[21–24 March, Cēsis, Latvia] For four days 56 pastors and church administrators from three Baltic countries gathered in Cēsis to take part in the Bible conference organised by the Baltic Union Conference Ministerial Association. Special emphasis was on the book of Revelation and Seventh-day Adventist doctrines which are related to this book.
Laszlo Gallusz, senior lecturer in New Testament studies at Belgrade Theological Seminary, presented historical background of the book of Revelation, and The Centre of Revelation. Jiří Moskala, professor of Old Testament Exegesis and Theology, presented lectures on the Pre-advent judgement, Adventist identity, and Three angels messages.
Many pastors said they appreciate lecture about Jesus as a Mediator, because there is a strange teaching in the Christian circles that Jesus by his sacrifice had to calm down God’s wrath against the sinful men. Nothing could be further from the truth! Bible reveals that Jesus is working with the Father to save people, the God–The Father himself loves men.
Here are just a few responses from the participants:
- Lectures inspired and gave me a deeper trust in God’s love. It would be good if we could have such conference every year.
- These days together with the lecturers gave me even greater motivation to serve others, to be part of God’s family and invite others! Thanks! I got a much broader view of Adventism. That it is not life just between the “pillars” (of faith)!
- It’s important to view complex topics and Biblical message from the God’s perspective — from the perspective of salvation. Gospel is a message of joy! Both in personal and public ministry of the church we need a healthy balance — and this seminar only strengthened this idea. Thank you!
- This was a liberating seminar. It bring joy to people by portraying God who does not punish, but brings salvation.
- To live in Jesus means living victorious life. If personal relationships with Jesus will be better – ministry will be better.
- Everything that I share should reveal Jesus, not me! We can live with safe assurance about our salvation!
- Well organised conference, good food — both spiritual and physical.
Concluding Bible conference, Baltic Union Conference president David Nõmmik said, “This Bible conference was indeed a long-awaited event for many of our pastors. It reminded me the past extended theological courses in Riga, which were conducted by the well known professors from Newbold College and Andrews University. Something similar was seen in this event, where pastors attentively listened to lectures, made notes and asked challenging questions both publicly and in private conversations with the professors. The feedback showed that we need such gatherings more often, especially during such times of constant change and when facing controversial theological issues in the churches.”
Jiří Moskala, Ph.D., is professor of Old Testament exegesis and theology and dean of the Seventh-day Adventist Theological Seminary, Andrews University, Berrien Springs, Michigan, USA.
Laszlo Gallusz, Ph.D., is senior lecturer in New Testament studies at Belgrade Theological Seminary, Serbia. He is the author of «The Throne Motif in the Book of Revelation», as well as a number of books and scholarly articles in English, Hungarian, and Serbian.