This week's GOOD BOOKS is something of a testimony for me. The story of William Borden of Yale was an inspiration to me some forty years ago (!) during my undergraduate days in New Jersey, USA. Mrs Howard Taylor's biography, Borden of Yale '09 (Philadelphia, CIM, 1926) is a classic. Any

biography written by her is a work of art. Her presentation of Pastor Hsi and Hudson Taylor is a joy to read. It is not easy to capture the essence of a person and his milieu, with just the right amount of facts, first-person testimonies, and response from the people whose lives have been touched by God: all this time the storyline must keep flowing as the interest of the reader is sustained and heightened.
    Borden of Yale is a compelling story. It captures all the allure of the East, while retaining something of the staidness of upper crust, American society. Religion was a heritage for William. Money was no problem at all and family life was idyllic, loving, and warm, especially between him and his mother. His father was an intrepid traveller.  Wealth, a privileged life, education at the best schools (Yale and Princeton), and an ability to enjoy a robust, all-American student life, did not spoil the young man. When his father died suddenly he was only 18 years and became the recipient of a very large inheritance. He did not allow money or success to spoil his zest for the Lord's work. This commited young man in his mid-twenties became a trustee of the Moody Bible Institute and a Director of the National Bible Institute (NBI) in New York City, among his many other duties.
    His friend, Mr Don O. Shelton, had founded the NBI some years earlier. Faithfully he supported the school first with a modest $100 a month. TIme and again he rescued the financially-beleaguered institution with his generous gifts. NBI's mission to reach out to the down and out in New York City struck a responsive chord in Borden's heart.
    Borden left the USA for China. He never arrived there but died en route in Cairo. The testimony of his life touched many young people; scores  surrendered their lives to the Lord upon receiving  the tragic news of his premature death. NBI received a large gift from the estate of William Borden, moved to New Jersey and became Shelton College. I spent an eventful four years from 1959-1963. While there, I went weekly to New York City to teach a Sunday School class at Pell Street, China Town and preached occasionally at  the Bowery Street Rescue Mission, ministries close to the heart of William Borden. (Dr Quek SH)

In John 12:24 our Lord was speaking of himself as affirmed in v.32 of the same chapter. But for those who desire to follow our Lord all the way by living lives that are fully surrendered to our Saviour Lord, John 12:24 maybe applied quite aptly too. One such example is William Borden of Yale, born November 1887 and called home to glory in April 1913.
Envisioned at the age of 17 while touring the eastern mission fields that are gravely darkened by ignorance and heathenism, young Borden made a total surrender of his life to Jesus Christ, his Master, and wrote
"No Reserve" in his Bible. Being greatly burdened by the spiritual state of the millions of Muslims in China, he desired to be a missionary in underdeveloped Northwest China.
While he was studying in Yale University, his dear father, a wealthy businessman engaged in dairy products famous throughout Canada and USA, passed away leaving his dear mother much in need of comfort and companionship. Despite the family challenges, Borden remained steadfast in his calling and wrote
"No Retreat" in his Bible. Hence, after graduating from Yale he proceeded to theological training at Princeton Theological Seminary, graduating from there in 1912, whereupon he made preparations to sail to the mission field of his calling. Before he left home, he made a will regarding the use of his huge inheritance from his father.
En route to China he stopped at Cairo to study Arabic and the Koran to better understand those to whom he desired to minister. But our God was working mysteriously His purposes to fulfill: Borden was struck by cerebral meningitis. which was incurable and highly contagious. Before breathing his last, he wrote
"No Regrets" in his Bible, trusting His God who knows all and makes no mistakes. Thus at the young age of 25, Borden was called home to glory. At the news of his death, a wave of spiritual revival swept through Canada, USA and UK. Many young men and women gave their lives to Jesus Christ to server Him in China. The major portion of Borden's fortune was dedicated to CIM work in Northwest China. Hence the Borden Memorial Hospital was built in 1914 right beside the Yellow River in the city where the Lord has called my husband and me to serve. We count it an honour to connect with such a dear hero of faith, even in the remotest manner. May God's will continue to be done in Northwest China as elsewhere. (Mrs Leong KT)

The Chapel Speaker for this Wednesday, October 24th, is Mr Yong Teck Meng (Dip CS, 1998), who serves as Elder at Amazing Grace Presbyterian Church. We invite all to come and join us at BGST, No.4 Bishan St 13, Rm 302 (3rd Floor) at 12 noon.

It is unlikely that seven students are mistaken, especially they are looking at the prospect of spending a whole year to equip themselves under
TENT, the Tentmaking Programme sponsored jointly by BGST and the Discipleship Training Centre. Some may  find the thought of aspiring to be like Paul too intimidating. But we are on target and hope that in the two and a half months left we can find the remaining 3 or more students to form the team of Tentmaking trainees. How can you help promote this programme? (1) Speak with Pastors and other decision-makers and persuade them to make an announcement to the congregation. (2) Think of lay persons known to you who may not know about the existence of this programme and speak to them personally to sign up for TENT.

Dr Quek Swee Hwa will speak at the devotions of the Discipleship Training Centre on Wednesday, Oct 24, at 8.00 am.

Rev Samuel Kim Jeong Sook (Dip CS, 2001), will soon be leaving for Johannesberg, South Africa, for six months. His email for the time being is and his long term plans are still to work with the Korean Seamen's Mission in New York City.

Congratulations to
Dr Tan Lai Yong (former BGST student) who was among fifty recipents in China who were presented a Friendship Award by Premier Zhu Rongji. Dr Tan answered God's call to serve in Yunnan as the Medical Director of Project Grace International, focusing on the training of village doctors, and the sick among the poor who lived in the remote mountain regions of Yunnan. When the doctors completed a three month training stint with him, they were given fruit tree cuttings. The harvest from the lychee, chestnut walnut and walnut trees helped to augment the low salaries received by these doctors. Dr Tan, together with his wife Lay Chin (a frormer lecturer at NTU, Singapore) is also involved in starting a primary school for the Lahu minority tribe and three other Singaporeans are working with him. Pray especially for their life and witness for the Lord.

Announcing another graduate Dip CS concentration... the Faculty Board is in the process of preparing concentration packages to help students decide what kind of programme they wish to take. For a lay student especially who is new to theological study, looking at a Prospectus or a brochure can be somewhat bewildering. So we are here to assist you to make sense of the choices before you.

Last week, we announced the
Diploma in Christian Studies (Speech Communication) and received several enquiries. Those interested to know more about this programme may contact Rev Ng Seng Chuan at BGST Office.

We are pleased to announce the
Diploma in Christian Studies (Christian Education) for those who are able to spare two evenings a week for two years and take a total of 6 credits (or two 3-credit courses) consistently through this period. Dr Ng Peh Cheng has a rich experience of 16 years teaching at the Singapore Bible College. She has kept herself abreast of the latest research in her field. This graduate programme comrpises the following interesting courses:

  • The Educational Ministry of the Church
  • Learning the Craft of Teaching
  • Qualitative Research and the Christian Ministry
  • Curriculum Theory and Development for Education Ministry
  • Many exciting electives

Wishing you God's richest blessings, Happy Birthday !

Ms Wong Judy  10/22, Mr Low Ying Kit Peter  10/24
Mr Soh Chee Song Peter  10/24, Rev Heng Yoke Ing Ian 10/24
Dr Lee Chua Chien Earn  10/25

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Biblical Graduate School of Theology
4 Bishan Street 13
Singapore 579792
updated on 22 Oct 2001
Oct 2000