devotional

20DEC
2015

LBCF 1689 Reflections (Part 48)

Reflections on the Baptist Confession of Faith of 1689. 23 Aug 14 began a perhaps unbroken, orderly, and personal journey through my favorite written confession of faith. This will be my personal reflections on this beloved written codification of the Christian Faith which is according to a Baptist flavor.

 

 

 

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Chapter 3, paragraph 7: “The doctrine of the high mystery of predestination is to be handled with special prudence and care…”

 

 

This is very important. The doctrine of predestination says a lot about God, and people’s juices quickly flow when you talk about it. I know one in twenty Christians today who can actually articulate some biblical view of it, and half that who love whatever view of it they hold. Most see it as irrelevant taking the “let’s just talk about something else” tac when it comes up. Seeing that the Bible has a great deal to say about it, it is not something we should handle as such. We should study it well.

 

Anyone handling this doctrine must handle it carefully. It’s easy to misunderstand it, and few doctrines conflict with our natural sinfulness more. There are so many truths that must combine in someone’s mind for it to make sense. Each facet of truth should be approached, in a perfect world, with the intention of having each point’s assistance in understanding it. Doctrines of depravity, the nature of grace, the complete denial of boasting in us and more must combine or else the doctrine, at best, remains undeveloped. Many young Reformed people handle this doctrine like my three-year-old would handle a thirty-five-pound sword. Most people against the sovereignty of a free God aren’t the least bit interested in actually getting after the theology of it. In any case, we must seek God’s word as it is written, and not how we would have it written. We conform to it; it’s not the other way around.

 

I liken teaching on this subject to Mt. Everest. I’ve never been to its summit, but I have seen pictures from it. Just seeing pictures of it is not the same as having been there. It’s like that with the absolute sovereignty of God. I’ve never been to the summit of it (I’m not God), but he has shown me numerous high resolution pictures of it over both nations and individuals, and so I know exactly what it looks like. I will handle it carefully knowing the God who sits on top the mountain.

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