So, it has been over a month now since I started my first year of Crossland’s Seminary. For those of you who don’t know I have begun a 4-year master's degree in Christian Ministry.
This last month has been intense but also such a blessing. The first module is an introduction to Old Testament theology. Each week I have been given 3 – 4 books of the Old Testament starting with Genesis that I have to study, using a mixture of books that examine the major themes and essays written by the Crossland’s team. After this, I have to answer some questions on each book and then write a 400 – 500 essay looking at a theme or topic that has been explored in the study time. This takes about 8 – 10 hours. Then I have to engage with my tutor group and comment on the work they have done, and they then do the same to me! A few weeks ago I also went away for a study week, having in-person lectures. In addition, I have just finished writing an interim essay, which is about 1500 – 2000 words. It was a description and assessment of the principles of interpretation found in Dale Ralph Davis’ book 1 Samuel: Looking on the heart. I hope to share this essay with all of you once I have checked that this is ok.
At the end of this module, I will need to write a 3500-word essay. This will be an exposition of 1 Samuel 2:1–10 within the context of the whole book. Again my hope will be to share it with you all once it has been submitted.
All of this sounds very academic (which it is!) but it has also been such a blessing. What I have learned has, as I hope you would expect, been transformative to my soul. I have seen the great providence of God in parts of scripture I would never have noticed. I have seen how much the triune God has been seeking a relationship with his created people from the very start, even where in places it may seem very legalistic. The essay I have just written also challenged me on how I may idolize theologians and has equipped me to be more discerning in what I gain from them. I can already see how this is equipping me not only in my walk but also in how I serve in God’s Church.
If you would like to know more, please do ask me about it. I would love to share what I have been learning so far with you.
I would also ask to continue to be praying for my studies and balancing that with the other commitments I have in the ministry or the church and especially my home life.
Steven Driver 11th October 2021