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March 2010 | by Andrew Graham

Defenders of Calvinism

 

A men’s conference called ‘A defence of Calvinism’ took place in December for the second year running. It was held at Bawtry Hall Conference Centre near Doncaster.

      Jared Bryson from Penistone described the weekend as ‘intellectually and spiritually engaging’, while Marius Wahrlich from Berlin, Germany, said that it was ‘challenging but inspiring’ and described the fellowship as ‘precious’.

      Delegates came from different parts of the UK, and three came from Germany. Important topics were presented by various speakers, with each session followed by lively discussion.

      Three sessions were led by Kevin Bidwell from Sheffield, who is finishing his PhD at Wales Evangelical School of Theology. His opening talk set the tone for the weekend as he addressed the question: ‘What does it mean to be Reformed?’ He outlined the authority of Scripture, the need to be confessional, the importance of the doctrine of the church, and the priority of preaching.

      Other addresses by other men included ‘Double predestination’, looking at Romans 9:20-24, ‘Music and singing – which way forward?’ and ‘Recovering the Reformed confession’.

      There was also a panel session on ‘Particular redemption – do we really need to be Five-Point Calvinists?’ Here, four delegates were selected to be part of a forum to discuss the importance of a biblical and reformed understanding of the atonement.

      These conference topics were chosen to show how Calvinism impacts the whole of life, and our doctrine of the church, understanding of worship and interpretation of Scripture.

      Discussion was open, honest and constantly in pursuit of truth for the glory of God. Attendees left with a renewed commitment to Reformed truth and a desire to be ‘always reforming’ in the true spirit of the Reformation.

      There were other sessions, including an introduction to the book of Romans led by Kevin Bidwell, and a closing devotion by Spencer Cunnah from Wycliffe Independent Church in Sheffield.

      And of course, no men’s conference would seem complete without a Saturday afternoon five-a-side football match. If you are interested in attending in 2010, please contact [email protected] for more details.

 

Andrew Graham

 

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