Project Documents

Date of Award

2015

Document Type

Project Report

Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry

School

Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary

Program

Doctor of Ministry DMin

First Advisor

Kenley Hall

Second Advisor

R. Clifford Jones

Abstract

Problem

Kingsboro Temple Seventh-day Adventist Church was an active congregation; however, there was a disconnect between spirituality and the knowledge of and commitment to the distinct Adventist fundamental doctrines. Many viewed the distinct doctrines of Adventism as irrelevant to the Christian experience and daily lifestyle choices, resulting in a nonchalant attitude to the distinctiveness of the Adventist message and the purpose and mission of the church.

Method

The purpose of this dissertation project was to develop and preach a series of Christocentric doctrinal sermons that would impact spiritual growth, doctrinal knowledge, and foster personal evangelism at Kingsboro Temple. Based on a study from the Old and New Testaments, the writings of Ellen G. White (1827-1915), and theological and ministry literature, information regarding the biblical and Christocentric nature of doctrines and their relevancy were produced. From these materials, one introductory and seven doctrinal sermons were developed and preached at Kingsboro Temple. A survey was developed and administered before and after the sermons were preached. The same volunteer sample group participated in the pre- and post-survey: Forty-four participated in the pre-survey and 37 of the 44 participated in the post-survey. The surveys were then analyzed to evaluate the impact of the sermon series regarding the project's goals.

Results

The findings of the pre- and post-surveys revealed the positive impact of the sermon series on members, who became more knowledgeable of the Adventist Fundamental Beliefs, their biblical and Christocentric nature, their relevance, etc. The positive and visible changes in lifestyle choices of some members and positive feedback also suggest the success of the series and other ministries. However, there were some negative feedback and the findings also revealed room for improvement.

Conclusion

While there has been a move for some time in Christianity towards viewing doctrine as irrelevant, this dissertation project presents the biblical and theological evidence for the Christocentric nature of doctrine and their necessity and relevance to the Christian life. The findings of the pre- and post-surveys at Kingsboro Temple demonstrate that preaching Christocentric doctrinal sermons can have a positive impact on helping members understand doctrines, their true nature, and their relevancy to daily Christian living and the church’s message and mission, which will in turn inspire personal evangelism. It will be a challenge for the Adventist Church in the future if there is continued neglect of Christocentric doctrinal preaching.

Subject Area

Preaching, Christian life, Seventh-day Adventists--Doctrines, Kingsboro Temple Seventh-day Adventist Church (Brooklyn, NY)

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