The Autumn University Conference 2018 took place at The Quinta in Shropshire from 2-4 November 2018. The subject of the conference was JUBILEE. Conference participants came from 11 countries and represented 89 universities. Approximately 40% of those joining the conference were there for the first time.
The conference began with dinner on Friday evening, followed by the first conference meeting. There was much singing and praising, and a warm welcome to the Age of the Jubilee.
This weekend I met God all over again!
The highlight of the conference to me were the messages on the subject; the jubilee. In the year of jubilee, the children of Israel who had sold themselves to slavery and lost their possession could return to their possession and be released from slavery. Today, if we are anxious about anything we don’t have to wait for a better day or year. The only way to escape anxiety is to enjoy the Lord. If we are labouring to be a good Christian on our campus, we can stop our trying and just come to Jesus.
Now is the time to enjoy Jesus as the reality of the Jubilee! We have our entire Christian life in the jubilee, living a life of liberty, release, and freedom from bondage. We obtain Him as our freedom from any situation as soon as we turn to Him in our spirit. (1 Cor. 3:17 says, “…where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom”). Hallelujah! Jubilujah!
This has been a landmark experience in my Christian life and I can’t wait for the next landmark in March!
– student from University of Surrey, UK
One of the highlights of the first meeting was going through many verses in the Bible that describe shouting, for example, with the children of Israel and the wall of Jericho (Joshua 6), and with blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:47). This really released us for the whole weekend – opening our mouths to call on the Lord and to praise Him is very scriptural!
Hallelujah! Christ is the jubilee! It is not an event, but a Person! We need to live in the reality and experience of Christ. To do this, we need to be in the Word and to pray. From this, we become those who are so jubilant that we proclaim the jubilee to all around us! I really enjoyed being with those who truly call on the Lord out of a pure heart – believers who really love the Lord and fan their spirits into flame!
– student from Anglia Ruskin University (Cambridge), UK
Saturday morning started with breakfast and then the first group time. We were in groups of about 8 people, from a few different universities. During the group times, we read the scripture verses, shared from our notes on the previous message, read through ministry on the same topic, asked and answered questions, and prayed together.
I enjoyed the group times, there was lots of sharing from everyone, and lots of pray reading, it was a pity that we ran out of time so often. I just liked that we could ask questions and share our own experiences.
For the messages I was touched that God is such a loving Father. As long as we have a turn to Him, He’s just aching for us to come back to His house. I often feel that it’s probably too late for me and that I don’t live up to certain standards of being a good person, but the Lord doesn’t want that. Indeed, He already has the best robe prepared for us, all He sees now is Christ. What we need is to continually turn back, to declare and shout that Christ as the Jubilee has already come for us to experience, no matter what condition we are in.
– student from London School of Economics, UK
Following that was the second message, which was on the Blessings of the Jubilee. One of the highlights of this message was the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15, that is, the story of the father and his two sons. There was a lot of new light and application, causing us to realise that whether we are the prodigal son who left his family and squandered all his wealth before coming to his senses and returned home, or the son who faithfully stayed at home and worked hard, we now are able to enjoy our Father’s presence and to rejoice with Him.
I was enlightened by the questions: “Do you know the Father’s love?” and “Do you know how much our Lord loves us?” I was so weak in the previous year, so I decided to join this conference before completing my studies in the UK. It was really worth it for me to receive our Lord as my jubilee, and I can enjoy and praise Him everywhere and anytime. He loves me and I am back to return to the Lord and to receive His riches.
– student from University of Nottingham, UK
I enjoyed the Jubilee actually is right now. It’s not an event, it’s a person, a living. The Jubilee is the proclaiming of the wonderful release – release from bondage, anxiety, and our cares. Today we have freedom! Free from all things other than Christ! I really enjoyed Luke 15 – when the prodigal son returned to his father’s house, while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and he ran and kissed him, then put on the best robe, ring and sandals on. Actually the father had prepared all things just to wait the son to return. We have freedom, liberty and release while we are in the Father’s house, and only in the Father’s house we are full of rest, satisfaction and enjoyment! This is the living of the Jubilee!
– student from Nottingham Trent University, UK
After lunch on Saturday, we had some free time for rest, activities, or study. A large group went on a walk around the beautiful countryside, while others played basketball, football, ultimate frisbee, and other games. Those who needed to were able to study or work on assignments.
The free time ended with refreshments and snack, and then we enjoyed a wonderful hour of singing and praising the Lord. It was actually so good that it was hard to stop and we overran into the group time!
Listen to the messages and some of the songs we learnt this weekend here:
Dinner on Saturday was a hog roast! All the accommodation and food were provided at The Quinta and by Gracious Catering. We were really blessed by the care of all the staff there, and touched that The Quinta staff prayed for us during the week before our arrival. Those with food allergies or intolerances were also well taken care of, with plenty of alternatives provided.
The food was really good. It’s also always good to enjoy singing and praising with the saints and playing football/basketball. This conference also made me realise that I need to enjoy the jubilee in my daily life as well as the church life if I am to be one with the Lord.
– A Level student from Liverpool
The third message was on the Living of the Jubilee. In this message we saw that our human life without the jubilee is a life of three labours – the labour to be a good person, the labour of anxiety, and the labour of suffering. However, on the other hand, the living of the jubilee is a life of liberty, freedom, and release, a life full of rest, satisfaction, and enjoyment!
I was enlightened to see that there is so much bondage and oppression in the world and in our old self. There is the labour of being a good person, the labour of anxiety, and the labour of suffering. But God’s desire is the reality of the jubilee (Leviticus 25), that we be released from all bondage and slavery and return to God who is our possession and return to the church which is our divine family! Praise the Lord that He has come and has already set us free! Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom! We can simply turn to Him right now by calling His name and experience this salvation! I was also enlightened by the warning given at the end which relates to Leviticus 26. The only way for us to experience freedom in our every day lives is to fully enjoy God as our possession, be fully in the church life, and not have any other love apart from Him.
– student from University of Cambridge, UK
The brother sharing this message encouraged us to consider what will happen when we return home and to our universities. What will Monday be like? We shouldn’t live from conference to conference, but the jubilee should affect our daily living.
I pray that the Jubilee would become my reality day by day, and that the Lord would provide the time to share this good news with my friends and classmates.
– student from University of Birmingham, UK
On Saturday evening, we enjoyed another treat – a bonfire! We also enjoyed toasting marshmallows and more jubilant and sweet singing to the Lord. The fire also reminded us that we needed our spirit to be fanned into flame, and we need the light that shines in the darkness in order to see clearly!
The fourth and final meeting of the conference the next morning was on the Proclamation of Christ as the Jubilee. We were encouraged to receive the commission to preach the gospel and blow the trumpet of God’s complete salvation to the world, proclaiming, “Behold, now is the well-acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation,” the year of jubilee (2 Cor. 6:2). We need to go to the Lord and to pray that we would personally see and experience all the blessings of the New Testament jubilee that we may become living witnesses of the Lord who proclaim Him as the jubilee.
Open my eyes Lord! I want to live the jubilee! I want to share the Lord!
– student from University of Cambridge, UK