Blog Interview – Dr. Dan Wallace – Dallas Theological Seminary

1) Please introduce yourself and your role at Dallas Seminary

I am Dan Wallace, professor of New Testament Studies. I am also the Executive Director of the Center for the Study of New Testament Manuscripts

2) Tell us a little about Dallas Seminary

DTS was begun in 1924 by Lewis Sperry Chafer and W. H. Griffith-Thomas. Their vision was to have a seminary in which every book of the Bible was taught. That is still part of the curriculum. DTS also does not have an MDiv. Its flagship degree is the four-year ThM. It has especially strong Old Testament and New Testament departments. DTS requires 2 & ½ years of Greek and 2 years of Hebrew for its ThM students. We also have a PhD program and a DMin program, among others. Enrolment is about 2000 students, many of whom are at extension schools or online students.

DTS is an evangelical seminary not affiliated with any denomination. We accept students from all denominations. Its distinctive is its premillennialism, though students do not need to adhere to this doctrine. DTS is a dispensational school, but only one unit on dispensationalism is required.

Many on the outside think that DTS is a fundamentalist school that crams dispensationalism down students’ throats or at least heavily promotes it. This has not been the case in my 39 years of association with the school. DTS has serious scholars who make a contribution in many areas. We have first-rate Old Testament and New Testament scholars, patristic scholars, theologians, church historians, etc. The faculty are members of several scholarly societies including Society of New Testament Studies, Institute for Biblical Research, Society of Biblical Literature, and the Evangelical Theological Society, to name a few.

3) Are the courses full time, part-time or a mixture of both?

I’m not sure I understand the question. Courses are courses; students are full-time and part-time.

4) How does Dallas Seminary students fund their studies?

About half of tuition is paid by donors; students have to raise the rest. There is an increasing number of scholarships for students, and full-time students get a discount on courses.

5) Does Dallas Seminary take students from overseas?

Absolutely! A large percentage of our students come from overseas—from South Korea, Kenya, India, China, and about 50 other countries I believe.

6) What type of ministry is Dallas Seminary intended to prepare students for?

DTS chiefly prepares people for full-time vocational ministry—including the pastorate, missions, translation work, and teaching. Many parachurch organizations are populated with DTS grads. We do have courses specifically intended to enrich laypeople.

7) When students leave Dallas Seminary what kind of ministries / jobs do they go into.

See #6.

8) What is distinctive about what Dallas Seminary offers compared with other colleges in the UK and overseas?

The ThM is the most distinctive thing about DTS, with its rigorous requirements in Greek and Hebrew and instruction in every book of the Bible.

9) Please tell us about the library and other research facilities.

DTS’s library is excellent. I believe the holdings are about 400,000, and these are focused on the Bible, theology, philosophy, Greek, Hebrew, archaeology, biblical backgrounds, church fathers, etc. Every incoming students gets a large package of Logos Bible software to use during their time at the school. If they graduate, they get to keep it. The library system includes first-rate Interlibrary Loan, several computers with a variety of Bible software loaded in them, excellent resources in German, French, and to some degree Latin, Spanish, and other languages.

10) Does Dallas Seminary offer a distance or on-line learning option. If yes, please tell us more about it.

Yes, it does. But I don’t teach these courses so I can’t speak to this well. I know that we have quite a few Chinese students taking on-line courses and what we offer on-line increases every year.

My thanks to Dr Wallace for taking part in this series.

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