Questions & Answers
Ever since we joined the Internet community on 26 February 1996 Stewarton Bible School (SBS) has had an Introductory article explaining who we are; but we continue to receive e-mail queries for more details. Hopefully this article, which no doubt will grow as more and more questions come in, will answer them:
- When, by whom, and how was SBS founded?
- How many students does SBS have?
- Who runs SBS?
- To which denomination is SBS linked?
- May my group affiliate with SBS?
- What theological training do SBS teachers have?
- Who funds SBS ... How can I support?
- SBS Publications ... May I Copy or Translate them?
- Which Bible Version Does SBS recommend?
1. When, by whom and how was SBS founded? SBS was founded in 1968 when I, David B Loughran, (DBL) and my wife Ingeborg Katharina Loughran (IKL) moved with our children from London in England to Stewarton in Scotland. We came to Scotland because my employer, the National Savings Bank, had earlier moved its headquarters from London to Glasgow.
SBS started in the front room of our home in Stewarton, when we invited the friends of our children (we had 3 then, but now have 4) to a Bible study each Sabbath (Saturday) afternoon. Choruses, simple Bible lessons, stories and memory verses were the spiritual tools we used to instruct the youngsters. Working at their own pace, the children copied the junior lessons and memory verses into their exercise books. The children, most between the ages of 5 and 11, were encouraged to decorate their books with cut-outs from flower and travel catalogues. Colouring blanks of popular Bible characters, stories and verses (obtained from the local Bible shop) were also given to the youngsters. At the end of each year the children's books were collected and judged. The best - and the worst - received prizes. It wasn't long before our house was unable to accommodate the growing number of children who attended. So we moved to a hall in the town for our meetings. Stewarton Bible School was born: and, like most fires, it was started with small twigs - little children!
2. How Many Students Does SBS Have? Initially we were able to call the young children who attended our school, 'students,' but when the work grew and adults became involved we dropped the word 'student.' The early lessons were also re-written because the youngsters had out-grown the Junior Bible Course. Thus the lessons became more and more advanced as I endeavoured to keep pace with their enquiring minds. Within several years the Bible Course was being requested by people outside Stewarton; yea outside the UK. The enquirers often wanted the Course for their own children or congregations. These believers could hardly be called our 'students.' Now we simply refer to them as 'enquirers.' It is not possible to tell how many 'enquirers' have written to SBS over the years. What we do know is that the SBS Team has despatched many thousands of free Bible Courses, tracts, booklets and Sermon Notes to many countries.
3. Who Runs SBS? It goes without saying that the spiritual head of SBS is the Lord Jesus Christ, YESHUA the Messiah. At the human level SBS is managed by a small team of unpaid staff. We now have 11 Trustees (5 men and 6 women). The men take it in turn to preach the Sabbath sermons in Stewarton. Mrs Frances Maloney (a Trustee) is the SBS Treasurer. Publications are written by myself (David B Loughran). Our Internet site was initially designed and launched by Trustee Alan Maloney. E-mail is now handled by my son Kurt David Loughran. SBS literature is despatched by my wife Inge, with help from Mrs Maloney. As you can see, SBS is a very small organisation: but we have a very big message, which has now reached you.
I repeat: all SBS staff are unpaid. This helps keep expenses to the minimum.
4. To which Denomination is SBS Linked? Stewarton Bible School is not linked to or directed by any earthly, religious denomination.
SBS is an independent Information Service, a Message, a Voice in the Wilderness; and though it holds similar views to several other Christian groups, as regards:
SBS is not affiliated to or financed by any religious group. In other words SBS is not the secret work of some denomination, sect or cult seeking to hide its identity in order to win members.
- The divine inspiration and
preservation of the Holy Scriptures.
- The Creation record in Genesis
- The divinity of Jesus Christ (Yeshua the Messiah)
- The virgin birth and Messianic role of the Saviour
- His role as the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.
- His bodily resurrection, ascension and promised return etc.,
Stewarton Bible School has no membership! We are not a denomination!
5. May my Group Affiliate with SBS?
As stated above, SBS is not a denomination. We have no membership and we have no mailing list. It follows that it is not possible to 'affiliate with' or 'become a member' of a group which has no membership. Nevertheless we are very happy - yea greatly privileged - to work alongside any Christian group or person who chooses to express faith in Yahweh and His only begotten Son Yeshua (Jesus) by keeping the commandments. After all is said and done, are we not members of One body, the Church of the Living God? So there really is no need for the hand to affiliate with the foot, or the eye with the ear; because even at this very moment that single body is being directed by the mind of Jesus Christ, who is the true (and only) head of the church. The way we see it is, all true believers in the Saviour are already our brothers and sisters. They may not agree with us on all points: but who are we to dismiss them? Many are obviously on a higher spiritual plane than we are; and the Most High is using them in a way we couldn't even begin to duplicate.
Nevertheless, having sent our free Lessons, Tracts, Sermon Notes and Booklets to several hundred church ministers, pastors, teachers, youth leaders and thousands of ordinary Christians around the world, we are obviously working in the vineyard alongside many groups. But we are not 'affiliated' to any. We are simply 'fellow labourers' in the Almighty's Field.
6. What Theological Training do SBS Teachers Have? This question made me smile as I mused on how the prophets, patriarchs and apostles of old would have answered it: Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joshua, Gideon, King David, Elijah, Elisha, Jeremiah, John the Baptist, Matthew, Mark, Peter, James, John and the other disciples, not forgetting the Saviour himself. How would they have answered the question: What theological training do you have? The words of the prophet Amos also came to mind:
|Amos 7:14 ||"Then answered Amos, and said to Amaziah, I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet's son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit:"" |
I am not impliedly decrying theological training: it is important, but not as much as some think. For the fact is, the Almighty raises up believers according to His own standards. Educational qualifications, wealth, fame, talent, social standing, outward appearance etc. are useful; but they are secondary in His sight. Qualities like faith, obedience, holiness, humility, honesty, absolute loyalty to one's spouse, the ability to raise one's family to fear God and keep His commandments etc.; these are the things the Most High values.
"Man looketh on the outward appearance,
but the LORD looketh on the heart.""
But, the question has been asked and, as founder of SBS, I do not want to dodge it: so here goes:
I suppose all this adds up to a reasonably long life of religious/secular study and experience. But, as I mentioned earlier, these things count for little in the Almighty's eyes when compared with the fruit of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22). Only on the Day of Judgement will it be known how truly educated, weighty and effective I have been. That is why I had to smile when the question came in. The vanity of the question is only matched by the foolishness of my answer. As the wise man wrote: "Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher; all is vanity." (Ecclesiastes 1:2) Or as the apostle Paul commented in 2 Corinthians 11:16-30 when rattling off a long list of impressive qualifications "... I speak as a fool."
- I was educated in Wynberg Allen Memorial School, a Christian boarding school in the hill station of Mussoorie, India. The school catered for the children of British businessmen, missionaries, Anglo Indians and wealthy Indians who wanted their children brought up in an English-speaking environment. The school was built in memory of a Christian Englishman called Mr Allen, who's wish was that his money be spent on bringing up children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord Jesus Christ. English was the first language, Urdu or Hindi the second. I was a student of this school for 12 years, from 5 to 17 years of age (1936-1947). The foundations of my Christian understanding and experience were laid during those early years. A large plaque on the entrance road to the school reads:
End-of-term school examinations were set by Cambridge University (England) and I gained 7 Junior School certificates and 5 Senior certificates from that university.
- But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them. (2 Timothy 3:14)
- After India gained its independence I came to London, England and was baptised in the Seventh Day Adventist Church in 1952. I took a leading part in that church for about 12 years: until I was removed from office as Sabbath School Superintendent because I began to celebrate the Bible Feasts mentioned in Leviticus 23. The SDA church does not celebrate the Bible Feasts. Nevertheless I continued to worship each Sabbath at the SDA church till November 1967 when my employers the National Savings Bank transferred its headquarters from London to Scotland. In 1968 Stewarton Bible School was born as mentioned earlier.
- My secular employment, and I suppose one could say that such experience goes a long way in gaining spiritual understanding of life, has been:
- 11 years working as a metal polisher in several factories in London. (1951-1962)
- 27 years working for the National Savings Bank, 11 years of which I worked as a systems analyst in the computer department. (1963-1990)
- 5 years as a computer consultant and part-time lecturer on computer studies at Kilmarnock Technical College. (1991-1995)
7. Who Funds SBS? How can I Support? Stewarton Bible School is is a Registered Scottish Charity (No.SC007855), which is financially supported by true believers from various groups in the UK and abroad. If you feel led by the Holy Spirit to support this work, then there are several things you could do; all of which will result in the saving of souls!
- You could tell people about SBS.
- You could link to the SBS site from your own. If you do not have a web site, see our file: The Labourers Urgently Needed for information on how to create one. If you already have a site then see SBS Contact Persons
- You could Download the Entire SBS Site, print some articles, (placing your own mailing address on them ) and then distribute them in your area. In this way you could join us in the great work of taking the Everlasting Gospel to all the world! Several groups and individual believers world-wide are now doing this. Remember that all SBS publications are Public Domain! See file No Copyright for information about copying and translating SBS files.
- You could photocopy SBS booklets for distribution. Write to us for Free Booklets for this purpose; making sure that you specify the booklet being requested and please give your full mailing address - including the country!
- You could write for the Free SBS website
CD and copy the SBS files to your friends. This is an important
and urgent offer. Do not fail to avail yourself of it; because armed with this disk you will be able to proclaim the Truth in your corner of the vineyard; and I am certain the Almighty will be with you and bless your efforts. The Truth, as you know, belongs to the LORD God of Israel and His people; and you must assist in passing it on.
- You could become a Steward in the Royal Household and support SBS with tithes and offerings; making all cheques payable to Stewarton Bible School (Scotland). Cheques should be sent to Stewarton Bible School, Stewarton, Scotland. As we are a registered Charity (No.SC007855), donations are Tax
deductible. Bear in mind that SBS has no paid employees; so all incoming funds are spent on publishing and despatching the Truth ... free of charge!
- And, most importantly, you could set aside a little time each week to 'pray for SBS.'
After all is said and done; this is by far the greatest help you could give us; and it will cost you absolutely nothing!
8. SBS Publications
List of SBS Articles
See the SBS Index File for a complete list of the articles at this web site. You may even be interested in receiving Free Booklets! Here is an offer you certainly cannot afford to miss.
Truth is Priceless
We endeavour to follow the Master's advice in Matthew 10:8 when he said: ...freely ye have received, freely give. Since the school was founded in 1968 all our literature has been distributed free of charge!
As far as the Internet is concerned we now offer all the files at the SBS site
on compact disk. See Free SBS website CD offer for details.
All SBS publications are Public Domain!
SBS hard-copy literature (Booklets, Bible Lessons, Sermon Notes etc.) and all the SBS Internet files are not copy protected.
See No Copyright for details.
Permission to Translate
In addition to our no copyright policy, you are hereby given you permission to translate Stewarton Bible School publications into your own language. There are two conditions here. They are:
- That you clearly state that you are the translator. This means
that your name, postal address and WWW location (if applicable) must
appear on the translated work.
- If Stewarton Bible School's name, or its founder's (David B Loughran's) name appears anywhere on the
translated work, giving the impression that SBS has vetted and passed the translation as being correct, the following notice in the English language must also appear on your translation.
This is a TRANSLATION of a
Stewarton Bible School publication.
For a free copy in the English language, write to:
Stewarton Bible School
Stewarton, Kilmarnock, Scotland
9. Which Bible Version Does SBS Recommend?
Stewarton Bible School recommends that as far as Bible study is concerned, English-speaking students should only study the Authorized King James Version!
It is the perfect, infallible Word of God and has been used by the
Almighty for coming on 400 years! The underlying text of the KJV has been translated into 800 languages and has gone into over 800,000,000 copies! By comparison modern translations are out-dated and supplanted within a few years of their publication; the reason being that modern translations are based on corrupt manuscripts and many of their translators were and still are - unbelievers!
They did/do not believe:
Since these facts become known to us in 1996 all SBS Bible quotations have been solely from the Authorized King James Version (1611). Existing stocks of our publications which were printed before 1996 are being sent out with a cover note informing readers of our new position as regards the KJV. Our Internet articles are also being corrected and all quotations from modern translations are being systematically deleted! For a full explanation as to why we have taken this extraordinary step see Bible Versions: Which is the real Word of God?
- The Creation account in Genesis.
- The Virgin birth and Deity of Jesus Christ. In other words, that the Saviour is God Incarnate!
- The Saviour's miracles, his resurrection and ascension and His promised return.
- They also did/do not believe that Almighty God has preserved His Word since He first gave it through the inspired Prophets and Apostles. They believe that ALL Bibles have errors and that not one can be classified as the Word of God!
Believers who are not fluent in English should obtain a Bible in their own language; but ensure that it is based on the same text (Textus Receptus) as that which underlies the Authorised King James Version. For information as to where such Bibles are available see Foreign-Language Bibles.
If you have a question, the answer to which you think will be of interest to many readers, please e-mail it to us. Meanwhile may the Almighty bless and keep all who seek to learn and do His will.
In the Saviour's Name
SBS Founder: David B Loughran
Stewarton Bible School, Scotland