devotional

14APR
2016

LBCF 1689 Reflections (part 56)

 

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 4: Of Creation, paragraph 3: “Besides the law written in their hearts, they received a command not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, which whilst the kept, they were happy in their communion with God, and had dominion over the creatures.”

In Romans 2, Paul speaks of the law being written on each and every person’s “heart” today. The confession here affirms the idea of this in Adam and Eve even prior to the Fall. There is an objective moral software standard in man’s hardware from birth. It remains there even in our sinful condition. It cannot be “Z’d out” from our end, but with a great deal of effort or distance, the channels of communication can break between one’s knowledge of sin and themselves. Though contorted, this standard knows that the God of the universe exists. Though contorted, it knows much of the ethic of God. The conscience is the bridge in even a fallen man’s understanding to reveal his sinful condition. It is given by God and keeps many safe. The conscience has been described as the unbiased witness in the courtroom who always tells the truth. That’s its job. The Ten Commandments should activate the conscience when downloaded.

 
The heart (kardia) in Greek, often reflects “the whole of someone”. Jesus’ breaking down of the command of love toward God being obeyed with all of one’s heart, mind, soul and strength is an intentional overstatement. We are to love God with all that we are. When the confession here speaks of the law written on the hearts of Adam and Eve even prior to the Fall, it affirms that men have always been coded with at least a basic knowledge of right and wrong.

 
Aside from this, our first parents received a verbal command. God said “do not eat…” This was on top of the idea that perhaps they already knew that the tree was to be avoided because of evil. This also affirms that mankind was never created as God. Mankind is not God. Our knowledge is imperfect unlike God’s.

 
Adam and Eve were almost certainly only in the Garden of Eden for a few months before the Fall. They had no children born yet when they were kicked out. While they were in the garden they were in daily fellowship with the God none of us have yet seen. They were happy (as obedience always leads to), but it was not to last. Their dominion, as mentioned here reference the animals, was over everything. They had dominion over everything created on this planet. As a result of the curse, death entered mankind and the creation began to increase in difficulty.

 
You and I, like with Adam’s “do not eat” commandment have also been given a verbal command that we’re not to transgress. “Do not lie” God said, for example. In lying we therefore have sinned “in the same way that Adam” did (Romans 5:14 NET). We sin against what we know is right “deep down inside”…and against God’s verbal command. Romans 5 speaks of our transgression of the law. We transgress what we’ve been told not to do. This is why all men born of the first Adam need to again be born of the last Adam.

6 responses to “LBCF 1689 Reflections (part 56)”

  1. Mike L. says:

    All of mankind indeed is under condemnation. Thank God that in Christ he made a way we’d not thought of!

  2. Williamrib says:

    Thanks a lot for the article post. Cool. Beidleman

  3. Valarieea says:

    I really enjoy the forum.Thanks Again. Cool. Sweem

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