I had the privilege to take a group of college students to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary‘s 20/20 Collegiate Conference this past weekend. I attended seminary at SEBTS and this was the first time my wife and I had been back on the campus since we left in January of 2008. We loved our time at Southeastern and were able to catch up with some good friends while we were there.
The conference was amazing and beyond anything I ever expected! Our college students loved the speakers and the breakout sessions that they attended. You would do well to take some time and listen to the conference speakers discuss the importance of God’s Word and how every part of Scripture testifies to Jesus Christ. Here are the links to the videos:
What I took away from the conference:
1. Jesus is the point. He is the point of all the Scriptures, Genesis – Revelation. We should not approach the Bible as a “how to” book. If we do, we will miss the grand story of redemption woven throughout all 66 books.
2. Progressive sanctification is not becoming more dependent on yourself but more dependent on Jesus. For some reason we have this idea that we only need Jesus to get saved and then we can “pick ourselves up by our own bootstraps” and live out the Christian life. This is so far from the truth but for many it is reality. We must daily preach the gospel to ourselves.
3. Preach Jesus. It is extremely easy to preach morality and “do better” sermons. People don’t need morality; they need Jesus. Our people should walk away from our sermons saying, “What a beautiful Savior.”
Great quotes from the weekend:
“Though we are saved by grace alone through faith alone… if it is true grace and true faith, it will never be alone.” (DA Carson)
“If we read the Bible and miss Jesus our reading becomes fuel for our own self improvement plans.” (Tullian Tchividjian)
“When we see ourselves as the point of God’s story, the story becomes a tragedy.” (Tullian Tchividjian)
“Preaching and teaching the Bible is not about mastering certain techniques but being mastered by certain convictions.” (Tony Merida)
“If you want to preach life-changing messages you must keep the Life-Changer at the center of the message.” (Tony Merida)
“Religious people find Jesus useful but disciples find Jesus beautiful.” (Tony Merida)