Biblical Principles of Government is a 10 week course (20 hours of instruction) designed for adults and teenage students. It is usually taught as a weekly class that meets for two hours each week.
The President of the Institute for Principle Studies, Mike Winther, has been teaching this class in different parts of Northern California for well over two decades. Spanning numerous denominations, this class has been hosted by over 20 different churches. Many senior pastors and directors of education have made comments like the following:
“Thank you so much for your ministry and your excellent teaching on Biblical Principles of Government. Your passion for teaching American history and government based on Biblical principles has infected us all. You have not only taught us God’s Truth, but you have also given us an important perspective about our responsibilities as citizens of the United States, and motivated us to take action to honor these Truths!”
The course has proven to be very popular—it is not unusual for people to drive 60 or even 90 miles each week to attend the course. The class is difficult to describe because it deals with a broad variety of topics relating to family, church, and civil government. It includes teaching on history, evolution, economics, charity, education, and basic civics.
Most of the concepts covered in Biblical Principles of Government have not been taught in American schools since before the Civil War. We get lots of, “Wow, I never knew that before!” comments from students.
This is a fun class, but also one that will challenge students and make them think. IPS encourages families to take the class together because it generates lots of great family discussion. Although it is an adult class, the material is understandable to most students age 12 or over (perhaps younger in some cases).
Because of the broad scope of the course material, there are benefits to the body of Christ that often surprise people. Here are a few examples:
Evangelism. Although the primary purpose of the course is to disciple the saints, we find that the subject does draw some unbelievers. We have had several students give their lives to Christ as the result of some of the apologetic material presented in the class.
Strengthening families. Although the Institute for Principle Studies is not explicitly a family support ministry, we promote some very specific family activities as part of the strategy to compete in the culture wars. Many of our participants become motivated to read both their Bibles and important Christian works together as a family. Additionally, our teaching on authority and power presents biblical standards that apply to both government and family life. This provides considerable philosophical support to our efforts to help students fulfill the fifth commandment. Because many parents take the class with their teenage students, we find that these concepts are plugged into the family from both directions: parent and child.
Strengthening the church. The Biblical Principles of Government course includes information on church history and the importance of building our churches to meet the needs of our communities.
…And the obvious. Of course, students learn about good government, competing economic systems, and much more.
To view our current classes, click here.
If you would like to bring the Biblical Principles of Government course to your church, please contact Matt Vasquez and request a Host Church Packet.