Issue No. 05 March 2013
TOO MUCH OF A GOOD THING - By Pastor Jabez Chia (Mount Carmel B-P Church)

Can good education produce bad result? If yes, in what way? Recently we read a thought provoking article written by Pastor Jabez Chia of Mount Carmel B-P Church which, we thought, may be of interest to our BTW readers. Pastor Chia has gladly given his permission to us to share his article with you in our BTW this week. So, we hope you too would enjoy the article and give serious thoughts to the pertinent issues in our daily lives:

A youth leader shared during last Sunday’s prayer time from Timothy Keller’s book Counterfeit Gods which I shall paraphrase here, “When we make the good things into the ultimate things, idolatry is taking place.”

A good education for a child promises a good future. This explains why some overseas missions focus on giving the younger ones a good education to help their communities escape from poverty. Armed with a good education, a generation of youths would be more qualified to find a higher paying job.

So, it comes as an eye-blinking surprise to read in our local papers, “Guidelines to avoid overteaching pre-school children.” Mrs Dianne Seet, principal of Ascension Kindergarten, said research has shown that over-teaching children when they are not developmentally ready may not be beneficial.

Well, we are known to be a generation of parents who love to give our children the best in education. Not just academic education, but education in all sorts of arenas. If we are not beneficiaries in the past of such privileges, we do not want to deprive our children of such educational opportunities. If we have benefited from a privileged family background, we hesitate to withhold from our children more of such good learning opportunities. After all, children are like sponges, the more you immerse them, the more water they are able to absorb. Or is it?

"There's an idea that (has) persisted over decades that the more knowledge you put into a child's head, the better it is for the child. But that's not necessarily the case," said Ms Indranee Rajah, Senior Minister of State for Law and Education, on 20 February (SPH – AsiaOne News).

Some parents have the presence of mind to give their children quality education as well as character-building education. Some parents just focus on their child’s academic excellence. Children who are over-taught tend to get bored when they get into Primary One and Two.

“The teacher is telling me nothing new. I have learned them already.” Some less discerning children will demonstrate disruptive behaviour in class, pride and arrogance when talking to peers about school work, and an-I-know-it-all attitude when interacting with teachers. The situation gets unpleasant when their parents justify their children’s behaviour by pointing a finger at the sub-par, sub-standard curriculum in the primary education system. What shall we do? The option is to stream all these students into a class where they receive higher education. Such manoeuvres inevitably influence some parents to over-prepare their children in order to qualify for the best class or GEP (Gifted Education Programme). Wanting our children to excel is a good thing, but it could become the ultimate thing. Without godly parental influence in a child’s character development, this good thing will become a different animal.

Please take note of the university graduate who barged his car into a Bedok parking lot plus flashing his middle finger at the party who confronted him. It also does not help to learn that irate neighbours complained about a parent-driver honking her car loudly when picking her son up at St Hilda Primary School. She would not let her son walk to her car, but insisted on driving right up to him. What kind of education is she giving to her son?

“Come on, it’s just a few rotten apples; just a few black sheep.” I am afraid that this is just the tip of the iceberg. We only get to read really bad news that made it to the headlines. It seems a good academic education could end up being the ultimate thing which steamrolls over people and even over one self. 1 Corinthians 8:1-2 says, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up.

The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know.” In 1 Corinthians 13:2b, Apostle Paul wrote that “...but (I) have not love, I am nothing.” Our sinful nature is exposed time and again. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) We may be able to provide a good education, but how do we show people the way of love?

By Ps Jabez Chia

Chapel News

Please note that there will be no chapel on 6 March 2013.

The next chapel worship service is on 13 March 2013, led by Dr Lai Pak Wah. The speaker will be Rev Ng Seng Chuan.

The topic is 'Conversation with Seng Chuan: Reflections on Christian ministry, public speaking, and speech education.' 

Chapel begins at 12 pm. All are welcome.

March Course

CO/ECF535, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer : Dr Danny Goh Dr Danny Goh
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Thursdays: Mar 21, Apr 18, 25, May 2, 9, 16
Time : 7:15 pm – 10:00 pm
Fees : $225 (for credit); $157.50 (for audit)

Christians are called to authentic sexual living in a world in which an inauthentic (distorted, even perverse) view of sex is often the norm. By integrating Scriptures and the social sciences, this course addresses the major issues associated with the meaning and living out of authentic human sexuality. This includes developing a biological, developmental and biblical perspective of gender and sexuality, and looking into specific areas of sexual intimacy and dysfunctions in premarital, marital and extramarital situations. Other social issues in sexuality like sexual orientation, pornography, sex addiction and sexual abuse will also be addressed.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/co-ecf535.pdf

March Intensive Courses

CE/ME231, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer : Dr Sng Bee Bee Dr Sng Bee Bee
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Fridays: Mar 22; Saturday: 23 [Day Class]
Time: 9:30 am – 12:30 pm, follow by 1:30 – 6:00 pm
Fees : $225 (for credit); $157.50 (by audit)

What is God’s will and calling in my teaching profession? How can I discern his hands at work in the midst of pressure and problems in schools? God has designed a special purpose for work and that includes the teaching profession. The Bible tells us of the original purpose of work and education. Jesus is the Great Teacher and the perfect model of effective teaching methods. This course will cover the theology of work and education and how to share the gospel in restrictive educational environments. This course has a dual objective:

  1. to help Christian teachers understand the biblical basis of teaching and reaching out to students in the local context
  2. understand the place of education in overseas missions.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/CE-ME231-13.pdf

ME101, 3 Credits [Required for MDiv]

Adjunct Lecturers : Dr Tan Kang San & Mrs Tan Loun-Ling Mrs Tan Loun-LingDr Tan Kang Sang
Venue : BGST @ Clarus Centre
Dates/Time : Saturdays: Mar 23 & 30, 9:30 am – 12:30 pm, followed by 1:30 – 4:30 pm
Weekdays: Mar 25, 26 & 28, 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm, followed by 7pm – 10 pm
Fees $450 (for credit); $315 (for audit)

In this course of sixteen lectures we shall aim to lay a biblical foundation for global mission and explore the practical outworking for mission issues in Asian contexts. The first eight lectures will lay the biblical foundations by looking at mission in the Old and New Testaments. The following eight lectures will examine some major areas in the actual task of mission such as mission shaped churches, growing mission leadership, partnerships, interfaith, bible translations, tentmaking, diaspora and global Christian movements. Time will be given for discussion and open questions.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/ME101-13.pdf

April Courses

OT351, 3 Credits, Group Tutorial

Adjunct Lecturer : Dr Daniel Block Dr Daniel Block Dr Andrew Lee
Tutor : Dr Andrew Lee
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Wednesdays: Apr 3, 10, 17, 24, May 8, 15
Time : 7:15 pm – 9:45 pm
Fees : $450 (for credit); $315 (for audit)

This course aims to help students achieve the following goals:

  1. To gain a general knowledge of the content of the book of Deuteronomy as a whole and recent scholarly approaches to the study of the book.
  2. To engage in conversation over special issues of interpretation raised by the book of Deuteronomy, and to increase our skills in the interpretation of the book.
  3. To understand the importance of wrestling with Old Testament texts for extracting valid theological and practical lessons from those texts.
  4. To rediscover the grace of God in the book of Deuteronomy and the Old Testament more broadly.
  5. To recognize the enduring theology of the book of Deuteronomy and its contribution to biblical theology generally and the New Testament particularly.
  6. To be inspired by the message of Deuteronomy, and recognise the significance of the book for Christians today.
  7. To learn how we might preach the message of the book of Deuteronomy in our local churches.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/ot351-13.pdf

ME/IC241, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer : Dr Tan Lai Yong Dr Tan Lai Yong
Venue : Healthserve Ltd (For map, visit http://www.streetdirectory.com/businessfinder/company_map/105041/98012/)
Dates/Time : Tuesdays, Apr 5 (7:00 pm – 10:00 pm), Apr 12, 19 (7:00 pm - *11.30 pm);
Saturday, Apr 27 (Sat, 9:00 am – 2:00 pm)
* These are field trips’ nights and will last up to 11:30 pm.
Fees : $225 (for credit); $157.50 (for audit)

The aim of this course is to discover the heartbeat of God for His people through reading of the Psalms. Together as a class, we aim to feel God’s pulse for the lost and to help us find spiritual direction for our own missions journeys and experience as we study the Psalms.

We will study the books of Psalms - focusing on selected Psalms that will help us to examine our moods, methods and motives (and God’s) as we consider serving God in missions and in reaching out to different communities.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/ME-IC241-13.pdf

TS211 , 3 Credits, Group Tutorial [Required for MCS & MDiv]

Adjunct Lecturer : Dr Douglas Milne Dr Douglas Milne


Mr Tan Kok Choon
Tutor : Mr Tan Kok Choon
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Tuesdays: Apr 9, 16, 23, 30, May 7, 14
Time : 7:15 pm – 9:45 pm
Fees : $450 (for credit); $315 (for audit)

Nothing is more foundational in theology than a right understanding of God. “The doctrine of God one espouses largely controls countless other areas of life and thought” (Don Carson). But we can only know God in His revelation of Himself to us. And when we do this, we discover that He has revealed fundamental truth about ourselves. This course examines the great truths about God and Humankind that make up the prelude to the Gospel of Redemption in Jesus Christ.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/ts211-13.pdf

AT232, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer : Rev Ng Seng Chuan Rev Ng Seng Chuan
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Fridays: Apr 12, 19, 26, May 3, 10, 17
Time : 7:15 pm – 10:00 pm
Fees : $225 (for credit); *This course is not offer on audit basis

The aim of this course is to equip participants with the skills for effective speech writing. If a speech or sermon sounds dry or uninteresting, it often has something to do with poor choice of diction and inappropriate text arrangement. The skill lies in writing a speech that sounds good. Half the battle with effective communication has precisely to do with this area of crafting a speech.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/at232-13.pdf

AT235, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer : Mr Chan Kum Soon Mr Chan Kum Soon
Venue : BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates : Saturdays: Apr 20, 27, May 4, 11, 18
Time : 12:30 – 3:30 pm
Fees : $225 (for credit); $157.50 (for audit)

This course is design for aspiring worship leaders as well as worship leaders who wants a deeper grasp of what it takes to be an effective worship leader. “Man’s chief aim is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever” (Westminster Shorter Catechism). The key question for worship leaders, therefore, is “Did worship really occur? Did the assembly have an encounter with the Triune God week after week? What exactly is worship all about, much less leading others to an encounter with God? As worship leaders, do we pander to the narcissistic culture within and without the church by adopting worldly methods in worship leadership? What exactly is the role of the worship leader in corporate worship?

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://www.bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/at235-13.pdf

April Intensive Courses

NT253, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer: Dr Bruce Winter Bruce Winter
Venue: BGST, Clarus Centre

Weekdays: Apr 1, 2, 4 (7:15 - 10:00 pm);
Saturday: Apr 6 (10:00 am—12:00 pm; 1:00—5:00 pm)

Fees: $225 (for credit); $157.50 (by audit)

First Corinthians is the longest pastoral letter Paul wrote to any church. To understand this letter, there is the need to firstly understand what caused the problems in the church in Corinth after Paul left to continue his ministry elsewhere. These were the inroads to surrounding culture and also social changes in Corinth. This course will examine these causes in detail, and the consequences of embracing the cultural way of doing things and not thinking out clearly and responding in a Christian way when new changes come about. The course will then explore issue by issue Paul’s answers on how to resolve the problems. To summarize, we will explore:

(a) Cultural Causes,
(b) Consequences for Christians, and
(c) God’s correction.

We will also address the implications of this for the 21st century church as an important model for pastoral care of fellow Christians.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://www.bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/nt253-13.pdf

NT254, 1.5 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer: Dr Bruce Winter Bruce Winter
Venue: BGST, Clarus Centre
Dates/Time: Weekdays: Apr 8, 10, 11 (7:15 - 10:00 pm);
Saturday: Apr 13 (Sat 10:00 am - 12:00 pm; 1:00 - 5:00 pm)
Fees: $225 (for credit); $157.50 (by audit)

"For when I am weak, then I am strong" (2 Cor 12:10, ESV). No statement better reveals Paul's view of the nature of Christian ministry. No person except Paul was so self-disclosing about his own struggles and difficulties, and how this helped the church to move forward and not divide. This course examines in detail 2 Corinthians, the letter that Paul wrote because the surrounding culture could provide no solution on how to resolve a breakdown in relationships between ministers and members.This certainly has implications for Asian churches where the stresses and strains in church life often lead to breakups. Paul’s letter shows the way forward for ministers and members with God’s solution for His church.

To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://www.bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/nt254-13.pdf

June Intensive Courses

MM258, 3 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer: Mr Benjamin Pwee Mr Benjamin Pwee
Venue: St John’s – St Margaret’s Church, 30 Dover Avenue (for weekdays classes only).
* Venue for weekend classes is to be confirmed later.
Dates/Time: Weekdays: Jun 3, 4, 6, 24, 25, 27;
Saturdays: Jun 1 & 29 (NOTE: Sat 9:30am - 12:30pm, followed by 1:30 - 4:30pm)
Fees: $450 (for credit); $315 (by audit

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 this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/mm258-13.pdf

MM259, 3 Credits

Adjunct Lecturer: Dr Toh See Kiat Dr Toh See Kiat
Venue: To Be Confirmed

Weekdays: Jun 10, 11, 13, 17, 18, 20;
Saturdays, Jun 15 & 22 (NOTE: Sat 9:30am - 12:30pm, followed by 1:30 - 4:30pm)

Fees: $450 (for credit); $315 (by audit

More details about the course will be given in due time.

If you would like to have an overview of the courses we will be offering in Semester 2 of Academic Year 2012-2013, please visit our webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/2012-2013-sem2.pdf

For course inquiries, please email us at inquiry@bgst.edu.sg
37 Jalan Pemimpin, #06-05 Block B, Clarus Centre, S(577177).
Tel: 6227-6815 Fax: 6255-3686 Email: inquiry@bgst.edu.sg
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