There is one question which stands out among all the others which were asked during my tenure at Western Seminary. It was a question I had not expected. But it may be the most important question I was asked as a seminary professor.
The depth of the ministerial task and the complexity of our age call for forceful training. And yet, I meet more and more students who are making degree choices based upon what has the least force. Along with this, too few churches and individual believers want to invest in the cost of training their future leaders.
This week I will begin my 40th year of teaching the Old Testament (OT) at Western Seminary. In their degree programs at Western, most students will invest 70 hours of class time and 140 hours of personal study in the Old Testament. Why is teaching the Old Testament an important part of the curriculum at Western Seminary?
Western is committed to a “renewal through reformation and revival” agenda. We are laboring to train leaders who can effect positive change by bringing a classic, robust evangelicalism to bear upon the contemporary scene.
Western Seminary stands in the great tradition of the Reformation, embracing the five solas. The solas of the Reformation are at the heart of the gospel centered transformation taking place among our students at Western Seminary. There’s not sufficient time to address each one of the five solas, but I’d like to touch briefly on Sola Gratia, by grace alone.