Monday, February 9, 2015

Still Time to Register for the Spring Conference and Prospective Student Open House

The deadline for "early bird" rates when registering for the Greenville Seminary 2015 Spring Theology Conference is past, but there is still time to sign up for this timely blockbuster conference. The final deadline for regular advance registration is March 5.

You may still be eligible for a discount if three or more families from your church sign up as a group. Contact Brenda Benson by e-mail at or by calling 864-322-2717 ext. 318 to receive a group registration link unique to your church. This link may be listed in your bulletin or distributed to members via e-mail. Church members (and regular attenders) may register online up until the online registration close date of Thursday, March 5th. To take advantage of the group discount a representative from your church must contact us by Wednesday, February 18th. The church group discount applies only to online registrations and will not be available for on-site registrations. 

Regular individual/family online registration is available for the three-day annual program on the timely and much-debated theme "The Law of God in a Lawless Age."

The conference will be held from Tuesday, March 10th, through Thursday, March 12th, at Woodruff Road Presbyterian Church in Simpsonville, S.C. The regular registration rate of $115 is still a bargain. You may also make reservations for a Tuesday evening dinner ($12) and Wednesday lunch ($9), both opportunities to fellowship and renew acquaintances with other conference-goers. On-site registration will be available: Regular $120, GPTS Graduate $90, and Prospective GPTS student or Non-GPTS student $30. Those unable to attend the entire conference may register on-site for one day for $45 (student, wife and/or child $10).

The issue of the place of the law of God in today's world is a critical  for the contemporary church. The conference will seek to answer such practical and theological questions as: What is the relationship between the Law and the Gospel? What is the place of the Ten Commandments in church and society today? More particularly, what is the role of the law in your life as a Christian?

Dr. Joseph Pipa Jr. was recently interviewed about the conference on the nationally syndicated Janet Mefford Radio Show. Listen here to Dr. Pipa's portion beginning at the 20-minute mark of hour 3 of the Feb. 6 broadcast.

Dr. Richard Barcellos, one of our guest conference speakers, spoke about his topic in a recent interview on Kevin Boling's radio program. Listen here for a preview of his subject "New Covenant Theology and the Law of God."

Speakers and their lecture subjects will include:
  • Dr. Richard Barcellos —  New Covenant Theology and The Law of God
  • Dr. Mark Jones — Antinomianism: The Golden White Devil
  • Dr. Ian Hamilton — What the Law Could Not Do (Rom. 8:3) (Tues. evening sermon)
  • Dr. Joseph Pipa Jr. — Third Use of the Law (Wed. evening sermon)
  • Dr. Pipa — Critique of Klinian Republication
  • Dr. Tony Curto — No Gospel Without the Law
  • Mr. Breno Macedo — Robert Rollock and the Covenant of Works
  • Dr. Sidney Dyer — Paul and Law in Galatians 3
  • Dr. George Scipione — The Principle of Equity and Counseling

Dr. Barcellos is pastor of Grace Reformed Baptist Church in Palmdale, Calif. He is the author of four books, co-author of another book and managing editor of the Journal of the Institute of Reformed Baptist Studies. Dr. Jones is pastor of Faith Vancouver Presbyterian Church of Vancouver, B.C. His latest book is Antinomianism: Reformed Theology's Unwelcome Guest?

The other speakers are faculty members or adjunct faculty at GPTS. Dr. Pipa is the seminary president. Dr. Curto is associate professor of practical theology in missions and apologetics at GPTS. Dr. Hamilton is a member of the GPTS Board of Trustees and pastor of Cambridge Presbyterian Church in England. Mr. Macedo is a 2011 graduate of GPTS and minister in the Presbyterian Church of Brazil. He is coordinator of historical theology at the Theological Seminary of Nordeste, Brazil. Dr. Dyer is professor of Greek and New Testament at GPTS. Dr. Scipione is adjunct professor of applied theology at GPTS, director of the Biblical Counseling Institute and adjunct professor of pastoral theology at Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary in Pittsburgh, Penn.

* * * * *

Prospective Student Open House

A special pre-conference Open House for prospective students will be held on Monday and Tuesday before the main conference opens. For details on this opportunity, see the separate story in the December e-newsletter. To register for the Open House, go here. If you are a prospective student attending the Open House, you may register for the main conference free of charge using this special dedicated link. (Do not use the regular conference registration form or you will be charged.)

Here is the schedule for the open house:
Monday, March 9:

  • 11:30 a.m. - Welcome luncheon in the Student Commons
  • 1:00-4:00 p.m. - Attend classes (Old Testament Biblical Theology, Dr. Morales; Medieval Church History, Dr. McGoldrick)
  • 4:00-4:30 p.m. - Panel discussion, Student Commons
  • 6:00-8:00 p.m. - Attend classes (Old Testament Introduction, Dr. Shaw)
Tuesday, March 10:
  • 9:00-10:45 a.m. - Attend classes (Hebrew I, Dr. Shaw; Eschatology, Dr. Pipa)
  • 11:00-11:45 a.m. - Chapel
  • 1:00 p.m. - Theology Conference begins at Woodruff Road Presbyterian Church.

GPTS Faculty Development: Imparting 'the Splendors of Christ'

2014 Commencement

Excellent teachers in an institution of Christian higher education model lifelong learning by maintaining active scholarly interests and pursuing creative work under the power of the Word of God. As professors teach and publish their work, they add to the body of Christian knowledge and model pastoral experience for their students, while elevating the prestige and standing of their institution.

As previously reported in this newsletter, the seminary is blessed with the addition of two new full-time faculty in 2015. Dr. Michael Morales began on-campus teaching this month with the beginning of the spring semester. He is teaching Old Testament Biblical Theology and will assume other courses in the future. Dr. Ryan McGraw will join the full-time resident faculty later this summer, teaching Systematic Theology. Both have served as adjunct faculty in recent years.

Dr. Morales
“The strong focus on pastoral ministry, personal piety, and on preaching the splendors of Christ Jesus drew me to Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary," Dr. Morales said, explaining his decision to join the GPTS faculty. "I have the joy and satisfaction of knowing that my labors in biblical studies among our students will go on to be poured out primarily through the chief means of grace, within the context of Lord’s Day worship. Because God has promised to bless what he himself has ordained, I am encouraged to think that in these urgent times the particular emphases of GPTS will prove a blessing to Christ’s church.”

Alumni Board Member Daniel Jarstfer points out, "One of the most important areas to maintain a 'no compromise' position is in the matter of faculty. One of the things that I most often speak about to others when speaking about GPTS is the quality of the men who taught me. As the alumni-elected board member, I have been a part of pursuing and approving additions to the faculty. The Board is looking to the future and placing godly, highly competent men in key faculty positions. The two recent appointments are a good example of what I speak. Dr. Morales and Dr. McGraw are both men of God who exhibit the character that we want modeled before the students. These men need to be cared for just as each of us expect to be cared for in our vocations."

Dr. McGraw
These vibrant young scholars will be lending additional stature to the quality of the theological education at Greenville Seminary already exemplified by our veteran faculty, bringing glory to God and Christ's church.

Greenville Seminary's Faculty Support and Development Program is designed to provide a sure foundation for our present and future faculty needs. The addition of budgeted faculty and the death of some key supporters necessitate building up reserves and the addition of new donors. We are turning to those who, like us, desire to see the best for the future of the Kingdom. If you have a particular affinity toward one of these new faculty, we especially encourage you to care for them through your missions giving.

You may donate instantly here...

...or mail your gift for faculty support to:

Greenville Seminary
PO Box 690
Taylors SC 29687

Financial Report for January 2015

The tables below indicate our financial situation as of the end of January 2015 and the first seven months our 2014-15 fiscal year. An outstanding year-end outpouring of donor investment in December has allowed us to maintain a positive reserve thus far in the fiscal year. We are very grateful for this provision. Unrestricted general fund donations from churches and individuals during January fell as they typically do following year-end giving (see graph). Expenses of $93,637 were $6,622 above the $87,015 budgeted for expenses. In addition, we received $788 toward our Capital Fund in January.

fundraising ideas for schools, churches, and youth sports teams
Graph shows January
contributions vs. Budget 
(upper number)

 Donation Income (unrestricted)
 Other Income
 Total Income
 Net Income
Donation Income
Other Income
Total Income
Net Income

 Capital Campaign Goal
 Long-term Pledges Outstanding
 Total Received and Pledged
 Outstanding Obligations
 Monthly Interest Payment
 Remaining Mortgage


If you would like to make a convenient online donation to Greenville Seminary, click the "Donate" button above. Gifts may also be mailed to: Greenville Seminary, PO Box 690, Taylors SC 29687.


From now until the end of 2015, Greenville Seminary urges you to join in our critical-needs Advancement Initiative by donating and enlisting a team of fellow supporters. Here's how it works:

Click on this link and then either select the orange DONATE TO YOUR CHARITY box to make a donation or, better yet, click on the black FUNDRAISE FOR YOUR CHARITY box to start your own peer-to-peer fund-raising campaign on behalf of GPTS. Once you have created your campaign, click on the "Manage Team" tab on your fund-raiser campaign page, then on the "Invite Team Members" box to create an e-mail message notifying your contacts about your fund-raising efforts on behalf of Greenville Seminary. In turn, they will have the opportunity to give or start a campaign of their own.

As you reach out, or even if you do not participate in this effort, we would appreciate knowing about your contacts. We are asking you to provide the names of five prospective donors from among your friends and acquaintances. To make your pledge and referrals, please fill out and submit the form here.
Most of all, be fervent in prayer that God would provide all that is needed for us to do what He has called us to do in this ministry which the church so badly needs in these uncommon times.

Remember, gifts to GPTS are tax-deductible and may include cash, securities, property or a variety of planned giving instruments. (The tax deduction is reduced by the fair market value of any premium received in return for a donation.) See here for information about planning your last will and testament with the Kingdom of God in mind.

Whether or not you can contribute financially, here is another way you can help the seminary: Spread the Word! Do you know someone that would be interested in learning more about our organization or supporting us? If so, share a link to this newsletter. (Click the tiny "M" e-mail icon at the bottom of this post.) Thank you for your continued support for Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary.

Join GPTS for Breakfast at the PCA General Assembly

Each year Greenville Seminary hosts a breakfast for interested guests attending the annual General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America.

We're hosting another get-together in Chattanooga on Wednesday, June 10, at 7 a.m. in Banquet Room H of the Chattanooga Convention Center, site of the 2015 GA. If you're a commissioner or guest, we cordially invite you to join us for breakfast, fellowship and an update on our ministry.

The breakfast is free, but we need reservations. You may submit a reservation online here: The reservation form has spaces for you to indicate guests who may be attending with you.

We hope you will join us in June for a little (pardon me, boys) Chat-'n'-Newsy-Chew-Chew!

Student Life at GPTS

Many students are interested not just in the academics of seminary life, but would also like to know about the extra-curricular activities available for the student and his family. The seminary offers a number of opportunities for student growth, entertainment and fellowship.

Prayer Groups

The students meet in groups once a week for a time of prayer with their student advisors. Our desire is to minister to one another and to encourage students and graduates to be men of prayer.

Student Body Association

As a member of the student body, you automatically become a member of the Student Body Association. The Association gives you the opportunity to serve the seminary and your fellow students. If you are elected to an office, you will also have the opportunity to exercise and develop leadership skills.

Seminary Ladies Fellowship

This group for GPTS women fills the need for a prospective pastor's wife to be prepared for life after her husband's graduation. The seminary wives have created a four-year curriculum that is presented by those who share their experience, insights, and biblical perspective for equipping our seminary wives for their future roles. If you are married, your wife will be thrilled with this group. The Ladies Fellowship is also open to female students, staffers and other women associated with the seminary.

Chapel Services

Services are held on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. The services are designed to assist students, faculty, and staff in their spiritual growth, but also to expose students to various types of preachers and preaching. We invite local Reformed pastors to proclaim God's Word to us at each Tuesday chapel service, and the Greenville metropolitan community is blessed with many excellent Reformed preachers. Visitors to the Greenville area and local residents are welcome to join us at any time.

Spring Conference

The seminary's annual Spring Theology Conference is a service to Christ's broader church drawing attendees from many parts of the North America and even overseas. We seek to deal with current issues affecting the Church. You will find the conferences to be a time of personal reflection and spiritual growth.


Students and their families also have opportunity to relax, improve their social skills, and enjoy Christian fellowship during occasional picnics, softball games, social gatherings, and formal dinners.


The seminary promotes the cause of missions in various ways, all designed to encourage seminarians to consider foreign missions as their future ministry or to educate future domestic pastors to discern mission matters worthy of their churches' support. Students frequently hear missionary presentations in chapel or after-chapel luncheons. Opportunities arise for students to take overseas field education and mission field internships.

For more information on Campus Life, visit our web site.

West Coast Friends: Visit our Booth at the Bay Area Ligonier Conference

Greenville Seminary will have a presence at the Ligonier San Francisco Bay Area Regional Conference in Walnut Creek, California, March 13-14. We look forward to an opportunity to share with our West Coast friends about our ministry. Look for our table in the exhibit area. GPTS will be represented by Development Director Garry Moes.

The conference on "Pilgrims in Progress" will be held East Bay area at Northcreek Church, 2303 Ygnacio Valley Road, Walnut Creek. Speakers include Drs. R.C. Sproul (via live video streaming), W. Robert Godfrey, Derek Thomas, Steven Lawson, and R.C. Sproul Jr. They will talk about what heavenly citizenship means for our earthly pilgrimage, our pursuit of truth, and our future hope, among other topics.

GPTS: Ministering in a Historic Southern Mill Town

GPTS: One of the new anchors on old Main Street in Taylors, S.C.

For more than a decade, Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary has been a key player in the redevelopment of our home community of Taylors, S.C., and President Joseph Pipa Jr. recently discussed GPTS's role with a group of community backers.

GPTS moved from its humble beginnings in Greenville to the unincorporated suburb of Taylors in 1998, originally into a small former textile mill church building (formerly used by Methodists and Baptists) on Main Street, now occupied by Covenant Community Orthodox Presbyterian Church. Since 2008, the seminary campus has been located a few blocks west in the old Taylors High School building, which was abandoned in 1960 when a new high school was built. The building fell into ruin for several years until GPTS purchased it and undertook a five-year $3.5 million renovation.

Remnants of Chick Springs
The once-thriving textile and resort community of Taylors fell on hard times when Burlington Industries closed the sprawling 1924 Southern Bleachery and textile mill in 1965, along with homes in the mill village. Much of South Carolina's renown textile industry suffered the same fate as competition from Asian countries grew. In the 1970s, the community slowly began to recover economically with the addition of major new commercial enterprises along seven-lane Wade Hampton Blvd. The appearance on Main Street of the new seminary building, a large Baptist church complex, and public library were key developments in the street's revival. Dr. Pipa has long supported a proposed county park at the nearby site of a former mineral spa and hotel/sanitarium known as the Chick Springs, which opened in 1840 but failed during the Great Depression of the 1930s. The resort's spring house and a picnic gazebo are the only remaining parts of the resort on the proposed park property along Main Street (see photo above).

In recent years, a grassroots non-profit organization calling itself Taylors Town Square was formed to promote community relations and advocate for further development, including the establishment of cottage industries, shops, art studios and a farmers market at the old mill and bleachery now owned by a real estate developer (scroll down to see photo below).

Dr. Pipa speaking to the Taylors Town Square group
The organization invited Dr. Pipa to speak on Wednesday, Feb. 4, at which time he recounted his involvement with the Taylors Community Association and the seminary's renovation of the old high school, which he characterized as a former "eyesore, drug haven, and blight on the community." He noted that sizable stalactites had begun to form in the leaky old building, putting to rest the claims of "old earth" advocates that it takes thousands or millions of years for stalactites to form. One stalactite has been framed and preserved in the office of GPTS Librarian Andy Wortman.

Dr. Pipa noted that the seminary's Student Commons has been used for functions by numerous community groups, including the old Taylors High School alumni association, which has expressed delight over the rejuvenation of their old alma mater.

Southern Bleachery & Print Works being quickened with new grassroots enterprises

The fourth Chick Springs Hotel and Resort, 1914. Earlier structures burned.
This building became a military barracks and academy during WWI.

Original Taylors Schoolhouse

Taylors High School in 1952 (original building burned in 1945)

"Eyesore" Taylors High School in ruins, 2004

Greenville Seminary today

Entry foyer — Welcome to GPTS

Creation Scientist to Lecture at GPTS on April 10th

Jonathan Sarfati of Creation Ministries International will make a special presentation at Greenville Seminary on April 10, 2015, beginning at 11 a.m. The public is invited to attend.

He will be presenting a new commentary on Genesis being published by CMI. The presentation will be followed by a luncheon and extended question & answer session.