Internet Explorer 7, 8, and 9 are no longer supported. Please use a newer browser.
Concourse works best with JavaScript enabled.
Liberty University logo

Online · School of Divinity · Christian Leadership & Church Ministries

Spiritual Factors of Growing Churches

  • CG
  • Section 8WK
  • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020
  • Modified 01/13/2020

Course Description

An examination of spiritual factors of church growth such as prayer, fasting, revival, anointed preaching and worship. The student will analyze and develop programs to produce balanced growth in evangelism and discipleship.





Recognizing that students come from various church backgrounds, this course is designed to expose students to biblical and practical Christian experiences. Therefore, a student must first grasp the philosophy, principles, and spirit of different ministries. The student will want to capture the zeal and philosophy of both church growth and Christian experiences with a view of incorporating them into his or her own ministry and lifestyle.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Evaluate his or her present ministry practices in light of biblical principles of spiritual growth.
  2. Design a plan for improving the spiritual climate of the present ministry and implementing specific strategies for moving people through various phases of spiritual growth.
  3. Explain the role of the ministry leader in a growing church and in moving believers along a pathway of spiritual growth in Christ.
  4. Trace the church growth and revival history, including the settings, characteristics, leaders, and effects of said movements.
  5. Identify the principles common to the working of the Holy Spirit in personal and corporate spiritual renewal.

Course Resources

Required Resources

The resources below are provided in the course at no cost to the student.

Faulls, Gregory. From Dust to Destiny., 2014. Note: This book is available as a free e-book download from It does not need to be purchased.

Gilbert, Greg. What is the Gospel. Wheaton: Crossway, 2010.

Hansen, Collin, and John D. Woodbridge. A God-Sized Vision: Revival Stories That Stretch And Stir. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2010.

Hawkins, Greg L., and Cally Parkinson. Move: What 1,000 Churches Reveal About Spiritual Growth. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011.

Scazzero, Peter. The Emotionally Healthy Church. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2015.

Tozer, A. W. The Crucified Life: How to Live Out a Deeper Christian Experience. Ventura: Regal, 2011.

Wilhoit, James C. Spiritual Formation as if the Church Mattered: Growing in Christ through Community. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2008.

Disclaimer: The above resources provide information consistent with the latest research regarding the subject area. Liberty University does not necessarily endorse specific personal, religious, philosophical, or political positions found in these resources.

Additional Materials for Learning

    1. Computer with basic audio/video output equipment
    2. Internet access (broadband recommended)
    3. Blackboard recommended browsers
    4. Microsoft Word
    5. School of Divinity Writing Guide:

Course Assignments

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (3)

The Discussion Board Forums in this course are completed in 2 parts over 2 modules/weeks. Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, in the first module/week that the Discussion Board Forum is assigned, the student must post a 400-word thread in response to the prompt provided. The student must then post 2 replies of at least 200 words in response to another student’s thread. For each thread, the student must support his/her assertions with at least 2 citations in current Turabian format. For each reply, the student must cite at least 1 source in current Turabian format. Acceptable sources include readings, textbooks, and related materials.

Journals (8)

Throughout the course, the student will maintain a journal. Each module/week, the student will record his/her spiritual practices and address the assigned prompt in at least 2 entries totaling 1–2 double-spaced pages.

Book Critiques (2)

The student will read 2 specified, required books and then submit a paper for each. The papers must comply with current Turabian writing style, include 4–6 citations, and be 3–5 double-spaced pages. The paper must use footnotes as needed. The student will summarize what he/she read, critique and evaluate the work, and apply the work to his/her own situations.

Reading Reflections (4)

The student will read 4 required books and then submit a paper for each. The papers must comply with current Turabian writing style, include 2–3 citations, and be 2–3 double-spaced pages for each book.

Spiritual Growth Plan

The student will create a comprehensive Spiritual Growth Plan that reflects his/her research with the textbooks and course materials. The paper will be 10–12 double-spaced pages of text, have a minimum of 10 citations, and comply with current Turabian writing style. The Spiritual Growth Plan must utilize all the course-required readings and additional materials as needed. The Spiritual Growth Plan will demonstrate the student’s grasp of the materials and the integration of those materials into the student’s life.

Course Grading

Course Requirements Checklist


Discussion Board Forums

Threads (3 at 50 pts ea)


Replies (3 at 50 pts ea)


Journals (8 at 15 pts ea)


Book Critiques (2 at 100 pts ea)


Reading Reflections (4 at 50 pts ea)


Spiritual Growth Plan





Late Assignment Policy

Course Assignments, including discussion boards, exams, and other graded assignments, should be submitted on time.

If the student is unable to complete an assignment on time, then he or she must contact the instructor immediately by email.

Assignments that are submitted after the due date without prior approval from the instructor will receive the following deductions:

  1. Late assignments submitted within one week after the due date will receive up to a 10% deduction.
  2. Assignments submitted more than one week and less than 2 weeks late will receive up to a 20% deduction.
  3. Assignments submitted two weeks late or after the final date of the course will not be accepted outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.
  4. Group projects, including group discussion board threads and/or replies, and assignments will not be accepted after the due date outside of special circumstances (e.g. death in the family, significant personal health issues), which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the instructor.

Disability Assistance

Students with a disability and those with medical conditions associated with pregnancy may contact Liberty University’s Online Office of Disability Accommodation Support (ODAS) at [email protected] for accommodations.  Such accommodations require appropriate documentation of your condition.   For more information about ODAS and the accommodations process, including how to request an accommodation, please visit Requests for accommodations not related to disabilities or pregnancy must be directed to the Registrar’s Office, which generally handles medical needs support.

If you have a complaint related to disability discrimination or an accommodation that was not provided, you may contact ODAS or the Office of Equity and Compliance by phone at (434) 592-4999 or by email at [email protected].  Click to see a full copy of Liberty’s Discrimination, Harassment, and Sexual Misconduct Policy or the Student Disability Grievance Policy and Procedures.

Course Attendance

In an effort to comply with U.S. Department of Education policies, attendance is measured by physical class attendance or any submission of a required assignment within the enrollment dates of the course (such as examinations, written papers or projects, any discussion board posts, etc.) or initiating any communication with one’s professor regarding an academic subject. More information regarding the attendance policy can be found in the Academic Course Catalogs. Regular attendance in online courses is expected throughout the length of the term. Students who do not attend within the first week of a sub-term by submitting a required academic assignment (such as the Course Requirements Checklist, an examination, written paper or project, discussion board post, or other academic activity) will be dropped from the course. Students who wish to re-engage in the course are encouraged to contact Academic Advising to discuss their enrollment options. Students who begin an online course, but at some point in the semester cease attending, and do not provide official notification to withdraw, will be assigned a grade of “FN” (Failure for Non-Attendance). Students wishing to withdraw from courses after the official start date should familiarize themselves with the withdrawal policy.

Grading Scale

A- B+ B B- C+ C C- D+ D D- F
940-1010 920-939 900-919 860-899 840-859 820-839 780-819 760-779 740-759 700-739 680-699 679 and below

For courses with a Pass/NP final grade, please refer to the Course Grading section of this syllabus for the assignment requirements and/or point value required to earn a Passing final grade.

Add/Drop Policy

The full policy statement and procedures are published in the Policy Directory.

Honor Code

Liberty University comprises a network of students, Alumni, faculty, staff and supporters that together form a Christian community based upon the truth of the Bible. This truth defines our foundational principles, from our Doctrinal Statement to the Code of Honor. These principles irrevocably align Liberty University’s operational procedures with the long tradition of university culture, which remains distinctively Christian, designed to preserve and advance truth. Our desire is to create a safe, comfortable environment within our community of learning, and we extend our academic and spiritual resources to all of our students with the goal of fostering academic maturity, spiritual growth and character development.

Communities are predicated on shared values and goals. The Code of Honor, an expression of the values from which our Doctrinal Statement was born, defines the fundamental principles by which our community exists. At the core of this code lie two essential concepts: a belief in the significance of all individuals, and a reliance on the existence of objective truth.

While we acknowledge that some may disagree with various elements of the Code of Honor, we maintain the expectation that our students will commit to respect and uphold the Code while enrolled at Liberty University.

Adherence to the principles and concepts established within facilitates the success of our students and strengthens the Liberty community.

The Code of Honor can be viewed in its entirety at


EVAN 500

Textbooks: Faulls, From Dust to Destiny (2014).

Gilbert, What is the Gospel (2010).

Hansen & Woodbridge, A God-Sized Vision (2010).

Hawkins & Parkinson, Move (2011).

Scazzero, The Emotionally Healthy Church (2015).

Tozer, The Crucified Life (2011).

Wilhoit, Spiritual Formation as if the Church Mattered (2008).


Reading & Study




Wilhoit: chs. 1–5

2 presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

Class Introductions

Journal 1





Wilhoit: chs. 6–10

2 presentations

DB Forum 1 Thread

Journal 2

Book Critique 1 – Wilhoit





Tozer: chs. 1–16

1 presentation

DB Forum 1 Replies

Journal 3

Reading Reflection 1 – Tozer





Faulls: Introduction; chs. 1–4

Gilbert: chs. 1–8

2 presentations

DB Forum 2 Thread

Journal 4

Reading Reflection 2 – Faulls, Gilbert





Hawkins & Parkinson: chs. 1–16

1 presentation

DB Forum 2 Replies

Journal 5

Book Critique 2 – Hawkins & Parkinson





Scazzero: chs. 1–12

3 presentations

DB Forum 3 Thread

Journal 6

Reading Reflection 3 – Scazzero





Hansen & Woodbridge: chs. 1–8

1 presentation

DB Forum 3 Replies

Journal 7

Reading Reflection 4 – Hansen & Woodbridge





1 presentation

Journal 8

Spiritual Growth Plan





DB = Discussion Board

NOTE: Each course module/week (except Module/Week 1) begins on Monday morning at 12:00 a.m. (ET) and ends on Sunday night at 11:59 p.m. (ET). The final module/week ends at 11:59 p.m. (ET) on Friday.