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As an attendee and presenter at this year’s Theological Conference put on by Sir Anthony Buzzard and the Atlanta Bible College, I guess I’m qualified to write a brief review of what went on and how things went.  With so many of us that post here on Kingdom Ready there in attendence, I would have thought that somebody would have beat me to  it already.  But maybe everyone else thought someone else would write something too.  So here goes.

The quick, very few words review goes like this.  It was an awesome 4 days (2 full days and parts of 2 others) of terrific fellowship, incredible presentations, good food, and fun!  There were people there from 7 or 8 different countries (USA, Canada, Germany, South Africa, Australia, Nicaragua, and I can’t remember the other one or two) and everyone from all over had an incredible zeal and love for Almighty Yahweh our God and Father and His son our brother, future king, and Messiah!

Now here’s the long form review – with links, photos, and videos (where available).

I flew into the Atlanta airport early on Thursday afternoon a little after 1:00pm.  I just missed the first shuttle going to the Simpsonwood Conference and Retreat Center in Norcross GA and the next one wasn’t going to run until 3:30pm.  So I decided to be adverturous and ride the Atlanta train system.  The “MARTA” train terminal is right there at the airport, so for $2 I got on it and rode it all the way to the town just to the south of Norcross called Doraville.  There at the Doraville station I walked out and got into a cab and in 10 minutes I was at Simpsonwood.  For those that have never been there, it is a BEAUTIFUL establishment.  The pictures on their website are pretty, but they really don’t do it justice.  Two hundred acres of woodlands along the Cattahoochee River makes for a serene and tranquil place to have a theological conference for sure!  As I was arriving,  Anthony and Barbara Buzzard were just getting there too and we greeting one another and talked in the lobby for awhile.  It was great to see them again and so many others I had met the previous year at the conference.  It brought back memories and the feeling I typically got when first arriving at summer church camp back in Oklahoma when I was a kid (Camp Shockley – the Oklahoma Advent Christian Campgrounds in Francis OK).  A comforting feeling of returning home to family you don’t get to see that often. Registration started at 4:00pm and then dinner at Simpsonwood’s cafeteria opened at 5:30pm.  Then that evening starting at 7:15pm the conference officially got underway.

BTW, speaking of the cafeteria, if you haven’t been to this conference at Simpsonwood, trust me – you will not go away hungry! You get three BIG meals a day of all-you-can eat home cooking. I suggest dieting before going because you will come home a few lbs greater!

It was also a grand meeting of Kingdom Ready BLOGGERS! Yes in attendence were: myself, Sean, Angela, Jaco, Xavier, along with our newest contributor – Steve Katsaras.  I also got to meet Sean’s father Vince Finnegan (originator and pastor of the Living Hope and International Ministries church and site that hosts Kingdom Ready) and his very cool father-in-law Hugh.

Here’s the full schedule along with the presenters and subjects/topics.  I’m also posting some photographs since a picture truly is worth a thousand words (and I don’t want to type that much and I’m sure you don’t want to read that much either). Also Dan Gill and his wife Sharon ran video of the entire conference.  I’m sure Dan will put up most if not all the presenters on his 21stcr.org web site.  So as they come available there, I will link to them there from this post.

Thursday May 12th

7:15pm Welcome/Opening

7:30pm Dan Gill: “Was Jesus a Christian?” Dan did a great presentation on how different Christianity of today is compared to what Jesus actually said and taught.  So much so that most Christian churches would kick Jesus out of their congregations if they did not know who he was.  And from what he said and did then, they probably wouldn’t recognize him. 

Dan Gill presnting

Friday May 13th

8:30 Breakfast and Late Registration (Yum! Loads of real bacon, sausage, eggs, biscuits and gravy!!!)

9:15am Dave Maas: “What’s in a Name?  Dave’s subject covered the Jewish Roots (and to some extent the Hebrew names) movement that is spreading quite a bit in the US.  More to the point that many within the movement are taking things WAY too far – bascially becoming “enforcers” of all-things Hebraic and doing away with the very things that Jesus embodied as Messiah and freed us from.

Dave Maas presents

10:30am Faith Stories (Where people attending the conference tell how they came to their current point in their faith journey.)  During this time Angela (KR’s own) & Tony Moore got up and gave a report on how well their church startup had been doing over the past year.  Also Joe Martin’s wife Rebecca gave a report on the Church of God General Conference’s mission trips to Malawi and Mozambique.

Angela & Tony Moore telling about their start-up church.

11:30am Lunch/Free Time

1:30pm Dr. Joe Martin: “The Servant of YHWH: A Messianic Job Description“.  Joe is a GREAT speaker and is very exciting to hear in person.  He has that wonderful, old-school southern preacher charm that really gets one fired-up. See it for yourself here (also from Dan Gill’s 21stcr.org web site: http://www.21stcr.org/multimedia-2011/jm-servant_yhwh_messianic_job_description/Play_webDVD.html

Dr. Joe Martin presenting

2:30pm Break time

3:00pm Ron Shockley (yes, yours truly): “A Common Sense Approach to the Biblical Presentation of Jesus, Death, and THE Devil” (I’ll start posting segments from this paper soon.  And I mean segments, I wrote an EPIC length paper, so it would be best to break it up into much smaller, eaiser to digest chunks.)

Me trying not to mess up!

4:00pm Free Time

5:30pm Evening Meal

7:00pm Steve Katsaras (our new KR contributor): “The Jesus Legends” Steve  may explain/write about his own paper here on KR.  And you can see Steve’s presentation now on Dan Gill’s web site 21stcr.org at the following link: http://www.21stcr.org/multimedia-2011/sk-jesus_legends/Play_webDVD.html

Steve Katsaras presenting

Friday evening we had our first “game night”.  Angela and her husband Tony brought along “Catch Phrase” and a Bible trivia game and we stayed up late playing both and even a hyrbid of the two – “Bible Catch Phrase”.

Saturday May 14th

8:30am Breakfast (Bacon, Eggs, & Biscuits and Gravy once again!  I must eat more and more!  Yikes!!)

9:15am Karl Ahrens: “Providing Churches for Isolated Believers”  Karl presented some interesting ideas on using video conferencing technology to bring scattered “unitarian Christian believers” together for somekind of community church services.

10:30am Faith Stories Part 2 During this segment Carlos (Xavier) Jimenz presented a nice piece on his trip to the birth place of original Socian “Michael Servetus” in Spain (in the village of Villanueva de Sijena). Additionally Jaysen Zea from the Cornerstone Bible Church in nearby McDonough GA gave a report on his efforts to help the Georgia tornado vicitms.

11:30am Baptism of GiGi (our visitor from Germany who wanted to get baptised after knowing/understanding the truth of the One God and his Messiah) 

Gathering at the river for the baptism Dr. Joe & Dan Gill baptising GiGi from Germany.She was thrilled the sun was breaking through the clouds just then.

12:30 Lunch/Free Time

1:30pm Jaco van Zyl: “Psalm 110:1 and the Status of the Second Lord”  Yes this is the “Jaco” we’ve come to know and love here on Kingdom Ready.  Soon we’ll have to have Jaco present his paper in person here on the site.  He did a fantastic job on how the truth of Psalm 110:1 totally destroys the Trinity.

Jaco presenting

2:30pm Break time

3:00pm Sean Finnegan: “Five Major Problems with the Trinity”  Sean humorously took the trinitarian position while self-admitting some of the key issues that trinitarians have trouble defending.  Sean posted on this very subject earlier this year here on KR.

Sean presenting

4:00pm Free Time

5:30pm Evening Meal

7:00pm Anthony Buzzard: Towards and Abrahamic Unity on Simple Basics”  Anthony is always a treat to hear speak in person.  His tremendous knowledge and passion for the subject along with his wonderful British accent always seem to enthrall the audience while setting them at ease.  His presentation covered a host of subjects from the true Gospel of the Kingdom, to how modern Christian denominations and even Bible translations miss the point of who Jesus actually was and what he actually preached.

Anthony presenting

Saturday night was game night “round 2”.  Except we got an even larger round of players.  Steve, Jaco, Sean, Angela, Tony, Paul & Jessica Rankin, GiGi, and me all played way too many rounds of Catch Phrase way to late into the night! It really was a lot of fun.

Sunday May 15th

8:30pm Breakfast (Ok, last day.  I”ll have a little fruit to make myself feel a tinge better.  But I still must have one last round of bacon & biscuits and gravy!!)

9:15am Joel Hemphill: “Worshiping God in Spirit and in Truth” Joel presented some short segments from his newest book “Glory to God in the Highest” along with his ever entertaining stories.

Joel Hemphill presenting

10:30am Kent Ross: “Buying the Truth and Selling it Not” Kent is the originator of the Theological Conference (2o years ago this year) and gave a nice presentation on the value of Biblical truth.

Kent Ross presenting

12:00pm Lunch & Dismissal

The KR blog guys (Angela had already left)

After the conference ended, I rode with Carlos over to Anthony & Barbara’s beautiful home for ice cream and the grand tour of their gorgeous yard & gardens before getting down to some bible study (a.k.a. the “After-Conference Class” taught by Anthony).  We barely got into it when it was time for me to go to the airport.  I really wish I could have stayed the rest of the day and all day the next for the rest of the study.  Well, maybe next year!

For anyone thinking of going, I HIGHLY reccommend it! It truly is a spirit-lifting experience.  You will learn something for sure. But more importantly, you will develop friendships with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ that also recognize the truths that Scripture presents about the one God, His human Messiah Jesus, and the coming Kingdom of God on earth!

18 Responses to “20th Theological Conference, 2011 – Ron’s Review”

  1. on 03 Jun 2011 at 9:06 amAngela

    Thank you, Ron, for posting such a great review, super photos (professional quality!), and bringing back fond memories of a very, very special conference with fellow brothers & sisters in Christ! Tony & I had a simply marvelous time at the 20th and were glad to have been able to attend.

    I thought it was humorous, that you mentioned the very unofficial ‘game night’ in your review…probably the spontaneous fellowship of the evenings, was the BEST part for me…. except staying up until the wee hours made it a bit rough on us the following day, but oh so worth it! 🙂

    Great post, Ron!

  2. on 03 Jun 2011 at 9:07 amAngela

    and just a side note…from the game night…we can sure tell which KR bloggers are the most competitive….lol.

  3. on 03 Jun 2011 at 10:19 amXavier

    Ron S

    Carlos (Xavier) Jimenz

    Misspelled bro…just call me Xavier. 😉

    I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to all those people we had promised a special 20th Ann. cake. Due to unforeseeable circumstances we were not able to do so.

    Maybe next year…

  4. on 03 Jun 2011 at 10:23 amRon S.

    Thanks Angela! Though I don’t know about the “pro” quality. I really should invest in a better quality zoom with a little more power to frame-up the speaker/presenters better – or sit on the front row. AND I somehow totally missed getting a photo of Karl’s presentation. I also should have got one of Carlos during his Michael Servetus presentation.

    Both game nights were a…..(oh what’s that word that starts with a “b” and is like dynamite exploding….hmmmm, I can’t think of it..)! We’ll definitely have to try that again next year. I could even bring my electronic versions of Catch Phrase.

  5. on 03 Jun 2011 at 10:26 amRon S.

    Sorry Xavier. Did I leave out an “e” there before the z?

    Yeah dude! I was REALLY looking foward to that cake! Lol, maybe it is mythical like the trinity.

  6. on 03 Jun 2011 at 10:49 amXavier

    Ron S.

    I also should have got one of Carlos during his Michael Servetus presentation.

    YES YOU SHOULD HAVE! What gives?! ;p

    …maybe it is mythical like the trinity.

    Actually it was one of them plastic cakes. 😉

  7. on 03 Jun 2011 at 4:38 pmVictor

    Ron, thanks a lot for this, I really enjoyed reading and seeing the pictures. VG

  8. on 03 Jun 2011 at 6:39 pmRon S.

    Thanks Victor! It was really great to finally meet you in person and chat a bit. Hope we all can make it again next year!

  9. on 03 Jun 2011 at 8:31 pmSteve

    Fantastic review Ron. Very well laid out and presented.
    Reading your article and browsing the photos brought back wonderful memories. I certainly went away encouraged, edified and determined to continue spreading these long hidden truths – that mainstream Christianity has ignored.

  10. on 04 Jun 2011 at 3:20 pmRon S.

    Victor,

    Sorry amigo. Obviously I got you confused with Vince Finnegan. For some reason my brain saw the “Vi” part of your name and substituted Vince for Victor. You weren’t there this year. Though I do hope you can make it next year! 🙂

  11. on 04 Jun 2011 at 10:00 pmSean

    Ron,

    I too thank you for this excellent post. It was wonderful to read it and I think it may help others to come next year.

  12. on 09 Jun 2011 at 7:45 amSteve Cook

    Are there any recordings of the conference online?

  13. on 09 Jun 2011 at 9:22 amXavier

    Steve Cook

    Are there any recordings of the conference online?

    The Gills, as usual, have done an excellent job capturing some of the “fun”… http://www.21stcr.org/

    Let’s pray they can do it again come 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.

  14. on 09 Jun 2011 at 2:34 pmRon S.

    Steve,

    Right now, there are only two of the speakers’ sessions that are available for viewing on the 21stcr site (links above and directly in the article). We hope that eventually more of them will be available on their site.

  15. on 09 Jun 2011 at 2:34 pmRon S.

    Xavier,

    What is happening in 2012 in Melbourne??

  16. on 05 Jul 2011 at 11:53 amSarah

    Hi guys,

    Any word whether the MP3’s from this conference will eventually be available on the ChristianMonotheism website? The past One God conference audio files were invaluable to me.

    I hope you folks will continue recording and distributing these for public consumption – it’s deperately needed and very hard to find these days.

    Sarah

  17. on 05 Jul 2011 at 1:19 pmXavier

    Ron S.

    What is happening in 2012 in Melbourne??

    Steve K and co. might plan something for Nov. 2012. We’ll keep you posted.

    Sarah

    Any word whether the MP3′s from this conference will eventually be available on the ChristianMonotheism website?

    Check out the link for some of the vids:
    http://www.21stcr.org/

  18. on 25 Jun 2013 at 10:15 amGigi

    Hi Ron, I loved the game nights too. I really had problems to understand the games and this was so much fun to me.

    I was so thrilled that the sun came out, because I prayed for a sign , that God wanted this re baptism from me. It was dark no sun on Friday and I asked God… if it His will, that He let the sun comes out.

    When we came to the river on Saturday and Dr. Joe Martin standing in the river it was dark. After my baptism was finish and Dr. Joe Martin and Dan Gill prayed for me the sun came out. Praise God for listening to my Prayer, that my re baptism was His will. My first baptism has been …in the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit…

    I am thankful, that I had the opportunity to get re baptized at the conference, in the Name of our Lord Jesus.

    God bless

  

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