Though Bible Conference has always been a key element in the history of Bob Jones University, many aspects of this year’s Bible Conference will be firsts for the University.
In addition to being changed from a full week in March to the majority of a week in February, this year’s Bible Conference will be completely centered on a single theme: The Sufficiency of Christ.
Kyle Wilcox, executive assistant to President Pettit, said Pettit chose the theme before even considering which speakers to invite, then selected speakers who had experience preaching on that theme and who would connect well with students.
Besides Dr. Pettit, this year’s speakers are Dr. David Doran, Dr. Michael P.V. Barrett, Pastor Chris Anderson and Evangelist Will Galkin.
Dr. David Doran
Dr. Doran, senior pastor of Inter-City Baptist Church of Allen Park, Michigan, and president of Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary, holds a B.A. from BJU, an M.Div. and Th.M. from Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary and a D.Min. from Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Doran co-authored For the Sake of His Name, a book on missions, and has written many articles on a wide range of topics.
“I love the opportunity to open God’s Word with university students because God used His Word in my life so powerfully when I was a student at BJU,” Doran said.
Dr. Michael P.V. Barrett
Dr. Barrett is vice president for Academic Affairs at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He holds a B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. from BJU. Complete in Him: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying the Gospel and Beginning at Moses: A Guide to Finding Christ in the Old Testament are two books Barrett has authored.
“There is hardly a more vital theme, not only for a conference, but for life, than to live in the reality of Christ’s all-sufficiency,” Barrett said. “I trust the Lord will use the conference to help us both to understand and to enjoy what we have in the Gospel.”
Pastor Chris Anderson
In addition to serving as senior pastor at Killian Hill Baptist Church in Lilburn, Georgia, Pastor Anderson has written many hymns and also co-authored the Gospel Meditations devotional series. He received a B.A. in Bible from BJU and an M.A. in Bible from the Seminary.
“There’s nothing I enjoy more than preaching Christ, and I’m thrilled by the opportunity to do so at this year’s Bible Conference,” Anderson said.
“I’m praying for a great time as we study and adore our Savior together. I can’t wait!”
Evangelist Will Galkin
Will Galkin has participated in more than 575 evangelistic campaigns since he started serving in evangelism in 1995. After completing an M.A. in pastoral studies from BJU, he traveled with the Steve Pettit Evangelistic Team for six years and then branched off with his family to begin his own team.
While not on the road, Galkin serves at his home church of Gospel Grace Church in Salt Lake City, Utah.
“Without a doubt, my first thought goes toward the students of the University,” Galkin said, “My prayer is the students of BJU will grow in their understanding of what they have in Christ and how that understanding changes everything.”
Another new component to this year’s Bible Conference will be the Thursday afternoon workshops. Wilcox said that instead of a main service in FMA, each Bible Conference speaker will present a 45- to 60-minute practical workshop on a topic that relates to Bible Conference’s overall theme (see graphic). Wilcox said this set-up gives students the opportunity to choose which topic they would like to hear.
In addition to the new Thursday afternoon workshops, the Thursday evening FMA service will also differ from the usual format. To begin the service, BJU choir and orchestra members will present a concert of hymns all composed by Anderson.
The service will follow BJU’s usual praise service format, with congregational involvement. Following the concert, Anderson will preach the evening’s message.