelphia (Cold and Far!) and they do not provide very many scholarships. The other concern is that I do not agree with the WCF/Presbyterians on baptism. Then again, there are very few schools that I would agree with entirely.

Westminster Seminary California

This Westminster is a cousin of the previous entry. This school does not have quite the faculty (although it is still excellent). WSCal is a good option if I am looking at Pastoral/Minsterial work. The advantage is that it is not too far away (San Diego area) and possibly more conservative than the larger school.

Theological Seminary

The Jackson, Mississippi and Orlando, Florida capuses both look appealing. The advantage here is that it is another solid reformed seminary. This isn't necessarily a top choice among the Reformed schools but it is certainly one that I will look into.

Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

I have heard mixed reviews from this school. Several people have noted that the professors are a mixed bag with some being extremely good and others not as good. Probably this is a reality at most schools, but it may be moreso at this seminary. Nevertheless, I have heard many good things about GCTS so I will consider it as an option.

Talbot School of Theology

This school has solid faculty and is another great option for the pastoral route. Advantage is that I test out of a lot of units (from attending Biola) and that I know several of the professors already. One concern is the Dispensational Theology that is continuously pushed. However, Saucy and company have taken great strides towards the Reformed view.

Theological Seminary

Whenever considering Seminary, one must almost necessarily consider Dallas. Dallas puts out an amazing amount of quality scholarship every year. Nevertheless, if I were looking into a Dispensational Seminary then I would probably go to Talbot.

Wheaton College Graduate School

This is a big name school in the Evangelical world and definitely has an appeal. One concern is the lack of M.Div program (It is a graduate school and not a seminary). However, for the scholastic route this may not be a bad option. Wheaton has produced some top-notch scholars. However, it would seem that Talbot would be just as good without the distance.

Evangelical Divinity School

This school has the same Statement of Faith as my home church. It looks to have many of the benefits of Wheaton with the Divinity program. Nevertheless, this is probably not one of my top choices at all, despite the solid programs and respect in the evangelical world.

There are probably other possibilities, but at this point these are the schools that have caught my eye for one reason or another.


Blogger kate said...

Okay, my ideas:
Gordon-Conwell has all of the downsides of westminster without the good stuff. Far and cold!

If you're going to go to westminster california, you might as well just go to talbot. Even though you aren't dispensationalist, you don't really believe in infant baptism either... right?

Wheaton sounds good, but you just have to make sure that you don't want an M. Div before you enroll. Are you sure you want to do that?

What do you have against Trinity? You didn't really mention any reasons why you wouldn't want to go there.

I still think Westminster in PA is my favorite :)

4:59 PM  
Blogger Mike Garner said...

Regarding WSCal v. Talbot:

Dispensationalism is an entire hermenutic lens through which you view the scriptures. Infant baptism is one disagree that MANY throughout church history have disagreed on.

I would place Dispensationalists further away from me (theologically) than I would Paedo Baptists.

In Christ Alone,

5:04 PM  
Blogger R. Scott Clark said...

Dear Mike,

I stumbled across your blog.

There's a little more to Westminster Seminary California than might appear at first glance.

Send me a post at rsclark@wscal.edu and we'll talk or call me at the office: 760 480 8474

R. Scott Clark, D.Phil.,
Associate Professor of Historical and Systematic Theology
Westminster Seminary California

4:04 PM  

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