This entry comes from the historic city of Boston — home of Boston Baptist College (formerly known as Baptist Bible College East). BBC is the only Bible college in the state that is recognized the state board of higher education and under the leadership of dedicated educator, David Melton, this school is making significant strides into being a beachhead for training young New Englander’s for reaching this needy area of the country with the Gospel.
This is my fourth year of teaching at BBC. Every one who graduates from BBC must take the course that I teach. (I actually teach the front end of a 2-week interterm course — I provide the heavy lifting of 25 hours of lectures on Worldview, Philosophy, Comparative Religions and Apologetics. Next week, they begin work on an application practicum, visit some non-Christian institutions and do some practical exercises.) It’s a pretty intensive topic. For example today we compared a Theistic Worldview with a variety of other perspectives including Pantheism, Panetheism, Atheism, Naturalism, Postmodernism, Existentialism, Nihilism, New Age and a lot of other “isms”. Watching students try to get their intellectual arms around the nihilistic and existential concepts of ultimate reality, living in a box of experience and the ramifications of those philosophies is a fascinating and challenging exercise. Those that don’t slip into a coma, end up with a level of discernment that will be a useful tool as they challenge a culture that has long since abandoned a Biblial Worldview.
Each year, I enjoy taking in a different facet of Boston and the surrounding area. I hope I will be able to eek out a couple of hours to do that this year. One of the highlights of this week is when President Melton, a Harvard alum, takes us to the Harvard Faculty club for lunch. They serve a banana/bread pudding there that certainly was first created in Heaven. (It might well be the most spiritual thing on the entire campus.) It’s a blast to sit in a dining room decorated with over-stuffed chairs, cherry paneling, art and sculptures as tweed-jacketed professors (replete with leather-patch elbows) hold conversations in foreign languages about topics I don’t even fake trying to comprehend. I feel smarter just being in the room. I always keep thinking, “How did I end up here from Moberly, Missouri (my hometown)?”
I do have a few observations about my time in Boston….
- I always think of New Englanders as fairly-well educated folks. If that is this case, I’m always amazed at how many of them smoke. Maybe its because they have strict indoor smoking laws or something, but there are a LOT of smokers here…or at least more than I expected and I live in North Carolina. As for good breeding, I dropped by a mall earlier this evening and some 20-something lady with a baby and holding a cigarette hocked up a loogie and nearly spit it on my shoe as I was walking by her.
- I’m quite surprised at the number of Muslims in this neck of the country. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised considering some of them used Boston’s Logan Airport as a starting point on 9/11, but everywhere I turn, there’s another Muslim family, speaking Arabic and wearing their garb. Of course, I see a lot more in Charlotte than one would think as well.
- It makes me sad to see all the old churches that once actually were part of the work of the Gospel and which now are nothing more than social clubs or dead monuments to what once was. The place of Moody and other great revivalists is now a cold mission field in need of a new spiritual awakening.
- In a wierd quirk, along Interstate 93, it is legal to drive on the shoulders of the roads during certain hours. It is unnerving to see folks buzzing along the break-down lanes at 70 mph. But it is also cool and I always try to drive on them as well just for the cheap thrill of it all.
- The food in Boston is just great all the way around. From Italian to Seafood to everything in between, it is just great. I’d weigh 300 pounds if I lived here.
- We are experiencing a heat wave here. It’s been in the 40’s daily. Two years ago, I don’t believe it got above 0 degrees most days and and every year it seems to snow. I’m thinking people who buy natural gas to heat their homes gotta’ be happy about this warm snap.
Well, that’s my update. Nothing substantive, but just some miscellaneous thoughts as I enjoy teaching another generation of Boston Baptist graduates.