|Issue No. 08||April 2013|
|Hosanna!||By Mr Quek Tze-Ming|
Jesus’ entry to Jerusalem is recorded in all four Gospels (cf. Matt. 21:1– 11; Mark 11:1–11; Luke 19:29–38; John 12:12-19), which tells us how important this event is.
Jesus, his followers, and the crowds have come to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast of the Passover, the great spring festival that lies at the heart of Jewish national life. Passover is Israel’s National Day, celebrating the ancient story of the Exodus: The time when God set his people free from the wicked ruler of Egypt, through the prophet Moses, who wins a decisive battle on the night of the slain lamb.
But the Passover is not the only story echoing in the hearts and minds of the crowd as they see Jesus. Matthew and Mark tell us that people cut branches from trees or fields and spread them on the road. Only John gives us the detail that it was palm branches they took when they went out to meet Jesus. Less than two hundred years before Jesus' time, a Jewish liberator called Judas Maccabaeus had defeated the occupying armies of the pagan king Antiochus Epiphanes. Judas and his family celebrated by parading about Jerusalem, singing hymns, and carrying palm branches (1 Macc 13:51; 2 Macc 10:7).
Furthermore, the crowds are shouting and singing, "Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord, even the King of Israel!" (John 12:13). The cry, “Hosanna!” means “Save us now!” They are shouting words from Psalm 118.25- 26. This is a psalm that celebrates the return of a king to Jerusalem, after a battle against Israel’s enemies, a victory won against the odds. And now Ps 118 is used by the crowds to hail Jesus. “Hosanna! Save us!” They call him “King of Israel!”
Suddenly we get the impression that Jesus' entry is not a neutral religious celebration, or a nice spring festival. The whole scene is awash in Jewish political fervour, crackling with nationalistic energy. We see it in the palms, the entry, the cries, and especially the echoes of the stories swirling in this heady atmosphere. We get the impression that the crowds are greeting the triumphal return of a conquering national liberator.
"Like Moses saving us against Pharaoh! Like David saving us against the Philistines! Like Judah the Hammer saving us against Antiochus!" "This time, surely, this time, we have a liberator against the wicked pagan Romans! Surely he will crush all foreigners and restore Israel’s pride and independence!" "Save us! Hosanna!"
Even though most of us don’t really use that Aramaic word “Hosanna!” (well, except when we are singing!), we do ask Jesus to save or help us in situations in life.
The account of Jesus' entry to Jerusalem carries a subtle warning about our vision of Jesus as we call on him to save or help us. The crowd in Jerusalem had many who saw the needs of the day and the power of Jesus. They assumed that Jesus would serve their cause. They wave the palms and shout Hosanna. But as the gospel story unfolds, Jesus’ failure to satisfy these visions leads to cries of "Crucify Him!" one week later.
Do we likewise use Jesus to fuel our own visions? Do we take up the name of Jesus and attach it to our own agendas?
When we cry "Hosanna!" "Save us!" "Help us!" we must be prepared that God's help may not turn out in the ways that we expect. Perhaps we shouldn't be too quick to assume that God is on our side answering our every cry in the way we want him to. Instead, we would be wise to consider if we on His side, following the way of the one who gave Himself for others.
For if we say we follow Jesus, we must be prepared to follow in a self-giving, self-sacrificing lifestyle, so that others may live.
|BGST Convocation on 25 May 2013|
The next chapel worship service is on 24 April 2013, led by Mr Quek Tze-Ming. Chapel begins at 12 pm. All are welcome.
Please note that there will be no chapel service on 1 May 2013 as it is a public holiday.
|Relocation of BGST|
|Towards the end of last year, our landlord told us that we would have to vacate our current premises at 37 Jalan Pemimpin by the end of June 2013, a year earlier than we were expecting.
At an EGM held at BGST on 23rd February the members agreed to buy a property in the Golden Wheel Industrial Building, 50 Kallang Pudding Road. It is a freehold property. At present the nearest MRT stations are Aljunied and Potong Pasir, but by 2017 there will be a station on the Downtown Line (Stage 2) within a few minutes’ walk of the property. This should not pose any problems as we will continue to use the premises of our partner Churches to hold our classes.
We are delighted that we have been able to buy this property, and grateful to God for making this property available to BGST at an opportune time. Please pray for us, that our operations may be disrupted as little as possible during the move, and that the many new possibilities which open up for us as a result of the relocation will become reality in the years to come.
|Recruitment of Administrative Assistant|
|BGST is looking for an Administrative Assistant. The person will join the Admin team and be a part of the school’s administration and academic support team, as well as to ensure the smooth operation of the school’s day-to-day functions. In addition to general administrative duties, he/she will also be involved in supporting various functions including publications, events and initiatives of the school. Candidate should be familiar with Microsoft Office software, especially MS Access. For more details please visit our BGST Website.|
WORSHIP DESIGN AND WORSHIP LEADING
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
|June Intensive Courses|
GLOBALIZATION & CAPITALISM: A CHRISTIAN RESPONSE
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.
NEGOTIATION & CONFLICT RESOLUTION
This course is a general introduction to negotiation and conflict resolution. You will be introduced to the biblical principles for dispute resolution; the basic principles of communication and learn why disputes arise; and the basic techniques of negotiation (particularly principles-based negotiation). The course will also introduce you to the different ways to resolve disputes, their strengths and weaknesses and when to use them - traditional litigation (ie suing in court), the alternative dispute resolution (so-called ADR) procedures (IE mediation, arbitration and all the other variations). Some time will be spent on basic skill acquisition in negotiation and mediation.
To view course description, please visit this webpage at http://bgst.edu.sg/media/files/courses/MM263-Synopsis-13.pdf.
|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 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
|37 Jalan Pemimpin, #06-05 Block B, Clarus Centre, S(577177).
Tel: 6227-6815 Fax: 6255-3686 Email: email@example.com
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