Director of Admissions Sought

August 27, 2011 | Written by Matt Carter

Harding School of Theology seeks a director of admissions. The target start date is October 1, 2011. Those interested may send resumes to Dr. Evertt Huffard, VP/Dean at dean@hst.edu.

The director of admissions oversees the recruiting process on the Memphis campus, representing HST to prospective students and other constituencies.

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Student Fellowship Groups Forming

August 23, 2011 | Written by Sheila Owen

Sign-up lists for student fellowship groups are available in student lounge. 
Groups are hosted by faculty members, and are a great way for members of the HST community to get to know each other better.

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Convocation Tonight at 7:00

August 22, 2011 | Written by Matt Carter

The tenth annual Convocation will be held tonight in the W.B. West Jr. Center Auditorium at 7:00 p.m. The event will open the new year in a time of worship and contemplation on the year’s theme of Incarnation. The event will also inaugurate the school’s new name: Harding School of Theology.

Local dignitaries will be present to acknowledge the role HST plays in the greater Memphis community.  Dr. Daniel J. Earheart-Brown, president of Memphis Theological Seminary, will address the topic of incarnation as to launch the theme of the year.

The event is free and open to all friends of the school.

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New Website Launched

August 19, 2011 | Written by Matt Carter

Along with the new name Harding School of Theology, the new website hst.edu was launched August 19, 2011.

Built from the ground up by T&S Web Design, the new site incorporates a structure similar to the older hugsr.edu, but the new site is built on newer technology and a fresh design.

One new feature of hst.edu is the blog, which allows the newest stories appear on the home page, but also allows easy reading (and access from search engines) on the blog page.

As a matter of fact, the blog is so useful, you are reading it now! Enjoy!

International Ephesus Conference at HST

August 17, 2011 | Written by Matt Carter

International Ephesis Conference

Library of Celsus

An international conference on the study of Ephesus and its connection to the New Testament will be held at HST as a tribute to the 65th birthday of professor Richard E Oster.

The May 18-19, 2012, conference is slated to acknowledge Oster’s work on ancient Ephesus as a religious center and site of early Christian activity.

Dr. Oster’s contributions to the study of ancient Ephesus include, among other work, a Princeton Theological Seminary dissertation, “A Historical Commentary on the Missionary Success Stories in Acts 19:11-40,” an ANRW essay on “Ephesus as a Religious Center Under the Principate I. Paganism Before Constantine,” and A Bibliography on Ancient Ephesus; With Introduction and Index. Former students and colleagues will offer papers on Ephesian material culture and on early Christian texts connected to Ephesus.

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Free Alumni Privileges Extended

August 17, 2011 | Written by Matt Carter

A generous grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc, has funded subscription to ATLAS® for ALUM through April 2013. Harding Graduate School alumni are encouraged to take advantage of this on-line resource for theological research.

Alumni may gain access by contacting Don Meredith (dmeredith@harding.edu).

The ATLAS® for ALUM website describes the service: “ATLASerials (ATLAS) is ATLA\’s online full-text collection of more than 170 key journals, selected by leading scholars, theologians and clergy. Users can read articles or research the history of a topic from as early as 1908 to the present. We\’ve developed this resource guide for a variety of audiences, so please visit the “find your community” listings on the top right page to find out about next steps.”

Helpful links:

HUGSR Library

ATLAS for ALUM Terms of Use

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Bridges and Our Ministry of Reconciliation

June 28, 2011 | Written by The Bridge

Dr. Evertt W. Huffard

In Memphis, as in so many cities along the Mississippi River, the bridges across the river have historical, cultural, and economic impact, not only locally but also nationally. The Memphis bridges have connected East and West for over a century. Repairs or accidents on one of the bridges create immediate problems and remind us of how much we depend on them. They have been there so long we easily forget the sacrifice and labor of the bridge builders.

Several months ago we all decided to rename our bulletin The Bridge for reasons far beyond, but not unrelated to, our calling Memphis home. This school has served as a bridge in so many ways. For some of us who came here right out of undergraduate school, it was a bridge into ministry and adult life. For those who came here after some years of ministry, it was a bridge to a different level of ministry. For the second-career students, it was a bridge into full-time ministry.

Possibly the most obvious bridge one would expect from a graduate school like HUGSR spans our ignorance and knowledge—of the Word, ourselves, and the world. Feature articles in each issue of The Bridge will reflect on the bridges which must be built between the following: now and eternity, the Word and the human heart, the text and the world, the Old and New Testament, our heritage and present piety, the church and contemporary culture, each other in the church, and Greek to ministry.

Two millennia ago a new order was given that we will continue to live under until the Lord returns again. As Christ has become our bridge, so our living message of Christ is a bridge and our purpose is to build that bridge. We devote ourselves to building the kingdom with God’s help and to His glory. In doing, so we become bridges of God to our neighbors, to another generation, and to people of other nations.

 

All of this is from God who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he committed to us the message of reconciliation.

(2 Corinthians 5:18-19)

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The Psalms in Worship

June 1, 2011 | Written by The Bridge

Dr. Phillip McMillion

One often hears Christians express the desire for worship that is more meaningful. The issue is how to determine what makes worship meaningful and how we can achieve this. H. H. Rowley puts it this way, “The real meaning of worship derives in the first place from the God to whom it is directed.” In a Biblical sense, worship is to focus first on God, not on the preferences or feelings of the worshipper. This focus on God rather than humanity challenges some of the assumptions of some modern views of worship.

There is much we would still like to know about worship in ancient Israel, but most students of the Old Testament agree that the Psalms were important in Israel’s worship. Perhaps, we need to return to the use of the Psalms which express a confidence in God as one who is steadfast in love and mercy. There is a balance between the holiness of God, and the love of God. The challenge for us is to maintain both of these elements in our worship to the Lord.

One of the ways that the Old Testament maintained a balanced view of God was through remembering what God had done for his people. When God called Abraham and led him, God showed his love and protection. When he kept his covenant with Abraham, the Lord showed his steadfast love. God also showed His majesty and power, however, when He sent the plagues on the Egyptians and delivered Israel at the Red Sea. The memory of what God did for his people was crucial and it inspired them to respond to God in worship.

In many of the Psalms, there is an emphasis on telling and re-telling what God had done for his people. This was to be preserved and taught to each new generation in order that they might also understand and appreciate all that the Lord had done. When they remembered the Lord’s actions, the coming generations would also respond with gratitude and praise. This is clearly seen in Psalm 105. The Psalm opens with a call to “Give thanks to the Lord.” For what are they to give thanks? They give thanks for His deeds, wonderful works and miracles, as seen in verses 1-5. The largest part of Psalm 105 contains a summary of the deeds that God had done. In verses 7-15 the Psalmist reviews the covenant which God made with the Patriarchs. In verses 16-25, the Psalm recounts God’s work through Joseph and Israel’s oppression in Egypt. The plagues on the Egyptians are reviewed in verses 26-36. Then verses 37-42 relate the great deliverance by God at the Exodus and his care for Israel in the Wilderness. The people rejoice at the blessing of the new land which they receive in verses 43 and 44. The final line of Psalm 105 returns to the theme of praise to the Lord. This psalm calls on God’s people to praise him, but it also teaches what God has done. Why do they praise God? Because of all that God had already done for them. The works of God were not viewed as ancient history of no importance to the present generation. God’s work was taught over and over again to each new generation as a crucial part of their heritage.

In ancient Israel, if they were to praise God for what He had done for His people, it was crucial that they know the story of these great deeds of the past. This may seem obvious, but it is true. Now, how does that apply to us? Since we are indeed God’s people as 1 Peter 2:9 says, then this heritage of God’s works is also our heritage. If it was important for ancient Israel to know this story in order to properly worship and praise God, can it be any less important for us today? How can we worship God if we do not know the great things which God has done? In ancient Israel, they came to God with hearts full of thanksgiving and emotion, but that emotion was based on a knowledge of what the Lord had done for them.

In our modern world, there is often little appreciation of the past. Anything that happened over two weeks ago is considered ancient history with no possible relevance for us. We must be careful, however, not to let this attitude toward the past destroy our appreciation for God’s wonderful work. We must teach new Christians what God has done, and that this was done for them. As God’s people, we must remember God’s works so that we can praise him with hearts of gratitude. The joy, thankfulness, and emotion of our worship should always be grounded in our understanding and remembrance of God’s actions for us. Perhaps, the use of Psalms such as Psalm 105, 106, and 136 would help us to appreciate the importance of knowing God’s history.

There are many other types of Psalms that could also be used in worship today. There are times to thank God for his wonderful blessings, there are times to rejoice together, or times to cry together. The Psalms could help us to find words to express many of these thoughts. The key idea is to make sure our worship is centered on the Lord. We may well discover that our own emotions and feelings are richer because of our focus on God in our worship.

 

Phillip McMillion
Professor of Old Testament
Harding University Graduate School of Religion
1000 Cherry Road Memphis, TN 38117
pmcmill@hst.edu

 

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