FHU

...now browsing by tag

 
 

FHU 2009 Lectures Review

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

fhulecturesMy review of the Freed-Hardeman University 2009 lectures is a little late.  I know that several bloggers were posting their reflections from Henderson as the lectures were going on (my favorite has been Adam Faughn’s picture and audio essay on Faughnblog).  Alas, I do not own an iPhone or even a laptop with a working battery, so I must deign to publish my review several days after the fact the old-fashioned way: on a desktop computer, a dinosaur by today’s technological standards.

Any review of a multi-faceted lectureship is going to be subjective, as it will have to depend on what lectures the author chose to attend.  Sometimes these choices were arbitrary.  So what follows is my experience of the lectures.  Another person’s review would, no doubt, present a different perspective based on lectures I may not have had opportunity to attend.

From Tuesday morning to Thursday about lunchtime, I attended eighteen lectures in all.  Here are some of the highlights.

I got up early Tuesday morning to catch David Lipe’s treatment of Psalm 27: “Salvation in the Lord.”  It was a somewhat scholarly discussion of the psalm, but it still contained Lipe’s characteristic wit and undying devotion to evangelism.  From the time I was a student at FHU, I have listened to Lipe every time I have had the opportunity.

Dan Winkler conducted his usual series on preaching the New Testament.  This year his subject was Hebrews.  It was obvious that this man has spent a lot of time in Hebrews, and, as always, he shed new light on a text I have studied for many years.  Winkler had practical points for preachers to go along with his textual exposition.  One statement that has stuck with me is:

The preacher’s purpose is preaching; his goal is salvation; his message is Christ; his product is hope.

One of my classmates, David Sproule, gave an interesting lecture on “Great Hymns in the Psalms” in which he pointed out connections between the hymns in our songbooks and the psalms of the Bible.  I can’t imagine how long it took him to find all of these allusions.  More research went into this lesson than any other that I heard that week.  David also gave me a good idea for a song service.

A few years ago FHU invited Marlin Connelly to give a series on preaching through the Old Testament to balance out what Dan Winkler was doing in the New Testament.  I really enjoy Connelly’s exposition of the scripture.  In addition to his ability to organize difficult passages like Deuteronomy and Ecclesiastes, he is also deft at illustrating his points with unusual and relevant stories.  Connelly also couches his points in memorable language.  To wit: “unfair denouement” and “folly’s fragrance.”

Nathan Segars had an interesting take on Psalm 19.  I appreciated the fact that he did something original with a passage that has been a favorite of preachers for centuries.  Nathan pointed out the disconnect between the psalmist’s praise of God’s law and our attitude towards God’s law as burdensome commandments.  A rabbinic phrase was mentioned: “the joy of the commandment.”  Following God’s commandments without joy is not really fulfilling the commandment.  This was probably the most important lesson I learned all week.

Wednesday night another one of my former professors, Earl Edwards, preached on Psalm 51.  Edwards has a knack for preaching the gospel with a scholarly approach.  He dissected this psalm, one of the best known poems of David, so that everyone could understand its message.  I’ve heard people speak critically of FHU and her Bible teachers, saying they do not preach grace.  These folks aren’t paying attention.  Edwards extolled God’s mercy, quoting Spurgeon who said, “There is no measure of God’s grace…it is like a great flood that covers the highest mountain of our sins!”

There were many other good lectures that I attended and many that I missed.  These are just a few of the highlights for me.

As a new feature, FHU has added 72 of the lectures to iTunes.  These can be downloaded for free.  If you didn’t get to attend, check them out.