SPM Bible Knowledge Students’ Testimonies

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2015

53

Sherlyn Ng

from Penang Girls High School takes us with her on her BK Ride. She is doing the SACE (South Australia Certificate of Education) course in Disted College.

A recherché roller coaster ticket “A ride of a lifetime” was offered to me. Tentatively, I apprehensively signed up for the ride. With the encouragement of family and friends, I entered and was strapped on the ride “BK journey”. The ride was indeed bumpy in the beginning, I got nauseous after looking at my unsatisfying progress and considered backing out (but thankfully did not). No one forced me to stay on but I was reminded that we should “carry our own cross”.

Aboard on this “rocket ship” was our humorous and nurturing educator, “Teacher Stella”, indeed she was “stellar”. Throughout our long trek up, teacher Stella superbly articulates the lessons to us. During the twist and turns, we were constantly challenged to comprehend and memorise the scriptures. Nevertheless with each checkpoint “survived”, nah just kidding, it was fun, everyone was generously treated with snacks and goodies almost every lesson. Weekly prayer supplements before class commenced and at dismissals knitted us together. Classes were ever so wonderful and enjoyable.

When the ride reached its peak, it came to a sudden stop, a sudden silence reverberates in the air as teacher Stella gracefully parachutes away. Allowing us to finally stand on our two feet ourselves.

Before we knew it, with a sudden jerk the wheels continued rolling, our heart is in our throat, our stomach pirouetted with butterflies. The ride plummeted down at full speed as we battled the quizzes and SPM examination, individually but with God and prayers on our side.

Within a batter of an eyelid, we were approaching the end, I shut my eyes and reminisced.

“Amusing memories of us having pop quizzes, laughing at sarcasm being flung around during lessons, long van rides with our own sing song tune back from Regionals in Ipoh, victorious because we all made it into Nationals, then in August….boarding plane reading the Scriptures, presidential moments when we alighted the plane, awestruck feeling as several hundreds of BK students in our nation gathered for the 19th National Quiz, then later – conquering malls and scampering around the streets of KL in the pouring rain after competition, and finally only two of us scribbling furiously in our big school hall during SPM.”

It all came to a halt.

I got off the ride, congratulated with a flurry of hugs whilst I was unexpectedly awarded with a certificate “A+” in BK. I smiled and wore it with utmost honour, knowing that my Father in Heaven was smiling on me and my name was carved onto his palm. “Rather be glad because your names are written in heaven.” -Luke 10:20

The recherché ride is here. It’s your turn now. What are you waiting for?

54

Chuah Chee Song

studied at SMK Tinggi St. David, Melaka, currently doing the AUSMAT programme at Methodist College Kuala Lumpur, scored 8A+, 1A< 1A- for SPM, including an A+ for BK.

On hindsight, my motivation to take BK was more of an intellectual push rather than a spiritual one. As a leader in the school CF committee, I joined BK related events to be ‘an example’ to encourage others to join in. I did it out of a sense of duty, being a Christian in Malaysia. I did it ‘for the experience’. I did it for the company and fellowship among friends. Besides, who would turn down a day trip to KL with a whole busload of your friends for the August National BK Quiz?

There are more reasons I can think of that were not necessarily bad or wrong, but I think I nearly missed the point. I did BK for selfish reasons. Often, it took a Sunday sermon with a scripture passage taken from Luke, Acts or Genesis to point out the lessons that could be learnt from the BK texts. Even then, those lessons would be forgotten within a week of hearing them. I was relying so much on my own strength, putting God at the back of my mind. He was not my priority. He was not my main source of strength. Despite that, He was still so gracious to me. It was easy to take this faithful God for granted. I was struggling in my walk with Him. Even though outwardly everything was going fine. I was not living my life for Him.

What I want to say is—take up SPM BK! You don’t have to wait till Form 4, or even be sitting for SPM for that matter – just join a class. You may be considering BK for a few reasons. But let your main reason be for God. The words in Luke and Acts will be a great guide and compass for your life, letting you know more about who God is. There are great role models for us among the characters that show up in the two texts.

“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living, so that the person who serves God may be fully qualified and equipped to do every kind of good deed.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17, GNB) In addition, BK lets you go deeper into the background and historical context of the New Testament. (Think of it not only as a much better version of Sejarah, the Bible is TRUE Sejarah).

SPM BK lessons are also an avenue for you to be sincere and upfront about Christianity. Don’t be afraid to question, lest your faith ends up being merely a blind and uninformed faith. Real enquiry helps us “know how to give the right answer to everyone” (Colossians 4:6b, GNB).

BK can really help spur our spiritual growth. Take BK with the intent to “renew your mind”, the “mind” which encompasses not just your brain, but your heart, spirit and entire being. (Romans 12:1-2). I must also add that I thoroughly enjoyed my time studying BK, and hopefully you will too.

55

Edwina Joyce Sebastian

from Temerloh scored an A in BK, 2015. She is in the Matriculation Course in Gambang.

Studying Bible Knowledge for SPM had been both a challenge and a blessing for me. On the one hand, I had to study one more subject. On the other, I was given the chance to understand the Word of God from a different angle. It also really helped me spiritually as I found comfort from the texts in Luke and Acts especially during the hectic and stressful time preparing for the SPM. In my opinion, the Word of God should never be neglected, no matter how busy we may be.

56

Julian Yon

studied at the Methodist Boys School, KL and obtained 9A+ and 2A in the SPM, including an A+ for BK. He is currently pursuing his A-Levels in UCSI.

As I look back at my last 2 years in high school, I realise how much BK has changed me. BK not only requires diligence and discipline, but it also requires perseverance and prayer. Before competitions and exams, I would sometimes wake up at 5am to refresh and memorise the verses. There were times when I felt like giving up as there was just so much to memorise, but through God’s strength and coupled with encouragement from my friends, we persevered together and all the effort is definitely worth it. I really miss the days where we would test each other on the books of Luke and Acts, that was really the best way to learn and encourage each other. For me, BK isn’t a one-man journey, it’s brothers and sisters in Christ spurring one another to keep studying God’s Word and applying it in our daily lives.

Besides these good traits, BK also has helped me in my spiritual walk with God. “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”( 2 Timothy 3:16-17). Many of the parables and teachings of Jesus from the book of Luke still stays fresh in my mind till this day, and I’m constantly reminded of the fervency of the apostles as they bring the Good News to the whole world in the book of Acts! Not to mention the many stories and testimonies that were told by my teachers, and these remind me of how marvellous God is.

Learning BK has definitely been a journey that I would cherish forever. I am forever grateful and thankful to my BK teachers, Ms. Moey, Miss Karen, and Mrs. Lim as they have sacrificed much to deliver God’s Word to my friends and I. Ultimately, all glory goes to God for this incredible journey! My challenge to all those who are still considering to take up BK, just do it and be prepared for an unforgettable journey that God will take you through.

57

Marcus Lee

from SMK Seafield scored B+ in BK last year. His short testimony shows a very grateful heart.

I have always wanted to take SPM Bible Knowledge ever since I heard of it, which was when I was a lot younger. And my parents supported me. It didn’t matter to me whether BK was going to be easy to score or not. I took the subject to learn more about God!

Throughout the entire two years studying BK with Miss Ong as my teacher, I have truly been blessed. I have learnt many things and was able to study in depth the 2 books written by Dr Luke. In addition to all of that, I managed to know about the historical setting of Israel during the period of time when Jesus Christ was alive and the period after.

I am really thankful to Miss Ong Saw Hoon for her time and effort giving free BK tuition to me and anyone else willing to take the SPM BK exam. Thanks to my parents for their encouragement as I took the exam. Last but definitely not least, I’m thankful to God for giving me the strength I needed to last through the entire SPM year!

58

Alicia Sabrina Gomez

from Sri Sempurna International School obtained 5A+ and 5A, including an A+ for BK She is currently doing the A-Levels program in MCKL.

Bible Knowledge is the strangest (you memorize stories about random bearded men!) and toughest subject in the SPM Examination. It’s not like Biology or Sejarah, where you can practice past year questions and still scrape through the exam with a decent A. In a world where As and A+s are everything, Bible Knowledge is a taboo among students. It demands hard work and requires plain rote memorization, it takes up hours upon hours of your time- yet despite all that, I still decided to bring this upon myself.

The National Postal Bible Knowledge Quiz was a compulsory event in my school. It was through this “nasty” dealing from my school’s management that I was able to experience the Bible in a whole new light. The Bible was always something super holy to me, and I always felt that studying the Bible was for pastors and theologians, not for a 17 year old to attempt at SPM level.

As the end of 2014 approached and finals were round the corner, I started to panic. I had not been studying as consistently as I should had been for Bible Knowledge as I had focused all my energy on the other subjects, and I had an epiphany one day that I was very, very far behind. I managed to pull through by God’s grace at the eleventh hour, after I remembered reading in one National Bible Quiz testimony that Bible Knowledge required attention and care like every other subject, but the reason that set it apart was because you were studying God’s Word.

So, a tip for those who decided to join the BK club, if you are thinking of dropping the subject, DON’T.

HANG IN THERE. I’ve been there and I can honestly tell you that if you have reached that stage, it means you’re already more than half way to the finish line. And for those of you who are thinking of dropping this subject because it reduces your chances of getting an A+, DON’T, because think of it this way, if you are worried about not getting an A+, it shows you’re a pretty bright student (because most people just worry about passing), so don’t you want to honor God using His gift of academic ability? I can assure He won’t fail you.

59

Joshua Chin

from Sri Sempurna, KL scored A+ for BK in 2015.

To be honest, taking BK started off as an obligation as my cousins and siblings before me had taken it. Little did I know that there were strong lessons and experiences I would gain from the subject. Besides having a teacher who always put in back-breaking efforts to help us understand, my classmates and I knew we had a God who had a reason for the twelve of us to take up the subject.

As much as each lesson was like a story telling session, it was truly a story written like no other. I did sometimes question the need to memorise the verse so specifically but in the end I thank God for the experience and the adventure that came with it.

BK is not a subject to just add another grade for the SPM. It is a golden opportunity to understand what God did and said through His son Jesus Christ. I gained understanding at a deeper level. Studying BK will always be a blessing.

60

Kayla Ng Chun Rui

from SMK Kota Kemuning scored A- in BK last year.

BK lessons have been a great experience for me. I gained a deeper understanding of Luke and Acts. It included some knowledge of the Roman Empire and the nation of Israel under their rule. I learnt the reasons for the speeches and careful records that Luke made.

It was not just reading some material for an exam. I “visited the first century”….Jesus Christ was on earth then! I found Paul’s missionary journeys meaningful and interesting.

I got to pick a thing or two to apply to my life…..values and principles God wanted me to learn or strengthen.

61

Joel Tan Hui Jie

studied in St David High School, Melaka, and is now in Form 6 in SMK Gajah Berang, Melaka. He obtained an A+ for BK.

The five of us in our Form 5 year , met twice a week for BK – once in Auntie Jagan’s house, where she carefully passed down her experience, did revision of past year BK papers and made sure we were able to finish studying according to the time schedule. Even though we were from different schools, we also decided to form a study group so that we could encourage and spur one another to study as well as to discuss matters relating to our school Christian Fellowships.

Looking back now, we did learn some self-discipline and how to make use of our time. BK was a good way to help us study God’s word, as the textbook has lots of useful information, and questions that help us check to see if we understood the text.

Personally, Bible Knowledge has given me a better understanding of the New Testament. I personally had struggled with the idea of Paul being an apostle of Jesus, because he only appeared after Jesus had ascended. Why were there more of Paul’s instructions in letters than Jesus’ words? Furthermore why is it that Paul constantly had to defend his apostleship in his letters? Those were questions that I had, so I just had to see for myself what was written about this man in Acts .

As you may know, half of Acts is about Paul, and it is interesting, really, how he met Christ, how he escaped many persecutions, and even underwent a shipwreck and finally was bitten by a snake! To answer the question of Paul’s apostleship, the most significant issue was that the apostles themselves accepted Paul as one of them. In Acts 15, there was a meeting where all the apostles and elders met together and Paul was there! Surely, they wouldn’t have allowed an imposter in their midst, as even Ananias and Sapphira who told a lie, had to drop dead. So I had one burning question solved, and now I am able to appreciate Paul’s letters better. I want to follow the example of Christ just like Paul says in 1Cor 11:1, “ Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” And Bible Knowledge has helped me in this. ! I really enjoyed studying BK, except for memorizing the names of the geographical places especially of Paul’s missionary journeys!

So if you are considering taking BK, hey why not? Just be sure to count the cost, as Christ told in his parable, though in this case, not the cost of following him, but the cost of taking Bible Knowledge. I can assure you, it is well worth it.

62

Elvieka

from SMK St Columba, Miri, 2015, BK candidate

Bible knowledge was one of the hardest examination subjects I ever sat for but I never did once regret my choice. It helped me grow a lot spiritually. To balance my time between studying Bible Knowledge and doing worldly stuff was hard. I almost dropped the subject in my second year. However, my determination to continue was high despite the hardship having to cope with the subject. Reading and understanding the Word of God, motivated me whenever I was emotionally down . This is because I learned that God will never forsake me no matter what and that is His promise. It might be a hard subject to take but it was a great opportunity to learn deeper about the Bible. I never regretted challenging myself to take Bible Knowledge. Even though my result wasn’t that good in SPM, it doesn’t really reflect my spiritual growth. Walking through this journey, I was able to get to know how truly compassionate our God is and I am very blessed to know that.

63

Andrea Jeysing

from SMK(P) Sri Aman, PJ, obtained A+ for BK in 2014. She is in the International Baccalaureate Program in Taylor’s College Sri Hartamas.

Taking Bible Knowledge for the SPM examination was certainly a decision that I will never regret. I took it as an extra subject on top of the 9 subjects subjects in the pure Science stream in my Form 4 and 5. I made this decision to take BK because my elder sister encouraged me to do so after having taken it herself. Also, I was genuinely interested in the subject myself and so I started attending classes with Ms Moey Yoke Lai early in my Form 4 year.

I was always reminded of the value of studying BK by Ms Moey and to take the subject seriously because this subject was God’s Word. What I really liked about BK was that we got really deep into the Word and we studied the background history of the biblical times in Luke and Acts. This really deepened my understanding of the Word and to this day, I still find myself applying this knowledge in explaining the Word to others when the time called for it. For me, I found that of all the 10 subjects, the one that really made the most sense to me was Bible Knowledge. I felt so blessed and encouraged after my weekly BK classes.

A good grade for the subject requires a great amount of work. It meant memorising the text of Luke and Acts when it came down to the real deal of things. This was another really awesome opportunity to study the Word of God in great detail and it was such a rewarding experience. Memorising the Word of God is so important and I am glad that I had the opportunity to discipline myself to memorise the Word to do well in the exams. I know that many students view SPM BK as difficult. Perhaps they are unwilling to put in the work to do well. It is hard work that is totally worthwhile. God sees our efforts and rewards us for it. I was extremely blessed to have such an amazing BK teacher like Ms Moey.

Overall, it was the process of learning Bible Knowledge that strengthened my spiritual life. The fact that it was taken as an exam only motivated and pushed me to take it more seriously. However, I feel that the grade is not what matters but only the experience that truly counts when taking this subject. I pray that all christian students will be encouraged to take up SPM BK and bring glory to the name of the Lord. We study His Word and get to know Him more and more!

64

Mercy Linda Joseph

obtained Grade A- in 2015 SPM.

This is my testimony about God’s grace and mercy. Since primary school, I had not been a studious person, but amazingly I would always score in my public examinations. I didn’t aim for specific results but would pray to do my best, asking God to give me what I deserve for the effort I had put in. Proverbs 14:14 – You harvest what you plant.

From young I wasn’t good in Bible studies either. At the age of 10 I started to attend a different church and it was there that God made me to shine for Him. I began to take part in Sunday school even more. In Form 1, I got to know about Bible Knowledge through my Sunday school as they carried out the Postal Bible Knowledge Quiz. I sat for the Postal quiz and obtained 65%. This may be a moderate result but for me at that moment it was a big achievement as I had never done so well before. I was greatly encouraged.

Later on, I continued to take part in Postal quizzes and the National Bible Knowledge quiz. Each year God continued to bless me in ways I didn’t deserve.

During Form 5 in 2015, I went through terrible stress and was always down and distressed. I began to realize that I was unable to cope with my science subjects and BK. I eventually gave up and started to drop out of studies. I always felt that Bible Knowledge was an extra talent I had within me and failing it for my SPM trials was so unexpected.

However, God placed wonderful people in my life during my time of distress to uphold me and guide me. One of them was my Bible Knowledge teacher, Mrs. Janet Tevaraji, who never gave up on me and continued to motivate me. My hope and expectations for my SPM results were so low. However, my Loving Father in heaven never let me down. He gave me such amazing results which were unexpected. I now know that taking Bible Knowledge despite all the pressure actually pleased God and He blessed me. I obtained 4As including A- for Bible Knowledge. It was truly God’s great mercies and grace for which I will always be grateful. I now know why I was named Mercy. Praise and Glory to the Lord who gives us the victory!

65

Dona Supand

SMK St Columba Miri, 2015 BK Candidate

Almost everyone around me was shocked when I wanted to take Bible Knowledge as one of my SPM subjects. Like everyone else, I was hesitant on taking it as BK is known as one of the toughest subjects. I wondered what I had got myself into, especially when I was briefed on the BK syllabus and the structure of the examination.

However, I decided that I would work hard on the subject and do my very best. Taking BK classes has given me a detailed and greater understanding of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ as well as the Acts of Apostles.

Before joining BK classes I used to question the purpose of it all. Why do I have to memorise this text? Isn’t it enough that I understand the message? I finally knew why after I finished my exams.

Studying and understanding the books of Luke and Acts really made an impact upon my life. It would not have, had I not read them often.

BK is a subject worth taking. It doesn’t matter what results one gets for BK in SPM. It’s more than just a subject, it is the Word of God.

66

Elise Kong Xin Yuan

studied at SMK Convent, Sitiawan. She is now studying in AIMST, Kedah.

With God’s grace, I achieved 5A+s and 5As for my SPM including BK.

Praise God for He has done great things for us, and we are glad. (Psalm 126:3) Some people wonder what prompted me to do it. Well, Jeremiah 29:11 spoke to me. I know that God’s purpose in my life is good. So, I trusted him and took Bible Knowledge. Discouragement from certain people only served to drive me to take up the challenge and cling onto the Lord’s plans for me even tighter.

I thank Mr.Tan Ying Kee, my BK teacher for being a humble servant of God. He is down-to-earth and was the only one to volunteer to teach me. So, I thank God for sending His servant to Sitiawan. I am grateful to my mother who sent my brother and me for weekly classes and for supporting our interest in SPM BK.

What kept me going? It wasn’t easy taking this journey with the Lord. There were some moments when I regretted my decision. However, I knew that His promise is sure and I did not give up on whatever I started. He would provide me a perfect and wonderful ending if I persevered.

Week after week, my mind is saturated with the thoughts of God. I remembered being touched when reading about Jesus calling Levi to follow Him. Levi never hesitated, he got up, left everything and followed Him. Levi’s action inspired me to let go 100% of whatever that was holding me back from studying hard. So I let God lead me throughout the whole process. He is in control of everything. And I learnt to submit my worries, doubts and burdens to Him.

It was hard to juggle all 10 subjects. The only way was through prayer. Church members laid hands on me to pray and somehow I felt lighter and freer from the bondage of fear afterwards. (Psalm 50:15) Hallelujah! Only believe, all things are possible only when you trust in Him. (Proverbs 3:5-6) (Jeremiah 17:7) Jesus’ words in John 14:14 stayed with me throughout the exam season: ‘If ye shall ask anything in my name, I will do it.’

For me, taking SPM Bible Knowledge was on my bucket list since it is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I believe it is a magnificent way to glorify His name. Taking SPM BK was my responsibility as a Christian citizen. Moreover that are benefits of an in-depth knowledge Bible text. It drew me nearer to God. Hard times developed in me a stronger and firmer relationship with the Lord. His words alone gave me the sense of security that I needed in my hectic life so that my heart would not faint because of fear. Fear often got the best of me. But Psalms 27 gave me great assurance that I needed to have faith and trust only in Him.

The bonus point of honouring the Lord as a student is the beginning of wisdom! Is He not the giver of life and everything else in the entire universe? He will bestow favour and honour. No good things does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless. (Psalms 84:11)

67

Carly Teh En-Ai

from MGS Penang. She completed IB in Uplands and hopes to go overseas to do law.

BK started out as just another subject to take to get another A. But when SPM ended, God had revealed to me things that deepened my understanding of Luke and Acts. I also learnt the techniques used to memorise verses, ie comics! I grew my love for Him. I am so grateful for all that He’s done for me.

Blessed with the guidance of teachers and help from friends, doing BK was like a gift from God for which I am, without a doubt, exceedingly grateful.

68

Vivienne Ng Yi Wen

from Penang is doing Monash University Foundation Year in Sunway College.

I am currently studying in Sunway college and I took BK 2 years ago in my SPM, 2014. I heard about SPM BK from a church member. He was very passionate about BK and he encouraged me to take this subject. After consideration, I made this brave decision to take BK. Some of my classmates were interested in taking BK too, but I was the only one who actually signed up for BK.

I faced a lot of challenges, academically and psychologically. I had to manage 11 subjects all at once and my headmistress was not keen on my decision to sign up BK. Nevertheless, I persevered through it all and God multiplied my time just like how Jesus multiplied the 2 fish and bread to feed the multitude.

On the day SPM results was released, I couldn’t believe my eyes as God has blessed me with 10As and for Chinese, the subject which I least expected, an A-. It is therefore proven that when I seek God’s kingdom first, He will bless me with more than what I need.

After high school, I entered college in Penang and I was interested in joining a Christian fellowship. However, there was no existing CF. I gathered my friends and told them about the idea of starting a CF, but no one was willing to step up as a leader. Neither was I. When I was doing my devotions that night, I came across Isaiah 6:8 ” I heard the voice of the Sovereign God saying, ‘’Whom shall I send? Who will go on my behalf?’’ I replied ” Here I am Lord, send me.”

That’s when I knew that it was my calling to serve the Lord in my college. By the grace of God, we started CF without any experience. God blessed with us with spiritual growth and also numerically, from a fellowship of 10 to 30 in just 6 months.

Taking BK is a life-changing experience for me and I’ve realised the significance of the Word of God in encouraging me whenever my faith is tested. The Lord will not put you through something you cannot handle for He knows what you are truly capable of. Step out of your comfort zone and start living a life of faith rather than a life of mediocrity. God has great plans for you! 🙂