Urbana Theological Seminary

September 23, 2015

Robert Sievers: Islam and the End Times

Urbana Seminary’s Master of Arts in Religion graduate Robert Sievers will be speaking this Friday in Mahomet on a topic that is very dear to him. Robert explains:

Islam and the End Times

“Behold, I am coming quickly”. These words from Jesus have resonated with His followers for over two millennia. Each generation believed it would see Jesus’ return, and the reasons why have varied as much as the ages in which each generation lived. But something is happening in our own time that has never occurred before. It is this unique historical trend that might lend some clues as to whether we will soon see the last days of which Jesus spoke.
The past century saw its share of crises just as centuries before it. As in times past these world events led many to conclude that the end times were upon them. But these kingdoms passed away. Cultural wars are now taking place. Covenants established by God are being redefined. Our great medical technology has allowed our society to sacrifice our children at the altar of convenience under the moniker of “choice.” As our forbearers thought in their days, these factors also lead many to speculate that the end times are upon us.
Yet as these ideologies have come and gone, there has been a constant threat in the background. 1400 years ago, a small band of men pledging allegiance to Muhammad and his message took over a large swath of territory. For centuries, Christianity and Islam only interacted on the edges. Christians didn’t really know what Islam was or what Muslims believed. Similarly, Muslims didn’t know what Christians believed.
All this is now changing. What was once a mysterious religion is becoming thoroughly studied and researched. The shrinking of our world and the advent of the internet has thrust Christians and Muslims together in unprecedented ways. Christian theologians throughout the ages have wondered how Islam might play a role in end time events, yet there was always some other immediate crisis which masked this possibility. But today Islam is taking a primary role in the events of our world.
Our current landscape is unique in the way Islamic theology is understood, how Muslims and Christians are interacting, and how global events allow Islam to be a major player. What portent might this hold for us regarding our understanding of God’s future plans?
Within Islam itself, there is a vast amount of information about how Muslims view the end-time scenario from their own perspective. After fifteen centuries, it is only in recent days that Islamic prophecies about the end times have come to be studied and analyzed by Christian theologians. Deeper investigation into these Islamic traditions offers stunning clues into what events might come next for the body of Christ. With that in mind, please accept this invitation to join me at the Community Evangelical Free Church in Mahomet on Friday, September 25th at 6:00pm for a walk through Islamic eschatology. The Biblical prophecies will open up in surprising ways when contrasted with Islamic traditions. I hope to see you there!

September 21, 2015

Ministry Leaders and the Gospel

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On Monday, October 5, Pastor Bob Smart from Christ Church, PCA in Normal IL will be presenting Provisions 4 Pastors’ second annual Spiritual Life Conference, titled “Family Life in Ministry: Why Ministry Leaders Need the Gospel for Marriage and Parenting.” Bob explains what this will be about, and why he is doing it:

Karen and I were married over 30 years ago when we were idealistic about full-time vocational ministry. Our five children grew up as “preacher’s kids,” and four are married with a sense of call to the Gospel ministry. We have ten grandchildren with another on the way soon. Whenever our marriage or family suffered, ministry became more challenging. When family life went well, Gospel efforts seemed easier. There is an important relationship between the ministry leader’s family and the Gospel labors performed in season and out.
Ministry leaders are people. We live with families and have stories like everyone else, but how we love our families and interpret our stories will often have a greater impact on the lives of those we are called to serve than we may be aware. On October 5th we will consider how to enhance the ministry leader’s marriage and family in a way that strengthens the many others we serve. Our genders, life stories, and parenting efforts play a significant part in how we embrace, model, and teach the Gospel to others.
This is a great opportunity for ministry leaders get real, be human, and bring their spouses and other ministry leaders to another Pastor’s Forum for the sake of enhancing marriages and families – first at home, then in the Church. I look forward to meeting with you to encourage one another from the Scriptures, Bob

Karen and I were married over 30 years ago when we were idealistic about full-time vocational ministry. Our five children grew up as “preacher’s kids,” and four are married with a sense of call to the Gospel ministry. We have ten grandchildren with another on the way soon. Whenever our marriage or family suffered, ministry became more challenging. When family life went well, Gospel efforts seemed easier. There is an important relationship between the ministry leader’s family and the Gospel labors performed in season and out.

Ministry leaders are people. We live with families and have stories like everyone else, but how we love our families and interpret our stories will often have a greater impact on the lives of those we are called to serve than we may be aware. On October 5th we will consider how to enhance the ministry leader’s marriage and family in a way that strengthens the many others we serve. Our genders, life stories, and parenting efforts play a significant part in how we embrace, model, and teach the Gospel to others.

This is a great opportunity for ministry leaders get real, be human, and bring their spouses and other ministry leaders to another Pastor’s Forum for the sake of enhancing marriages and families – first at home, then in the Church. I look forward to meeting with you to encourage one another from the Scriptures, Bob

For more information and to register:  http://www.urbanaseminary.org/events/

September 12, 2015

Fourth Annual Tolkien Conference

Next Saturday, September 19 (one week from Today!), Urbana Theological Seminary will be hosting its fourth annual Tolkien Conference. This year’s conference will include a fabulous lineup of speakers, as well as a “Hobbit Birthday Party” brought to us by The Wheaton College Tolkien Society.

Our Keynote speaker will be Dr. Charlie Starr from Kentucky Christian University. Dr. Starr is the author of Light: C.S. Lewis’s First and Final Short Story, in which one of C. S. Lewis’s short stories that had been kept in an archive was published for the first time, as well as several articles and essays on Lewis, Tolkien, and Christianity and art/fillm/culture. Dr. Starr will be presenting on Tolkien’s understanding of mythology, which was instrumental in C. S. Lewis’s conversion to Christianity.

Also speaking will be Mike Foster, American Representative of the (international) Tolkien Society for more than 25 years. Mike was one of the speakers at last year’s conference, where he told stories about different people he has known who knew Tolkien himself. This year Mike will be presenting on two of Tolkien’s short stories, “Smith of Wooton Major” and “Farmer Giles of Ham.” Since one of these stories was written early in Tolkien’s career and one late, he will be focusing on comparing the two.

Rick Williams, from the Baptist Student Foundation at the University of Illinois (and who also teaches Worldviews at Judah Christian High School), will be presenting on another of Tolkien’s lesser-known stories, “Roverrandom.” It is a children’s story about a dog who is sent on a magical adventure. Williams presented at Urbana Seminary’s Second annual Tolkien Conference, and the presentation he gave then is going to be published in the upcoming book Tolkien and the Arts by Square Halo Press.

Billie Jarvis-Freeman, from Lincoln Christian University, will be presenting on art in Tolkien’s Middle Earth, looking at the relationship between characters who create or enjoy art and their inherent goodness. Dr. Jarvis-Freeman’s research interests include Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, and George MacDonald.

The final speaker will be Urbana Seminary’s dean, Dr. Melody Green. Dr. Green has been organizing this conference for the last four years, and has spoken at it more than once. This time she will be presenting a close examination of the poem “The Riddle of Strider,” looking at what it means and why it is such a popular poem. This paper is closely related to a presentation she gave at Aston University in 2005.

The day will wrap up with a Hobbit Birthday Party (after all, Sept 22 IS Bilbo and Frodo’s birthday, the event that stared the whole Lord of the Rings adventure) that will include entertainment by the Wheaton College Tolkien Society. While they are keeping the exact nature of this entertainment under wraps, they promise it will be fun and entertaining.

So this is going to be one conference you do not want to miss! It does cost $25 to attend, and that covers lunch and snacks as well as the conference itself. For more information or to register, see http://tolkienconference.com. (and yes, if you cannot register in advance, you can come and pay at the door).  If you have any questions or are curious about how you could volunteer, contact Dr. Melody Green at  mgreen@urbanaseminary.org
We look forward to seeing you there!

August 21, 2015

The Bible, Culture, and Sexuality

Most Christians have likely never heard of Tindering. I hadn’t until I began preparing this summer for my fall class, MN740 – the Bible, Culture and Sexuality. Tinder is a “dating” app that has become popular among millennials in large urban areas (and others), in which those wishing to “hook-up” with no prior relationship and no commitment beyond a one night stand can swish their phone screens right (yes, I’ll meet you) or left (no I’m not interested). A recent article in Vanity Fair, hardly an icon of conservative Christianity, even calls the practice into question and wonders if we’ve reached the point of a “dating apocalypse” in western civilization. How did we get to this point?
Dating and the hook-up culture are only a couple of the issues that will be addressed in this class. We’ll explore the Biblical foundations for marriage and sex, and talk about aberrations from both a biblical and cultural perspective. Hot button current topics such as homosexual “marriage” and gender identification will be dealt with, but also divorce, pornography, sex trafficking, and singleness. We’ll look at historical, philosophical and religious roots to situation in which we find ourselves in the West, and we’ll pay special attention to the role of entertainment, media and politics in the process. And we will of course look to what the appropriate response should be both from the individual Christian and the Church.
Assignments will include weekly readings from magazines, newspapers and other venues which help shape cultural opinion. Students will also be sent out to sample opinions in the community and how people came to their understandings. While this class is not “Everything You Wanted to Know About Sex but were Afraid to Ask,” it is a place to come with all your questions, fears and biases and we’ll learn together!

August 7, 2015

Christianity and Doctor Who

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Almost ten years ago, when I was working on my dissertation, people would ask me what I was writing about. I would happily answer “sacrificial death in children’s literature,” and the people who did not quickly back away or change the topic would say one of two things: “oh—you mean like in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe?” A question to which I would easily and readily respond in the affirmative. But a good number of other people would say “oh—you mean like in Doctor Who?” After receiving this response from quite a few people of different ages and backgrounds, I decided that I needed to find out what they were talking about.
As many people now know, the British science fiction television series Doctor Who has run for more than fifty years, and has a huge dedicated following that crosses all ages and several continents. It is a show in which one enigmatic character, the Doctor, travels through time and space to save humans from the messes that they get themselves into—over and over again. It is a fun show because of the adventure and the silliness, but it is also a show that asks some serious questions and requires its audience to think about some very serious issues. While the creators of the series are outspoken atheists, Russell Davies, one of the writers, explains at one point in his book Doctor Who: The Writer’s Tale that sometimes the show deliberately engages Christian themes and ideas, while at other times, they come in uninvited because of the topic a particular episode is addressing. For example, while the main character, The Doctor, is a complicated, scientific-materialist, he is also in many ways a Christ figure, who willingly sacrifices himself to save entire worlds from destruction or annihilation.
There are quite a few other ways that the series engages Christianity, as well. For example, some characters are named after people in the Bible, in such a way that the viewer who knows the Bible story will have an idea about what is going to happen as soon as that character’s name is spoken. Some storylines actually reflect Biblical stories—one episode, “The Doctor’s Daughter,” even tells the entire story of the Bible, working through the main points on an alien planet. At various points, the series also asks some serious questions about specific aspects of Christian faith, such as what really happened on Easter or whether or not Satan could really exist. These questions, when they arise, are helpful not only for the Christian viewer to think through his or her own stance on these things, but also for opening doors to conversations about issues of faith with those who might otherwise not be interested.
C. S. Lewis, in an essay called “Sometimes Stories Say Best What’s to be Said,” said that he had created the Narnia stories to sneak theology and the story of Christ “past watchful dragons.” Those dragons he was talking about included then, and still include now, cultural assumptions, previous experience, and learned prejudices. The Christian who has thoughtfully engaged any aspect of popular culture such as the series Doctor Who may be not only refreshed by the experience, but also better equipped to use this as a way of sneaking past those watchful dragons—or in this case, aliens.

July 31, 2015

Forgiveness: A Remedy for the Unacceptable

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Forgiveness amazes me. Forgiveness is a transformational process that can change the course of one’s life for eternity, can change relationships within a family, a culture, even within a nation or between nations. Forgiveness allows the termination of the passing on of the pain, resentments, and hate inherent in being wronged. Forgiveness allows resolution of the unacceptable and a new beginning.

Living in this fallen world, we are confronted with many experiences of being wronged, hurt, and betrayed. We are designed to connect with one another, to have closeness, openness, and to love and be loved. Connecting with one another requires vulnerability but, since the fall, it is no longer safe to be vulnerable. We now are in a terrible predicament: we need both closeness and love as well as safety. We must be vulnerable to love and be loved but it is not safe to be fully vulnerable. We are wronged, hurt by others, and even betray ourselves. Love is broken, love is withdrawn, and we are hurt. We are in a constant tension between closeness and safety.

Remedies do not work when they are not rooted in reality. We need love but our fear of further hurt prompts us to try to control, deny, overlook, make excuses, or in some way overcome the wrong that has happened. All the while, resentments build. Anger is our response to perceiving that something is wrong. Anger occurs when love is broken or withdrawn, for we are designed to love and be loved. This is unacceptable to us. Tolerance doesn’t work, acceptance does not work, nor does trying to undo it. What has happened has happened. We need a remedy that can address the reality of the unacceptable.

Recently, my wife and I, along with a Czech couple who also teach at the seminary in Prague, visited Auschwitz, Poland. No place on earth represents greater broken and withdrawn love, greater evil than this former killing factory where approximately 1.5 million people were murdered. What happened here and at the other nearly 900 Nazi death camps cannot be tolerated. How can one who survived continue with life?

Eva and Miriam Mozes were 10 year old twins when they were shipped to Auschwitz and chosen by Dr. Mengele for his tortuous experiments. Both survived and Eva today lives in Indiana. In the documentary “Forgiving Dr. Mengele,” she observed

“Getting even has never healed a single person.”

She identified that she did not want those who hurt her to have power over her. She has responded to the broken love via offering forgiveness to all those who wronged her.

Corrie Ten Boom survived time in two other Nazi camps. After her release, she ministered to those who had wronged her. On one occasion, she noted a former guard as she was sharing in a church.

“Even as the angry vengeful thoughts boiled through me, I saw the sin of them. Jesus Christ had died for this man; was I going to ask for more? Lord Jesus, I prayed, forgive me and help me to forgive him….Jesus, I cannot forgive him. Give me your forgiveness….And so I discovered that it is not on our forgiveness any more than on our goodness that the world’s healing hinges, but on his. When he tells us to love our enemies, he gives along with the command, the love itself.”

She found the remedy for broken love, the remedy for the unacceptable.

Daniel Green, Ph.D., will be teaching a class on forgiveness this fall at Urbana Theological Seminary. For more information, contact Dr. Melody Green at mgreen@urbanaseminary.org

July 21, 2015


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With the start of the semester one month away, we are gearing up for a great semester! For the next few weeks we will be running blog entries about some of the topics we will be addressing in classes this fall. For the first entry in this series, visiting Professor Daniel Green, Ph.D. addresses the topic of “Forgiveness:”

“As a Christian Psychologist, a Psychologist who is a Christian, the topic of forgiveness fascinates me in several ways. First, forgiveness is very personal. I have distinct memories of having done wrong and having been offered forgiveness. I so appreciated the relief, the release of the guilt. I have experienced facing myself in the mirror and acknowledging the wrong I had done and taking the forgiveness offered to me and applying it to myself. A burden was lifted, shame released, and I was able to go in a new direction.
Second, I am grateful for the eternal forgiveness offered to me, by grace, by our Lord. As far as the east is from the west, beyond my comprehension, my guilt has been removed from me. I am not under condemnation and, although I remain challenged in this fallen world, death does not have victory. I am clean through Jesus. The implications of this truth for my identity daily living, and relationships are numerous.
Third, Psychological research during the last 30 years has demonstrated both that forgiveness can be taught, learned, and applied with significant benefits to those who offer forgiveness as well as those who are offered forgiveness. Forgiveness research began in the 1980’s as Robert Enright, Ph.D. (University of Wisconsin) began to ask questions developed from his Christian faith and his experience with forgiveness. Soon after this, Everett Worthington, Ph.D. (Virginia Commonwealth University) began to study forgiveness within his work with marriages. As a Christian, Worthington also brought the scientific technology of research to the study of forgiveness. During the 1990s, others joined this field of study and there are now thousands of published scientific studies on this topic. Enright’s Forgiveness Therapy is recognized by the American Psychological Association as an evidenced-based treatment. The research is solid and ongoing.
This research has shown that people who forgive are less resentful, happier, more content, report greater empathy for others, and show many physical health benefits. Families, people groups, and cultures have been changed when forgiveness has been applied to the problems of broken love, withdrawn love, wrongdoings, and thus the unacceptable.
How is forgiveness defined? The various psychological definitions include the following:
–Undeserved gift offered by the forgiver
–A change in motivation with a reduction in guarding, protection, avoidance, and an increase in experience of freedom with thoughts of or contact with the offender,
–Emotional release of resentments, hate, and other aversive emotions,
–Desiring good for the offender.
Forgiveness is not making an excuse, pretending the wrongdoing did not occur or was not significant, nor is forgiveness ignoring justice. Forgiveness recognizes the wrongdoing and the unacceptable nature of the broken or withdrawn love. Forgiveness does not undo what has happened, rather, it is realistic with the reality of the wrong. Forgiveness forgives the person who did the wrong. Forgiveness does not minimize the wrong that has been done but rather applies love to the one who did the wrong. Forgiveness is the only viable remedy for resolving the unacceptable.

Dan Green, Ph.D. will be teaching a class on Forgiveness and Reconciliation here at Urbana Theological Seminary this fall. His class will be offered in modular format over the course of three weekends. He has taught classes on Forgiveness at several other institutions, including The Evangelical Theological Seminary of Prague, Trinity International University, Wisconsin Center for Christian Studies. Dr. Green is a licensed Psychologist, and has served as the clinical director for New Life Resources, Inc, which is located in WI. To register, go to http://www.urbanaseminary.org/courses/fall/ If you have any questions, contact Dr. Melody Green at mgreen@urbanaseminary.org

May 19, 2015

G. K. Chesterton

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By Dr. Melody Green

Gilbert Keith Chesterton has been described as “one of the most effective and entertaining defenders of the Christian Faith in the early part of the twentieth century.” Born into Victorian England and living until 1936, he was also one of the most popular journalists of his time. He influenced a large number of well-known writers, including C. S. Lewis, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Ravi Zacharias. During his life, Chesterton wrote more than 80 books, 200 short stories, 4000 essays, countless poems, and a handful of plays. No matter what the genre, in all of his writing he tackled important issues with a pithy sense of humor that often allowed his readers to lower their guard enough to really begin to think. According to a book published in 1923 about “contemporary apologists,” Chesterton “has aroused the whole world to thoughtful laughter, and even his critics are agreed that he is the most likeable man in English letters.”
More recently, Chesterton has been described as a prophet, who, while writing about the issues of his day, was also writing about issues that would still be vital a hundred years later. Issues such as human interaction with technology, international relations, racism, Darwinianism, and Marxism are just a few examples of the topics that were not only relevant when Chesterton tackled them, but are still relevant issues today.
While taking on serious topics, however, Chesterton believed that a sense of wonder and a sense of humor are both vital for clear thinking as well as for the Christian life. As an adult convert to Christianity, he believed that materialism, agnosticism, and atheism, all world views that he had at one time held to, were dark and hopeless philosophies that led to nothingness and despair. Therefore, one of the steps toward becoming a Christian, he argues, is regaining the childlike ability to see the world with a sense of wonder. After all, the world is a creation that reflects the joy and wonder of its Creator.
This summer, Urbana Theological Seminary is offering an introduction to the writings and thought of G. K. Chesterton. We will be reading and discussing his best known novel, essays, and apologetic texts, while also exploring common themes that run throughout his work. And, what better way to get you thinking about taking a class in Chesterton, than to share a few thoughts from the writer himself:

“The Bible tells us to love our neighbors, and also to love our enemies. That is probably because they are generally the same people.”

“To have a right to do a thing is not at all the same as to be right in doing it.”

“The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult, and left untried.”

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be defeated.”

This summer we will read, discuss, and laugh over G. K. Chesterton’s work. Join us!

April 27, 2015

Reading and Praying Scripture for Spiritual Transformation (Lectio Divina)

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The religious poet, a worshipper of Israel’s God, YHWH, exclaimed, “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long” (Psalm 119:97).
Biblical authors commend, through command and example, sustained reflection on God, His character, His works, His ways, His plans, and His instruction as revealed in the Holy Scriptures, and upon truth and wisdom discerned in human life and from the world around. This robust, full-orbed, biblical meditation results in “being transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2), and is a vehicle for communing with, and adoring, the Triune God—Father, Son, and Spirit—revealed in Scripture.
Followers of Christ throughout the centuries—Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant—developed diverse devotional practices involving biblical meditation. The shaping of each practice, and the terminology used, reflects the unique time, place, culture, situatedness, and spiritual emphases and sensitivities of the people of God in that specific setting.
The summer course, “Reading and Praying Scripture for Spiritual Transformation (Lectio Divina),” at Urbana Theological Seminary, explores a range of devotional approaches for meditating on God’s word, referred to throughout church history as “lectio divina,” a Latin phrase pronounced lex-ee-oh dih-vee-nuh, meaning sacred reading. Lectio divina refers to a reflective reading and praying of the Holy Scriptures, individually or in groups, in order to commune with God and be spiritually transformed.
A rich tradition of lectio divina is found in Benedictine spirituality (patterned after the sixth-century Rule of St. Benedict). In classical practice, there are four key aspects. The first is “lectio” (reading). We read Scripture out loud (preferably), slowly, deliberately, thoughtfully, and repeatedly. As Scripture so frequently enjoins (“Hear, O Israel!” Deuteronomy 6:4), we seek to truly listen to and receive God’s Word in our heart, mind, and soul. The second aspect is “meditatio” (meditation). We ruminate and chew on the text. We ponder it and reflect upon it, letting Scripture penetrate our heart and mind. We consider our life in all its dimensions in light of the text. We accept the content of Scripture as God’s word to us, transforming and affecting us at deep levels.
The third aspect is “oratio” (prayer). We respond to God from the heart in light of His word to us. We consecrate ourselves to Him, we lovingly yield to Him that He may transform us and draw us into greater intimacy with Himself. We “draw near to God” (James 4:8) and “abide” (John 15) in Christ. The fourth aspect is “contemplatio” (contemplation), which is an adoration of the Triune God in His manifold excellence and beauty as we rest in His presence. Contemplation of God, in vigorous, thoroughly-biblical, orthodox, Trinitarian perspective can be described metaphorically as “lovingly gazing upon” God. With the psalmist, having “calmed and quieted my soul” (Psalm 131:2), we seek to “behold the beauty of the Lord” (Psalm 27:4) and to “taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8). We rest in and admire Christ, transfixed by His sweetness, savoring the Savior.
This devotional practice of reading and praying Scripture for spiritual transformation is a fruitful complement to a spiritual diet of regularly listening to solid, sound preaching of the Word of God, and to engaging in academically-rigorous, theologically-faithful Bible study. Lectio divina helps us fulfill the command, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6:5). Please consider joining us for this summer course as we learn about historic Christian expressions of lectio divina. We will join the Hebrew poet in loving God’s law and “meditating on it all day long” (Psalm 119:97).
–Peter D. Spychalla, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of New Testament & Spiritual Formation

April 10, 2015

Founder’s Day and ANTIOCH 2015

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From the President’s Desk:

Every Spring Urbana Seminary observes Founders Day. For 2015 it’s tomorrow, April 11th! And of course we mark the day with this evening’s ANTIOCH celebration of God’s guiding hand and work in people’s lives.

What is Founders Day and why do we observe it? It’s a day to commemorate the hand of God in our founding as a school, to remember the people who made sacrifices and gave gifts, who prayed and created and worked. Founders Day is a time to say thank you to all who have helped and played a part, as well as to register our gratitude to God. It gives us a chance to pause and reflect as we end one school year and prepare to launch into another. It provides a time to inaugurate the new Founders Fund campaign.

In Spring 2015, what am I thankful for since last Founders Day and ANTIOCH 2014? Another class of graduates, soon to join the ranks of our alumni. A good school year coming to completion—so much learned, so much growth in the Lord and his character. The publication of two more faculty members’ books and others’ chapters. God connecting us with students for the future as we’ve seen the addition of some remarkable people to the student body this past year—keen of mind and with a heart for God and ministry.

Praise God! We celebrate his guidance and involvement in all that has happened. In the significant events of founding the Seminary, there are a number that occurred in April, hence our choosing April each year for Founders Day. And much more—each successive year Spring brings the completion of yet another year of students’ studies and life-changes, as well as another graduation (2015 is our 11th annual!).

This is a kingdom ministry to train God’s servants for His glory.
Unless the LORD build the house,
The builders labor in vain.
Psalm 127:1a
If God’s not in it, it won’t get anywhere. But if God is in it, He will prevail and work His purposes through our human efforts. Looking back it seems ever more clear that God has been in this!

Three follow-throughs to mark Founders Day 2014:
• I encourage you to join me to praise God that he has established a seminary in such a strategic location for the kingdom and to represent Christ. And look forward with real anticipation to what He will yet do through Urbana Seminary—pray for us for the future and God’s continued provision and direction.
• Come to graduation this year. It’s Friday May 15th, 7:00 PM. And you’re invited! Get the date into your calendars.
• On the Founders theme, remember the Founders Fund Campaign. You will receive more info about this in the near future. For us to move forward into the future it is essential that the Seminary have a growing circle of financial supporters to the glory of God. We cannot do it without you. This is an urgent ministry. A huge thanks to those who already give. And an encouragement to the rest to consider 2015 as the year to begin to give regularly to the Seminary’s ministry.

In Christ,


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