My colleague, the Rabbi, has often publicly made it known that he has been praying for 12 disciples to be trained in the field of OT for the Malaysian church. He has successcully trained one who is now on the faculty of STM. But he is still on the aggressive lookout for 11 more. Any takers to do postgraduate studies in OT under the Reb?
I, too, have been praying for more quality disciples to be trained in the field of NT. At the moment, I have two working under me in for their postgraduate studies, and perhaps potentially another one next year. But we need more. Like what the Reb says, he is not going to be around forever, same goes for the budding NT scholar too.
It takes at least 7-10 years to train someone to be a specialist in biblical studies, be it in NT or OT. The usual path is the 3-year Master of Divinity track, followed by a 2-year Master of Theology, then another 3-5 years of PhD studies.
Let's assume this - both the Reb and I start mentoring one disciple each in 2009 in his/her Master of Theology studies in OT and NT respectively. By the time this person completes his/her PhD in OT/NT, that would be in 2014/15 at the earliest, provided we can secure all the necessary funding, and there is no further unforeseen circumstances that would derail our planning, and that all studies are done full-time, a luxury that not many can afford. This is a very long wait indeed.
Would the Reb and I be still around by then? Only the Almighty knows. As such, would any potential disciples like to take up this challenge? At the same time, would anyone out there like to support (both spiritually and materially) such a candidate for his/her studies?