ANCHORED IN GOD’S WORD (Speech for my men’s group, Higher Standard)

Some of you know me–many of you do not. I have only been Christian for 10 years. Shortly after my conversion experience, God opened the door for me to go to a Theological Seminary and Graduate School where I earned my Bachelor’s, Master’s and, as of last October, after nearly 8 years, my Ph.D.

IMAGERY: A man of God standing atop a sheer cliff face. He wears the armor of God and he wields the Sword of Truth. Below him is an abyss, the realm of the enemy, which the man of God has been tasked by God to spy out so that God’s people can reclaim the territory. The man of God is prepared to do Spiritual battle if necessary, but first, he must anchor himself firmly on solid ground, on God’s Word, before he can repel down the cliff into enemy territory. As long as the man of God is tethered to the solid foundation of Christ above, as long as he is firmly rooted and grounded in love for God and God’s people, he will be able to ascend out of the darkness and back into the light.

1 Tim. 1:3b-6a”…charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies, which promote speculations rather than the stewardship (good order) from God that is by faith. The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Certain persons, by swerving from these, have wandered away into a vain discussion…”

As a Theologian, I have seen just how easy it is to wander away into vain discussions, fruitless arguments, and non-essential debate.

It is so important to remain anchored in God’s Word when one delves–not devotes but delves–into the deeper things of Theology. Theological inquiries should be devoted to God’s Word and God’s Will, and in v.5 we see that “the aim of our charge should be love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.” In this way, we avoid “wandering away into vain discussion” (v.6).

We avoid getting lost only if we are firmly anchored to God and His Word. God has given me a lot to do with Theology. He has me writing curriculum for college, my little Theology blog, and I consult with the head of a missions service in S.A., doing write-ups on the difficult questions her colleagues are asked in the field. Sometimes my research leads me into dark places–the argument of atheist scholars, for example (see Refutation of Dr. Coyne on my blog).

And that is why I’m here: Higher Standard is my anchor point. In this room, there are, as the Pastor has said, “mighty men of God”. I see a room full of Christians, each with his own gifts, each at his own waypoint on the journey, each trying to learn of God and to praise God and to discern his duty as a Christian man in service to God. Being here with you men is both very humbling and very empowering at the same time.

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