Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Presuppositions

It is best to read the Bible without any preconceived notions about what it should be saying. I like how Doug Phillips says it in his Publisher's Introduction to How God Wants Us to Worship Him by Joe Moorecraft, III:

"Suppose you lived on a desert island, had never had contact with modern culture, and the only thing to guide you in your decision making or in formulating your worldview was the Bible. How would you live?"

In other words, lay aside everything you've been taught, disassemble the incorrect framework you've built on which you hang Bible teachings and just let the Bible speak for itself. Or, more correctly, let the Bible speak for God.

I agree with this. But I also believe that it isn't possible to entirely jettison doctrine, once it is acquired, and that proper doctrine can be an aid to understanding the Bible.

In terms of culture, Christian lingo, popular movements, yes, discard them all and start from scratch. But when it comes to doctrine, hold fast to the truth. Which brings me to my point. Reading the Psalms is so much more enjoyable, not to mention edifying, when read with proper understanding of the Kingdom. Not just the Psalms, of course, but that is what I was reading this morning when I had my "ah-ha" moment.

Before I embraced Reformed theology, before I was a Calvinist, back when I was a rabid dispensationalist, I could never get a grasp on the Psalms. As a matter of fact, so many things I read did not fit into my dispensations, as I had been taught to understand them. Some things in the Bible seem to transcend the dispensations, and this was very confusing for me. But now, I see that God has been at work since the beginning of time, building a Kingdom, choosing his people, preparing a bride. Of course! Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever!

2 comments:

Folky Dots....Treasures for the Sweetest People said...

I have a question for you.
Did you become a calvinist before you were married to SM?
If so was he a calvinist before meeting you?

subject by design said...

I'm not sure when I started identifying my beliefs with what Calvin taught, as I came to them from the Bible and then later realized that what I now understood was, in fact, the theology called "Calvinism". It was a process that had begun some time before I met my husband and I was still not "there yet" at the time I married. My husband was not reformed before we met.