Just saw where the Fall Chapel schedule is posted. Here’s a few highlights:
3 different panel discussions which is something new this year
- Sept 3 called N.T. Wright and the Doctrine of Justification
- Oct 22 called Southern Baptists and the Great Commission Resurgence. (My only issue here is that the whole panel is from Highview . . . just a little one-side, no?)
- Nov 3 called Perspectives on Mulit-site Churches. (This one should be good w/ Dr. Mohler moderating. From what I remember from the IX Marks journal, only Greg Gilbert would be in the opposition to multi-site. Anyone can correct me if I am wrong.)
- Dr. Mohler – 7 times
- Dr. Moore – 2 times
- Dr. Ware, Dr. York, Dr. Hamilton, Dr. Nettles, Dr. Fuller, Mr. Jason Allen
Others to look fwd to:
- Dr. Al Jackson on Sept 15
- Rev Al Gilbert on Oct 20 as part of mission’s week. He is also on the GC Task Force
- Matt Chandler on Nov 12. I think this may be his first time to speak in Chapel . . . This may be the most full the chapel will ever be this late in the semester.
Should be a good semester.
Today, Beth and I are headed up to Southern for the Give Me an Answer Conference. This year’s theme is “Only One Savior?” focusing on the uniqueness of Christ in a post modern world. Dr. Mohler and Dr. Moore are the keynote speakers with Shane & Shane leading the worship time AND providing a concert tonight!
Also, many of the professors are leading breakout sessions during the day on Saturday ranging in topics from “What about the man on the island?” to “Preparing to teach the only savior on the mission field” to “The gospel and science fiction.”
Final note, SBTS students can register today for free with their Shield ID card in the Honeycutt Center.
This week at school is Great Commission Week and there are a number of reasons why I (and you) am excited even though I won’t be on campus much.
- If you haven’t heard Dr. Moore’s sermon from last week, then you need to. This is my 3rd year here and hearing Dr. Moore stress the need and emphasis for sharing the gospel and missions during Heritage Week was very encouraging. I was able to hear him also talk to the Foundation Board members and prospective students last week and his message never changed. He mentioned numerous times that we are going to be a seminary that is training missionaries or pastors who are going to send out missionaries.
- There is such a good chapel line up this week. In the year I worked for the IMB out of Richmond, I was able to hear both of these men preach. First, I heard Dr. Gilbert preach at Southwestern Seminary where he spoke directly to pastors challenging them that if they are not leading there church and people to be on mission with God then they were failing as pastors. Isn’t this what we need if we are going to reach the 1000’s of unreached people groups? Isn’t this what we need if we are going to have enough personnel to be there to train local pastors? Second, we will be blessed to hear Thursday from Buster Brown. He is the pastor at East Cooper Baptist Church near Charleston, SC. I know that he is passionate about missions. Besides the fact that he “stole” Liz from our church here, I like what all is going on there at ECBC. While there for a mission conference, I got to see that Buster is one of these pastors that Dr. Gilbert encouraged those preacher boys to be like.
- The final reason I love GCC week is that missionaries from all over come to town. And this year, a couple that is near and dear to my heart is here. Since they still work in South Asia, I won’t use their name, but please do drop by their booth there by Founders Cafe and say hello. I have known them since 2000 when I was just a naive college student on a summer mission project. They are a couple that I respect so much and feel blessed to know them. The only “problem” is that whenever I am around them, I feel the call to go back overseas. I guess we will see where that leads.
So, if any students read this, get involved in missions week! Go hear Dr. Moore talk about Islam. Dress up in a international dress on Thursday. Sit down and talk with the missionaries over coffee. Are there some mid-terms this week? Sure, but what’s a few points difference when you could take some time to hear how God can use you around the world? Bid on something in the Silent Auction to support the mission trips. Just do something! Don’t let this week go by and miss this great opportunity.
“I Want to Be in That Thunder – Why We Can’t Hear the Great Commission” (John 12:16-43)
Why is evangelism something that seems to be just another program?
Why is it we implore guilt when we talk about the need to soul win? Why is it the same as the dentist telling us we need to floss?
But in Acts and Romans, we see evangelism growing organically in light of the understanding of the cross and the Great Commission.
Why is it that our churches are so dead when it comes to EV and Missions?
If the Great Commission is going to be more than a slogan, then we must hear what Jesus is saying to us when he points us to the cross.
1. Jesus is calling us to another kind of Fear
- We are scared of the Great Commission. We assume that most are scared of giving up everything, but most are not going to face an Islamic terrorist. The fear that we have is similar to what we see right here with the Pharisees in the way that their fear is threatened as people follow Jesus.
- The Pharisees are afraid of being turned out of the synagogue, the living of a normal predictable life.
- There is a sense of personal threat and embarrassment. This can be deadly.
- The Pharisees were losing their position of authority as people followed Jesus.
- Don’t we have the same fear, embarrassment and awkwardness? Are we afraid of being odd?
- But we are being told to have some fear. Jesus himself is afraid.
- Jesus is deeply fearful and troubled here. He does not fear Pilote or Herod, but here he is deeply troubled because he understands something that we forget: Fear him who is able to cast both body and soul into hell.
- We are so ineffective at EV because to us, hell is just a theological category
2. Jesus calls us to another kind of Power
- The voice that the Pharisees have been longing to hear they think is thunder.
- All of this to fulfill Scripture in Isaiah.
- When the condemnation of God falls, the ministry of the Holy Spirit is the ministry of revealing.
- This power is a power that we do not see nor recognize. And neither to do we. We might explain the Roman Road forward and backward, but it is the power of God to save.
- We can sit around and talk about the power, but we will only see the power in the Holy Spirit.
- We can see the power of the Cross, when the sinner confesses Jesus as Lord.
3. John calls us to see through Jesus another kind of Glory
- Those not willing to confess Christ love the glory of man more than God.
- Could it be that our EV invitations are not successful often because of our motivations? The motivation to show off our success?
- When Isaiah is seeing the Glory filling the temple, he is seeing Jesus Christ.
- God will glorify his name by lifting Christ up. Isaiah speaks of God as high and lifted up. But John shows this “high and lifted up” on the cross. The glory of God is seen in a crucified Christ.
- Could it be that we are so dead in EV because we are clamoring for the glory of man instead of people who see and recognize the glory of God in a cross?
Dr. Moore is asking every student in the School of Theology to be involved in a Great Commission Group which seeks to hold each one accountable to share the gospel once a week.