Saturday, 23 November 2013
Biblical wisdom at the RRF Conference
There were echoes of the Wisdom literature at the RRF conference at Swanwick, 18-20 November.
Brian Edwards took us to the Psalms, expounding, clearly, powerfully and with reference to revival, three psalms. We were shown, from Psalm 63 the psalmist’s passion (a ‘burning yearning after God with a wonderful delight and certainty’); from Psalm 64 his protest; and from Psalm 65 his praise.
Brian reminded us, with examples and illustrations from the past, of great truths about revival, for instance, for preachers, ‘You just bend the bow, let God shoot the arrow’. This was biblical wisdom as it should be – straight from the shoulder.
Matthew Brennan (Clonmel) on the other hand brought us a bit of Ecclesiastes or Job (though he referred to neither!) – wisdom when life doesn’t work out. Winsomely, with pungency and wit, he took three ‘Texts that Stick’ and illustrated the ups and downs of pastoral life from his own experience but without ever promoting himself.
‘Who has believed our report?’ (Isa 53:1) led us to the familiar experience of an apparently fruitless ministry – but we were reminded forcefully that visible success varies, present success is not always visible, success is not limited to the work of conversion and success is not entirely ‘here’.
Matthew took us then to 1 Thess 1 (when the Word comes in power, the Holy Spirit and in full conviction); and finally 1 Thess 2 – Paul’s mental status, manner of ministry and evangelistic methods.
With all this wisdom it was as well that Jonathan Wood began with a conference sermon on Revelation 2:1-7, which took us more or less to the beginning of wisdom – falling in love with Jesus again – which as Jonathan pointed out, is not a bad definition of revival.
It was again a time of blessing and we were thankful to be there.
To listen to these and other Conference sermons, or for more information about RRF, visit www.reformationandrevival.org (or for CDs email firstname.lastname@example.org).