“Our seminaries, if we must have them, should more reflect a training hospital than a university. Divinity is not a body of knowledge to be mastered, like geology. The Bible is not a book to be dissected like Moby Dick. We go there, if we must go there, not to study the Word, but to begin to learn to have the Word study us. We go to pursue not advanced degrees, but the fruit of the Spirit. We go to lose our reputations, not to gain them. We go not to be thought wise, but to learn what fools we are.” what R.C. Sproul writes these words in Still Not Professionals, Ten Pleas for Today’s Pastors. He continues, “No man needs advanced degrees, and arcane letters after his name in order to follow Jesus. Which means that no man needs these things to lead others in following Jesus. If you follow Jesus, [your people] will follow you.”
Colleges and seminaries must be more than mirrors of culture or institutions that go through the motions in order to pump arcane letters for a fee. They must be laboratories of supernatural alchemy, with windows into the divine. How is such educational quality established and ensured?
The day prior to last week’s commencement ceremony, the Bethlehem College & Seminary Board of Trustees convened to wade into a substantial discussion of a plan to establish, monitor, and ensure educational quality, to adopt a budget for the 2016-17 fiscal year, to consider the regular periodic reports of President Tomlinson and other leaders, and more. We heard that the Department of Homeland Security has approved us to receive international students. We heard that next fall’s enrollment will be up to 210 (heading for a maximum enrollment of approximately 250), that Serious Joy, the semi-annual report to friends of Bethlehem College & Seminary now has a mailing list of 4,200 subscribers, and that beloved Tom Steller has been promoted from Academic Dean to the role of Senior Advisor to the President and Dean of Global and Alumni Outreach. We also approved also certificates and diplomas for fifty graduates in programs including Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Theology, Master of Arts in Biblical and Pastoral Studies, Master of Divinity, and Master of Theology.
Sam Crabtree Board Chair
2016 Commencement Student Testimony | Zach Howard
1. Pray for the Board of Trustees as we endeavor to establish, refine, and continually evaluate educational quality at the college and seminary.
2. Pray for our students and faculty to have a restful and safe summer.
3. Pray that the final Serious Joy Scholarships for 2016-2017 school year would be funded.
4. Pray for the incoming students and those who may still apply and enroll.