It may not have garnered the hype or the headlines of last night’s Academy Awards, but the death last week of Dr. Howard G. Hendricks, the longtime professor of Dallas Theological Seminary, marked the promotion of one of God’s great saints to Glory.
Dr. Hendricks, known as “Prof” to his students, taught for over sixty years. John Fuller, my friend and colleague and co-host of our radio program, has fond memories of his old professor.
“He was warm and confident but never condescending. He was demanding but delighted in the Scriptures and expected his students to spend time digging into the Bible and determine its veracity and its power for themselves.”
The confidence that John alluded to can be seen in the volumes of scholarship that Dr. Hendricks leaves behind. It’s impossible to boil down his ministry of 88 years to only a few quotes, but here are ten that if fully embraced can change your life:
1. “When God measures a man he puts the tape around the heart, not the head.”
2. “Perhaps the Spirit of God is saying to many of us today, “I want to minister through you. But before I can ever minister through you, I must minister to you.” Don’t despise the educational experience of your drying brook. Don’t throw in the towel… Let patience have her perfect work, that you may be mature and complete. He wants to make you just like His Son.”
3. “Dusty Bibles always lead to dirty lives. In fact, you are either in the Word and the Word is conforming you to the image of Jesus Christ, or you are in the world and the world is squeezing you into its mold.”
4. “Christian education is a bomb with a long fuse—it takes a while to go off.”
5. “Many of us want a word from God, but we don’t want the Word of God. We know enough to own a Bible but not enough for the Bible to own us. We pay the Bible lip service, but we fail to give it “life service.” In a world where the only absolute is that there are no absolutes, there is little room left for the authoritative Word of God as revealed in the Bible.”
6. “Most people don’t think, they just rearrange their prejudices.”
7. “There is nothing as repulsive as phoniness in the spiritual realm.”
8. “God is looking for one man, one woman, who will become His personal representative…God wants me to be available – His messenger boy, a suit of clothes in His ready-to-wear department that He could put on at will to accomplish His purpose.”
9. “How do you convince a world that God is alive? By His aliveness in your life, by His work in producing reality in your experience.”
10. “The Bible was written not to satisfy your curiosity but to help you conform to Christ’s image. Not to make you a smarter sinner but to make you like the Savior. Not to fill your head with a collection of biblical facts but to transform your life.”