Dr. Lloyd Goodwin had a vision for the Body of Christ. This dear minister of the gospel had wanted to start a Bible School for ministers to learn the Word of God in a concentrated course. Dr. Goodwin passed away in 1996, but his vision lives on.
We are pleased to be offering a quality Christian education to ministers, student ministers, and members of the Body of Christ around the world. This is a part of the work of the Lord, and part of the mission of the church.
We realize that formal education cannot substitute for the calling of God to preach. A seminary education, alone, does not qualify a man or woman for any Christian vocation. The great apostles, prophets, and ministers of the Bible and history did not attend any formal seminary program. Yet Jesus trained the twelve in an intensive, three and one-half year program. In the days of Elisha there were schools of the prophets. We can impart knowledge, and to some extent, wisdom; only God can call a man or woman to a specific work or ministry.
It is vital to understand the Bible. Understanding will keep you. Proverbs 2:11. We are admonished in the Scriptures to get wisdom and to get understanding. Proverbs 4:7. They will provide stability in troubled times. Isaiah 33:6. God’s people can be destroyed by a lack of knowledge. Hosea 4:6. A famine is coming – not a famine for food; but for hearing the Word of the Lord. Amos 8:11.
To the extent that we can, and with the assistance of the Lord, the faculty of the Gospel Assembly International Seminary and Bible School will strive to preserve and proclaim knowledge, understanding and wisdom. Every course has been prayerfully developed by members of the Body of Christ. Wherever possible, textbooks will be used that have been written by ministers from the Body of Christ. We will not rely on Babylon for help.
The courses we offer are just another means to teach the truth. This fellowship, from the days of our founder, William Sowders, has had a message of truth that is somewhat different from every other Christian denomination and group. Brother Sowders was commissioned of the Lord to “Preach My gospel!” He did so; and our churches are still doing so around the world. But as new ministers are added to the work, and as saints grow up in churches, and as the Lord adds to the churches, there has been a need for a program to systematically review the great truths that we hold dear. This seminary and Bible school is designed to fill that need.
May the Lord Jesus Christ help us.
Dr. Lloyd Goodwin often spoke of the need for a seminary and Bible school. One message said:
If God would tarry, and we could get some more ground around here, we’d even start a seminary for the ministers that God is giving us from around the world. We’d even bring them in for training and give them several years of training…a two-year Bible school. And after two years, [these ministers] would be far more efficient and far more effective.
If God would let me do that. Well, you say: “The Lord is coming shortly.” I know He is. “Well, what are you going to do?” I’m going to prepare for the return of the Lord. We’re going to give Him something to come back for. We’re going to give Him a church. We’re going to give Him a ministry. We’re going to give Him a multitude of assemblies where the saints of God will be working and moving on to perfection.
Lloyd L. Goodwin
December 24, 1995
This fellowship of churches traces its history back to the early church that came out of an upper room on the day of Pentecost. See Acts, chapter two. Its modern history began with the calling of Brother William Sowders to the ministry. He had an articulate calling of the Lord to preach a message that was different from the message of the institutional church world.
God used William Sowders to build a fellowship of churches that were separate and distinct from every other Pentecostal organization. They had a different message, a different spirit, a different order, a different purpose, and a different structure. The Lord blessed the work.
When Bro. William Sowders passed away in 1952, he was the moderator of a large movement. Since that time, the movement has divided, but if all divisions were still united, the movement would be larger now than it was at that time.
Brother Thomas Jolly was appointed as successor to Bro. Sowders as moderator of the fellowship. He was instrumental in bringing the churches into modern times, by adding refinements and structure – while keeping pure Pentecostal worship. The churches focused on New Testament order –doctrines and practices that the church had 2000 years ago.
Many of the churches eventually separated from Bro. Jolly. Included in one large division was Bro. Lloyd Goodwin, the pastor of the Des Moines Gospel Assembly Church. Bro. Goodwin had studied for the ministry under Bro. William Sowders, and later with Bro. Jolly. He had been sent to Des Moines in 1963 to be the pastor of a small, struggling church.
The Lord made a separation between Bro. Goodwin and most of the other ministers and churches in 1972. Yet he remained true to the calling of God on Bro. William Sowders. Brother Goodwin carried the message around the world, establishing more than 100 churches on six continents.
The church in Des Moines flourished under his ministry. He established a Christian school (K-12), built a large church, a school building and an apartment/dormitory complex on a beautiful campus. By the time of his death in 1996, he had earned a Doctorate in Theology, published numerous books and periodicals, and had a radio ministry that covered much of the United States. He was a well-known Bible scholar and teacher.
Brother Lloyd Goodwin had a desire to establish a seminary/Bible school to help to train new ministers and student ministers in the basic principles of the order and doctrine of the Body of Christ. We are seeing to it that his words do not fall to the ground. Though he is no longer with us, we still honor the man that God raised up to carry the gospel of the kingdom around the world.
This seminary and Bible school is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Lloyd Goodwin
The Gospel Assembly International Seminary and Bible School has been established to promote the preaching and teaching of the Gospel of the Kingdom in this country and abroad. Jesus said, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations.” Matthew 28:19. Again, our Lord said, “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” Matthew 24:14.
The main campus is located in Urbandale, Iowa, U.S.A., a suburb of the City of Des Moines. Our mailing address is:
Gospel Assembly International Seminary and Bible School
7135 Meredith Drive
Des Moines, Iowa 50322 U.S.A.
We can be reached by telephone at: 515-276-1331, and our fax number is: 515-276-1409.