Gidaju is a tall, young Ethiopian man with an invincible smile. This week he has graciously served as one of our interpreters for TLI’s course on Galatians in Hawassa. During our morning break today, Gidaju stopped me to ask how I was doing. I returned the favor and inquired if he was enjoying the week studying Paul’s letter to the Galatians. His response was far more than I bargained for.
"This teaching is so good,” he exclaimed. “It’s better than seminary!"
“This teaching is so good,” he exclaimed. “It’s better than seminary!”
Surprised and more than a bit curious, I asked for him to explain. Gidaju went on to describe his personal experience in a seminary in Africa. He said that in the classroom he only learned doctrines, principles, and concepts, but they didn’t really delve into the Bible. He recalled that even in his exegesis course they only opened the Bible once.
However, in his words, TLI’s training has been completely different. He’s so excited to sit in a class where “we are constantly into the text.” This is the kind of training he has always wanted from his biblical education—actually studying the Bible and getting practice teaching it. Not only that, but he gets the joy of worshiping with other students as they glean a deeper understanding of God in his Word. From Gidaju's perspective, TLI’s training in Hawassa for the last two years has been invaluable and an answer to prayer.
“This is the training that we need,” he said with a wide grin lighting up his face. “This is what we want.”