Saturday, May 06, 2006

Together for the Gospel

A lot has happened since the last post. One of the biggest things was a trip to Louisville, Kentucky for the Together for the Gospel Conference. About thirty pastors and TBI students from Bethlehem left at 6:00 AM on Tuesday, April 25, for Louisville. We took the church bus and van, and made the trip in about fourteen hours. While it was long, it was also filled with good conversation and a chance to rest and read.

On Wednesday morning, we had breakfast with Tom Schreiner, professor of New Testament Studies at Southern Seminary, and then went to chapel at the seminary, where R.C. Sproul gave the address. After chapel we had lunch with a bunch of TBI alumni and Pastor John Piper who flew in from his sabbatical in Cambridge, England to speak at the conference. It was good to see Pastor again and hear about his studies. A new book will come out from these studies, I am sure.

After a stroll around the Southern Seminary campus, we headed to the conference in downtown Louisville. The conference was put together by four friends from different denominations who are "Together for the Gospel." They are Mark Dever, pastor of Capital Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC; Al Mohler, president of Southern Seminary; C.J. Mahaney, pastor of Covenant Life Church in Maryland; and Ligon Duncan III, pastor of First Presbyterion Church in Jackson, Mississippi. For the conference, they invited three guests, John Piper, R.C. Sproul, and John MacArthur. It was a delightful three days of fantastic sermons, worship, and encouragement for pastors. While these men differed on certain issues (like the mode of baptism), they certainly agree on the gospel. It was a joy.

Click on the title to this post for a link to the T4G website. You can download each man's talk for a small fee. I think the two best talks were John Piper's and Ligon Duncan's. Pastor Piper spoke on why expositional preaching is particularly glorifying to God. Duncan spoke on preaching from the Old Testament. Please download these and listen to them. Even if you never preach, they are worth hearing.

I arrived back early on Saturday, April 29, and spent the rest of the weekend catching up with Wendy and the kids. What a joy it is to come home.

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