The 22nd Annual Scottish Reformed Conference
On Saturday 14th May the annual meeting of the Scottish Reformed Conference took place at Hamilton College for the joy of hearing the Word of God expounded by two excellent preachers and for the renewing of fellowship with our brothers and sisters from many different denominations. Well in excess of 450 people were there and even more wonderfully, we knew the presence of our Lord as we gathered in his Name. It was great to see so many families with young children attending and the children’s work was not just child minding but, in the midst of fun, teaching our children the ways of God. Also a crèche was provided for babies and toddlers.
Joel Beeke from Grand Rapids in Michigan, USA was our main speaker and this is the second time he graced our conference. He preached twice, despite a throat problem, both instructively and encouragingly; the first time from Romans 7 about our spiritual struggles as believers under the title Wrestling for Inward Holiness and then the three headings Defeat, Dilemma and Deliverance. Dr Beeke said that just as the Psalms reveal the heart of the writer so in Rom 7 we see the heart of the apostle in the midst of our spiritual warfare. The last part of his exposition sought to answer the question why the Christian life has to be like this. Apart from keeping us reliant on the Lord Jesus and his Holy Spirit, it is so to teach us to subject our consciences to the Word of God, a matter so significant amongst Christians in Scotland today. Then from Hebrews 12 under the title Staying on the Racetrack with headings Mission, Manner and Motive, We were encouraged to ‘keep on keeping on’ as did our OT fellow-believers Heb 11 and our Lord, Heb 12. We look forward to another visit from him in the future.
Our second speaker was from Northern Ireland. On his first visit to our conference Pastor Steven Curry gave a strikingly straightforward yet deeply profound message from Philippians 2:5ff, reflecting on the glories of Christ and the impact that glory ought to have on our life as believers – for the prime motive of Paul in this section is ethical. Hence the title, Christ Jesus – A Pattern for Christian Service. When Christ emptied himself we usually ask ‘from what?’ but Curry taught us we ought to ask ‘into what?’ for in his incarnation Christ Jesus made a ‘subtraction by addition,’ emptied himself by taking our human nature.
A new aspect of our work began recently. It is aimed at young people, and is an opportunity for them to have fellowship and address the issues they in particular face as young men and women is a society that is seeking to destroy its Christian foundation and bearings and more than ever to silence the Christian message. Details may be obtained from the SRC Network webpage.
At our next conference on 12th May 2012 we look forward to welcoming Dr Steve J. Lawson and Dr Iain D. Campbell.
Rev Richard Buckley
Photographs by John Broadfoot