History with Hands and Feet, Heart and Soul
I was a history major in college, and I cannot tell you how many hours I spent reading book after book and listening to lecture after lecture where there was no understanding of the meaning of history. We students were thus bored to tears.
Not so with Vision Forum’s History of the World Mega-Conference.
The facts and the figures were the same, but it was not like the kind of history you get in the university. It was history, but with heart and hands and feet...something you could use. Something that would inspire your soul to fill your heart with Christ in the midst of the flow of history. It was the kind of history that made you want to get up in the morning and participate in the grand stream that will be used to proclaim the glory of God for all eternity.
I think Joe Morecraft summed this up very nicely during his lecture “On What Every Christian Should Know about the Reformation”:
Although much of historical writing is cold and unemotional, the history of Christianity and the Church is, to use D’Aubigne’s phrase, “pregnant with celestial fire.” A Christian historian’s primary goal is to show the hand of God “at work in human affairs, and this not only in respect of the spiritual movements of his period, but equally so in respect of political and ecclesiastical movements. God ruling, God overruling, God hiding His power, God openly intervening in the affairs of [nations] and individuals — this...is the essential stuff of history, the principal thread needful for the weaving of his tapestry. ‘History should be made to live with its own proper life. God is this life. God must be acknowledged — God proclaimed — in history. The history of the world should [be designed to show itself] to be annals of the government of the supreme King.’”
What I liked the most about the History of the World Mega-Conference:
First, every speaker had childlike trust in Scripture and believed in a literal, historical, grammatical interpretation of the creation narratives and the chronological timelines of scripture.
Second, they offered the events in history in a way that was supremely practical for life. For them, history equals inspiration. Instead of simply going over boring and lifeless names and dates, they made history live. Every session was a life encounter with God and His will for mankind.
Third, the speakers represented diverse theological perspectives. There were Presbyterians, Baptists, Dispensationalists, and Covenant theologians, all praising the Lord Jesus for His faithfulness. They shared a common belief in the perfection and beauty of Scripture and that it should be trusted in everything.
Fourth, they believed that history should put fire in the bones in the form of hope for the future and an understanding of our place in the stream of God’s sovereign plan.
I plan to use these leactures around the kitchen table to teach history for many years to come.