previous -------------- next
On November 29, 1993, a man who had a
tremendous influence in my spiritual and
theological life passed away. Dr. Richard
Weeks was one of my professors in Bible
College. Not only did he teach several
classes dealing with specific books of the Bible, he also taught Baptist history and Baptist polity. Above all, he was in charge of the Pastoral Studies department. He was the one who taught us how to put a sermon together and preach it. He taught us how to marry and bury, and how to handle the administration of a Baptist church.
I owe Dr. Weeks a tremendous debt, for he, probably more than any other teacher, shaped and molded my doctrine and practice. He taught me what it really meant to call yourself a Baptist. He taught me the doctrine of the Church, and why the local church is God's program for today. He taught me what separation was all about, both in his expositions of Scripture and in his accounts of his personal battles against Liberalism. He taught me to preach the Bible, and not simply be a story teller. He taught me something else too, though to the best of my remembrance he never gave us a lecture on the subject; he taught us to pray. Perhaps my fondest memory of him is the way he would open our classes in prayer. In those moments before he would begin to teach, he would pray in such a fashion that it was evident that he was talking to His Heavenly Father.
Dr. Weeks was a small man, under five feet in stature. Yet I believe that he stood tall in the sight of his Lord. His love for God and His Word, his concern for both the saved and the lost, and his enthusiasm for serving God made him a leader to me, and to my fellow students.
The day after his death I was sharing some of these things with one of our church members. His comment was this: "Praise the Lord for Bro. Weeks. And now the torch has been passed." I have thought long and hard about those words for these past several weeks. Dr. Weeks taught me in seminary, and he preached at my Ordination. Was he not, in effect, preparing me to carry the torch of truth after he was gone? So then it falls to me, and to my fellow pastor to stand firm upon those Biblical principles which we were taught. It is up to me to impart to those whom I serve the same enthusiasm and love for the Lord which he gave to me. To not do so is not only to fail my teacher, but more importantly, to fail my Lord.
I thank God that he gave me a professor like Richard Weeks, whose classroom brought me conviction. I hope and pray that I will allow God to use me the way He used him, and that I will carry the torch of Christ-honoring fundamentalism, and pass it on, just like he did.
Mark J Momtgomery