Students gather in Thomas Road and the Vines Center to experience worship and teaching
For more than two decades, Liberty University has begun each semester with a week dedicated to spiritual depth and development. According to Liberty’s website, Spiritual Emphasis Week is meant to minister to the needs of its students while encouraging them to live Sprit-filled lives.
Guest speaker Miles McPherson returned for the fourth time to Liberty to lead the event Wednesday-Friday, Jan. 22-24. McPherson is a former NFL player and currently serves as the senior pastor of The Rock Church in San Diego, Calif.
McPherson spoke on how Christians have an “amigos con derechos” — literally translated to “friends with benefits” — relationship with the devil and with Christ. According to McPherson, many Christians forget the impact that “flirting with the enemy” can have. Just as Christians must be cautious to adhere to boundaries in romantic relationships, McPherson said that Christians must remain equally guarded against the temptations of Satan. He warned students to be aware of the “whispers of the devil next to you.”
“When you make a contract with the devil, you give him authority … legal jurisdiction, spiritual jurisdiction … over part of your life,” McPherson said in Friday’s Convocation.
Sophomore Kendra Smith said she thought that Friday’s sermon was a good reminder to students that Christians are constantly engaged in spiritual warfare.
“I thought his sermon was really good,” Smith said. “(What stood out to me was) the passage that our war is not against the flesh and blood, but against the rulers and authorities.”
According to McPherson, he has been preparing to deliver this message specifically to Liberty students for several months.
“God has been putting this whole series on the Holy Spirit and spiritual battles on my heart for the last six months,” McPherson said.
McPherson acknowledged that Spiritual Emphasis Week helps to set the tone for each new semester, and hopes that it will assist students in focusing first and foremost on Christ.
“Hopefully it kick starts (Liberty students’) spiritual journey this semester and gets them focused on God,” McPherson said.
To stay in contact with McPherson, students can download his newest application called Miles a Minute. Users of the application will be able to listen to and share daily one-minute video devotionals.