Meet a Graduate
June 02, 2012
Eric Kamoga, M.Div. '12
Eric Kamoga will, Lord willing, finish up a Master of Divinity degree in pastoral ministry this year. After he graduates, he plans to go back to his homeland of Uganda to help train leaders in the gospel truth. “My passion has always been to train pastors in Uganda, and that arose after a long time of doing ministry and seeing the need.”
Eric came to Christ while he was finishing university in a setting where there were many students evangelizing but very few people discipling. As he started sharing the Gospel on mission trips, he observed, “You go to places and evangelize and see many coming to Christ,…but you’re concerned about the new believers because sometimes it’s the leaders who need the gospel.” Eric laments the fact that many in the churches in Uganda don’t have a hermeneutical framework that is consistent with the history of redemption and is gospel-centered. They may verbally assent to the fact that Christ died for our sins, but he says that “preaching the gospel, living and thinking in a manner consistent with the gospel, is what is lacking.”
Eric goes on to describe an experience he had in 2010 when he went back to do some training with leaders in Uganda:
I led a study of Christ and Adam as our two representatives, connecting Genesis with Romans 5, 1 Corinthians 15, and Ephesians 2. At the end of the seminar, one of the church leaders said, ‘I hear what you’ve been saying…but if someone gives you a gift and you take it, and he gives a similar gift to another and he refuses it, you who accepted the gift have surely done something, and the one who refused the gift has refused to do something.’ The whole perspective was Arminian —you are doing something [to earn salvation]. Since we had just read Ephesians 2, which says you were dead in your sins but God has resurrected you together with Christ, I said to him, ‘Yes, we’ve been looking at Adam and we’ve seen that we are dead in our sins. If you have two dead bodies, and you give them both a gift, which one will take the gift? Of course, neither. But if you resurrect one and he takes the gift you are giving him, would you really say that he is doing something to take the gift that you gave him?’ After that, it was settled.
Eric deepened his understanding of the gospel of grace while teaching at a missionary school that had been started by World Harvest Mission. As he taught there, ministered in a local church, and participated in mission trips during school breaks, he developed a desire to attend seminary. He learned of Westminster through a fellow teacher who later became his wife and whose mother (Robin Muhlbaier) graduated from Westminster.
Shortly after being accepted, he received one of Westminster’s special named scholarships, the Weir Scholarship. The scholarship has benefitted him greatly in his time here. He has been able to focus his attention on his studies more, especially taking additional apologetics courses with Dr. Oliphint. He says, “I don’t think I would have been able to do that if I were juggling other things [besides class work], because the apologetics classes’ readings were quite demanding, and on top of that I had my normal workload as an M.Div. student. I wanted to be able to understand and not just squeeze through. So I thank God for being able to take extra classes that I knew would be helpful for my ministry.”
Eric has thoroughly enjoyed the apologetics classes he has been able to take here and he has also enjoyed the way Westminster teaches hermeneutics, and how it is consistently applied in all the classes at Westminster. “Some might think I’m biased, but I think the reformed approach is very consistent with the Bible.”
Eric hopes to take what he has learned and apply it to teaching and training leaders in Uganda. “My heart is more [directed toward] training on an informal level, not so much at the formal level of seminary because most people do not have the resources or the time to come to seminary.” Eric hopes to be a part of the process to train those leaders to better bring the Gospel to their communities.
He also recognizes some of the challenges he will face going back home. “The challenge to that, and I guess you would have to look to the Lord to provide, is the financial aspect. When you go to areas where pastors have limited resources, you have to be able to think about how you are going to support yourself in a different way.” He and his wife hope to get involved in some business ventures to help support their ministry work, but ultimately he recognizes that they must rely on the Lord.
Eric’s prayer is that he would remain faithful to God’s call and His Word. His prayer for the church is for the humility to be able to believe and submit to the Gospel in all its richness, with both heart and mind, so that she may be continually transformed into the image of our elder Brother and Lord, Jesus Christ, to the glory of God. Join the Westminster community as we pray for this brother’s gospel ministry, as well as all the 2012 graduates.
Eric's time at Westminster was only possible through the generous giving of a donor. If you would like to support the work of the seminary through our students, please considering donating to the Westminster Scholarship Fund.