Graduation of Bethlehem Bible College’s First Cohort of Students of the Online Diploma Program in Biblical Studies
Bethlehem Bible College celebrated the graduation of the first batch of students in the Online Diploma Program in Biblical Studies. The online graduation was attended by Dr. Bishara Awad, Founder of the College, Rev. Dr. Jack Sara, President of the College, Rev. Dr. Munther Isaac, the Academic Dean, Dr. Jihan Twemeh Nazzal, the Administrative Director of the College, and the graduating students who are from different regions around the world.
In few words, Rev. Dr. Jack Sara, President of the College, and Professor Bahjat Khader, Coordinator of the Online Biblical Studies Program, welcomed the attendees and the graduating students. The student Michael Adel read a word from the Bible, and the student Lama Habash from Jordan gave a speech from the heart on behalf of herself and her fellow graduates, where she said:
“Today, on a personal level, I feel happy and accomplished, not only because I got an academic degree, but because I was able to place a cornerstone in the journey of building my spirituality that started with passion and ended with more passion. The momentum and richness of the courses that we have read during the past three years in an intensive study required a lot of effort, time and dedication. However, it makes me feel that we can spend an entire life studying the Bible without an end, so I believe this is a moment of beginning, not a moment of arrival.
“My journey began with the study out of a spiritual thirst and the certainty that man lives not on bread alone, but I soon discovered, after spending hours a day studying and reading the Bible, that I am standing before a living word that is able to reconstitute us.
“Today, I feel joyful because I became a member of the Bethlehem Bible College family, to which I am very proud to belong, as I used to follow its activities for many years before I started my studies.
“I consider Bethlehem Bible College to be a beacon in the midst of darkness and a light in the midst of a reality burdened with injustice and occupation, a reality that tries every day to dispel our identity. Through all of that, the College brings its serious educational programs, its promising activities and conferences, and its message related to Palestinian theology, especially with regard to explaining the concept of the people of God in the context of the Bible and thus resisting all concepts of Christian Zionism. The College comes today to say to the world, ‘We remain here, Palestinian Christians, witnesses of Jesus in the land of Christ and from the city of His birth.’ This I believe is a message that will remain on earth until the end of time.
“I consider the basic and fundamental lesson that I learned through my study is that Christ did not come to this world to live on isolated islands in which He will only practice His worship and His spiritual life, but rather came to contribute to the fulfillment of God’s will on this earth. He came to be an integral part of reality; He came to be light of the world, salt of the earth, and an essential component of it.
“As for the online study (the ‘virtual world’ as they call it), it was able, in my opinion, to create an actual reality. Today, we are part of one family, and today we are more experienced, more knowledgeable, and more loving of a reality that we want to live until the end, which is to be witnesses of Christ in this world.
“These words of thanks are not enough for what the College has presented and is offering us, represented by its Founder, President, Academic Dean, professors, and all its members, because you all have contributed to building an effective and influential academic edifice that has a prophetic voice worldwide, so thank you from the bottom of the heart.”
At the end, Rev. Dr. Munther Isaac, the Academic Dean, distributed certificates to the nine graduate students. He stressed that we are all ambassadors of Christ, and we as a College and graduates have the honor to represent the King of Kings and Lord of Lords wherever we are, and be a testimony and a beacon for the work of the Gospel. He added that nothing gives us more joy than seeing and witnessing the influence of the word of God on the lives of our students.