Ezra Bible Institute
Our program consists of ten courses spread across four foundational areas of study: Biblical studies, theology, practical theology, and applied ministry. Courses are typically held weekly from 6-9pm for 10 weeks. Generally, you can expect three hours of homework and reading assignments each week. Our goal is to challenge you with a rigorous learning environment so you can grow in your faith.
Our entire program focuses on the local church. All courses are hosted by churches in our area, and at present, courses are taught by qualified pastors currently ministering in local churches. As you study, you will be encouraged to work in close partnership with your own local church and pastor so your studies at Ezra Bible Institute can strengthen your relationship and ministry with your local church.
The 10th and final course is an applied ministry project. You will undertake this project in coordination with your church. This will be your opportunity to put your learning to work for the strengthening of your own church family. At Ezra Bible Institute, we believe your education is not complete until you are using your studies to serve in your local church.
Ezra Bible Institute began as a vision of several local church pastors in the Yakima Valley. Each of them have served as pastors for many years in central Washington and they independently identified the need for a theological school in the area. Because there are no Christian colleges or seminaries in central Washington, the options are limited for Christians who want to study theology and equip themselves for ministry in their local churches. There is a clear need for churches to find a way to work together to offer theological training in this area.
A meeting was held in the fall of 2014 for pastors who might want to work together to address this need, and from that meeting a steering committee was born. The steering committee consisted of five pastors from three denominations who all shared the same vision: developing a program of study that will be non-denominational, rigorous, and attuned to the local church needs of our region. The committee has worked steadily toward building an identity for the school and developing the program of study.
In the future, Ezra Bible Institute aims to be an independent, non-profit school that will work toward strengthening all evangelical churches in central Washington.
The Institute is currently guided by a permanent board that is always looking for additional ministry partners including local churches, instructors, students, and supporters. For the last two years, Ezra Bible Institute has also sponsored a Discern Conference featuring a nationally known biblical scholar.
Statement of Faith
We believe in one God, Creator of all things, holy, infinitely perfect, and eternally existing in a loving unity of three equally divine Persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Having limitless knowledge and sovereign power, God has graciously purposed from eternity to redeem a people for Himself and to make all things new for His own glory.
We believe that God has spoken in the Scriptures, both Old and New Testaments, through the words of human authors. As the verbally inspired Word of God, the Bible is the complete revelation of His will for salvation, and the ultimate authority by which every realm of human knowledge and endeavor should be judged. Therefore, it is to be believed in all that it teaches, obeyed in all that it requires, and trusted in all that it promises.
THE HUMAN CONDITION
We believe that God created Adam and Eve in His image, but they sinned when tempted by Satan. In union with Adam, human beings are sinners by nature and by choice, alienated from God, and under His wrath. Only through God’s saving work in Jesus Christ can we be rescued, reconciled and renewed.
We believe that Jesus Christ is God incarnate, fully God and fully man, one Person in two natures. Jesus—Israel’s promised Messiah—was conceived through the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. He lived a sinless life, was crucified under Pontius Pilate, arose bodily from the dead, ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God the Father as our High Priest and Advocate.
THE WORK OF CHRIST
We believe that Jesus Christ, as our representative and substitute, shed His blood on the cross as the perfect, all-sufficient sacrifice for our sins. His atoning death and victorious resurrection constitute the only ground for salvation.
THE HOLY SPIRIT
We believe that the Holy Spirit, in all that He does, glorifies the Lord Jesus Christ. He convicts the world of its guilt. He regenerates sinners, and in Him they are baptized into union with Christ and adopted as heirs in the family of God. He also indwells, illuminates, guides, equips and empowers believers for Christ-like living and service.
We believe that the true church comprises all who have been justified by God’s grace through faith alone in Christ alone. They are united by the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ, of which He is the Head. The true church is manifest in local churches, whose membership should be composed only of believers. The Lord Jesus mandated two ordinances, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, which visibly and tangibly express the gospel. Though they are not the means of salvation, when celebrated by the church in genuine faith, these ordinances confirm and nourish the believer.
We believe that God’s justifying grace must not be separated from His sanctifying power and purpose. God commands us to love Him supremely and others sacrificially, and to live out our faith with care for one another, compassion toward the poor and justice for the oppressed. With God’s Word, the Spirit’s power, and fervent prayer in Christ’s name, we are to combat the spiritual forces of evil. In obedience to Christ’s commission, we are to make disciples among all people, always bearing witness to the gospel in word and deed.
We believe in the personal and bodily return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The coming of Christ, as our blessed hope, motivates the believer to godly living, sacrificial service and energetic mission.
RESPONSE AND ETERNAL DESTINY
We believe that God commands everyone everywhere to believe the gospel by turning to Him in repentance and receiving the Lord Jesus Christ. We believe that God will raise the dead bodily and judge the world, assigning the unbeliever to condemnation and eternal conscious punishment and the believer to eternal blessedness with the Lord in the new heaven and the new earth, to the praise of His glorious grace.
Adopted with editing from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School Statement of Faith (divinity.tiu.edu/who-we-are/statement-of-faith/), December 9, 2014