Reformed Quarterly Volume 8, Issue 3
Life-changing experiences often occur suddenly and unexpectedly. Gail Sheehy, while in Ireland to write an article, was chatting with a young boy when a bullet blew his face off, and his limp body slumped against her. A vicious firefight ensued, terrifying her. Suddenly, in addition to a colossal headache from the shock, her whole life was upended. Now, at 35 years of age, she began to ask herself, “What counts, what is truly important?” It happens like that.
There are mountains to climb, dreams to pursue, and the myriad of activities packed into the incessant daily grind. You drive down one road after another in hot pursuit of momentary concerns, failing to ask what counts — that is, until some earthshaking encounter occurs which raises ultimate concerns. Then you ask, “What really does count?”
Cataclysmic experiences or not, to find out what really matters, you must come to grips with God and eternity through Jesus Christ, the Savior. That’s conversion. For the Apostle Paul it occurred on the Damascus Road–and he never looked back.
Unprecedented numbers of people are interested in religion, as Bill Moyers observed from the response to his special series on the power of myth with the late Joseph Campbell. Unfortunately, that interest is often misdirected in ways that seem good and reasonable, but lead to destruction. Some congregations and denominations are declining in numbers and impact because they reject or no longer emphasize that salvation is only through faith in Christ and that the Bible is the ultimate authority for what we believe and how we live. People need to hear a clear, unequivocal answer when they ask “what counts?” They need to hear the Gospel. And they need to believe, forsaking all to follow Him.
RTS exists to be sure this message is heard clearly. We train pastors, missionaries, and other Christian leaders who understand the Bible and will show others how it answers the ultimate questions of life. Recently, a well-known Christian leader told me that during his extensive travels in recent years, he had become convinced that RTS alumni are, as a group, consistently the most effective and discerning in applying the Bible to life. As a result, he wanted to know more about RTS.
As you read this and other issues of RTS Ministry, you will discover how God is at work among RTS faculty and alumni as we affirm that what counts with God is what really counts – for eternity.