The Lectureship is officially over now, but I’m still benefiting from the spiritual feast I received during the week. Unfortunately the “spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak,” (Matthew 26:41 ESV) as though I thoroughly enjoyed the spiritual nourishment, my body couldn’t take it all and I came down with a fever on the third day… which means that I missed out on day 4.
So here I’ll share with you what I took away from days 3 & 5 of the Lectureship/Seminar.
Love Your Enemies by King Yue Xianghui
“The world lives by the rule, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth'”
King opened up his talk with the above statement, which unfortunately is so true. Movies, media, novels, our closest friends – they all tell us that revenge is sweet and all “get what they deserve.” God has shown us a different way, however.
“By loving our enemies, it shows that we are the children of God. Since we are His children, we need to have agape love for all, just as He does”
King then went onto say that we need not only to bless those that curse us, but to do good to them (Matthew 5:43-48). I loved the example he gave of Jesus, giving us the perfect example of praying for our enemies, as He prayed “Father, forgive them” while He was being crucified on the cross.”
“Our love is made perfect in loving our enemies. If we only love those that love us, our love is not complete.”
The Bible: Its Transmission by Bryan Hatcher
“Does God desire to communicate with us? Yes, God wants to communicate with human beings. There is a special relationship, and as there is in any healthy relationship, there is a desire for communication”
He communicates generally through Creation (Romans 1:20, but He has also revealed His will through the Holy Spirit’s writings (1 Corinthians 2:10). He has given us everything we could possibly need to know in His Word (2 Peter 1:3).
“God is concerned with the spiritual, not the physical. God is always trying to move us from a physical way of thinking to a spiritual way of thinking. The only that matters is really relationship with the heavenly Father. Nothing else matters.”
God is thoroughly concerned with the salvation of our souls. That is what His Word is all about.
“The Bible is our textbook to Heaven, and the theme is the scheme of redemption.”
Creation Evidences by Danny Poo
Danny presented some great arguments on how we can see God through His creation in a very clear and thorough way. Here are two of my favourite quotes:
“There are many things we believe in despite never having seen them, because we believe in history… there are many things we have not seen, but we believe in them because the Bible tells us so.”
“”This beautifully designed human body cannot possibly happen by chance.”
Attacks on the Bible – Discrepancies by Peter Chin
When Peter speaks on the authenticity of the Bible, it is immediately clear to the listener exactly how much zeal he has for this subject. It is evident that this man loves God’s Word and has made it his life’s study.
“The only way that we can draw closer to God is to open the Bible, read it, memorize it and contemplate upon it.”
Questions and principles to consider when trying to determine the accuracy of the Biblical text:
- Bible writers are innocent until proven guilty – they are to be accepted as true, free from errors. Why is this that the Bible is often guilty until proven innocent?
- Possibilities are sufficient.
- Context is critical.
- Understand what a real contradiction is. Context changes meanings.
- Is it the same person or thing under consideration? E.g. Acts 12:1-2; 15:13-14 – these are not referring to the same James.
- Is it the same time reference under consideration? E.g. Genesis 1:31; 6:6 – These are two different periods of time, therefore God had different feelings about His creation at these times.
- Are the words and phrases under consideration used in the same sense?
In his conclusion, Peter directed the challenge to each one of us. Yes, there are many attacks on the Bible. This should not dishearten us, however, but should rather strengthen our resolve to know more about what lies within its pages so that we can answer these attempts to undermine its authority for ourselves.
“While he attacks the Bible, he also attacks each one of us. People attack the Bible and we are woefully unaware of how to meet these attacks. Let’s take up his challenge. Is the Bible the Word of God to you? If so, read it as such. Always be ready to answer those who ask a reason for the hope that is within you.”
“How do we respond to accusations? Let’s be ready to meet the attacks. Let’s be diligent students so that we can know and answer for ourselves.”
Tools for Effective Bible Study by Jennifer Hatcher
I didn’t realize that Jennifer was a librarian, but that just made this topic all the more perfect for her. Jennifer did a fantastic job of presenting the various tools that one can use to aid them in their study of God’s Word, and drew on her experiences as a librarian to illustrate just how important it is to study for yourself.
She started off with an illustration about how many decisions people really do trust her with as a librarian, and how we cannot be the same when it comes to our salvation, saying:
“Do not trust others with your salvation. Many are willing to trust other people with every decision – even their salvation. The problem is that if we trust others with our salvation, then we risk more than simply a bad night’s sleep on a bad mattress – we risk losing our eternal souls.”
“We should always let the Bible speak for itself, comparing verses with verses.”
So Great a Salvation in Its Recipient by Phillip Vanwinkle
Phillip gave a very encouraging lesson about how much we have been given and how precious we are in God’s sight as His children. Here are some of my favourite quotes:
“What are we doing with this amazing gift of grace and salvation that we currently have?”
“I don’t need to worry about what is going to happen tomorrow, God has already gone before me and he already knows what is going to happen.”
“We are going to get to Heaven – and not by the skin of our teeth. We are going to get there by a great victory.”
I also loved this verse that he concluded with:
“And the work of righteousness shall be peace; And the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, And in sure dwellings, And in quiet resting places” (Isaiah 32:17, 18).
So Great a Salvation in Its Reward by Tim Hayes
This was another encouraging lessons from Tim on what a great reward we have waiting for us, made possible by the precious blood of the Lamb.
“There has never been a time in the history of mankind where God has left people without hope.”
“We have a choice between life and death – God tells us to choose life, because He has made life possible for us.”