In God’s kindness, we have the opportunity this year to host the Stand for the Gospel conference in Christchurch. Andrew de Vries and the team at Bishopdale Reformed Church have graciously offered their church building as the meeting place for the first South Island conference.
Andrew will also be speaking in a seminar titled “Scripture: A Sufficient Word”. Here he answers some questions about himself and what he’ll be speaking about at this year’s conference.
1. Briefly share with us how you became a Christian.
I had the privilege of growing up in a Christian family and the Lord used this to open my eyes to see the glories of Jesus Christ and my desperate need for Him.
2. Why do you think what you’re teaching on is an important topic?
We live in an age when increasingly people think they require an extra word from God in order to know him better, or to know how to live the Christian life. Coupled with this is the modern fascination with Christian experience as the place we get our doctrine from. The prime example of this is the recent spate of “heaven tourism” books which purport to make us more assured in our beliefs about heaven. We need to be thoroughly convinced that the Bible is sufficient for us to know him and to live the Christian life.
3. What do you hope will be filling people’s minds and hearts as they walk away from your message(s)?
I want people to be confident that in the Scriptures they have all they need to live the Christian life. I want people to go away hungry to read the word in order to enjoy deeper fellowship with the Lord.
4. Is there any passage of Scripture that sums up what you’ll be sharing?
2 Tim 3:16 states:
“All Scripture is God breathed, and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
5. Can you expound on one point that you’ll be making in your message?
One of the practical implications of the sufficiency of Scriptures is that all Christians can enjoy intimacy with God. We don’t need to learn a new technique, hear detailed whispers from God, or buy the latest evangelical best-seller in order to draw close to the Lord. We’ve got all we need for that in the Scriptures.
6. How has what you’re going to speak on affected your own life?
It has given me confidence to make important life decisions. It also gives me confidence that I can know God well even when I don’t experience ‘extra-ordinary’ visions or words from heaven.
7. Can you recommend any books, articles, websites, or materials on this topic?
One general book is Taking God at his Word by Kevin DeYoung. A more detailed study on the sufficiency of Scriptures is The Sufficiency of Scripture by Noel Weeks. James Boice frequently wrote on the sufficiency of scriptures and many of his books and articles are helpful.
8. What would you say to someone who is trying to decide whether or not to come to the South Island STAND Conference?
What else you rather be doing when the cold June southerlies are coming through, than enjoying some solid teaching and warm fellowship at the Stand Conference!
Join Andrew 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/.