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Lead by a united faculty of pastor-theologians, the Master of Divinity program fully equips you to:

Master the Original Languages

Understand How to Interpret Any Text

Proclaim the Bible Verse-by-Verse

Shepherd God’s People with Reformed Practical Theology

Core Classes and Schedule

View Academic Catalog

When it comes to the care of souls, the question is not “How quickly and easily can I prepare?” but “How much training do I need to be fully equipped?” That is why our Master of Divinity curriculum requires twice the units of other programs and emphasizes the original languages.

And because pastors need to care for souls in a place of souls, our full Master of Divinity is a residential program, located on the campus of Grace Community Church.

  • 9 Language Courses
  • 7 Bible Courses
  • 6 Theology Courses
  • 6 Ministry Courses
  • 5 Preaching Courses
  • 5 Elective Courses

Though the regular higher education course load is ~15 units per semester, our students find they study and retain knowledge best when undertaking 11-12 units per semester. The majority of our students choose to take four years to complete the M.Div. program instead of three.

Year One

FallCourse CodeUnitsSpringCourse CodeUnitsSummerCourse CodeUnits
OT Studies IBI 5013OT Studies IIBI 5023Beginning Greek INT 5012
HermeneuticsBI 5053Pastoral CounselingPM 512A3Beginning Greek IINT 5022
Hebrew Grammar IOT 5033Hebrew Grammar IIOT 5043General Elective2
Historical Theology ITH 5073Historical Theology IITH 5083
Fundamentals of Expository PreachingPM 5011Foundations of Pastoral MinistryPM 511A2
Grammar, Research & WritingPM 5052General Elective I2
Total15Total16Total6

Year Two

FallCourse CodeUnitsSpringCourse CodeUnits
NT StudiesBI 6013Apologetics and EvangelismTH 6023
Intro to Hebrew ExegesisOT 6033Greek Exegesis IINT 6043
Greek Exegesis INT 6033Theology IITH 6063
Theology ITH 6053Mechanics of PreachingPM 6022
History of Expository PreachingPM 6011Expository Preaching WorkshopPM 6043
General Elective III2Elective IV (Hebrew Exegesis)OT2
Total15Total16

Year Three

FallCourse CodeUnitsSpringCourse CodeUnits
Advanced HermenueticsBI 7052Ordination PreparationBI 7012
Old Testament IntroductionOT 7963Practice of Pastoral MinistriesPM 7123
Theology IIITH 7053New Testament IntroductionNT 7963
Expository Preaching LabPM 7033Theology IVTH 7063
Elective V (Greek Exegesis)NT2Prayer and the PastorPM 7142
Elective VI2Elective VII2
Total15Total15

What it Takes to Complete

4
Years to Complete
98
Required Units

Compare Master of Divinity to our other Programs


Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Doctor of Ministry

Prerequisites

  1. Master of Divinity (or M.Div-equivalent M.A. of at least 72 credits)
  2. 3+ years of commendable pastoral ministry experience

Career Outcomes

Enhanced skills in sermon preparation and public exposition of Scripture

Learning Outcomes

  1. As an experienced biblical expositor, to add further understanding, quality, and depth to the exegetical skill needed in sermon preparation.
  2. As an experienced biblical expositor, to add further understanding, quality, and depth to the sermon content synthesis.
  3. As an experienced biblical expositor, to add further understanding, quality, and depth to the rhetorical eloquence.
  4. As an experienced biblical expositor, to demonstrate enhanced expository preaching skills in a culminating program project.

Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Master of Theology

Prerequisites

  1. Master of Divinity (or M.Div-equivalent M.A. of at least 72 credits)
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience

Career Outcomes

Qualification to fulfill a teaching position and pursue doctoral study, such as the PhD

Learning Outcomes

  1. As an advancing scholar, specialize in an area of biblical or theological studies, gaining facility in its literature and scholarship.
  2. As an advancing exegete, employ more refined skills in Hebrew and Greek translation, exegesis, and interpretation.
  3. As an advancing teacher, implement the skills of communication and effective teaching of course content.
  4. As an advancing researcher, demonstrate thoughtfulness, in-depth interaction, thorough research, and excellence in scholarly writing

Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Doctor of Philosophy

Prerequisites

  1. Master of Theology
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience

Career Outcomes

Qualification for professorship, writing, and research

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a critical thinker, collect and analyze primary and secondary sources of information, critique interpretations of the evidence, synthesize the evidence for future scholarly contributions to the field of study, and draw and integrate implications for professional practice.
  2. As a theological exegete, apply exegetical skills to the biblical text, develop a theological critique of views related to the text, and connect the issue with its historical precedents.
  3. As a scholarly communicator, engage in quality written papers and oral presentations in colloquia for the purpose of disseminating personal scholarship to peer audiences as well as future readers and hearers of their work

Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Bachelor of Theology

Prerequisites

  1. A minimum of 30 semester units of undergraduate general education credits, with at least 3 of those credits in math
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.
  3. Over 25 years old

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Diploma of Theology

Prerequisites

  1. o previous degrees required
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience
  3. Over 25 years old

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.


Master of Divinity

Prerequisites

  1. Bachelor’s Degree
  2. A consistent record of commendable Christian ministry experience.

Career Outcomes

Qualification for pastoral, missionary, and Christian education ministries, as well as further graduate study.

Learning Outcomes

  1. As a future elder, pastor, missionary, or educator, comprehend the significant areas of biblical interpretation, biblical languages, Christian theology and pastoral ministry.
  2. As a future elder/pastor, construct a personal, biblical philosophy of ministry with application to the desired vocational goals.
  3. As a future preacher/teacher of the Scripture, synthesize the input of biblical languages, Bible backgrounds and theological constructs to preach and teach the Bible to varied age levels and abilities within any ministry context.
  4. As a future spiritual leader, exhibit the disciplines of holiness, prayer, leadership, and compassion required for ministry.

Alternative Learning Options

Saturday Courses

Graduate in four years without taking semester-long courses during the week.

Learn More

Distance Education

Explore several Distance Education options for students who wish to study under the TMS faculty without relocating to Los Angeles.

Learn More

Bible Translation Emphasis

Equip for translation ministry—study theology, biblical languages, and Bible translation.

Learn More

Frequent Questions

Why is the Master of Divinity the flagship program of TMS and how is it different than any other program at the school?

The Master of Divinity program is designed to fully equip men for pastoral ministry. To prepare its pastors to that end, the Master of Divinity program requires 98 units, including 9 biblical language courses so the student can master the original languages. To complete this degree, students must also complete five preaching courses, including labs where men are mentored in the art of expository preaching. Students in this program are also required to complete two-thirds of their classes in person. This allows them to fully benefit from the value of in-person education at The Master’s Seminary.

What are my options for online study as a Master of Divinity student?

The Master of Divinity online courses enable you to complete one-third of the M.Div. program online, allowing you to remain in your present ministry. Because the in-person experience is a crucial part of the education at TMS, students must come to our main campus in Southern California or one of our distance learning locations for the final two-thirds of the degree.

Do I have to attend Grace Community Church as an M.Div. student?

Students are not required to attend Grace Community Church while they are at The Master’s Seminary. Thankfully, there are many biblically focused, Christ-exalting churches in the greater Los Angeles area. However, the seminary is located on the campus of Grace Community Church and many of our faculty and administration are elders and leaders at Grace Church. By attending Grace Church, students will fully benefit from the church-seminary partnership—including discipleship and ministry opportunities—that are at the foundation of the training model.

Do I need prior theological training to become a student in the Master of Divinity program?

You do not need prior theological training, but you do need a bachelor’s degree. Along with a degree in biblical studies, students enter the Master of Divinity program with degrees in the humanities, the sciences, business, and communications, to name a few. Students without a bachelor’s degree can enter the Bachelor of Theology or Diploma of Theology program. For information on those programs, see here.

Do I have to have an undergraduate degree to attend The Master’s Seminary?

To enroll in the Master of Divinity program, students must have a bachelor’s degree. However, students without a bachelor’s degree can pursue the Bachelor of Theology or Diploma of Theology at TMS.

What is the age range of students in the Master of Divinity Program?

There is no age requirement for admittance to The Master of Divinity program. Our student body ranges from early-twenties—students fresh out of college—to retired age—older men eager for theological training. Many of our students move to Southern California with their families to begin theological education. Others come here single, marry, and start a family by the time they have finished. Since its beginning, The Master’s Seminary has not catered to any age group but has been the right choice for men of varying ages.

What scholarship opportunities are available especially for Master of Divinity students?

Through the generosity of many donors, TMS is able to provide Master of Divinity students with a wide range of scholarship opportunities. Visit our financial information page to see a complete list of our scholarships.

I’m interested in missions work after seminary, how will the M.Div. program prepare me to do ministry overseas?

Missions is one of the four key pillars of The Master’s Seminary. The Master of Divinity program prepares men to shepherd people in any culture or context. Along with the classroom preparation, there are several practical partnerships that encourage missions work for TMS graduates. The Master’s Seminary shares its building with The Master’s Academy International, a fellowship of training centers established and run by our alumni. Grace Ministries International is a ministry of Grace Community Church that sends out missionaries—many of whom are TMS graduates—who provide leadership training, church strengthening, church planting, and Bible translation around the world.

What about my wife and family? How can they get involved at TMS?

The Master’s Seminary offers a variety of ministries and programs for wives and families, including Seminary Wives Discipleship, Every Woman’s Grace, Adventure Club, and The Master’s Kids. Along with those official programs, life on a local church campus provides families ample opportunity to develop relationships and enjoy community.

Do you have on-campus housing?

Although we don’t have on-campus housing, we do our very best to accommodate students. We have a housing scholarship that helps significant numbers of our students afford to live close to the seminary campus. If you are considering TMS, and you have concerns about housing affordability in Los Angeles, please make sure you visit our housing scholarship page and talk to an admissions counselor.

Will my credits transfer if I’m at a different seminary, or if I did a Bible college bachelor’s degree?

For the Master of Divinity program, students must complete at least 50 credits at TMS. That means the students can use a maximum of 48 credits from other accredited institutions, provided those credits closely mirror the TMS M.Div curriculum. Transfer credit decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. Depending on their training background, students may also test out of some language and Bible survey courses.

I don’t believe God has called me to be the senior pastor and primary preacher at a local church. Is the M.Div. still for me? What kind of ministry can I do beyond that?

Alumni with our Master of Divinity program serve in many different settings. Along with pastoral and preaching ministry, our graduates work as military chaplains, missionaries, Bible translators, teachers, biblical counselors, and youth leaders. Some men are fully equipped lay elders who are pursuing God’s calling beyond vocational ministry.

When you say TMS has a united-faculty of pastor-theologians, does that means all professors have to believe the exact same thing about every issue in the Bible?

When we say a united-faculty of pastor-theologians, we are saying that our faculty are united behind the school’s doctrinal statement. That does not mean faculty members have to agree on every non-essential issue in Scripture.

Why TMS?

You wouldn’t trust a doctor who didn’t train at a hospital, who had never cared for an actual patient. In the same way, you shouldn’t entrust the care of your soul, or your family’s, to a pastor with no local church experience. You want someone who was trained in the church and trained by pastors.

Learn More

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