Tuesday, October 5, 2010

100th post: An indulgent look back

I don't usually reflect, so for those few who read this blog, feel free to skip over this post, as it's more for my benefit than anyone else's. Or maybe God will, in the spirit of the verse I have at the top of this blog, use this as an opportunity to help someone.

When I started this blog a little over a year ago, I wasn't sure if I would be able to keep putting out new material at a consistent rate. After all, I tried starting a blog two years ago and got no further than half a dozen posts before I realized I was out of my depth.

While a part of me still feels that way, I've been blessed to have had the opportunity within the past year to have written some book reviews, had my first semi-formal debate, and have written a couple of essays I believe do an adequate, if incomplete, job of beginning to address why I believe what I believe. It's amazing how much God has taught me in the three and a half years since I've had my spiritual awakening.

Prior to that awakening, I grew up in a Christian high school which I admittedly took for granted. After a semester of college, I picked up a witty book which contained some quotes by Soren Kierkegaard, who, although he believed some wrong, wrong things, I will always be indebted to for having been the occasion by which my interest in philosophy and theology was piqued.

This being back in 2007 and having just gone to college, what with the facebook craze rising, I started to discuss theology on different groups. Naturally, my upbringing coupled with my personality gifted me with knowledge of facts without the wisdom to know how to use them, much less systematize them. When I received my first introduction to Reformed Theology, however, I was struck by its depth and rationality. Some people are turned off by that, and I doubt I'll ever know why. I won't brag too much, I hope, by mentioning after a half a week talking about it with some people, I accepted it as an accurate, sound, systematic representation of salvation. Even as I have come to appreciate its implications, I still believe that.

After a year of reading various authors, I began to list several doctrines which seemed to me to be very important, told myself I would study each of them for a given period of time, and then - somehow - put it all together. That lasted a week, maybe. Still, as I look back, I can discern distinct periods in which my knowledge of a given subject was raised to a high level: the first year it was sola gratia, the second year it was sola fide, and in the last year and a half it's been sola scriptura.

But it's true what they say: "the more you know, the more you know how ignorant you are." That is to say, God's word is truth, and truth is systematic; while I believe it is a duty to systematize truth - for that is the only way to give a cogent defense for one's faith - it can be (and is, for me) an overwhelming prospect. So I'll end this, my 100th post, with a prayer that God will give me the understanding and wisdom for 100 more, always with 1 Corinthians 4:7 in the back of my mind.

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