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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Doctrine: Why Should I Believe Yours?

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Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: Nothing but ...

Point taken. I posit, however, that if I make a point and someone makes a counterpoint - game on.

... Will come back to this.

"Could I be wrong?" Sure I could be. So could you. So could the Armenians, the Calvanists... the list goes on. What a sad state of affairs that no one knows for sure.

The whole reason for mentioning it brother is from experience.

This is truly alarming.

In many ways you are quite right, one of the biggest overlooked issues I have observed is how the deeper more penetrating questions go by the way side or come up as glaring in such disputings such as what you mentioned. Others here have well pointed out the same thing. I do believe also there is a lesson there. However, every once in awhile a saint comes along who has a better perspective on the matter. Here is such a one; [url=]Practical Wisdom for Calvinists*[/url]

You're right about your last point. My conversion would go a heck of a lot easier if I just smiled, nodded, and agreed with what everyone told me.

Am hoping this was further clarified by your subsequent post, which is accepted brother. Corey, there is nothing here but love for you and acceptance to bring forth those things on your heart. It is one of the vast difficulties I personally have in this minor role of moderating things, a lot of redundancy in trying to get across the point that this is not 'game on', but game over (am playing with your words here a bit). It is not a duel, a matching of wits or an outdoing of each other. To be tested and challenged is for the benefit of all, unto edification not towards manipulation. To cut out the scaffolding under presumptions is to put everyone on the same level which were are,

[i]So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.[/i] Rom 12:5

Even as they have not the same 'office'.

We ought to be able to work through difficulties and questions, doctrinal issues and all the other topics and items that come through here and still keep ever before us;

Joh 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

The most glaring thing that can come about in some disputings is that we deny that admonishen, tack it on as an afterthought rather than a forethought. We can often prove just the opposite by being known as something other than that, am speaking in sweeping generalities here and am guilty of just as much over the course of tenure here. Much that has been regrettable.

Also, do understand though where you are coming from in bitterness of spirit and wondering at many things. Am not much of one for fixed patterns in God's economy of doing things, always it seems the proverbial curve-ball between us in how He may lead one in contrast to another. But have known of and observed some similar things where having started perhaps on wrong footing (for instance in my case with the whole of WOF styled teaching) the 'pendulumitis' as Zac Poonen put it carried over to the other extreme and began to be very forceful towards doctrinal ... 'pin point accuracy'? perhaps is what I am thinking. And it was driven by that same bitterness and resentfulness of spirit. There can be a latching unto certain pre defined constructs and then a constant defending of position, a fitting of everything into these presuppositions. It is a long way of saying, trading one for another. Like yourself, Tozer threw a giant wrench in everything I was holding to and then 'discovering' this wonder of wonder just created a whole upsetting of everything I "thought" I knew and understood. I have more "perhaps" and things held in abeyance than I ever thought possible. I didn't exactly find a thousand questions answered but ten thousand more to be asked. But there is a large bit of hyperbole in all that... Actually what I did begin to find and still do is that there are far more penetrating issues that are often behind, suppressed and not dealt with even when they rear their ugly heads. Pride. False humility. Honesty. Heart sins. Anger. Bitterness. All the things that our Lord was trying to get at, the apostles repeated, character and integrity matters. Core issues.

It is the great beauty in my opinion that what exists here cuts across many lines and is difficult to crowd into a corner or place a label on it. What are we? As members here? Try and place a denominational tag on it and just as readily something could be drawn from to dispute it, contradict it, cause yet another consideration. It's been attempted, everything from legalism to "Charismatic" and it always cause a bit of a chuckle, 'really?' Have you read _______ :-)

A lot of rich history here, a lot to consider and by and large just some real honest saints trying to get at the meaning and meat of matters. Glad you are a part of the whole peculiar and wonderful thing that it is.

Mike Balog

 2007/5/16 9:46Profile

Joined: 2007/2/3
Posts: 835
Alberta, Canada

 Re: Doctrine: Why Should I Believe Yours?


Corey_H wrote:
Why should I trust [b]any[/b] of the doctrines of men that arose after my Lord Jesus ascended? Or did his "finished work" need a little polishing by a savage race like ours?

Reading your first post over again, this seems to be saying you have a question as to the authority and inspiration of the epistles? Which were written after Jesus ascended. (I picked this up from Philologos' latest post.) Actually the gospels, too, were written after He ascended. But the epistles are, in fact, the work of the ascended Christ: for they are the writings of men who wrote as they were inspired by the Holy Spirit sent from the Throne.

(Maybe you don't question this in the first place: maybe you are just questioning the doctrines men have produced after the canon of Scripture was in place? In which case it is wise to check out all things, prove all things, against the Scriptures, leaning heavily for help on the same Spirit who inspired them.)


Allan Halton

 2007/5/16 11:25Profile

Joined: 2007/2/3
Posts: 835
Alberta, Canada



hmmhmm wrote:

'I was preparing to go to Nyack College. Before I left there was one burning question I had in mind, and I went to Dr. Tozer and said, “Could you give me some advice concerning the problem of Calvinism versus Arminianism?”
And I’ll never forget the advice he gave me. At the time I thought it was rather inconclusive and not too helpful. But I listened carefully. He said, [b]“My son, when you get to college you’re going to find that all of the boys will be gathered in a room discussing and arguing over Arminianism and Calvinism night after night after night.[/b] I’ll tell you what to do, Cliff. Go to your room and meet God. At the end of four years you’ll be way down the line and they’ll still be where they started, because greater minds than yours have wrestled with this problem and have not come up with satisfactory conclusions. [b]Instead, learn to know God.”'[/b]

-Cliff Westergren

Thanks, Hmmhmm, for this little gem of truth. I wish this could be pasted up on a bill-board in large letters for all to see.

The wise will hear, and heed this.


Allan Halton

 2007/5/16 11:31Profile

 Re: Doctrine: Why Should I Believe Yours?

Hi Corey

I've just finished reading this thread, and there have been some wonderful responses, so thank you for starting it.

As a very new Christian I imagined that [i]all[/i] Christians agreed 100% about all matters of doctrine! I soon found out my mistake, but it upset me very much that Christians could disagree - often very strongly.

As has been mentioned, the Predestination/free will debate was a very hot topic in the Christian Union when I was a student. Most Christian students were strong Calvinists, and the one or two lonely Armenians got very short shrift from the vocal majority.

Gradually I began to accept that believers sometimes disagree very strongly on non-vital points of doctrine. And even to enjoy a certain amount of debate on various topics. After pondering on the arguments for and against I eventually (it took a few years!)came to the conclusion that [i]both[/i] predestination and free will are true!

I think much of the doctrinal arguments are because we tend to try to understand the things of God solely with our mind, and forget that spiritual Truth can only be fully appreciated and undersood through the Holy Spirit. Also that we in the West are geared to Western, Greek, thought, not Eastern, Hebrew, thought - the perspective of the writers of the Bible.

...I do believe that the basic issue has to be settled between you and the Lord, not between you and other people, or churches, or even deciding which doctrines are true and which aren't.

When we react emotionally to people, or over differing opinions, there is always a reason that is to do with us, not so much the other person.

You said you have a lot of bitterness. This is [i]your[/i] problem; what others do, say, or react like isn't.

OK, some who hold various conflicting doctrines and argue over them, (sometimes in a way that disturbs you), no doubt have problems too, but that is none of your business! Your business is finding out from the Lord [i]why[/i] you feel bitter. If you repent of whatever He reveals as sin on your part He will deal with and heal, if necessary, anything in your soul and personality that has allowed a "root of bitterness" to grow.

I speak from experience. Although for me it was not so much bitterness as confusion and hurt. Also an irresistable compulsion to argue!

Even since joining SI the Lord has been dealing with this latter problem. Indeed He has [i]used[/i] SI to help this along. But I joined with wrong motives (wanting to give others the benefit of my wisdom and Bible knowledge! :oops: ) The root of the problem was inferiority that caused me to "show off" in order to make people accept and respect me...

Its wonderful how the Lord searches our hearts and exposes things we somtimes don't even know about in ourselves, not to condemn but to save.

Many times the Lord has gently and firmly brought me up short when I was complaining about what others had said or done that was wrong, and showed me my own heart, as in "Do you know [i]why[/i] you feel like that(/said that/did that)?

Blessings in Him


 2007/5/16 12:46


ADisciple said

Maybe there's a message in that. It was said of Watchman Nee that whenever he met a man, he always looked for his limp. (Referring to Jacob after he had wrestled with the Angel, and the Angel touched him, crippled him, in the thigh, the place of his great strength.) I think maybe God is after something like that in us more than He is after people who have got it all figured out.

He's wants to touch us in the place of our strength, too. And then, limping, it is easier to walk with the Truth. Maybe we don't know as much, haven't got it all figured out, but we walk in Truth.

Thanks brother. Great analogy.

hmmhmm, thanks for the story on Tozer.

 2007/5/16 12:52

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