Shepherds’ Conference Recap – Days 3 & 4

Recap of Day 3 (March 5, 2015)

Session #10 – Steven Lawson – In typical Lawson-fashion, he “let it fly.” Lawson is Southern-Baptist style preacher with a tenacious style of theological application. He preached on the subject of the invincibility of God’s Word. He looked at 7 metaphors for the Scripture:

  1. The Bible is a sword that pierces (Heb 4:12-13).
  2. The Bible is a mirror that reveals (Jas 1:23).
  3. The Bible is a seed that germinates (I Pet 1:23).
  4. The Bible is a milk that nourishes (I Pet 2:2-3).
  5. The Bible is a lamp that shines (Ps 119:105).
  6. The Bible is a fire that consumes (Jer 23:29).
  7. The Bible is a hammer that shatters (Jer 23:29).

Memorable quote – “When you’re called to preach, you are called to play with fire.”


Session #11 – Gregory Beale – In a conference with so many speakers, there are bound to be some that don’t resonate with you for whatever reason. Admittedly, Beale was this for me. I don’t quite know what his assignment was, but it would seem that he took a “problem passage” in Hosea and sought to demonstrate how inerrancy assists us in solving supposed contradictions in Scripture.


Session #12 – Inerrancy Q/A – Al Mohler moderated this discussion with Kevin DeYoung, Ligon Duncan, Mark Dever, and John MacArthur. They shared stories and experiences about their personal histories and journeys through the debate over inerrancy in their seminary education or denomination.


Session #13 – Derek Thomas – DIDN’T ATTEND


Session #14 – Albert Mohler – Unfortunately, I was unable to attend this session, but I did capture some notes from a friend’s blog from the session and Mohler centralized his message on 12 principles of hermeneutics for those who believe in the inerrancy of Scripture:

  1. When the Bible speaks, God speaks.
  2. The biblical text determines the limits of its own interpretation.
  3. Scripture is to be interpreted by Scripture.
  4. The biblical text addresses as sentences (e.g., words, grammar, propositions).
  5. The canon establishes the limits of God’ written revelation.
  6. The forms of biblical literature of Scripture are as the divine author intended.
  7. No external authority can correct the Scripture in any respect.
  8. Scriptural claims concerning history in the space-time continuum are to be believed and taught as having actually happened in the space-time continuum.
  9. Holy Scripture is to be read as a story that contains stories.
  10. Our confidence in the Bible is unbroken. All that it claims is true. And all that it promises will come to be.
  11. Our understanding of Scripture is dependent on the work of the Holly Spirit.
  12. Our study and preaching of the Bible is not an end unto itself.


Recap of Day 4 (March 6, 2015)

Session #15 – Sinclair Ferguson – What a treat and service it was to hear Ferguson speak on the topic of the Holy Spirit and Inerrancy. His premise was simple and profound – the Holy Spirit gives truth to the church. He then proceeded to explain to us that the apostles were spokesman (e.g., power of attorney) for the Spirit, equipped the apostles to give us the N.T., guarantees the inerrancy of the Word, makes the prayer of Jesus in John 17 effectual and then answers Jesus prayer in that chapter by delivering the Gospel of John.

Memorable Quote – “The Father does not lie to Jesus; Jesus does not lie to the Spirit; the Spirit does not lies to the apostles; the apostles do not lie to the church.”


Session #16 – Iain Murray – This historical sketch of some of the attacks on inerrancy in the last hundred was punctuated by his heartfelt and personal call for all of us to avoid the applause of men.

Memorable quote – “Attacks on the Word of God are as old as the fall of man.”


Seminar Session #2 – Austin Duncan – This session was on “The Public Reading of Scripture: Recovering One of the Church’s Most Neglected Practices.” Duncan began by telling us a simple reason the public reading of Scripture (outside of the text being preached) is not common: it is done poorly. He then proceeded to give us some biblical reasons for the public reading of Scripture (Neh 8:1-18; Luke 4:14-22; II Tim 4:13) and very helpful tip on how to instill this as a church practice or to improve on the existing practice in our church.


Session #17 – Kevin DeYoung – My favorite conference speaker, DeYoung, took us to Matthew 5:17-19 where he demonstrated that Jesus’ view of inerrancy was complete. Every single letter comes from a perfect God and Jesus was completely given to inerrancy. His concluding points of application were:

  1. Do not set aside anything in the Bible.
  2. View everything in light of Christ.
  3. Defend the Bible to preach Christ.

Memorable quote – “You will never be relevant when you mess around with Scripture. Jesus does not think you are cool when you are least in the kingdom of heaven.”


Session #18 – John MacArthur – “Running the anchor leg” was our modern example of expositiory preaching. MacArthur made quite the provocative statement when he concluded that a view of the inerrancy of Scripture demands expository preaching. He said that since every word is inspired and perfect, we should preach all of them. He also took us to Matthew 22:23-33 and showed us how the tense of a verb (vs. 31) and Jesus’ reference to Exodus 3:6 destroyed the Sadducees disbelief in the resurrection.

Memorable quote – “If you were going to make a point for something as massive as the truth of the Resurrection, would you build your case on the tense of a verb? Jesus did.”




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