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BIBLICAL GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY

Issue No. 39

28 Sep - 4 Oct 2009

bookA Meditation

A Centered or Cluttered Life
" ‘A life without a lonely place, that is, a life without a quiet center, easily becomes destructive’ and, we might add, shallow, dissipated and lacking in any sense of direction. We get nowhere if we fear to walk alone. ‘The busier life is, the more need there is for a still centre; a place deep within us to which we can withdraw after the day-to-day buffeting and storms; a place where we can reflect on experience and try and make sense of life: a place where we can mull over events and savour them more fully; a place where, above all, we can listen . . ‘to what others are saying verbally or non-verbally, to what our feelings and fears are saying to us, and to what God is saying through circumstances, through people, through creation and his word spoken in the depths of our being. ‘All these things pass us by, like views from the window of an express train, if we do not learn to stand still at disciplined intervals and do some stock-taking and viewing."

— Sister Margaret Magdalen, Jesus - A Man of Prayer
Chapter 2, ‘To A Lonely Place’, page, 40 (IVP 1987)

(This book is out of print but it is available in the BGST Library.)

Siew Kim SiangReflections on the 2nd BGST Fundraising Golf Tournament by Siew Kim Siang

golfAs I did my quiet time in the morning after the Golf Tournament (GT), I couldn’t help but to praise and thank God for seeing us through a successful 2009 GT in aid of BGST’s Building Fund. Without His timely provision of “Camels and Camel Drivers” like the Committee members, there would not be any GT event, let alone bringing in the much needed $81K in a near desert condition – a bare and gloomy economic outlook following last year’s global financial tsunami.

The desert-like situation in November 2008 hit home when both King Keong (the de facto lead organiser of GT) and Kim Siang (the non-golfing facilitator) were eager to form a committee for GT 09. Despite our intense soliciting, there was no taker – probably due to our ‘flogging the same old horses’ (i.e. tapping people from the same church) overshadowed by the economic downturn. We felt like the only camel and driver left desolate in the desert we were about to cross.  How were we going to earn our keep, let alone bring in the funds? In this we learnt to lean even more on the power of the Holy Spirit (Zech. 4:6). We were also encouraged by the concerted prayers of the BGST community of Council members, Faculty, Staff and Students and even our home churches, who must have received God’s listening ears. 

Man like to do things like a car running with its own fuel tank. In our eagerness to have everything organised expeditiously, George Matheson, the blind Scottish pastor urges us to see things in a different light. He says that “the Spirit requires not only a service of work but also a service of waiting.” He came to see that in the kingdom of Christ, there are not only times for action but times to refrain from action.” Like Gideon, we were in need of affirmation in the form of a sponsor to underwrite the one-day Golf event together with a hole-in-one car prize. To look for someone with $22K, as well as a car as the coveted prize for a GT, were an uphill task made worse in the prevailing climate.  Casting all our cares and concerns for new blood coming from other churches and waiting on the Lord, paid handsome dividends ‘for he careth for you’ (1 Pet. 5:7).

Our God is a wonderful provider. One August afternoon, an anonymous brother in-Christ telephoned to say that he wanted to donate a sum of money because he strongly believed in the School’s mission and the much admired godly Principal in Dr Quek. What warmed my heart most was that the donor does not even play golf – yet he wanted to support our cause! Added to this, a church and even our Guest-of-Honour contributed to the till.  These and other acts of support spoke volumes of our Lord’s unfathomable riches, if we care to ‘ask Him for anything in His name’ (Jn. 14:14). We thank God for bringing all the right people and the accompanied resources, despite our having to wait patiently for several months.
 
The month of September was not that weather friendly to outdoor activities like golf.  But the Lord is good and He is great as He averted the inclement weather forecasted for the eventful GT on Friday 25 Sep from “occasional thunder and rainfall in the afternoon” to that of a sunny and breezy day! The organisers were particularly jittery as they remembered the wet day during the wash-out at BGST’s inaugural GT 2007! When James, the GT photographer confirmed that the wet weather forecast was true, I told him that our God would change this for His faithful people had collectively prayed for fine weather and safe golfing to facilitate this event. To his surprise and the amazement of all golfers (non-believers included), the opening prayer by Dr Quek, our Principal over the public address system was most timely and edifying before the flag-off. We thanked God that He sent the rain clouds elsewhere instead of at the RCC vicinity!  Safety-wise, we were relieved that a stray ball missed hitting a VIP golfer on the golf course!

The GT Dinner was another testimony of God’s goodness. Besides bringing a good mix of golfers and their non-golfing family members and friends, the Lord brought in $8K from the lively auction conducted by MC Wong Kar Fatt.  This and the day golfing event sound like music to my ears.

A reflection from Francis Loo, a Committee member, perhaps sums up the situation best:  “In the course of the week I was reading Golfing with the Master by Phil Callaway -- no relation to the famous 'Callaway' brand. Phil said, "Golf is all about hope. And so is life. Perhaps hope can be defined as Having One Purpose: Eternity.  Real Hope vanquishes despair and dread and gives birth to faith." How true it is as we work together in this GT. Thanks to our Risen Lord. Amen.

weekly updatesWeekly Updates

Our Chapel Speaker on 7 Oct will be Mr Yap Poh Kheng who will be speaking on “Engaging the Marketplace: A Personal Framework.” He is the Director of Access, a marketing technology company. He is also the Founder & Director of Center for Christian Entrepreneurship.

Chapel begins at 12 pm every Wednesday. You are welcome to join us.

newsNews Bits

Introducing Our New MCS (Master in Christian Studies) Student

Dr Tan Chew Lim is a member and active leader at the Telok Ayer Methodist Church. He is a Professor at the National University of Singapore and has obtained degrees from the Universities of Singapore, Surrey (UK) and Virginia (USA).


WE HAVE JUST UPGRADED OUR PHONE SYSTEM

All incoming calls are now directly connected to our voicemail. The caller can reach the intended party by keying in the extension number of the party or press zero for assistance.

The extensions for the faculty are:
200 - Dr Quek SH, 201 - Dr PE Satterthwaite, 202 - Dr Ng Peh Cheng, 203 - Dr A Pagolu,
204 - Dr A Lee, 205 - Mr Quek TM, 206 - Dr E Tay, 207 - Mr J Chong SC, 210 - Mr Chou FS.phone

The extensions for the administration office are:
220 - Serene, 221 - Kok Wee, 222 - Christine, 223 - Anthony, 230 - Susan,

The extensions for the library and bookshop staff are:
240 & 241 - Kok Weng, Daisy, Sow Yoke or May Fern.


CHECK OUT our New Course Schedule Year 2009-2010 Semester 2 at http://bgst.edu.sg/pdf/2009-2010sem2.pdf


NEW COURSE
Dr Oh Boon LeongLetters  From  Paul to a Young Pastor: A Primer on Church Order & Leadership
NT262, 1.5 cr
Lecturer : Dr Oh Boon Leong
Dates :  Oct 9, 16, 23, 30; 
Time : 7.15 - 10.15pm
Dr Oh completed his PhD in New Testament at King’s College, University of London, in June 2001. His special area of studies is the writing and theology of the Apostle Paul, especially the study of Galatians. Earlier he had received the M Div from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and the M Th from the University of Aberdeen. He is married and serves as an Associate Pastor at the Mt Carmel Bible-Presbyterian Church. He provides leadership for the third worship service of his church, the Saturday Evening Service.

“I wish I’d known then what I know now” is a comment often heard among pastors and church leaders. Newer or young pastors wish they had learned, at the beginning of their ministry, from the experiences of more senior colleagues in the pastorate. In this course “Letters to a Young Pastor,” we will sit at the feet of a veteran missionary pastor, the Apostle Paul. We will hear the letters he wrote to young Timothy and Titus as he encouraged and instructed them on issues concerning the life of a pastor, church order and leadership. The letters portray a deep concern for the pastoral oversight of the church. They also reveal the soul, the passion, and the inner spirit of the writer. Besides church leadership, the letters also supply the readers with rich theological motives for godly living.

COURSE GOALS
At the end of this course, the students should be able to:

  • Appreciate the origin, social situation, literary and rhetorical features of the Pastoral Epistles.
  • Demonstrate interpretive skills by wrestling with difficulties in the text.
  • Gain a firm grasp of the theological message of the Pastoral Epistles for Christian faith and conduct, especially in church life.
  • Apply the doctrinal and ethical emphases of the Pastoral Epistles to contemporary life situations

For the full course description, click on this link http://bgst.edu.sg/courses/pdf/nt262-09.pdf

31 Tanjong Pagar Road, Singapore 088454.
Tel: 62276815 Fax: 62276816  Email :
bgst@pacific.net.sg
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