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Expect a lot but don’t claim too much

Where were you on Saturday, May 21, 2011, the day the world did NOT end?

Another scholar got it wrong, deceived by his own intellect. We expect more from a Bible student, but things haven’t changed much since the days of Moses (read Deuteronomy 18:22). While Mr. Camping claimed too much for himself (we claim only what the Bible allows us to claim), we lived May 21, 2011 as Commencement Day at Immanuel Lutheran College, Eau Claire, Wisconsin—another day of His grace.

From the back row in Immanuel Lutheran College Field-House, we welcomed old and new friends before the faculty and graduates entered, dusting off the ceiling beams with the glorious processional hymn “Immanuel, God with us!”

The ILC Chorus carried us forward with “Jesus is the living Stone” as introduction to Pres. John Pfeiffer’s keynote address (GOALS) based on Philippians 3:13-21. While some new goals are opening for our graduates, God has set the greater and higher goal of our “upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Commencement is a good word. It means to proceed, to get going. Another school year has passed into history, and our graduates are commencing toward other goals, as Pres. Pfeiffer pointed out: “We are pressing on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Hymns were selected to beseech His support toward that goal: “Father, let me dedicate All my life to Thee,” and “Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah.”


David L. W. Pfeiffer received his diploma from the Seminary department and will begin his first tour of pastoral service at Ascension congregation of Batavia, Illinois.

Six students were graduated from the college department, three of whom intend to continue their studies in our Seminary department, and twenty-five young Christians completed their high school career.

We thank the Lord of the Church for these gifts: “Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; Let Your glory be above all the Earth” (Psalm 57).

On the evening before commencement, we enjoyed the 2011 Spring Concert of the choirs of Immanuel Lutheran College as they raised the roof of Messiah Lutheran Church with a medley of anthems, somber Lenten devotions, Easter chorales, and coronation praises – plus the synagogue melody “Hosanna to our King” and the powerful martial “Miriam dances at the Red Sea.”

While May 21, 2011 was Armed Forces Day and Graduation Day at ILC, a happy day of rain and sunshine, tears and smiles—it wasn’t, however, the end of the world. For that we are still waiting. We are leaning forward to greet Him and to find our stability at Jesus’ feet.

Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus!