Bearing Witness Through Biblical Preaching

In The Witness of Preaching, Thomas Long describes biblical preaching in the following way, “Biblical preaching happens when a preacher prayerfully goes to listen to the Bible on behalf of the people and then speaks on Christ’s behalf what the preacher hears there.”   The goal of The Ministry of Preaching Course (MIN 6302) at Austin Grad is to equip students with the homiletical skills needed to bear faithful witness to Christ’s gospel through the event of preaching.  Utilizing the works of Thomas Long, Fred Craddock, and Barbara Brown Taylor students will develop their own theology of preaching. Throughout the semester, we will … [Read more...]

Calamity and Creation: Does God Cause Disasters?

Deep calls to deep at the roar of your waterfalls; all your breakers and your waves have gone over me. (Psalm 42:7 ESV)   When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? (Psalm 8:3–4 ESV)   This dispatch is offered as a meditation on the two psalm verses quoted above (honest!). A bit like Pascal, though, I didn’t have time to write a short blog post, so I had to write this long one instead. The headlines that have greeted us as August has yielded to September … [Read more...]

Christian Encounters with other Cultures & Faiths

What does it mean for Christians to encounter adherents of other religious traditions? Living in an ambulatory, pluralistic world such intersections are inevitable. While these encounters were less frequent in the past due to more limited mobility, this is no longer true. We can circumnavigate the globe quickly and with relative ease via commercial air carriers. In addition, social media has created the possibility of communicating with the vast majority of people on the planet. Given this reality, it is vital for Christians who serve or intend to serve in ministry—along with any others who have the slightest evangelistic bent—to prepare … [Read more...]

Helping Veterans on the Road to Healing

At the risk of oversimplifying, Christians have at their disposal at least three ethical views concerning the use of force, namely, pacifism, Christian realism, and the just war tradition.  To be sure each of these views has various shades.  There are pacifists with just war sympathies, just warriors with realist tendencies, etc.  The issues surrounding the ethical use of force, or if the use of force is even ethical at all, are both highly nuanced and very important.  The debates between the various proponents of these views in academia have become rather complex and, at times, nasty.  One simply needs to do a search … [Read more...]

Ministry in the Next Generation

I am not sure what started this but a few days ago I began to recall my first sermon. I do not remember its exact date; but almost 60 years have passed since that time. It was a Sunday evening and I preached the sermon to a congregation of about twenty-five or thirty at my home church in Australia. Although mainly inauspicious and uneventful I do have one lasting recollection. When I came to the end of my notes and what I had prepared to say it seemed like I was only speaking for about five minutes. Anxiously I looked up at the clock on the wall. Somewhat relieved I observed that over twenty minutes had gone by since I began to … [Read more...]

Join Me for Lunch or Dinner Monday at Austin Grad

If you are considering church planting as a vocation, then you're invited to visit with Charles Kiser about a new apprenticeship program in church planting. Charles is director of training for Mission Alive -- a premier, discipleship-based, church planting organization.  … [Read more...]

Eternal Threads Founder is Austin Grad Alumna

Austin Graduate School of Theology alumna Linda Egle is passionate to serve and be on mission for the Lord.  She does this by bringing opportunity and hope to women across the world through the organization she founded, Eternal Threads. Eternal Threads is a nonprofit organization based in Abilene, Texas.  The organization helps women in impoverished countries support their families and improve their livelihoods with their handiwork in sewing and tailoring.        Eternal Threads is able to partner with these women and provide a market for them to sell their goods in the United States.  Linda … [Read more...]

Marketplace Ministries at Rudy’s BBQ 

What if more businesses employed people like Christopher Bennett whose job is to minister to other employees?  Chris, a graduate of Austin Graduate School of Theology,  is a Team Member Care Associate at K&N Management, which owns the well-known establishments Mighty Fine Burgers and Rudy’s BBQ.   Simply put, Chris’ work empowers people to make positive change in their lives. Whether they are wanting to excel in their career,  experiencing difficult relationships, or maybe dealing with addictions, K&N Management has created a team that’s available 24/7 to help bridge the gap between what is and what could be. … [Read more...]

Missionary in Russia

Austin Graduate School of Theology's newest Living Stones Award recipient Joel Petty serves the Lord as a missionary in Russia. “I find fulfillment when someone comes to the realization that God exists and loves them…when someone finds joy by hearing and obeying God's word not only when coming to Christ initially, but as they follow him throughout life with all its ups, downs, adventures and suffering,” Joel said. Joel received his bachelor’s degree from Southwest Texas (now known as Texas State Universary) in geography and political science with a concentration in Soviet studies.  It was the late 80's.  By the time he … [Read more...]

My Predecessor’s Library Haunted Me

The Austin Grad community assembles in convocation at the beginning of each school year. We are reminded of our high calling as a seminary, and we dedicate our work in the coming year to the glory of God. We worship together in song, prayer, and scripture reading. Dr. Jerry Christian, chairman of the board of trustees, gave a charge and we made vows to be faithful in our service for the 2016-17 academic year. I was honored to deliver the exhortation. “My predecessor’s library haunted me.” That line helped shape my exhortation. It is from David Hansen’s book, The Art of Pastoring: Ministry Without All the Answers. I also referenced and offered … [Read more...]