Moore College welcomes Os Guinness

Last night the College held a special Centre for Christian Living event with internationally renowned apologist, author and speaker Os Guinness, who delivered a stirring lecture about Christian freedom.

It was exciting to see the Marcus Loane Hall so full, and to discover that even more were watching via livestream around Australia and beyond.

The atmosphere was good, and the feedback from participants was universally positive and encouraging.

The night was attended by Christians from many churches in Sydney, graduates of the College, friends of the College, and students, staff and faculty.

Os spoke on “The greatest enemy of freedom is freedom” and reflected on the underpinnings of Western culture and its roots in history to the present day. He outlined how biblical ideas—particularly mediated through the Reformation—have decisively formed the foundation of Western societies. The modern freedoms we enjoy—freedoms of speech, of association, of conscience and of religion—can only exist and be sustained when their connection with virtue and faith is understood and nourished.

True freedom, he explained, is based in the truth: “the truth shall set you free” (John 8:32). It is a freedom not simply from constraint, but a freedom to be who we were made to be. The challenge he presented for Christians was to understand how vital this Christian vision of freedom is—not only for our own lives and churches, but also for our nation and all of humanity.

Bishop of North Sydney Chris Edwards was among those present, and said that Os’s talk had reignited his thinking on engaging with the world: “Deep joy in Christian life often comes from the vast number of people who enrich our journey, but it is often only a handful of really significant people who speak into our Christian thinking. Os Guinness is one of the handful for me. So his reminder of the significance of ‘covenant’ for true freedom and his challenge to be on the ‘front foot’, rather than retreat from the secularist threats we face, made me dive back into his books.

“His challenge to challenge the relativists with their own relativism and to pursue their arguments to expose their pointless conclusions was so encouraging. I love his bravery! He has reignited my will to be ‘front foot’ thinking, then doing.”

Moore College Dean of Operations Cam Capel remarked, “Os Guinness had no notes and spoke spellbindingly for over an hour. I started to get a sore neck at not being able to look away for a moment!

“Christians should not be fearful of the new secular pressures, but instead should go out and respectfully and courageously promote the gospel as it is good news and addresses so many of today’s troubling issues.”

CCL Director Tony Payne commented, “The presentation by Dr Guinness was really quite remarkable—spanning not only the history of our civilisation and where our most foundational values come from, but also challenging us in the present not to despair and not to lose our confidence in the gospel of freedom. Instead, we must think globally about the problems facing our culture and world, and act locally to sustain and grow freedom through the gospel of Christ.

“The question time was a real highlight. And, of course, it was exciting to see so many people, both in the room and via Livestream, engaging with how the truth of the Bible shapes our lives and our whole society. That’s what CCL exists: to help Christians learn to bring biblical ethics to the issues that confront us day by day.”

The College thanks God for a thought-provoking night, and comments from attendees are already making organisers consider when we will hold a similar event in the future.

Positive comments on the livestream and social media include:

  • “This was an excellent lecture. Os Guinness is a brilliant scholar!”
  • “Brilliant. Thanks Os and those who put this together.”
  • “It’s a winner.”
  • “When is the next lecture in this great series from CCL?”
  • “I want moore”

Audio and video will be available on the CCL website within the next month. Subscribe to the CCL newsletter for updates.

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