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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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    We are a community of confessing believers who love the gospel of Jesus Christ, affirm the Biblical and Christ-exalting truths of the Reformation such as the five solas, the doctrines of grace, monergistic regeneration, and the redemptive historical approach to interpreting the Scriptures.

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  • « The Impact of New Testament Mystery Revelation on Old Testament Hermeneutics | Main | Images of the Savior (23 – His Calming of a Storm) »

    Theology is a Holy Work, a Service of Worship

    Religion, the fear of God, must therefore be the element which inspires and animates all theological investigation. That must be the pulsebeat of the science. A theologian is a person who makes bold to speak about God because he speaks out of God and through God. To profess theology is to do holy work. It is a priestly ministration in the house of the Lord. It is itself a service of worship, a consecration of mind and heart to the honour of His name.

    - Herman Bavinck. Quoted from The Good Confression: An Exploration of the Christian Faith by Daniel R. Hyde

    Posted by John on May 17, 2007 02:12 PM

    Comments

    I am afraid we are living in a time when theology is passed over for a entertainment event. With so many moral issues facing our great nation our pastors, including myself, must focus on theology. If Gods people do not know what they believe or why they believe it we can only watch as our churches fall into the trap the adversary has laid.

    I'm not sure the definition of RELIGION is "the fear of God" At least not according to James.



    James 1:27 "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world."



    Theology is the understanding and the why I serve the orphans and widows not my faith or my religion that is Phariseeism. Theological academia can become my god, mere "Wisdom of Man". My theology, dogma and understanding of God is my motivation for how I submit and serve Him. Not the other way around. When I posses a healthy fear of God and His Sovereignty. Recognizing the miracle of His Grace and mercy towards me. My "Religion" is formed. In other words my lifestyle is created in response to His loving kindness. My flesh has no time for widows and orphans. But I have been captured by His Grace and mercy which is drawing me to Himself and my desires in life are becoming less and less self-gratifying and more and more God-Glorifying in all that I do. That is why I care for the Orphans and make time for the widows. My theology is created from sound Biblical Doctrine which enables me to know my savior in a more real and personal way.

    There is great danger in reading the Scriptures through a predetermined theological lens as opposed to reading scripture, wrestling with scripture as it literally reads and was intended to be understood by the original readers.

    Greetings Robert

    James' description of pure religion does not negate the fact that the beginning of all wise and true religion is the fear of the Lord. It is frequently alluded to in the Scripture. You speak as if it is either/or rather than both/and.

    Theology has nothing to do with acadamia, it is something every one of us do as soon as we ask who Jesus is. "Jesus" is not merely a word, but a person who has demands our allegiance and has content to speak to us. That content is theology. "Recognizing the miracle of his grace" toward you, as you mentioned, requires illumination and understanding of his word.

    The author of the quote was simply saying that what drives us to study theology is a afffection for God. If this is not present then all subsequent actions, including care for orphans and widows, would not arise from a heart that loves God. And the Scripture states that all not done from faith is sin.

    JJ

    I am sure if I serve widows and orphans withour the grace of God I am serving in sin. Even my good deeds are sin if not provoked by the Holy Spirit of God. When I do good without Gods command I do good for my own pleasure and/or my own fuzzy feelings. That is sin. It is for my glory. Only the deeds done for the glory of God, while empowered by God are rightous.
    Brett Clements

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