Friday, July 20, 2012

Theology Breakfast 3

I have arrived home from Theology Breakfast 3 and thought that I would give a summary of it for today's post. For those of you who don't know what theology breakfast is, take a look here. Here is the short synopsis of what we are attempting when we meet together:
We call this idea Theology Breakfast. Simply, we want to set up an opportunity for Christian men with a love of theology to gather together for mutual enjoyment and edification. We want to network and strengthen relationships with brothers from around the city. This will not be a large gathering as we are looking at 12-20 people. Included in this email are both pastors and laymen from 8 different churches in London and the surrounding area. included are men ranging in age from 20s through 70s who belong to at least 5 different denominations.
Today, Pastor Mike Wilkins from West London Alliance was the presenter. The following is Mike's bio from his church's website:
Mike has been involved with the Christian & Missionary Alliance since he began attending the Kingston Alliance Church as a Queen's University student in 1973 and has been the Pastor of West London Alliance Church since 1984.

Mike and his wife Deb have been married since 1977. Queen's University grads, they moved to Toronto, where Mike worked first for a publisher of children's books, then at a Christian youth camp outside Toronto and finally as Minister of Discipleship at Bayview Glen Church. After seven years of Toronto life, they moved to London.

For many years, Mike's preaching and pastoral ministry have been primarily under the influence of the thinking (and writing) and character and vision of "Five (and then Nine and then Five once again and now Seven) Dead Men": especially Jonathan Edwards, Charles Spurgeon, G.K Chesterton and C.S. Lewis.

After seven years of homeschooling their children, Deb now works for Compassion Canada, "releasing children from poverty in Jesus' name."

Mike and Deb have three children, now no longer children at all. Jessica is a high school English literature teacher, currently working at a private girls' school in Tokyo, Japan. Ben is a graduate of McGill University, still lives in Montreal and is working away at the building of a career as a piano-based singer/songwriter. Joanna lives here in London, works as a nurse on the Adult Oncology floor of Victoria Hospital and serves as a volunteer leader of our Senior High ministry.

Mike is a runner who for many years tried but never quite managed to qualify for the Boston Marathon. (Obviously, he didn't try hard enough.) He does have a personal lifetime best of 3:05, but that was back in 1982, when everyone ran faster and the Boston qualifying standards were much higher.

For a few weeks each summer, Mike is the guy paddling Iona, his severely-scratched but still beloved canoe: usually in Temagami because it's so hard to get a reservation in Killarney. Sometimes Deb goes with him and paddles in the bow, smiling stoically and secretly wishing that they had a cottage in Muskoka.

Besides reading books written by men now dead, and running and canoe-tripping, as a fourth hobby, Mike writes plays and forces the church to stage them. Some of them are now available for staging by other chuches and community theatre groups at
Mike delivered a talk entitled Living Lawfully and Loving It. He began by sharing some major developments in his life that led him to the place where he is today. These were explained as waves he encountered and are as follows:
  •  First Wave: The authority of the Bible - Mike became convinced of the authority of Scripture and this was his answer to the question "Whose BOAT is this?"
  • Second Wave: The sovereignty of God - Mike became convinced of the sovereignty of God and this answered the question "Who is steering the boat?"
  • Third Wave: An eschatology of victory - Mike became convinced of the post-millenial position and this answered "Where is this boat going?"
  • Fourth Wave: Living lawfully and loving it - Mike became convinced of the doctrinal stance referred to as theonomy and this answered the question "How is this boat ever going to get there?"
Mike than described four enormous personal values of this fourth wave:
  1. A new understanding of the continuity of the Old and New Testaments
  2. A delight in the law of God
  3. Specific personal assistance in giving godly counsel
  4. Living lawfully and loving it
This was an excellently delivered presentation that fulfilled both goals of being enjoyable and edifying. The question I am left with is: How do I formulate the continuity and discontinuity of the Old and New Testaments? Some more thinking and studying and praying is in order.

 A big thanks to Pastor Mike and to all the men who are passionate about what they believe and who they believe!

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