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Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Know Your Gifts

Romans Chapter 12 mkes it clear to us that we can know God's will for our lives, and that key to this process of discovery are two things.

First of all we are expeceted to consecate our lives - dedicate ourselves to His service. Not reluctantly or begrudgingly, but joyfully, willingly; recognising that it is through giving ourselves to Him, we truly find ourselves.

Secondly, as part of this process of being a living sacrifice, we are expected to test and approve the leadings within our spirits, to discover whether inclination and opportunity give birth to desire and mastery of specific gifts.

If we find that the out come is good, we have a positive experience; we continue in that vein. If we find enjoy and lok forward to the next opportunity to practise; it is pleasing. Finally, if we look back and see how an unseen hand has shaped our formative experience and directed us almost unconsciously into this path - we recognise that His will is perfect.

Our only responsibility then is to be wholehearted, to throw ourselves with enthusiasm into the enterprise that our Creator has uniquely designed us for.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

What is the fuss about?

If you believe that the Bible contains a timeless wisdom, applicable to all generations, then it is entirely logical that you should want to understand its message in order to apply it to your ow life. This is a responsibiity for all who would claim to be followers of Christ, however, not just a select few.

As a book, the Bible makes certain specific claims about itself and its purpose. These claims can be tested, and it is the conviction of those of us who valuse the art of apologetics, that these claims stand firm when the book is put to the test.

One claim can be fount in 2 Timothy ch.3 v.16-17, where the Apostle Paul confidently declares that "Every Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.."

His words set a scope for the use of scripture in transforming lives, but makes some bold claims. It is all of scripture, not just the bits that we like, it provides a thorough equipping, not a partial training that needs to be suppleneted, and is effective for every good work - it has universal application as a foundation for all fields of service.

That is why it is essential for those who believe that the Good Lord has set them apart for the responsibility of service to set apart time to study His message in detail. To do otherwise is to be inadequately prepared for the task.

Why go to Bible College?

In this weblog, I shall discuss some of the pros an cons of pursuing an education at a Bible college, seminary or Bible school.

People's reasons for going to a Bible college are many and varied. For some, it's just an education. A degree in theology is just as marketable as any other higher education qualification. It shows a potential employer that you have a trained mind, that you can organise yourself to persevere with a programme of study for a number of years, that you can perform well under stress and meet deadlines. It may say little about your spiritual life, however.

For others, it is one step on fulfilling a divine calling on their lives. It may not be a necessary requirement for them in achieving their destiny, but it will open doors and give them opportunities to test that calling in different situations. It gives an opportunity to concentrate on the foundations they need to be sccessful in a life of service.