Sunday, September 25, 2022

The 2022 Clearview Apologetics Conference

As you all know, the Clearview Apologetics Conference was held yesterday and today in Henderson, NC. 

In all honesty, it was one of the most delightful conferences I've ever had the privilege of attending and participating in. It was like having your cake and eating it too. I really did enjoy the presentations by my colleagues Abidan Shah, Maurice Robinson, and Peter Gurry. 

Here's Maurice promising to never again make a joke about beardless men. 

For me, the best part of the conference was chatting with people during the breaks, as with this young man who was so passionate about the study of the Greek New Testament it put me to shame. 

I also appreciated the fact that so many really good questions were asked doing the Q & A sessions. I love the idea of having people text their questions to the moderator who then passed them on to us. 

All in all, the speakers and presentations were informative and touched on subjects that are important to all followers of Christ. There was a ton of great info, but what stuck with me the most were:

1. New Testament Textual Criticism is as much an art as it is a science. 

2. If God's word is to be "a lamp to my feet and a light to my path" (Ps. 119:105), I need to to able to discern whether the better attested reading is found above or below the line in my Greek New Testament.

3. Now more than ever I want to leave behind as my legacy a generation of Bible students armed with the ability to "correctly handle the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15).

4. I was so excited to see that John Meade and Peter Gurry's new book is now out. May it have a long and happy life! 

5. Every speaker emphasized the fact that the only way to experience authentic Christianity is through a firsthand acquaintance with the Bible. Don't just let a friend or a YouTube video tell you what the Bible says. Read it and study it for yourself. 

That is exactly my prayer now that the conference is over. Each of the speakers is now preparing his talk for publication, because the hope is that one day these papers will see the light of day as a published book. Each of us will try to explain what we believe is the best approach to the subject of textual criticism, but in the end our prayer is that this conference -- and the book to come -- will open the door to a deeper understanding and more obedient application of the word of God, not only for this generation, but for all that are to come. 

I want to offer my deepest thanks to Clearview Church and it magnificent staff for being such great hosts. An extra-large bundle of gratitude goes to pastor Abidan Shah for leading his congregation with such courage and humility. Pastors never lose face by telling their people, "I don't know. But I'll try to find out."