Built to provide you with a deep understanding of the Bible without the additional coursework needed to prepare for pastoral ministry, the MAR enables you to serve your church effectively while also positioning you for future theological studies.

These courses . . .

Train you to read the Bible in its original languages.

Teach you how Genesis—Esther propels you along the storyline of the Bible.

Orient you to modern church history.

Provide you with a deep understanding of key theological concepts.

Prepare you to defend the faith in a manner consistent with the Scriptures.

Greek 1

This course provides the building blocks for further study by giving the foundation for a reading knowledge of Greek. Students will learn the Greek alphabet, grammar, and basic Greek syntax.

Greek 3

This course builds upon the reading knowledge of Koine Greek established in Greek 2 and explains the exegetical method that will be used in the rest of the New Testament courses at Westminster. Students will be equipped to trace an author’s flow of thought throughout a passage using discourse analysis.

Hebrew 2

This course builds on tools learned in Hebrew 1 with a specific focus on Hebrew syntax. At the conclusion of this course students will be prepared to translate any narrative passage in the Hebrew Bible.

Introduction to Apologetics

This course serves as an introduction to the method of defending the faith that is thoroughly biblical and self-consciously Reformed. This course will cover the biblical basis for apologetics, developing a world-and-life view, the issue of meaning, covenantal apologetics, engaging contemporary culture, and highlights in the history of apologetics. We will give special attention to the problem of meaning, the problem of evil, world religions (including Islam), science and faith, reason and revelation, and aesthetics.

Introduction to New Testament II

Students will learn the methods, tools, and principles necessary for interpreting the New Testament in light of its historical backgrounds, such as the Old Testament and the Jewish and Greek literature contemporary to the New Testament. Students will become familiar with the interpretive problems in studying New Testament backgrounds and how to address them.

Prolegomena to Theology

This course provides a foundation for the study of theology as a whole. The primary focus is on the doctrine of Scripture and its authority in other fields of theological study. Students will learn the nature, method, and source of theology.

Doctrine of Salvation

This course explores the details of the accomplishment and application of salvation by Christ and the Holy Spirit. Students will study the whole scope of redemption throughout history, starting with the garden of Eden and culminating in the climactic establishment of the new heavens and new earth at Christ’s return.

Greek 2

This course prepares students for further work in the New Testament by giving them a reading knowledge of Koine Greek. The course focuses on further Greek grammar, vocabulary, and more advanced syntax.

Hebrew 1

This course builds a foundational knowledge of biblical Hebrew, focusing on alphabet, vocabulary, and grammar. By the end of this course, students will be able to translate sections of Scripture and explore the beginning stages of Hebrew syntax.

Hebrew 3

This course reinforces the translational skills established in Hebrew 2 and moves on to the exegetical method that will be used in further Old Testament courses. Students will be equipped to analyse Hebrew narrative and discourse in order to discern the original author’s flow of thought.

Introduction to New Testament I

Students will learn why some books are considered to be canonical and others are not, how the canon was formed, and why we can trust the current state of the canon. At the end of this course, students will be able to handle questions of textual criticism and learn how to decide between different textual variants.

Old Testament History and Theology I

This course focuses on God’s unfolding plan of redemption in the book of Genesis in order to better understand its fulfillment in the Pentateuch and the rest of Scripture through the person and work of Jesus Christ. This will be accomplished through translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis of the Hebrew text.

Hermeneutics

In this course students will grow in their ability to understand, interpret, and apply the Bible. This course focuses on developing students’ ability to discover the meaning of biblical passages and answer related questions for themselves.

Church in the Modern Age

This course reviews the people, events, and ideas that influenced the development of the church from the 17th century to today. This includes an examination of the historical context out of which theological distinctions within the modern church emerged.

Greek 1

This course provides the building blocks for further study by giving the foundation for a reading knowledge of Greek. Students will learn the Greek alphabet, grammar, and basic Greek syntax.

Greek 2

This course prepares students for further work in the New Testament by giving them a reading knowledge of Koine Greek. The course focuses on further Greek grammar, vocabulary, and more advanced syntax.

Greek 3

This course builds upon the reading knowledge of Koine Greek established in Greek 2 and explains the exegetical method that will be used in the rest of the New Testament courses at Westminster. Students will be equipped to trace an author’s flow of thought throughout a passage using discourse analysis.

Hebrew 1

This course builds a foundational knowledge of biblical Hebrew, focusing on alphabet, vocabulary, and grammar. By the end of this course, students will be able to translate sections of Scripture and explore the beginning stages of Hebrew syntax.

Hebrew 2

This course builds on tools learned in Hebrew 1 with a specific focus on Hebrew syntax. At the conclusion of this course students will be prepared to translate any narrative passage in the Hebrew Bible.

Hebrew 3

This course reinforces the translational skills established in Hebrew 2 and moves on to the exegetical method that will be used in further Old Testament courses. Students will be equipped to analyse Hebrew narrative and discourse in order to discern the original author’s flow of thought.

Introduction to Apologetics

This course serves as an introduction to the method of defending the faith that is thoroughly biblical and self-consciously Reformed. This course will cover the biblical basis for apologetics, developing a world-and-life view, the issue of meaning, covenantal apologetics, engaging contemporary culture, and highlights in the history of apologetics. We will give special attention to the problem of meaning, the problem of evil, world religions (including Islam), science and faith, reason and revelation, and aesthetics.

Introduction to New Testament I

Students will learn why some books are considered to be canonical and others are not, how the canon was formed, and why we can trust the current state of the canon. At the end of this course, students will be able to handle questions of textual criticism and learn how to decide between different textual variants.

Introduction to New Testament II

Students will learn the methods, tools, and principles necessary for interpreting the New Testament in light of its historical backgrounds, such as the Old Testament and the Jewish and Greek literature contemporary to the New Testament. Students will become familiar with the interpretive problems in studying New Testament backgrounds and how to address them.

Old Testament History and Theology I

This course focuses on God’s unfolding plan of redemption in the book of Genesis in order to better understand its fulfillment in the Pentateuch and the rest of Scripture through the person and work of Jesus Christ. This will be accomplished through translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis of the Hebrew text.

Prolegomena to Theology

This course provides a foundation for the study of theology as a whole. The primary focus is on the doctrine of Scripture and its authority in other fields of theological study. Students will learn the nature, method, and source of theology.

Hermeneutics

In this course students will grow in their ability to understand, interpret, and apply the Bible. This course focuses on developing students’ ability to discover the meaning of biblical passages and answer related questions for themselves.

Doctrine of Salvation

This course explores the details of the accomplishment and application of salvation by Christ and the Holy Spirit. Students will study the whole scope of redemption throughout history, starting with the garden of Eden and culminating in the climactic establishment of the new heavens and new earth at Christ’s return.

Church in the Modern Age

This course reviews the people, events, and ideas that influenced the development of the church from the 17th century to today. This includes an examination of the historical context out of which theological distinctions within the modern church emerged.

With up to six more elective courses than the other emphases, the General Studies emphasis gives you a solid foundation in the major divisions of theology while also providing you with the freedom to explore you own theological interests.

With up to six more biblical studies courses than the other emphases, the Biblical Studies emphasis provides you with a strong understanding of major theological concepts while also giving you the most time in class studying each book of the Bible.

Old Testament Introduction

In this course, students will be introduced to the various complex issues surrounding Old Testament interpretation. The course is designed to prepare students for subsequent work in Old Testament studies by giving them a foundational understanding of its character.

Acts and Pauline Epistles

This class will deepen understanding of Acts and the letters of Paul, especially exegetically and in a biblical-theological manner. It will deepen exegetical skills to achieve a better understanding of the argument and contents of the epistles and their place in Pauline biblical theology.

Prophetical Books

This course focuses on the structure, content, and theology of the prophetic books of the Old Testament. Students will use exegetical methods, including discourse analysis of the original Hebrew, to understand how the message of the prophets fits into God’s plan of redemption by their fulfillment in Christ.

Hebrews to Revelation

This course reviews the contents, distinctive features, themes, and major emphases of Hebrews, the General Epistles, and Revelation. Students will gain greater skill in exegeting portions of Hebrews through Revelation in Greek and understand the canonical and redemptive-historical contexts of these books.

Old Testament History and Theology II

Picking up where OTHT 1 left off, this course focuses on God’s plan of redemptive history from Genesis through Esther, highlighting how the history of Israel finds its fulfilment in Christ. This course lays the foundation for further study in the Old Testament as students expand their skills in translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis.

Gospels

This class focuses primarily on the four Gospels, and explores secular critical methods. Using exegesis of the texts in their original languages, students will better understand the kingdom of God in the message and ministry of Jesus, how this fits into the grand scheme of biblical theology, and how it relates to ministry today.

Poetry & Wisdom

This course explores biblical Hebrew poetry and wisdom literature.Using translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis, students will explore the theological content and context of these books and discuss their relationship to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Old Testament Introduction

In this course, students will be introduced to the various complex issues surrounding Old Testament interpretation. The course is designed to prepare students for subsequent work in Old Testament studies by giving them a foundational understanding of its character.

Old Testament History and Theology II

Picking up where OTHT 1 left off, this course focuses on God’s plan of redemptive history from Genesis through Esther, highlighting how the history of Israel finds its fulfilment in Christ. This course lays the foundation for further study in the Old Testament as students expand their skills in translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis.

Acts and Pauline Epistles

This class will deepen understanding of Acts and the letters of Paul, especially exegetically and in a biblical-theological manner. It will deepen exegetical skills to achieve a better understanding of the argument and contents of the epistles and their place in Pauline biblical theology.

Gospels

This class focuses primarily on the four Gospels, and explores secular critical methods. Using exegesis of the texts in their original languages, students will better understand the kingdom of God in the message and ministry of Jesus, how this fits into the grand scheme of biblical theology, and how it relates to ministry today.

Prophetical Books

This course focuses on the structure, content, and theology of the prophetic books of the Old Testament. Students will use exegetical methods, including discourse analysis of the original Hebrew, to understand how the message of the prophets fits into God’s plan of redemption by their fulfillment in Christ.

Poetry & Wisdom

This course explores biblical Hebrew poetry and wisdom literature.Using translation, exegesis, and discourse analysis, students will explore the theological content and context of these books and discuss their relationship to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Hebrews to Revelation

This course reviews the contents, distinctive features, themes, and major emphases of Hebrews, the General Epistles, and Revelation. Students will gain greater skill in exegeting portions of Hebrews through Revelation in Greek and understand the canonical and redemptive-historical contexts of these books.

With three more systematic theology courses, three additional church history courses, and one extra course in apologetics, the Theological Studies emphasis provides you with a firm grounding in the story of the Bible while also sharpening your ability to do work in historical and systematic theological.

Principles of Christian Apologetics

The purpose of this course will be to study in-depth the principles of a specifically Reformed, Christian apologetic. In doing so, students will look at some of the problems that have plagued both philosophy and non-Reformed apologetics in order to be better equipped to defend and commend the Christian faith.

Doctrine of Christ

This course studies Christ and God’s accomplishment of salvation through him. Specific attention is given to both the central focus and comprehensive scope of this salvation as it relates to the person and work of Christ.

Doctrine of the Church

This course will cover basic biblical and historical themes in ecclesiology, including the kingdom of God, the body of Christ, the sacraments, and worship, among others. Students will gain an appreciation for and an ability to articulate the teaching of Scripture about the church.

Medieval Church

Int this course students will learn the major theological themes and personalities of the medieval church in light of the social and cultural contexts from the 6th to 16th centuries, from the Carolingian Era to the end of medieval Christendom. By studying the primary sources of the medieval period, students will better understand the continuities and discontinuities with the ancient church and the Reformation period.

Doctrine of God

This course explores the nature and character of God, including his triunity, simplicity, attributes, decrees, and more. Particular attention is paid to God’s revelation of himself in Scripture.

Doctrine of Man

The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the understanding of man as a covenantal creature made in the image of God in all of its facets and aspects, covering both man’s inherent dignity and acquired depravity.

Ancient Church

This course will explore the key personalities, controversies, and theological developments that marked the first five centuries of the Christian church. Students will learn to articulate how the beliefs and practices of the early church developed and the cultural contexts that shaped the development of the church during the patristic period.

The Reformation

This course introduces major events, personalities, and ideas that shaped the Reformation of the 16th and 17th centuries. Starting with the late medieval context of the Reformation, students will study Martin Luther, John Calvin, justification by faith, anabaptism, the Catholic Reformation, the Anglican settlements and the rise of Puritanism.

Principles of Christian Apologetics

The purpose of this course will be to study in-depth the principles of a specifically Reformed, Christian apologetic. In doing so, students will look at some of the problems that have plagued both philosophy and non-Reformed apologetics in order to be better equipped to defend and commend the Christian faith.

Doctrine of God

This course explores the nature and character of God, including his triunity, simplicity, attributes, decrees, and more. Particular attention is paid to God’s revelation of himself in Scripture.

Doctrine of Christ

This course studies Christ and God’s accomplishment of salvation through him. Specific attention is given to both the central focus and comprehensive scope of this salvation as it relates to the person and work of Christ.

Doctrine of Man

The goal of this course is to familiarize students with the understanding of man as a covenantal creature made in the image of God in all of its facets and aspects, covering both man’s inherent dignity and acquired depravity.

Doctrine of the Church

This course will cover basic biblical and historical themes in ecclesiology, including the kingdom of God, the body of Christ, the sacraments, and worship, among others. Students will gain an appreciation for and an ability to articulate the teaching of Scripture about the church.

Ancient Church

This course will explore the key personalities, controversies, and theological developments that marked the first five centuries of the Christian church. Students will learn to articulate how the beliefs and practices of the early church developed and the cultural contexts that shaped the development of the church during the patristic period.

Medieval Church

Int this course students will learn the major theological themes and personalities of the medieval church in light of the social and cultural contexts from the 6th to 16th centuries, from the Carolingian Era to the end of medieval Christendom. By studying the primary sources of the medieval period, students will better understand the continuities and discontinuities with the ancient church and the Reformation period.

The Reformation

This course introduces major events, personalities, and ideas that shaped the Reformation of the 16th and 17th centuries. Starting with the late medieval context of the Reformation, students will study Martin Luther, John Calvin, justification by faith, anabaptism, the Catholic Reformation, the Anglican settlements and the rise of Puritanism.

By The Numbers

2-3
years to degree completion
74
credit hours of coursework
13
students in last year’s graduating class

What Our Alumni Say

“The deeper Bible knowledge, theological underpinnings, spiritual formation, and practical ministry training I received at Westminster equipped me for effective service as a lay elder and ministry leader in my local church and made me a better leader of and consultant to Christian nonprofit organizations. Perhaps more importantly, my time at Westminster changed the way I read Scripture, pray, live life, and serve my wife and children.”


— Gray Wirth
Consultant, The Center

What Our Alumni Say

“I have an enormous debt of gratitude to Westminster Theological Seminary. There I received what I consider to be one of God’s greatest gifts: an excellent education in piety, pastoral skills and knowledge, which is paying spiritual dividends that benefit my family, sheep and students. In my day-to-day ministry, be it either in the classroom or in the church, I am constantly reminded of my time at Westminster, and my desire to see others being reached by its ministry is ever growing.”


— Gustavo Monteiro
PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the financial aid options for the MAR?

Most MAR students receive scholarships that cover 25–66% of their tuition. For more information regarding scholarships, contact admissions@wts.edu.

What is the difference between the MDiv and the MAR

The MAR degree is intended for students who do not plan on going into pastoral ministry but are pursuing an academic career. While the MDiv is no less academic than the MAR, the MAR does not require practical theology courses.

Is a thesis required for the MAR?

A thesis is not required for the MAR program. Only our post-graduate programs require theses.

What are the differences between the MAR Theological vs the MAR Biblical?

The MAR in theological studies is essentially the MDiv without the practical theology courses and with half the biblical theology courses, whereas the MAR in biblical studies is essentially the MDiv without the practical theology courses and with half the systematic theology courses.

Can I get into PhD/ThM programs with an MAR degree?

The MAR is designed for exactly that purpose. Some major universities do require a master’s with a thesis for admittance into their PhD program, however those programs usually have a 1-2 year post graduate program similar to our ThM that serve as something of a gateway to their PhD programs.The MAR would more than sufficiently equip you for those programs.