Thursday, June 19, 2014

Jet Lag, Spritual Warfare and the Grace of God

This trip has been unusually trying as far as jet lag goes. I have had more trouble with being tired during the day and am not sleeping well at night. It is hot, but not unbearably so if you are indoors with fans going full blast. It is hard to keep your bible open to the right page with all the wind. The men are struggling a bit with the subject matter, the redemptive story of the bible. This is the idea that the bible is one big story that gradually builds up to the gospel, demonstrated in the death and resurrection of Jesus. 

It is very hard to preach or teach the Old Testament well if you do not understand the redemptive story, and how the passage you are working through fits in with that story. Much like it is difficult to understand a passage correctly without considering the context; it is equally difficult to understand the proper teaching and purpose of any passage, especially the Old Testament passages, without understanding the redemptive story context. This is our first attempt to teach this in our workshops, and the weaknesses of our training materials is quite apparent. We will have to do many revisions for it to be more useful and effective in the future. We are not discouraged by that. We simply have a lot to learn about how to teach this concept in a way that is easily understood and applied, but can also then be passed on in training to others.

It is such a delight to have Brad with me to help with this training. He has been a friend since seminary 30 years ago, and is such a fine godly and biblically- centered man. I am so glad he is on our training team. Brad is an encouraging man and totally sold out to the ministry of training others to study the bible well. It is his first time to India and he is doing great. His insights and encouragement to the students are wonderful.  

I have been experiencing some spiritual warfare on this trip, more than usual I think. Spiritual attack always comes in unexpected ways, and is designed to distract or lead us into despair. This time it has come in the form of internal accusations about my failings as a father and husband in the past. But thanks be to God because it has really served to drive me to the Lord and to celebrate His grace in my life. Edie has been a great help to me in this so that the enemy’s designs have been largely defeated. By His grace, on we go.


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