November 06, 2006

I Wish Spurgeon Would Quit Living In My Head

Another one: Hits me right where I am today! Lord, simply help me to be thirsty. As I read that, my mind instantly thinks of this great hymn. Also, did you know the story behind the hymn? Thank you God!

Systematic Theology - Chapter 3 (The Canon Of Scripture)

Wow.. a lot to dig through here so I may not cover it in one post. The first parts of the chapter deal heavily with the Apocrypha. Having grown up a Roman Catholic, I found this chapter to be quite revealing and learned some things that I didn't know.

By the way, for those who have ever wondered "What's the big difference between Catholics and Protestants?", you should go here, here, here and here.

To answer the question of "Why Does It Matter To Determine The Canon?", Grudem writes the following paragraph:

The precise determination of the extent of the canon of Scripture is therefore of the utmost importance. If we are to trust and obey God absolutely we must have a collection of words that we are certain are God's own words to us. If there are any sections of Scripture about which we have doubts whether they are God's word or not, we will not consider them to have absolute divine authority and we will not trust them as much as we would trust God himself."

Let that paragraph sink in for a while!

Grudem then traces the origins of the beginning of the Old Testament Canon to the giving of the 10 Commandments to the Israelites. Makes sense, it's the first written commands of God! (Ex 31:18) (Ex 32:16) (Deut 4:13) (Deut 10:4-5)

He then deals with a thorny issue and this is where we'll end for today. In Deut 4:2, Moses warns the people "not to add to or take away from the word that he had commanded them." But yet in the book of Joshua after Moses departs from the scene, we have that very thing occuring. (Josh 24:26). Grudem's explanation here is this:

Joshua must have been convinced that he was not taking it upon himself to add to the written words of God, but that God himself had authroized such additional writing.

Well, and here's where I'll end the systematic theology discussion for today. Isnt' that what the Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, and numerous other cults have claimed?

A Hand To Guide Me

It's the title of a book I'm reading right now (I'm reading about 6 at the same time). I've read Denzel's introduction and man what a story. I'm really looking forward to reading the rest of the book but for now here's a snippet:

"But if there's one lesson to be learned from the voices you're about to hear, it is that it's not only on us. It's on the folks around us as well. And mostly, it's on our ability to keep open to their example. That's the underlying message in these pages, that you can draw a line from every great success back to the some rock-solid foundation. A parent. A teacher. A coach. A role model. It all starts somewhere. And for me, that somewhere is with God. I'm not here to tell you what to believe, but I'll tell you what I believe, and this is what works for me. It's why I'm setting these thoughts on paper right now. It's why I'm here--by the Grace of God"

Sounds a little like the Jonah Syndrome Huh?