We’re thankful for the opportunity this year to host the Stand for the Gospel conference in Christchurch. We’re pleased to have Rob Harrod, Pastor of Grace Baptist Church, speak at this year’s South Island conference in a seminar titled “Jesus’s View of Scripture: Foundational for God-honouring Life and Ministry”. Rob was kind enough to answer a few questions about himself and the seminar he’ll be leading.
1. Briefly share with us how you became a Christian.
As a first year university student from a non-Christian home I was approached by two Christian students, on campus at Sydney University, who shared the gospel with me clearly. Walking away from that meeting God graciously used His Word and their simple presentation of the good news to convince me of my sin, show me what a true Christian is, and point me to Jesus as the only Saviour, bringing me to faith and repentance over the next few days.
2. Why do you think what you’re teaching on is an important topic?
In this world, both in our wider culture and, sadly, sometimes in the church the authority, reliability, sufficiency of the Bible is questioned, doubted, attacked, ridiculed, misunderstood and undermined. If we are to live “by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God” we need to be people with strong and clear convictions about the Bible. One of the best ways of coming to such convictions is understanding Jesus’ view of Scripture and, as His disciples, making it ours.
3. What do you hope will be filling people’s minds and hearts as they walk away from your message(s)?
That they will see what Jesus Himself believed and taught about Scripture, and that this will continue to shape their lives, their thinking, and their ministry to the glory of God.
4. Is there any passage of Scripture that sums up what you’ll be sharing?
There are many passages that address what I hope to share about Jesus’ view of Scripture. The most succinct is Jesus’ statement that “Scripture cannot be broken” (John 10:35). As the Word of the God who cannot lie it reflects His perfect character.
5. Can you expand on one point that you’ll be making in your message(s)?
As Jesus is the Lord and Head of His Church (Eph. 1:22-23) then one of the many ways we are to follow and imitate Him is to embrace His view of Scripture. Do we believe about the Bible what Jesus believed about the Bible? Do we see the Scriptures as He sees them? If we are truly His disciples this is not optional, but essential. We are not to take our view of the Bible from the culture around us, but from Jesus Himself. As our Lord did, we are to build our lives and service on the unshakeable foundation of Scripture – “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” (Matthew 4:4)
6. How has what you’re going to speak on affected your own life?
Having Jesus’ view of Scripture pointed out to me in the early days of my Christian life as a university student has been a strong influence and support in the many years since then. It has provided an unfailing standard by which to measure the shifting opinions of men.
7. Can you recommend any books, articles, websites, or materials on this topic?
There is a lot of good material around:
- John Wenham’s book Christ and the Bible deals with this theme very directly and helpfully.
- More recently, Kevin deYoung’s book Taking God at His Word is a great introduction to the doctrine of Scripture; his chapter on “Christ’s unbreakable Bible” is particularly relevant.
- Andrew Wilson’s book Unbreakable is a very brief and simple introduction to this topic.
- The recent “Inerrancy Summit” in the USA featured 18 messages related to various aspects of the doctrine of Scripture by speakers such as Sinclair Ferguson, RC Sproul, Carl Trueman, Mark Dever, Al Mohler, Iain Murray, John MacArthur and Kevin deYoung. The video sessions are free to watch here.
8. What would you say to someone who is trying to decide whether or not to come to STAND conference?
STAND conference will be a good investment of time for believers eager to grapple with the Truths of Scripture and build their lives on the solid foundation of God’s Truth. It’s also a good opportunity for wider fellowship shaped by the Gospel.
Join Rob and others in rejoicing in the sufficiency of the Gospel. For more details and to register for STAND 2015, visit: http://www.standforthegospel.org/conference/stand-2015/.