God Is Faithful: ABTS Graduation Ceremony 2022
God is faithful. He is the Keeper of His covenant. So, when He calls us to take part in a task which only He can do, we rest in the assurance that He will complete it as He had promised. This was a central theme throughout this year’s graduation ceremony as we celebrated God’s work in the region. On the first day of the month, two years after our last in-person graduation ceremony was possible, the audience stood up in honor of the students, and when the magnitude of their applause gradually began to fade, the ceremony commenced. Once more, we were privileged to glorify the God who has called another cohort and equipped them for ministry.
This year’s graduates came from Morocco, Sudan, Lebanon, Syria, and Egypt, and for the Master of Religion program specifically, from Lebanon, Singapore, and the US. The Lord has been using them in the region in each of their unique contexts all throughout their theological training period. Our student speaker for the Bachelor of Theology program, Yaser from Syria, pastors a church that seeks to serve differently abled individuals. During the ceremony, he shared:
Every student at ABTS learned to have a clear vision and mission in their context and to set specific, strategic, measurable goals to fulfill that vision. We learned how to be good communicators and to take practical steps towards change. We learned about the missional church and reaching people from different cultures. We learned that we are all brothers and sisters regardless of our color, race, and past. We learned that the Lord Jesus came to save the brokenhearted, to be with them and comfort them. Today, we need Jesus in our beloved Middle East and North Africa, and in the whole world. How we truly need Him!
With their current academic journeys coming to a close, Hani Hanna, President of the Evangelical Theological Seminary in Cairo and the main speaker at the ceremony, encouraged this year’s graduates to proclaim the gospel and to be the order in a world that is filled with disorder. He said, “God is telling you today that He is a faithful God, and that He has chosen you for a mission that you will accomplish because of His faithfulness.” He reflected on the Lord’s words in Isaiah 49 to His people who were in exile. God told His people: “I will keep you and will make you a covenant for the people.” He wasn’t going to give them another covenant. He was going to turn them into a covenant—an extraordinary presence in the world that says to the captives, “come out!” and to those in the darkness, “be free!”
It is God’s work. He is the one who initiates, and He invites us to come alongside Him. Our graduates have already rolled up their sleeves and gone out into the fields, so we ask you to keep them in your prayers so that they are always watchful to where God is at work because the harvest is plentiful.