Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

Opportunities for intake last week

Gavin Peacock, Highgate Rd Chapel
The opportunities to hear others ministering last week were so many that it has taken me until now to write things up.
We started off last Monday (4th) in Westminster Baptist Church listening to Paul Yeulett from Grove Chapel speaking to the fellowship on Stress in the ministry. He began with some more general remarks on the subject of stress before narrowing down to stress in the ministry going to the Psalm and 2 Corinthians before finishing with some practical suggestions such as the importance of things such as rest, variety and delegation. It was a helpful paper and although our chairman was rather disappointed by the number present (about 16) it seemed none to bad given the subject and the day. I must say that although the folk at Westminster Baptist Church are extremely welcoming and kind, the building is not a great draw aesthetically. Such relatively superficial considerations do weigh with some.
The Westminster Fellowship was originally the brainchild of Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones and on Tuesday evening it was the Dr Lloyd-Jones Memorial Lecture that I went off to at the LTS. This normally takes place during the annual John Owen Centre Conference but as the lecture is intended not to be only for ministers a shift of timing was felt desirable. A good number attended this year's lecture which was from Old Testament specialist Dr Iain Duguid. He spoke on The Song of Songs, on what love is and on marriage and singleness. He helpfully argued that marriage involves  a threefold bond - legal, affectionate and sexual. He spoke of marriage as friendship on fire. He closed with an appropriate focus on Christ and the cross. See here for a similar paper given at Westminster Theological Seminary.
Besides this public lecture Dr Duguid lectured to the seminary students on the Song. On the Wednesday afternoon  there was an opportunity for others to be present when we turned to another of the wisdom books Proverbs and how to preach it. Dr D made some helpful remarks on the subject and gave an example or two of how to go about it. It was good to be present for that too.
As if all that was not enough, there were three further opportunities for intake on the Saturday. The LTS was having an elders day with Garry Williams, Robert Strivens and Ian Fry (a minister and Director of Youth and Children’s Ministry Training at Oak Hill Theological College) [LTS here] and next door the Kensit church had a morning conference on reaching Muslims with Amjad Mahand. We opted for Gavin Peacock with is wife Amanda at Highgate Road Chapel, following up the Song of Songs work with a well attended day conference on biblical manhood and womanhood. There are difficulties when a group focusses only on one matter but it was good to look at the subject again with some very clear messages and an opportunity for questions at the end. More from cbmw here.

No comments: