Monday, October 22, 2012

God's University

Welcome to God’s University

Most of us have attended school - some for more years than others. But, would you believe me, that you are still in school? You see, each of us is still in God’s University. Like most schools, God’s University has a campus - called life. The campus offers opportunities for various kinds of experiences and problem solving. The campus serves as a laboratory for the faculty and students to work out the various difficulties that are a part of each student's life. And like most members of the campus community, we occasionally fail and occasionally succeed. But our campus provides a place in which students can grow and change as they study the textbooks under the careful hand of a watchful faculty. Also, like most schools, God’s University has textbooks. The master textbook, the text that truly guides all instruction in God’s University, is Scripture. It provides a master plan for each lesson that we cover during our time of enrollment. The author has pulled teaching from over 3000 years of history. The sources used include men and women who have both been blue-collar workers, kings, spiritual leaders. Though most of us, as we designed a text, might not choose this collection of authors - after all they included murderers, liars, and adulterers. However, though these people may not have been chosen by you or me, they have, over the years, been used by the institution to effectively communicate all that we need to know. The sources also include some of the greatest writers of all time - such men as Moses, David, and Paul (nee Saul). As a book, it has served the test of time, more than any other. There are other text that are sometimes used - written by such men as Augustine, Luther, Calvin, Wesley, Spurgeon, and Moody. There are others - but all their writing must stand against the master text. The value of these additional texts only exists to the extent that it echoes the teaching found in the master text. A university with only a campus and a textbook would quickly become an unwelcome institution. Those who are teaching have the most impressive credentials. God the Father, as expected, serves as the President of God’s University. Jesus the Son serves as the Dean of Students - responsible for all activity on the campus. The Academic Dean is the Holy Spirit - it the Holy Spirit that directs all instruction on campus. This faculty has one characteristic that distinguishes it from all other academic institutions. That characteristic is that there are no politics among its leadership. They are in perfect agreement about the needs of the students - both corporately, but also individually. There is a wonderful consensus about what the students need to learn and about what each student needs to learn. Just as there are other lesser textbooks, so are there lesser teachers. They are given such titles as Pastors, Bible Study Leaders, and Brothers and Sisters in Christ. The school’s leadership uses these other leaders to guide and walk along the students. They serve as mentors and examples to the entire student body. Oh, they sometimes fail, but the leadership even uses those mishaps to reshape the student body to better represent the foundational principles that underlie the purpose of God’s University. The student body is diverse - coming from every continent and country. They represent every race and nationality. They are young and old - some having just begun their journey as a student, others having studied for many years in God’s University. As someone has said, “There is always room for one more.” The campus is able to expand even further. There is an open admission policy - anyone is welcome to enter the gates of this University. The only requirement for entry is an admission of our imperfections and a recognition that the Dean of Students has paid the entire tuition cost - for your entire life. That does not mean that your instruction is free - there is a cost beyond that paid by the Dean of Students. Enrollment will mean to love the unlovable, it will require the student to offer all he or she is and all he or she has to the use of the college administration. They will use it wisely - but we need to let them use it. The amazing thing about these students, regardless of how long they have studied, they know that there is still more to learn. Only on graduation day will the instruction stop. There is a celebration like none seen on earth when each student walks through those gates leading to the heavenly home - prepared just for them. That home will have streets of gold, angels singing and praising God - that same God who served as the President of God’s University. That is the story - now I want to invite you to attend this prestigious institution. We are all broken, we are all in need of the instruction offered here. But we have to enter - it is an act of the will. A personal recognition that Jesus, as the song says, “Paid It All”. Without that recognition, there is no entry into God’s University. Are you, right here, right now, willing to let God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit, to teach you, to guide you, and to change you into the person he wants you to become. Will you come study with us, so that we can all grow together.
© Floyd H. Johnson (2012)

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