“Master of Divinity.” A few months ago I heard someone comment on the massive overstatement in that graduate degree’s title. Similarly, I recently saw a seminary advertise its Doctor of Ministry program with a slogan something like “Becoming an Expert.” I told my bride I needed to return my degree if that was the intended outcome of the program.
The men in our congregation have a monthly fellowship. We met last night, and one of our guys had us read Psalm 19:7-9. I’ve taught this passage so many times over the years; it’s my go-to passage when I’m introducing the idea of biblical parallelism to people. I know this passage. Still, two things were pointed out to me that I’d never noticed before. First, there is the six-fold repetition “of the LORD.” Can you believe I never really noticed that? I was simultaneously excited to see it and a little sheepish that I’d never noticed it! Second, a brother pointed out the creation elements in 19:1-6, and the further creation aspect in our “soul” (19:7), “the heart” (19:8), and “the eyes” (19:8). Not only is God Personal Creator of the heavens, but of us as individuals, and His glory shows in it all. Wow.
Second, my bride pulled together two verses that I’d always separated in my mind (foolishly): “…in Him all things hold together. He is also the head of the body, the church” (Colossians 1:17b,18a). Wow, again. I can’t hold “all things…together,” including “the church.” I needed to hear that. Seriously. I needed it to the core of my being. My bride was used (once again) by the Holy Spirit, through the Word, to provide a much-needed balm for my soul.
Regardless our years of experience, and in spite of the pieces of paper matted in frames on our walls, we need each other desperately in the Church, especially in the area of the ministry of the Word. My dissertation, in partial fulfillment of that latest piece of paper, emphasized the “prophethood of all believers” and the role all believers must have in the Spirit-empowered, Christ-centered ministry of the Word. Yesterday the Holy Spirit convicted me anew that the dissertation wasn’t just a hoop to jump through to graduate; it is the great need of the Church in this day. It is the great need of this pastor, who is far from being a “Master” or an “expert” in anything.
We need each other.
|Got home after sunset following our men's meeting.|
Enjoyed the message of God's glory the sky was preaching
while I let my dogs run a little.