Archives for August 13, 2022

Singapore and Jakarta

We have spent two days on the island of Bali, Indonesia resting and getting over jet lag, as well as meeting with friends of the seminary I will teach at in Jakarta, Indonesia next week, the International Reformed Evangelical Seminary (IRES). Friday we flew three hours to Singapore, where I spoke to 175 young adults on the Puritan view of marriage and family, followed by a QA session. Enjoyable conversation followed, as we met with Nam Tuck, a minister for whom I preached on my last trip to Singapore and who attended PRTS for a few months on his sabbatical, and Jack Sin, a well-known Singaporean minister with whom I have corresponded for years (photo 1). It was also wonderful to see Sam and Carolyn Poon, and their children Joseph and Alithia (photo 2—Sam is on the far right). Sam graduated from PRTS with a ThM degree several years ago, then went on to get his PhD from Scotland, and is now pastoring and doing part-time teaching in a seminary in Singapore. Later that night we enjoyed the stunning city lights of Singapore from the 24th floor of our hotel room (photo 3).

On Saturday, we enjoyed a delicious lunch with another group of new and old friends (photo 4). The main course was codfish and watermelon fruit bowls, spectacularly prepared in a steaming display (photo 5). Then we headed to the airport, flew to Jakarta, Indonesia, and are settled into our hotel for five days, as I look forward to preaching twice tomorrow in the church founded by Rev. Steven Tong, Reformed Millennium Center Indonesia, and teaching at IRES next week.


On Thursday, our Indonesian friends took us to beautiful Mount Batur, in Bali, Indonesia, where I enjoyed a mango smoothie and Mary sipped coconut water (photo 1). While Indonesia as a whole has the largest population of Muslims of any country, the island of Bali is primarily Hindu. Tourism is their highest source of income. It has a very low crime rate. Population of Indonesia is 270 million, of which 87.5% is Muslim and 6% are Protestant. They were under Dutch rule for 350 years, then from 1942 to 1945 Japan controlled them. In 1945 they became independent.

We ate lunch on the way back with Ben Intan and John and Yanda Prawiro at a stunningly beautiful resort overlooking a river (photo 2)—probably the most picturesque resort we’ve seen in our lives. Mary and I both couldn’t help but think of the Garden of Eden as we viewed the panorama of amazingly lush greenery everywhere in front of us. We could see rafters floating over the rapids below (photo 3). The Queen and I tried out an old Volkswagon that was parked by the entrance of the resort (photo 4). Over a delicious supper, we enjoyed fellowship with friends of the International Reformed Evangelical Seminary (IRES). On Friday morning, we strolled along the quiet, picturesque beach which looks out over the Indian Ocean (photo 5) prior to flying to Singapore.