|Issue No. 12||July 2013|
|Not a Type of Coffee - By Mr Quek Tze Ming|
In Matthew's Great Commission, Jesus told his disciples: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit" (Matt 28.19). Did you notice that the disciples are to baptize in the "name," and not "names"? The three persons together share one divine identity, and constitute the one God.
For more than two millennia now, Christians have confessed that the one eternal God is eternally both singular and plural; that the Father, Son, and Spirit are personally distinct yet essentially one. We do not believe in three gods who are not one, neither do we believe in one god who is not three.
Careful Christian thinkers have always affirmed that the Trinity is a mystery. A "mystery," in popular usage, is something that cries out to be solved (as in a murder-mystery). But that is not what we mean. In biblical and theological usage, "mystery" refers to something which was once hidden, or beyond our comprehension, but is now made known. And so, the mystery of the Trinity is not a mathematical conundrum to be solved or explained. Indeed, any attempt to do so is almost certainly bound to falsify or misrepresent it. Instead, the mystery of the Trinity is something to be confessed and experienced.
But that doesn't mean we cannot say anything the Trinity. Confession involves, amongst other things, description. We can and should describe what and why we confess.
From history and Scripture, we have come to know of this man, Jesus, who acted in ways and manners that only Israel's God was supposed to act, who prayed to his Father, who promised that he and his Father would send "another Comforter" to continue his work.
The earliest Christians reflected on the significance of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection, and proclaimed the good news of what was accomplished. What was accomplished turned out to be the cooperative activity of the Three in saving us. The Father plans, the Son procures, and the Spirit applies salvation (Rom 8.1-17; Eph 1.3-14). This cooperative work of grace, bookended by the major events of Incarnation and Cross Resurrection, impelled the early Christians to think of - and worship - God as a divine trinity, three-in-one, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
In our worship services, we affirm this truth. Traditional services do this by invoking the name of the Trinity at the opening prayer, sing the Gloria Patri and/or the Doxology. Contemporary services do it by putting some thought in the choice of choruses and hymns that proclaim the triune God. I would encourage all service leaders to end with a Trinitarian Benediction, whenever appropriate. Some of these elements in the order of worship are often glossed over. But they are symbols to remind us that in our Christian life, we experience the worship of God the Father above us, we know the fellowship of God the Son beside us, and both worship and fellowship are accomplished through the prompting of God the Holy Spirit within us.
|Closure of Library & Book Corner - 29 July 2013|
|The library and book corner will be closed at 6 pm on 29 July 2013 as all staff will be supporting the BGST Public Lecture “The Heavenly Good of Earthly Work” held at Redemption Hill Church that evening. We apologize for any inconvenience caused and seek your understanding.|
There will be no chapel service on 31 July 13.
Chapel service on 7 August will be led by Dr Andrew Lee.
Chapel starts at 12 noon and you are welcome to join us at our new premise at 50 Kallang Pudding Road, #07-01 Golden Wheel Industrial Building.
For Semester 1 of Academic Year 2013-2014, please visit our webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/2013-2014-sem1.pdf.
For course inquiries, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
|Coming Course by Mr QUek Tze-Ming in July|
NEW TESTAMENT FOUNDATIONS I, NT101, 3 credits (Blended Learning)
The New Testament contains some of the most influential documents ever written. NT Foundations I & II survey the entire contents of the NT in two semesters. The student will be drawn into the world of the NT and encouraged to interact with the themes and message contained within each piece of writing in the NT. In so doing, students can better examine the implications of the NT’s message for Christians and for the Church today.
NT Foundations I & II will be taught using a two-volume introduction to the New Testament entitled Exploring the New Testament, and jointly published by IVP and SPCK.
To view course description, please visit http://www.bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/nt101-13.pdf
|Intensive Course by Mr Ben Pwee in August|
|GLOBALIZATION & CAPITALISM, MM258, 3 credits
This course provides an introduction and overview to globalization and capitalism, and outlines the key theological issues and concerns that they pose to the believer and the Church in Asia today. It seeks to help students better understand, grasp and come to terms with these issues, and not only see their impact on the believer and the Church in Asia, but also be able to formulate a Christian response at a personal and corporate level to them.
To view course description, please visit our website at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/mm258-13.pdf
|Intensive Course by Prof Alan Millard in September|
Professor Alan Millard, studied Ancient Semitic Languages in the Universities of Oxford and London, was employed in the Department of Western Asiatic Antiquities at the British Museum, and as Librarian at Tyndale Library for Biblical Research in Cambridge for seven years. He subsequently taught at the University of Liverpool from 1970, where he was awarded a personal chair as Rankin Professor of Hebrew and Ancient Semitic Languages in 1992.
He has worked on archaeological excavations in Syria, at Petra in Jordan and at the Assyrian city of Nimrud in Iraq and has visited the Holy Land several times. In 1984 he held a Fellowship at the Institute for Advanced Studies at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, working with the late Yigael Yadin.
Professor Millard’s interests centre on the ancient languages and history of the Near East, and the study of the Bible as a product of that ancient world. He has published editions of Babylonian and Assyrian cuneiform tablets, among them Atrahasis. The Babylonian Story of the Flood (with W. G. Lambert), La Statue royale de Tell Fekherye et son inscription bilingue assyro-araméenne (with A. Abou Assaf and P. Bordreuil) and Eponyms of the Assyrian Empire, as well as numerous articles in specialist journals. His books, Treasures from Bible Times (1985) and Discoveries from the Time of Jesus (1990), which were issued in a single volume in 1997 as Discoveries from Bible Times (Lion Publishing, Oxford), present some of the results of archaeological and historical research relating to the Bible for the wider public.
Prof Alan Millard will be offering 2 courses at BGST:
The Bible and Archaeology: Friends or Foes? Fancy, Facts and Faith (OT/NT194, 3 credits)
The Bible and Other Ancient Books: Reality, Recording and Writing (OT/NT252, 1.5 credits)
Look out for further course details in the next issue of BTW.
50 Kallang Pudding Road, #07-01, Golden Wheel Industrial Building, S(349326).