Portable Seminary

T omorrow (Thursday) and the day after (Friday) I’m off for a visit to my _alma mater_ Heritage Seminary to talk about missions and theological education. I recently came across the blog of one of my former professors, Earl Marshall. He posted “tongue in cheek” commentary on seminary education.
*Who knew I was wasting three years?*
All those years in seminary earning a Master of Divinity (not to mention the additional years on that silly Ph.D.) when now I learn that I could have bought one book and avoided all those term papers and exams.
I just read about a forthcoming book called The Portable Seminary, described as “A Master’s Level Overview in One Volume.” Even at 704 pages, it’s going to have to be an overview from a pretty lofty elevation, given that I had single seminary classes with that much reading.
The publisher reports that this book is “Designed for anyone who wants an introduction to a seminary education but cannot afford the time or money to attend seminary, who lives where formal training is unavailable, or whose previous education is primarily secular.” The publisher’s catalog also says that it is “A user-friendly theological education without the time and expense of seminary.”
Wow, who would have ever guessed you could skip through the hard work of preparation for ministry by reading one book? Personally, I am eagerly awaiting additional volumes such as The Portable Medical School and The Portable Law School, given that I don’t have time or money to go to such places but am anxious to dabble in those noble professions. Maybe after that I’ll pick up a copy of The Portable Engineering School and get a job designing airplanes and such.
Just so long as they’re “user-friendly,” of course. Who needs all that hard work, anyway?
I end with Paul’s words to Timothy,
Be diligent in these matters, give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and your doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers. 1 Timothy 4:15-16

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