June is a quiet month at Bethlehem College and Seminary. The students are working summer jobs, visiting their families, and taking mission trips. The faculty are taking family vacations, speaking in churches, teaching internationally, working on research projects, and developing new courses for the fall. The admissions team is still busy attending conferences, talking to prospective students, holding informational meetings, and preparing for new seminarians who begin studying Greek class next week. I’m reminded of Psalm 92, “a song for the Sabbath”:
It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
to sing praises to your name, O Most High;
to declare your steadfast love in the morning,
and your faithfulness by night,
to the music of the lute and the harp,
to the melody of the lyre.
For you, O Lord, have made me glad by your work;
at the works of your hands I sing for joy.
Indeed, it is good to thank our faithful God, to praise his name, to rejoice at his wondrous works. Let me share eight reasons why I am brimming with thankfulness to God for what he has done in and through Bethlehem College and Seminary this past year.
- $500,000 Match—Once again, God has supplied the needs of this school through the remarkable generosity of financial partners who gave over $500,000 towards the “On the Double” matching campaign in support of the Serious Joy Scholarship. To God be the glory!
- 241 Students—I thank God for all the students who took classes at Bethlehem College and Seminary’s main campus in Minneapolis and our extension sites in Cameroon, Hawaii, and Memphis.
- 78 Graduates—At our recent commencement services we celebrated God’s faithfulness towards dozens of students in our college, seminary, and evening programs and launched them into various vocations and ministries without a burden of student loan debt.
- 17 Years—I thank God for Joe Rigney’s faithful and fruitful service as a teacher and leader at our school since 2006, and we pray that God would direct his steps and establish the work of his hands as he transitions to another institution.
- 16 Full-Time Faculty—We have a remarkable team of teachers at Bethlehem, who have taught and mentored our students with biblical fidelity, academic excellence, and pastoral hearts. This summer my colleagues are traveling to Cameroon, Canada, Ethiopia, and Vietnam to teach and serve the global church. They have published new books this year, including Romans: A Concise Guide to the Greatest Letter Ever Written, Five Views of Christ in the Old Testament, and Reading the Psalms Theologically. It is a joy to partner with this remarkable team to carry out this good work from the Lord.
- 15 Trustees—These men include alumni, area pastors, and marketplace and ministry leaders, who guide our institution with prayerfulness, faithfulness, and wisdom.
- 2 Churches—Bethlehem College and Seminary is a church-based institution governed by Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis and The North Church in Mounds View, and I am grateful to God for a happy partnership with these two congregations. Bethlehem Baptist Church continues to host our college and seminary programs and staff offices, while The North Church will begin hosting the school’s evening degree programs on Monday nights this year.
- 1 Ambition—We have a glorious shared mission at Bethlehem College and Seminary: “to spread a passion for the supremacy of God in all things for the joy of all peoples through Jesus Christ by equipping men and women to treasure Christ above all things, to grow in wisdom and knowledge over a lifetime, and to glorify God in every sphere of life.” We seek to make a disproportionate impact by teaching students the life-changing truth that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.
As I reflect on this past year, I am truly gladdened by the Lord’s work for these eight reasons (and more!), and I am eager to see what he will do in and through Bethlehem College and Seminary in the years to come.
Brian Tabb, Ph.D.
Interim President and Professor of Biblical Studies
- Praise the Lord with us for his faithfulness through the On the Double campaign.
- Pray for the incoming seminarians as they move to Minneapolis and begin the Greek intensive next week.
- Pray for the teaching team currently in Cameroon.
- Pray that the Lord would guide those students still making college decisions.