It was super. I did hear both Begg and Mohler. Begg preached once and it was from 2 Corinthians 4:1-7 which was a challenge to preachers to stay true to the word. It was Ministry (source and substance), Method (words are the tools of the trade - candid - clear - confident) and Men (saved - servants - self-effacive). He made a great comment I had never heard articulated this way about servant hood which he expressed to an elder on one occasion - "I am your servant but you will never be my master." I'll have to file that one away.
Mohler was outstanding. He preached three times in the early morning main sessions. He focused on the importance of various ways of not getting caught in the trap of diluting the power of the Word of God. I think the most memorable sermon to me was his last on Luke 24:13-22 and the challenge as to whether believer's hearts burn within them after they have heard us communicate God's Word to them. His big idea was to bring every text into accountability to the "big story" of the Word. Every story in the Bible ends with Jesus and we must always have in view the "big story" of the Creation - Fall - Redemption - Consummation, as Jesus demonstrated on the road to Emmaus. Great stuff!
All of the general sessions seemed to focus on staying true to the Word and doing it through expository preaching. Mohler made the comment that in most large growing churches today the Word is preached in little stories that end up being moral teachings when they need to be always placed in the context of the"big story" to bring us face to face with Jesus Christ. I think he hit the nail on the head.
The music was great. It was a bit contemporary at times but a real inspiration to sit in the midst of over 1,100 preachers and sing. I think the highlight of the music was Keith and Kristyn Getty. They are members of Alistair Begg's church. They have a website at http://www.gettymusic.com/ They have written a lot of what many call new hymns. Their worship leading was, to me, most powerful and inspiring. Stephen Newby and his praise band was there also. I must say that Newby has a real heart for worship and it comes through in spite of the overriding sound of the instruments at times.
All in all I would say it was a very worthwhile, uplifting and personally challenging experience. Being on campus for 4 days brought back many memories. As I told my Greek professor friend at Columbia International University before I went, I have many regrets about my failure to take advantage of my opportunities of education when I attended Moody and the only thing I do not regret was meeting Caris during that time. He emailed me a one liner back, "A good wife is worth more than many degrees." Quite insightful and very true.
Monday, May 26, 2008
Moody Pastor’s Conference First Hand
Since my dad went to Moody Bible Institute as did my mom, as did my sister and as did my Pastor brother-in-law from the East, I have an interest in what goes on at this great institution. The MBI Pastor’s Conference was held last week and brother-in-law from the East was in attendance. I sent an e-mail inquiring of the conference and especially of two speakers who always have my undivided attention and interest, Alistair Begg and Al Mohler. Here is his inspirational first hand report: