The Tamale Institute of Biblical Studies has started with a second batch of students training. Out of the twenty-four short-listed applicants, twelve reported for the commencement of the program. The other twelve applicants are being contacted to ascertain their reasons for not reporting. Reasons given so far indicate that the reporting date, as per the Institute’s calendar, coincides with the peak period for farming. Efforts are being made to admit more students to make up the desired number of twenty-four.
The graduation of the first batch of 15 students which was tied to the Institutes annual seminar taking place from June 23-26, 2011, as scheduled.
In all, participants of the seminar which preceded the graduation were entreated to a call to the great commission. Speaker after speaker, the message let us revive that spirit to evangelism as it was in the beginning of Christianity.
The director of the Institute, brother Baah Joseph Okyere in his welcome address, thanked the Bear Valley Bible Institute and all sponsors for their support. He said this appreciable intervention by brother Steven Ashcraft has brought about a great relief to students and an undeniable hope for the growth of the congregations in the northern sector of Ghana. He called on preachers and leaders of the congregations to make maximum use of the facility.
Brother Bob Turner, who represented Bear Valley Bible Institute, in his presentation spoke of the Institute’s mission to train men for preaching of the gospel around the globe. He expressed appreciation for the efforts the Tamale Congregations are making and urged them to continue with the work. He further called on congregations in general and individual Christians in particular to consider the need for training for the dissemination of the gospel.
In another impressive talk delivered by brother Tony Johnson, participants were brought to an understanding that no excuse can be given for not obeying the call in the 'Great Commission'. With several references from the scripture, the great speaker aroused the commitment of participants to go and preach the gospel.
Speaking on the topic 'Set for the Defense of the gospel,' Brother Francis Ayine reminded participants of the protection, guidance and providence of God and said as faithfuls, all should be bold in their evangelistic work.
In the same vein, Brother Roger Ayillah cautioned participants of the need to couple their zeal to spread the gospel with the true knowledge of God and added that all should avoid speeches which have no bearing to the doctrine of Christ.
Participants were also asked to continue to appreciate the past since that would enable us know the way forward. Brother Ampadu Asiamah, the director of the West Coast School of Preaching outlined the zealousness that those who were baptized in 1970s showed toward preaching, and assured participants of a remarkable growth of the Lord’s if all take up the evangelism activities in the various congregations seriously.
The graduation which took place the next day was chaired by Brother Ampadu Asiamah. The function was attended by the representatives of Bear Valley Bible Institute, staff of West Coast Bible Institute, the medical team from Bomso Clinic, members of the Tamale Congregations, friends and family members of the graduates and some invited guests.
It was a short but very colorful gathering. The main activity was the presentation of certificates to the graduating students. The students were commissioned with prayers led by brother Bob Turner. Another significant activity was presentation of special awards to outstanding students. Jacob Adjei Yeboah received best academic performance award, Stephen Abugbilla received both the best servant award and the most enterprising award, and Christian Someritey received the most disciplined student award whilst the most determined student award went to Godfrey Nathaniel Cann.
Baah Joseph Okyere