Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Ministry Equipping Conference Day #1

SAMSUNG            Last weekend we completed the 4th annual PIU Ministry Equipping Conference. It did not go exactly as we planned with the tropical storm warnings interrupting the conference as typhoon Francisco tracked south just off the east coast of Guam and then came back up north a few hundred miles off SAMSUNG            the west coast. Our speaker Dr. Alpheus Zubule, who was supposed to arrive on Friday morning, was held up in Cairns Australia because of the Guam weather. Our planned three day conference became a two day conference. Nevertheless, I thought it went well despite the circumstances. The theme of the conference was “Ministry in Context.”

SAMSUNG            Thursday night’s theme was “Reading the Bible in its Ancient Context.” PIU staff took the attendees through the story of “David and Goliath” SAMSUNG            highlighting the historical, grammatical-lexical, literary, and theological contexts. Mike Owen highlighted the ancient Near Eastern background of the text and its importance for understanding the message of the text.

SAMSUNG            Nico Daams, from the “Isles of the Sea” group of Wycliffe Bible Translators, addressed the lexical and grammatical context of the David and Goliath story. He also talked about the difficult issues that local Bible translators face as they try to translate place names and geographical features that have no relevance to people who live on a tropical island. Another difficulty the translator always faces is that each Hebrew word has a different range of meaning than the English (or island language) word used to translate it.

I was the third speaker in the lineup and had the opportunity to talk about the literary context of First Samuel 17.The passage is mainly narrative history. My main point in this was that biblical narrative history is unlike modern history books in that the stories are mainly about God – God is always the main hero in the story. Second there is a small poetic section in the story in verses 43-47. This highlights the main point of the story, which is about how God saves. The story is not about David’s bravery. The theme is “the battle is the Lord’s” and the main quality of a godly king is trust in God’s promises.

Here is my outline of the passage:

  • Intro of Goliath: Saul Runs 1-11
  • Intro of David: Response to Challenge 12-31
    • David and Jesse 12-15
      • Goliath 16
    • Jesse and David 17-19
      • David and Brothers 20-24
        • Goliath/Saul/Goliath 25-27  (Twist #1 – Saul should be the hero)
      • Eliab and David 28-31
    • David and Saul 31-39
      • David vs. Goliath Weaponry 40-42
        • David vs Goliath taunting 43-47 (Twist #2 – the inferiorly equipped soldier wins)
      • David Defeats Goliath – Weaponry 48-51
    • David and Israel Spoil Goliath and the Philistines 52-54
  • David Reintroduced 55-58

SAMSUNG            PIU Bible prof, Iotaka Choram, tied the evening together by talking about how to take the message from its biblical context and apply it to the context of the preacher’s audience. He talked quite a bit about the fear of the “spirits of the islands” that many Christians still struggle with. To see the battle of David and Goliath as really being a battle between the true God and the god of the Philistines should be a tremendous encouragement to the many islanders who struggle with this fear. God has defeated these spirits and they no longer need to be feared.

No comments: