Thursday, September 09, 2010

Letter: August 21, 2010

Dear Friends,

I trust the Lord is giving you a blessed summer and causing everything in your life to work together for good. Recently the Lord has been doing wonderful work here in our prison and we marvel as we watch Him work. He is blessing our evening yard instead of being locked up; second, He is bringing more and more inmates to hear the Word; and third, He is bringing more commitment and spiritual growth in the men’s lives (we observe). There are some of the speakers whom I have invited to participate in a leadership class using John MacArthurs’s book on leadership. I was also able to teach three night in a row on “radical discipleship” exhorting the men to better use their prison time to seek and serve the Lord.

I pointed out to them that if they were to watch 39 hours of TV a week (that’s turning it on at 6PM and off at 11PM with a few additional hours on the weekend), and spent just two hours a day on the yard in sports and tow hours walking and talking, they would spend a total of 34,840 hours over ten years involve din these things. I said, “Do you want to walk out of the gate after ten years having watched 21,000 hours of TV or having spent that time in the Word of God?” So I laid out a plan for them for one, three, five, and ten years in prison. I shall give you an example:

In one year in prison, you could:
a. have a daily, personal one-on-one time with the Lord.
b. Read completely through the Bible once.
c. Memorize 50 verses (one per week)
d. Study 4 books of the Bible (one per quarter) in depth
e. Complete several Bible study pamphlets or booklets
f. Read 2 books on the spiritual life and one missionary biography.
g. Start a prayer list and pray regularly (daily)
h. Regularly listen to expository sermons on Christina radio or tapes.

In TEN years in prison, you could:
a. have personal time with the Lord daily
b. Read through the Bible 6 times
c. Study 40 books or the Bible in depth (one per quarter)
d. Memorize 500 verses
e. Have regular prayer
f. Read 15 books on spiritual life, 6 missionary biographies, and 3 different systematic theologies
g. Complete 3 years of Greek plus translate the new Testament (reading Greek to English). (I have several Greek students who have been studying for two years and will be read to translate the New Testament in about two more years.)
h. Complete 1 years of Hebrew
i. Complete a B.A. in Biblical studies
j. Listen to hundreds of good sermons

So as I told them, how do you want to walk out of prison? It’s up to you. They could still watch some TV, do some sports, etc. Many or most of the guys received this well and are starting to list out which books they are going to read and which verse they will memorize. Many need materials and books but don’t have them. Please pray. All of this is to God’s glory. Praying I will be a faithful servant. God bless you.

In Christ,



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