Mohler and Scroggins charge Boyce grads to make an impact

Communications Staff — May 19, 2005

Graduates of Boyce College have a responsibility to use their education to impact the world for Christ, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Albert Mohler Jr. said at the college’s commencement service May 14. Boyce College is the undergraduate school of Southern Seminary.

“We are to be Christians who think,” he said. “That is why, when we celebrate today your graduation, we’re not just celebrating the fact that you’ve been in an extended camp for four years, but that you have been in the process of learning for these years. Gird up your minds for action.”

Seventy-nine students graduated from Boyce, including 19 from the Seminary Wives Institute and seven from the inaugural class of the Women’s Ministry Institute.

Preaching from 1 Peter 1, Mohler urged graduates to think as Christians in a world that views believers as “aliens and strangers.”

“The hope of this generation of Christians is that the education you have received in Boyce College will prepare you not to be out-thought, but to out-think,” he said. “… Our hope is that the years you have invested in study and the years that have been invested in you by this faculty will show much fruit in the fact that your minds will be agile and active. You’ll be thinking … but you’ll be thinking as Christians.”

One key to thinking as a Christian is to maintain a sobriety of spirit, Mohler noted. Christian sober-mindedness should be rooted in the knowledge that Christ has purchased us with His blood and that eternity is on the horizon, he said.

“We are to fix our hope completely on the grace to be brought to us at the revelation of Jesus Christ … Our lives, our thinking, our conduct, our worldview, our analysis – all of these things must be different precisely because we know what’s coming,” he said.

“We look forward to that day when every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.”

Ultimately Christians should strive to adopt a Christian worldview in order to make their lives reflect the holiness of God, Mohler said.

“We have been confronted with the Word of God … and there is obligation in that,” he said. “But there is now obligation that is addressed to you as well. For you have received from this faculty and from your program of training so much that is now invested in you, and what was excusable once in ignorance is excusable no more. For we must live up to what we know.”

Mohler concluded his charge by reminding graduates that their future ministries will depend on remaining alert and drawing from the foundation they received at Boyce.

“As a faculty and administration we know we will face a judgment for how we taught and for how this school prepares those who would claim the name of Christ,” he said. “You go today with our hopes, with our prayer. You go with our great ambition. You go with our congratulations. But we can’t let you go without an exhortation: keep your minds alert.”

Boyce dean James Scroggins told graduates that their education at Boyce should help them love Christ and His Word with greater fervor.

“Our hope when you graduate is that you love the Bible more and are able to teach it more effectively than ever before, that you love people more than you ever have before, that you love Jesus more than you ever have before, that you love the Gospel of Jesus Christ more than you ever have before because this is a Gospel school,” he said.

The existence of Boyce College fulfills the vision of nineteenth-century Baptist theologian James P. Boyce who hoped “that people from all kinds of social backgrounds and academic backgrounds would be able to come to a place and study and train to take the Gospel to the world,” Scroggins said.

Just as Boyce had a passion to send out ministers to proclaim the Gospel in his day, Boyce College has a passion to send out ministers to proclaim the Gospel today, he said.

“You are here because your task to take this Gospel to people wherever you go and invite them to come to Jesus Christ.”

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