I was thinking tonight that those who study the works of knowledgeable men and their nuanced systems of theology face a tendency to lose sight that such books are merely a means to growing in the fellowship of God in truth. A doctrinal tome is nothing more than the work of a spiritual cartographer, intricately plotted and artfully drawn for the purpose of guiding readers to the Divine destination. It is therefore a perversion of the maps, to wile one's days examining lines and bearings without real intentions of traversing the paths for which they were designed. We need always to be reminded that reading, praying, conversing about theology is but the means; our end being to glorify God in purified fellowship with Christ.
Hello theopenlife,That is great! I like it - go for the target, don't take side trips.Great post,white stone
Do take the side trips, insomuch as they reveal aspects of our Lord! A guided tour through the Eschatological maze, far down the corridors of Eternal Decrees, or up to the bluff of False Conversion where one might observe the pits of Apostasy, will each make for a greater understanding of God's metaphysical creation - the redemptive plan. Just keep on the way, never satisfied to remain at these points.Lest I be accused of mimicking Bunyan, I'll stop now.Glad the post was of benefit, White Stone.
That is AWESOME!!! I see people ("ists") fascinated with various "isms". I try myself NOT to be an "ist", but I'm a sheep and by nature I tend toward "isms".
Mike this is a wonderful post my friend. All Theology should lead us into worshipful reverence for and towards God, it should crush our pride and ego due to his revealing his wonderful grace and nature to us. It should lead us to Glorify God and enjoy him forever and it should ultimately lead to eternal life because it issues from the very words of God (John 6:63). If someone is filled with knowledge, pride, and contention they only have the letter of the law when it comes to Theology. but if they have the spirit of the theology the effects are amazing because it is an unveiling of The person,character and attributes of God and that my friend should put us in the dust causing us to turn to Christ and Christ alone and look to him and his merits as an anchor to faith. A matter of fact Demons are perfectly orthodox they believe God and Tremble they have more piety than some Christians however they only have the letter of the law a knowledge and no eternal life abides in them because the word has no place in them by way of regenerating power( James 2:19). however Angels Have not only a mere knowledge but intimacy and life with God and it produces a worshipful intimate praise and obedience to God as a result all they do is cry HOLY, HOLY, HOLY. Theology should cause us to bow the knee in worship and look to God in Humility and say as one man I heard say after prayer and deep study of the scriptures. "WHAT HAS GOD DONE, WHAT HAS THIS WONDERFUL GOD DONE FOR US". I agree that one must know Theology aright but the effects of true theology usher us into worship and praise all at the same time guarding us from what is false establishing us in proper biblical doctrine and directing us to God. Thus giving us the ability to provide an answer to every man of the hope that we have in us presenting it in love, grace, and truth.
Tracy, I myself ascribe to an "ism" and am an "ist", but praise God it is all merely an attempt at describing my hope in Christ. Fuegodedios, your comment was wonderfully edifying and worth the read. Thanks.
Thanks for the sharing of your thoughts brother, precious thoughts
My pleasure, Christian.PS: Alison's music is up, if you haven't found it yet.
As I was reading the posts on this thread, I came away very blessed. I can see that God is teaching us that to know his blessed promise and obtain the blessing of God is designed to draw us into a closer fellowship to the giver of the promise. Such is the way of God's commands. "Be ye holy for I am holy"..its the way into abiding communion with God, it maintains the open ear, the seeing eye, the joyful desirous heart. Yes, theology is good, but the God behind all that theology has to say about Him, expects his disciples to know the Master well. Knowing God well, cannot be done without solid theology, but knowing God well cannot be done with theology alone. One must seek God, minister to God in worship, spend time in adoration and praises for Him. God intends theology empowered, man is sometimes satisfied with theology as a mental fascination as one poster said. I heartily agree. Theology is meant for proclamation of the one true God. Prayer is meant to introduce us to the God weve heard so much about.Micaiahsword
Quote: It is therefore a perversion of the maps, to wile one's days examining lines and bearings without real intentions of traversing the paths for which they were designed. We need always to be reminded that reading, praying, conversing about theology is but the means; our end being to glorify God in purified fellowship with Christ.Well stated, (although I must say that prayer is vital to our staying in the True Vine. Maybe you're referring to praying about theology? Not sure.) We're all digging for the same treasure, and there is only one place to dig. The writings of men are accounts of the treasures they found in their own mining experiences, and God does indeed desire that we communicate with one another, yet even the best of these findings are mere nuggets when you consider the wealth of the mine. They should never substitute for our own time in the word. You can't spot a counterfeiter/imposter unless you are intimately acquainted with the genuine.Brother, your thread is a good reminder to examine ourselves as to where we are fixing our eyes and placing our faith and spending our devotional time. We need to guard ourselves from idols.As to the map analogy: Nothing like bad directions when you're trying to get somewhere. I know a lot of people who have ended up in the wrong place using Mapquest. Test every spirit in light of scripture! :-)