What We’re Doing Right
It is view weekend here at The Master’s College, and we have over 100 potential students roaming around campus. Every view weekend, I pause to reflect over what I have learned from attending The Master’s College and how God has blessed me over the last two years. When I first visited the college it seemed practically perfect: good doctrine, friendly people, and an unyielding stand on the Word of God. I quickly learned TMC is indeed not perfect. It is an institution which strives to glorify God and pursue Him passionately, but it is composed of fallen people. And 1,000 fallen twenty year olds living in community is going to produce an atmosphere stained with sin. It is easy to lose perspective and forget all the good things about The Master’s College when you are constantly taught how you ought to live and then confronted with the reality that you and everybody around you will never live up to that standard. I want to reflect now upon the life-transforming truths which I have learned from attending TMC.
1. Living as a follower of Christ will cost me everything. How I live cannot be dictated by the expectations of both Christians and non-Christians, but only by Scripture. The Jesus of the Bible who says, “Take up your cross and follow me” is not safe. Contemporary Conservative Christianity is a danger to my soul as it strips the zeal and life and passion out of the life of Christ and His call to live radically. When any words of Scripture no longer impact my soul but rather seem dull and unimportant I have moved my eyes off of Christ. Paul said, “Follow my example as I follow Christ.” This Christ Paul followed was not a safe, tame individual who pulled His punches to keep from offending the crowds, the religious leaders, and even His own disciples whom He loved dearly. Rather love and concern for their souls drove Him to do the will of the Father come hell or high water. Christ knew exactly what His passion for the will of the Father would cost Him. Rip Matthew 23 out of the Bible and Jesus isn’t crucified three days later. But He verbally tore the Pharisees apart for their unbelief and hatred of God knowing He was signing His own death warrant. This is the Jesus I follow.
2. Relationships are not optional. I came to TMC a very judgmental person with a penchant for scratching people’s names out of the Book of Life if they didn’t match up with my own standards. But I am not the judge of my brothers and sisters. I called by God exhort, encourage, and strengthen them. I must see fellow Christians as Christ sees them—people God Himself was willing to be crucified for. Personality differences melt away when faced with the heat of the cross. No amount of awkwardness or pride or cliquish mentality can stand in the way of my love for fellow Christians. Because of my love for God, I love the people who He has redeemed and pour myself into their lives so that we may both grown further in our love for and service to God.
3. Knowledge avails me nothing. During my first class of the semester, the professor walked in the door, set his bag on the table, looked the class in the eye and said, “I do not care what you know about the Bible when you leave this class. You can get an ‘A’ and go to hell. I’m not interested in making smarter sinners in my class. I’m here to help you know God.” Knoweldge does not equate to spiritual growth. Knowledge does not equate to loving God. Knowledge does not equate to eternal life. Knowledge provides an intellectual framework for loving God, but it is not loving God. Loving God is pursuing satisfaction in Him! The Great Commission commands us to “teach them to observe all I have commanded them.” Don’t just teach the truth. Teach them to apply the truth. In order to teach application, I must be already applying the Word to my own life. Scripture is literal. Do exactly what it says.