Jump to content

The Protestant Community

Christian and Theologically Protestant? Or, sincerely inquiring about the Protestant faith? Welcome to Christforums the Christian Protestant community. You'll first need to register in order to join our community. Create or respond to threads on your favorite topics and subjects. Registration takes less than a minute, it's simple, fast, and free! Enjoy the fellowship! God bless, Christforums' Staff
Register now

Fenced Community

Christforums is a Protestant Christian forum, open to Bible-believing Christians such as Presbyterians, Lutherans, Reformed, Baptists, Church of Christ members, Pentecostals, Anglicans. Methodists, Charismatics, or any other conservative, Nicene- derived Christian Church. We do not solicit cultists of any kind, including Mormons, Jehovah's Witnesses, Eastern Lightning, Falun Gong, Unification Church, Aum Shinrikyo, Christian Scientists or any other non-Nicene, non-Biblical heresy.
Register now

Christian Fellowship

John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
Sign in to follow this  
Soul man

Unlearning To Learn

Recommended Posts

Unlearn to learn

 

Some believers have been so inundated and indoctrinated by the charisma of man, they can't move on in God.

To move on in God they will have to unlearn most of what they know and have been taught as gospel.

Not everything we have been taught is bad, but there comes a time when you are taught only by the HolySpirit.

God has always used man, but man can only take you so far, and sometimes what they have had to say must be overridden by the HolySpirit.

The unlearning process can be one of the hardest things a believer will ever go through.

The thing about understanding is, it can all go on a shelf, good or bad, and what you need for Christian living you can take back in time.

It will not kill you, you may feel like it at the time, but you will live.

It is the pet doctrines that is killing our spiritual growth.

Satan himself being the progenitor of religion, man's doctrine will parallel truth.

The important thing is to go through the unlearning, so you can be taught correctly by the HolySpirit.

It is not an easy process, Christians can spend years trying to make the things they have been taught work, to no avail.

Bits and pieces, and parts have worked, but a far cry from what they read about in the scriptures.

Left waning and wanting to find out how to put it all together.

Then there are those that hear the message and know by the Spirit they must make a change.

They have tried everything and still there is a hunger in their hearts for their Father.

They are the ones that hear His voice calling, deep calleth to deep.

They are the ones ready to surrender all and move on, no doctrine, no man made religion, no man has been able to satisfy that hunger, only the longing heart crying out for their Father, Abba Father, my Father my Father, these have grown up in Christ

 

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • Similar Topics

    • Robert Jeffress Disappointed To Learn Heaven's Wall Won't Keep All Democrats Out

      DALLAS, TX—Upon reading through the biblical description of the New Jerusalem Monday morning, Pastor Robert Jeffress was reportedly disappointed to discover that there was nothing indicating the heavenly city's wall would include security measures to keep Democrats from entering. The post Robert Jeffress Disappointed To Learn Heaven's Wall Won't Keep All Democrats Out appeared first on The Babylon Bee. View the original full article

      in Christian Satire

    • Family With 3 Adopted Children Surprised To Learn They Only Care About The Unborn

      FORT WORTH, TX—Because of their Christian beliefs and consistent pro-life convictions, Brent and Lydia Larson have adopted three children and so were surprised to learn Wednesday that they only care about the unborn. The post Family With 3 Adopted Children Surprised To Learn They Only Care About The Unborn appeared first on The Babylon Bee. View the original full article

      in Christian Satire

    • Learn to Hear ‘Exodus Echoes’ in the Whole Bible

      When we hear the word exodus, we probably think about Moses and Pharaoh, Egypt and slavery, plagues and Passover, redemption and Red Sea. We think about the book that bears its name. But if you think the exodus is just some story near the front of your Bible, think again. In their new book, Echoes of Exodus: Tracing Themes of Redemption through Scripture, Alastair Roberts and Andrew Wilson want to convince you that the exodus is one of the most pervasive patterns in the Bible—a melody recurring again and again until it reaches its crescendo in the true Passover lamb, who redeems his captive people and his groaning creation. Roberts and Wilson are known for working together on the Mere Fidelity podcast with Derek Rishmawy and Matthew Lee Anderson (to whom the book is dedicated). Wilson is teaching pastor at King’s Church in London and author of several books. Roberts is a scholar who divides his time in the United States between no less than three theological Institutes (Davenant, Theopolis, and Greystone) and is otherwise known for writing long-form articles online. This is his first book. And frankly, it’s a wild and crazy ride and will sometimes stretch the limits of your credulity. At times I was left scratching my head. But more often I was staggered at the textual connections they were making (e.g., the exodus-shape of the book of Revelation, 150–51). And more than once I was in tears from the poetic beauty of their prose, especially when connecting it all to Jesus (see esp. 114–115, 152). It’s a wild ride, but it’s worth it. Because even if you hear only half the echoes of exodus they want you to, you’ll likely be hearing twice as many as you do now. So prepare to be challenged, and hopefully transformed. Musical Reading When we discuss biblical typology, we often use visual metaphors. We speak of seeing Jesus in the Old Testament; we say that the exodus is a picture of our salvation. This is good—even biblical (2 Cor. 3:13–18). But as the book’s title implies, Roberts and Wilson have chosen to explore auditory metaphors in what they call a “musical reading of Scripture.” We acknowledge this musical reading anytime we speak of the Bible’s storyline being orchestrated by God, containing themes and rhythms and discordant notes that need to be resolved or harmonized (21). This musical reading helps us see connections in the Bible’s storyline in the following way: As the Bible commences its overture, we hear a melody, and a regular rhythm begins. As things develop, various harmonies and counterpoints arise, some of which complement the melody beautifully, but some of which chafe against it, leaving us . . . to wonder what the Composer is doing. . . . Then the melody returns . . . bringing a temporary sense of resolution. . . . [The] rhythms of Scripture continue to be accented. . . . But every bar, every bar . . . heightens the sense that the piece is still incomplete. Eventually, after an uncomfortably long silence, the score builds to a massive crescendo in Christ, as the various themes come together and resolve in a fashion that nobody could have imagined, bringing the audience to its feet. Yet even then, the piece does not end. . . . Only at the finale, when the Christ-crescendo is recapitulated . . . do we ultimately see the full scope of the Composer’s vision. (25–26) The pattern and elements of the exodus story are thus heard as a theme that reemerges with slight variations throughout Scripture. For example, take one element of the exodus theme: that of leaving your home to sojourn in a foreign land only to return home with riches—or as they put it, “people going out empty and coming back full” (84; Gen. 15:14; Ex. 12:36). Ruth gives us a variation of this theme, as Naomi leaves full and comes back empty (Ruth 1:21). The authors note that Naomi’s experience reflects Israel’s frustration during the period of the judges. “We have had our exodus . . . we are now back in the land—but we are not living in the abundance we had hoped for” (85). Not only is this a variation on the theme; it’s proof the symphony is “still incomplete.” Musical Structure This musical reading structures the entire book. The chapters are thus organized into five parts: an “overture” followed by four “movements.” The overture introduces the musical concept and then looks at the Last Supper, which they creatively call “The First Supper,” since the original Passover celebration was patterned after the true Passover and meant to “evoke the Last Supper in advance” (much like marriage was meant to evoke Christ and the church in advance). The first movement unpacks the exodus story from Exodus through Joshua, introducing basic elements like wicked king, defeated gods, and rescued people. The second movement jumps back and covers the exodus in Genesis. (Yes, you heard that right. The parallels in Abraham’s life will blow your mind. Think going down to Egypt to escape famine, only to have your wife taken captive by Pharaoh and then freed when God sends plagues on the Egyptians! The book is full of this sort of thing.) The third movement attends to the echoes in the remainder of the Old Testament, from Ruth to Esther. Roberts and Wilson make a good case that the exodus didn’t technically end until the building of the temple under Solomon. (Again, read chapter 14 and prepare to have your mind blown.) The fourth movement plays the crescendo-fulfillment in the New Testament, from Gospels to Apocalypse. In good biblical-theological fashion, the authors view this crescendo as a two-stage, already-not-yet finale, which leaves us as sojourners redeemed from slavery but not in the Promised Land. The book closes with a brief coda on “living the exodus.” Maximalist Hermeneutics As I said earlier, this book may stretch the limits of your thinking, depending on where you fall on the hermeneutical spectrum. Some interpreters are more minimalist in their interpretation, preferring to see types and hear echoes only where the New Testament (or later Old Testament) explicitly identifies them. To them this is safe, as it staves off the wild allegory that finds Jesus under (or in) every rock in the Old Testament (1 Cor. 10:4). But from the beginning, Roberts and Wilson make clear that they’re going to take a more maximalist path (14), citing influences like G. K. Beale (Handbook on the New Testament Use of the Old Testament), Richard Hays (Echoes of Scripture in the Gospels), Peter Leithart (Deep Exegesis), and James Jordan (Through New Eyes). They anticipate possible skepticism: Sometimes you may disagree. You may think we’re reaching, or you may think we’ve missed something. In many ways, that doesn’t matter. As long as we recognize that The Lion King is based on Hamlet, we can agree to disagree on whether . . . we can see Rosencrantz and Guildenstern in the characters of Pumbaa and Timon. (13) Read and make up your own mind. Given my own influences (James Hamilton, Jonathan Pennington, and so on), I almost always found their connections credible, even if not conclusive. At any rate, there are worse things than Jesus you could find under every Old Testament rock. Memorable Takeaways I’ll close with two memorable points for Christian living. First, the exodus highlights both our liberty and also our responsibility. The Israelites weren’t delivered from Egypt in order to “wander off and do their own thing” (145). Neither are we delivered from sin and Satan in order to live for ourselves (2 Cor. 5:15). Rather, we’re set free from one master that we might serve a new one. Besides being a key part of the exodus, this truth is “at the heart of Christian discipleship” (145). And finally, as “exodus people,” Christians must always be those who sympathize and advocate for the truly oppressed. You don’t have to embrace liberation theology to acknowledge that those who have known both the oppression of Satan and also the elation of freedom ought to be disposed toward those who still suffer under various forms of Satanic oppression. “We use our power to serve the interests of those without it, because the exodus was never just for us” (158). So I would encourage you to take up this slender volume and read. Learn to hear the echoes. Learn to tell the story—the story of a “cosmic exodus stretching from Eden to New Jerusalem” (151). Tell it to your neighbors. Tell it to your children. Because “one day the Jordan will divide, and the trumpets will sound, and worldly powers will collapse, and the vines will stretch as far as the eye can see” (158). Even so. Come, Lord Jesus. View the full article

      in Christian Current Events

    • U.K. Students to Learn that Boys Have Periods, Too

      Students in one United Kingdom city now will be taught that boys have periods, too, as part of new curriculum recommendations approved by the city council. View the full article

      in Christian Current Events

    • What 2018 Can Learn from 1943

      Books that attempt to assess the legacies of several different thinkers aren’t new or, sometimes, particularly interesting. Far too often the thinkers are haphazardly selected, their thought then analyzed individual-by-individual without shedding new light or establishing meaningful ties among them. Thankfully, Alan Jacobs’s The Year of Our Lord 1943: Christian Humanism in an Age of Crisis isn’t such a book. Jacobs argues that in the final years of World War II, a group of disparate Christian intellectuals began thinking about what the shape of post-war Europe ought to be; and though they had few personal ties, they all came to broadly shared conclusions. The five thinkers Jacobs profiles are C. S. Lewis, T. S. Eliot, Jacques Maritain, Simone Weil, and W. H. Auden. Jacobs, professor of humanities at Baylor University, calls their shared social vision “Christian humanism.” He develops it under the headings of humanist influence, the centrality of education, an openness to the possibility that contemporary events in the West had demonic influences, and the centrality of force to the regime the humanists were critiquing. I don’t know Maritain, Weil, or Auden well enough to comment on how strong Jacobs’s handling of them is. But I do know Eliot and Lewis. And here I can say with great confidence that Jacobs’s work is a shimmering example of how scholarship can bless and illumine. Eliot and Liberal Democracy Eliot critiqued liberal democracy in multiple essays and poems, most notably in The Idea of a Christian Society, which argues that a liberal democratic system isn’t sustainable. Liberal democratic societies begin with the assumption that individuals have a right to define themselves independent of the claims of society, religion, politics, or any other unchosen body. Indeed, the main job of government is the protection and underwriting of individual self-expression. Similarly, religion, the economy, technology, and a host of other social institutions are likewise understood as valuable only to the extent that they serve the self-actualization of individual people. On the other hand, to whatever extent government, religion, family, or neighborhood constrains individual self-identification, such bodies are considered unjust and dangerous. Eliot, writing in the 1930s and 1940s, already saw where such a regime would eventually arrive. In The Idea of a Christian Society, Eliot writes: That liberalism may be a tendency towards something very different from itself, is a possibility in its nature. For it is something which tends to release energy rather than accumulate it, to relax, rather than to fortify. It is a movement not so much defined by its end, as by its starting point; away from, rather than towards, something definite. Our point of departure is more real to us than our destination; and the destination is likely to present a very different picture when arrived at, from the vaguer image formed in imagination. By destroying traditional social habits of the people, by dissolving their natural collective consciousness into individual constituents, by licensing the opinions of the most foolish, by substituting instruction for education, by encouraging cleverness rather than wisdom, the upstart rather than the qualified, by fostering a notion of getting on to which the alternative is a hopeless apathy, Liberalism can prepare the way for that which is its own negation: the artificial, mechanized or brutalized control which is a desperate remedy for its chaos. In other words, liberal democracies run on a fuel they can’t produce themselves. A society with thick local community and a high regard for tradition is the sort that can explode into new forms of life under a liberal democratic order. Yet as the liberal democratic order becomes more entrenched, the very things that first gave it life will wither, at which point it’ll have to transform if it’s to endure. Here Jacobs’s treatment of force is particularly helpful, as the powers of science, bureaucracy, and the general ethos of technique (as understood by the French critic Jacques Ellul) would become ascendant as a means of propping up the decaying structures of liberalism. Those familiar with Lewis’s work will recognize the ways it aligns with Eliot’s. Writing in The Abolition of Man, Lewis argued that the defining problem of Western society is that we deny the sources of virtue and wisdom while expecting folks to go on being virtuous and wise. “We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful,” is the particularly memorable image preferred by Lewis. Jacobs convincingly argues that Auden, Maritain, and Weil share this concern—the ascendant order at the end of WWII treated the heritage of Christian Europe with disdain but moved ahead on the assumption that the virtues produced by Christian Europe would endure. Christian Hope Jacobs’s book is perhaps most helpful in its acknowledgement of both the correctness of the humanists’ diagnosis and their view of Christian hope. Writing in The Lord of the Rings, Lewis’s friend J. R. R. Tolkien—who would share the same basic concerns as Jacobs’s five humanists—describes the hope of Frodo and the Fellowship of the Ring as a “fool’s hope.” In the face of late modernity’s horrors, Christians are given several options for response. Jacobs describes the two most common. One is the route of the Christian pragmatist, symbolized (according to Jacobs) by Reinhold Niebuhr. This approach recognizes that a materialist liberal democratic society is ascendant and there’s no obvious way of overthrowing it; the Christian response, then, is to baptize the order as much as possible to save it from its own worst impulses. We might, to continue with the Tolkien reference, call this the Boromir Option. The problem with this option is that the wisdom of late-modern man is inherently destructive, dedicated to the creation of machines and monsters that can destroy civilizations. To compromise with such “wisdom” is ultimately to trade the foolishness of God for the wisdom of man. The second option is the “fool’s hope” symbolized so powerfully in the company sent to smuggle the Dark Lord Sauron’s Ring of Power into Mordor and destroy it. This is the hope of the Christian humanists. It’s foolish because it candidly acknowledges the likelihood of temporal failure. Tolkien called this “the long defeat,” and sometimes spoke of “fighting the long defeat together.” The Kentucky agrarian writer Wendell Berry, whose work also belongs to this school of Christian humanism, recently spoke with Bill Moyers about “being run over”: MOYERS: What have you seen over a long life that prevents you from being fatally pessimistic? BERRY: Well, hope. And . . . and in my work, in my . . . especially in the essays, I’ve always been trying to construct or lay out, map out the grounds of a legitimate, authentic hope. And if you can find one good example, then you’ve got the grounds for hope. If you can change yourself, if you can make certain requirements of yourself that you are then able to fulfill, you have a reason for hope. MOYERS: Do you think that you’ve put yourself in front of the locomotive of history, waving your arms and shouting, “Stop!”? BERRY: Oh sure. And you can do that very comfortably if you’re willing to be run over. To the Hobbits Jacobs concludes The Year of Our Lord 1943 by evaluating the ascent of personalism, a humane philosophy meant to treat people in their social contexts while avoiding the errors of both communism and romantic individualism. This personalism, Auden particularly saw, couldn’t ultimately defeat democratic liberalism on its own terms. “Ares has at last quit the field,” Auden would write at the close of the war, but this didn’t make him hopeful. It just meant the old strife between the children of Hermes and Apollo would resume. By the children of Apollo, Auden had in mind the technocrats, those who worship “the god of reason and order, manifested in our time through administrative bureaucracy, claiming the authority of ‘common-sense.’” Set against them, he held up the children of Hermes, those who “forego power and control to pursue the intricacies of reflection: they are, therefore, and necessarily, ‘we, the unpolitical.’” Auden’s hope for the children of Hermes is striking—he knows the children of Apollo will win in the interim, but he allows himself to dream of a day when Hermes will again reign. And in the interim, he counsels those who resist Apollo with orders both amusing and memorable: “Thou shalt not do as the dean pleases. . . . Thou shalt not worship projects nor / Shalt thou or thine bow down before / Administration. . . . Thou shalt not be on friendly terms / with guys in advertising firms.” The lines call three things to mind: First, Berry’s own words in “The Joy of Sales Resistance,” where he gleefully tramples on the ad men of his day. Second, consider the toast given by Tolkien at a dinner among readers of his books in Rotterdam in 1958: I look East, West, North, South, and I do not see Sauron; but I see very many descendants of Saruman. And I think we Hobbits now have no magic weapons against them. And yet, dear gentle Hobbits, may I conclude by giving you this toast: To the Hobbits! And may they outlast all the wizards! Third, I am reminded of the conclusion to C. S. Lewis’s underappreciated novel That Hideous Strength. The scientists and the bureaucrats have been defeated by an act of God, literally devoured by the animals they’d imprisoned for the sake of their cruel experiments. The two protagonists—the sundered couple Mark and Jane Studdock—are reunited in marriage, which is the great theme of the novel and Lewis’s rebuttal to the divorce age that now rules. As Jane approaches the house where she will find Mark, she sees his shirt hanging over a wall and smiles at the familiarity of it. She knows “it is high time that she went in.” At the end of all things, the bride is reunited with her groom in a long-hoped-for reunion after an extended estrangement. Here we might give Eliot the final word, who wrote in his marvelous Four Quartets: “We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” View the full article

      in Christian Current Events

×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.