GBC Winter Teaching Module 2023
What a joy to be back at Grace Bible College, in Central India and to interact with the students and staff. It is always a precious reunion of ministry family as we celebrate the goodness of our Lord and the fellowship of ministry together. Our time together was spent talking with our students, listening to their hearts for ministry and seeing the Lord carry burdens that have been on their hearts. Several of our first year Bth students have fathers who are not well and there is a danger of the family not being able to sustain their livelihood because their son is studying, and decisions, tough decisions, are being made which mean these students will go home before their education is completed to take care of the family.
There is such a passion to serve the Lord among these students and to reach their country for Christ. This is exactly what Paul’s appeal to Timothy was all about in 2 Tim 2:1-2; “You then, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.” If a person cannot go, then we need to raise up those who would be able to stand in our place. This is what goal of the sponsorship of a Bible College student is all about. This is the reason and the passion of Indigenous Ministries, and those who are committed to support their Bible College student, and we have seen God bring successes in raising up godly men and women to deeply impact their society for Christ. Thank you so much to our sponsors and financial donors.
Dee and I arrived at GBC a week before Pastor Craig Miller arrived and I spent that week teaching three hours a day. Pastor Craig’s and my aim was to uncover expository systematic teaching of the Word of God. As he shared, “I lectured on expository preaching and then did a series of expositions as examples. I asked the students to analyze my sermons to see if they could recognize the principles I was teaching.” I enjoyed Craig sharing the meaning of Expository Preaching, taken from the word’s meaning, expose, or, “to expose.” Pastor Craig did such a wonderful job of analogy that was clearly brought out when he shared when Ezra opened the book in Nehemiah 8:8, “So they read from the Book of the Law of God, explaining it and giving insight, so that the people could understand what was being read.…” The purpose of expository preaching is found in this verse. They explained, They gave insight, and the people understood. I am so thankful for Craig and the partnership that we enjoy. Each day the students would gather around him and I would say “cut their teeth” on the concepts that they were having exemplified for them in the teaching.
I took the two weeks to teach on two subjects, first, “The Preparation for a Godly Life.” It was an in-depth study on Romans chapter 6, 7, and 8. Verse by verse doctrine by doctrine understanding the Biblical outline of salvation, redemption, discipleship and the Lord redeeming his child. I also taught Chapel each day on the Book of Ephesians. It was wonderful to open up in verse by verse fashion teaching through the Epistle. It was such a joy to to hear the glowing heartfelt responses especially as we got to Romans 8:1-2 “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. By the time we were finished with the class, the students had memorized Romans 8:1-4. One of our GBC professors who is teaching Romans this semester shared what an inspiration and motivational time that was. It was a joy to challenge the thinking of especially our first year students who are growing in their life and wisdom in the Word of God. In India and the majority of preaching globally is simply topical, but as Ezra set the stage in opening the Book of the Law, he set the stage for understanding and wisdom. It was an honor to serve together with Pastor Craig serving the students in this Winter Teaching Module 2023.
– John W. Cook, CEO