We began our first Center for Biblical Studies in Nigeria in 2010.
The current director in Nigeria had wanted to begin a Bible College for years but simply didn’t have the resources. Nigeria is a truly impoverished country. We communicated our plan for establishing a truly quality Bible College. With real fear and trembling the Director has operated the Biblical Studies Center with integrity.
It took about a year to develop, purchase, organize, and ship the first materials. We knew it needed to be the best quality that we could provide. In association with Charnock Institute of the Bible, we developed courses using the same courses there were offered by CIB. A few other aspects had to be considered, such as the Director’s Operations Manual (which explains how to operate the Bible Studies Center), all Answer Keys to all assignments and tests, Student Manuals, etc.
We originally sent materials for 3 students to Nigeria for a test run. Some rough edges in the materials were discovered and corrected. After completing the first year (Diploma in Biblical Studies), the Nigeria center had a waiting list of students wishing to enter the College. We provided total materials for 4 students in the first year program, and materials for the original students to begin the second year program; and now the third year program is in their hands. Every year the Nigeria center has requested that more materials be provided because of the waiting list of students.
All materials are provided to them at no cost. What has not been given to them are missionaries and finances. They have agreed to operate the Center for Biblical Studies at their own expense. They made their own sign, provided themselves with their own building, etc… we simply provided the reusable curriculum materials to them at no charge.
The materials developed were of the highest quality available. Other college professors who have observed what was developed have been amazed at the quality. They were surprised that we were developing such works for the Mission Field.
These materials are not consumable. Each text states on the cover that it is not to be written in, so that it can be passed on to the next student coming in behind them. All materials are to be turned in once completed. The tests are given at the Learning Center. Grades are recorded and filed.
When students begin, they are expected to do ministry ten hours per week. This means students are preparing for ministry by actually doing ministry. These hours are done under the direction of the Director and the local Church, potentially staffing numerous churches, as well as the center.
The Nigeria center has requested a full curriculum, so they can grant all of the degrees. As they progress, they will have their own Pastors, Professors, and Missionaries. Students completing the course work are requesting permission and resources to establish other Biblical Studies Centers in other locations around the country. This is the vision!
This center continues to grow. There are currently twenty potential students (including Pastors) on the waiting list for the first year program.
We cannot think of a better way to grow the Church in Nigeria than allowing them to produce their own Church leaders, their own Bible Colleges, train their own Pastors, Professors, and Missionaries. And all this happens from the finances that God provides them. We merely provide the the materials to open and operate a credible and quality Bible College; and God does the rest.