The Anniversary Series
As we look back over 75 years in gratitude, we also want to look ahead in faith!
We hope this lecture and seminar series will exhibit not just the work of our faculty but also the heart of Belfast Bible College. We are committed to being a place of learning, to serve the church by using theology to interpret and engage with the world around us. This series will trace decisive, emerging themes that impact both the church and culture and that cut across the generations. We will engage the complexity of each subject with a view to sow hope and recognise where God is at work – and how we can join him.
Through this series we will tackle four themes: the Bible, the church, the next generation and identity.
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Is the Bible irrelevant, out of date or even immoral?
Contemporary society increasingly devalues the Christian Scriptures, partially due to perceptions that it contains elements that are inappropriate, out of date or even destructive. Two of our BBC lecturers will help us explore ways to think about these questions and how we engage with the Bible today.
Dr Karen Fulton will focus on approaches to biblical passages on gender and explore whether biblical views on this issue are out of date, as is often claimed.
Dr William Ford will share some insights from his ongoing research into divinely commanded violence in the conquest of Canaan and the theological questions that this raises.
What are the future shapes of church and mission in Northern Ireland?
The decline of Christianity across the West has been widely reported. This general trend can mask very different local stories and our instinctive responses can cause us to forget what the church is and should be.
Dr Paul Coulter will share some of his PhD research around what church might look like in Northern Ireland in the future. A variety of local leaders will respond to these insights and together we will explore how research and practice can shed light on the direction of Christian mission in our country.
What theological challenges face the next generation and how are they responding?
Dr Cindy Brown will help us explore how young adults of the millennial and generation z age groups view realities like suffering, compassion, truth and justice. How do their preferences, values and needs impact their view of God, what it means to be human and whether or not community matters? What might these trends mean at both a personal and cultural level, and where does God fit into it all?
How can a biblical perspective inform our understanding of ethnic and national identity?
With recent advances in technology, the world has become more interconnected than ever before. Yet, alongside this new global awareness we have also seen rapid rise of nationalistic feeling, separatist tendencies and isolationist sentiments.
Dr Charlie Hadjiev will reflect on some of these developments in the light of biblical teaching on identity, community and relationship to the other. Are sovereign, independent nations the Bible’s vision for a global political order? What role can the history of Israel and the cross of Christ play in our understanding of national identity?