Every morning one of the guys down the hall in the dorm at the Reformed Episcopal Seminary which I attended would wake us up shouting, “Another day for work and play!” I can still hear him!
Well, he’s right! But I suspect today will be mostly work—and very little play (except as I write blogs).
At the WCF (Westminster Confession of Faith) training class last night we covered three sections, one of which was on Sanctification. During the discussion, we had the occasion to consider a modern unbiblical view in which the believer is said to have two natures—one all good; the other all bad, thus making the individual schizophrenic!
Among other things, in our Officer’s Training Class, we touched on God’s providence. In my opinion, unless a counselor is well aware of how God works for the good of His children, and is able to communicate something of those facts to counselees in times of distress, he will be a pretty sorry counselor.
I like what Chrysostom had to say about the providential care God showed for Joseph in the house of Potiphar. He points out that Joseph was really in a far worse prison when living in Potiphar’s household near a wild, lascivious woman than when he was jailed. He sees the imprisonment as blessed relief! Of course, he also goes through Joseph’s entire life to show how, at every turn, step by step, ordering each event, God was working out everything for His ends and Joseph’s good.
In studying the Decrees of God in our WCF Officer Training Course, we naturally had to look at Romans 9. In that passage, Paul reveals the reason for God’s election of some to eternal life, while passing over others who will not possess it. Of course, all men deserve hell, both because of Adam’s representative sin, and their own as well. So, the fact that He gave life to any is remarkable and gracious. Continue reading
In the WCF Officers Training Course we also considered the suffiency, use, and nature of the Scriptures. We talked about the fact that the Bible is inspired—not the writers, as is sometimes fallaciously stated. The writings—not the writers—were inspired. The word in the original means “to breathe out,” and refers to the biblical writings as being as much the Word of God as if one could hear them spoken by Him by means of breath.
Since the writings are God’s inerrant Word, they are sufficient for every aspect of life and godliness, as Peter told us in his epistle. That means that everything having to do with loving God and loving one’s neighbor is sufficiently considered by the Bible writers. Continue reading
Last night I began teaching a 12 week course of study in the Westminster Confession of Faith for an elder/deacon officer training course at my church. What a joy it was to discuss the Scriptures, God, and His decrees—the first three chapters.
One point I made was that the confession begins at the proper place by putting the Scriptures first. Clearly, this was a proper thing for the framers to do since all that follows purports to be a systematic presentation of the truth in these Scriptures. Continue reading