“Iron Sharpeneth Iron”

by Steven Chan
7 June 2009

Prov. 27:17 states that “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” According to the commentator, Albert Barnes, “the proverb expresses the gain of mutual counsel as found in clear, well-defined thoughts. Two minds, thus acting on each other, become more acute.” Such was indeed the effect for those who participated in the 2nd Annual Four Seas College Lectureship. We were much encouraged as well as enlightened by the lessons taught by the various brethren who spoke at the Lectureship.

The discussion on the theme of “the Christian Home” was indeed very fruitful and reminds us of the responsibilities of the parents and husbands/wives as contemplated by God. The role of the husband as head of the family was clarified as one characterized not by “lording over” the family but one of sacrificial love as exemplified by Christ’s love for the church (Eph 5:23-29). Similarly the important role assigned to the wife, does not reflect in any way her inferiorities or deficiencies in God’s sight (Gal. 3:28) in spite of her having the supportive role to her husband. Parents were reminded of their God-given role of bringing up their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Eph 6:1-4). Children are to obey their parents – for this right (Eph 6:1). Each one of us should reflect on the extent to which we have truly obeyed the Lord in our respective duties and obligations in the Christian home. To the extent that we may have failed, we should consider how we may amend our ways so that we may be aligned with God’s teachings.

Of particular interest was the input provided by bro See ing Or from Melaka as regards the problem of pre-menopausal problems that may affect some wives which may lead to divorces if they are not handled properly. He warned brethren to be more sensitive to the needs of their wives especially if they may be undergoing such a phase in their lives. He gave a new insight into the exhortation of the Bible in I Pet 3:7: “Ye husbands, in like manner, dwell with your wives according to knowledge” – including knowledge of their psychological and physiological challenges at various points in their lives. Do husbands really bother to know their wives in such a manner?

Brethren, do make it a point to attend such lectureship as you will definitely benefit from the study of the Word of God as shared by various students of the Bible. Also, you will be encouraged by those who are there from all parts of the world. For instance, there were members from Ipoh and Kuantan who stayed throughout the seminar. There was one visitor, Mr Dennis Wong, who first attended the Special seminar with Bro Billy Bland in Klang two weeks ago and then attended the special meeting with Patrick Swayne in Subang in the subsequent weekend, and thereafter spent the entire week in S’pore at the Four Seas College Lectureship, to learn the Bible. He said that he will also attend the special seminar by Patrick Swayne in Klang this weekend on the subject of the Holy Spirit. He exhibits a great desire to learn the Word of God. One cannot help but be encouraged by those who attended the Lectureship. Brethren, make the effort the next time to be with brethren when a study or discussion of the Scriptures are being held – you will be much enriched – as I was at Four Seas College Lectureship.