Monday, January 27, 2014

Historical Adam - Part 2

Some of my continuing argument in favor of the historical Adam with the youth pastor copied and pasted below. As I re-read my letter now, I wish I had seasoned it with a little more grace... but my feathers were ruffled...

I am hopeful that this essay might be helpful? (Please read before continuing.)

Maybe it could be said of the "godly scholars" you're reading... "For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them... For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God [Creator, as revealed] or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools...  " It appears they'd rather listen to unbelieving scientists than humbly taking heed to the clear teaching of Scripture, the Biblical doctrine of Orthodox Christianity and great Church leaders of old... tested, proven... whose lives of purity and holiness were testimonies of their knowledge of God and His Word, and the Spirit's work. Their lives and their teachings are gifts for our blessing today, and it is my humble opinion that we would all receive great benefit from heeding their instructions, conforming our lives to their examples, and believing and boldly preaching the same great truths that brought the The Reformation, The Great Awakening, the Puritan way of life, etc. Were they infallible? Of course not.

But consider this: What if, in a few decades, it is discovered that traditional carbon-dating and evolutionary science, for example, can be disproven beyond doubt? Will these "godly scholars" have to change their views again? Shall our doctrine continually blow with the wind of current accepted scientific thinking?

Here is a taste of Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones' view on this, from the interview I told you about. He addresses this issue of the "arrogance of modern man" in the first 4 minutes, particularly at time 2:17...

In regards to John Calvin, have you actually thoroughly studied him? Or are you just reading what others say about some of his teachings? But this is the quote I assume you/they are parsing...

"We indeed are not ignorant, that the circuit of the heavens is finite, and that the earth, like a little globe, is placed in the center." - John Calvin

The purpose of this passage, in context, " a part of a discussion in which Calvin was investigating the nature of God's eternity and infinity (brought about in part by the question of what God was doing before the Creation). In terms of the affirmation of the Ptolemaic system, Calvin simply uses it to once again affirm God's majesty and providential care for the world."

At any rate, having an incorrect view on the order of things in the universe would be one thing... But to deny that Adam and Eve were real people is quite another! One idea would have no effect on the gospel... The other completely unravels it! I would refer you to points #1 and #2 in my earlier reply. (Speaking of which, I would really like for you to address each of the points I made.)

Could it be that this "unnerving" you feel is actually the Holy Spirit at work within you? From my experience, when I study and learn new things (or am reminded of old things) according to the Holy Writ, or hear truth preached in a sermon, the Spirit within me says to my spirit, "Truth, truth!" And I trust this is from God, for He has promised to lead us into all truth, and His Spirit testifies to my spirit. No, there's no audible voice. But when I behave as the noble Bereans (Acts 17:11), it's a wonderful thing! I always test it with Scripture! Truth is sometimes encouraging, sometimes convicting, sometimes brings repentance, sometimes awes of wonder, etc... but it always ends in tears of joy and glory to God! Unnerving? Never!!!

I beseech you, my brother, with every caring bone within me for the sake of the gospel and your own soul... turn away from this path you are studying. This is heresy you are exploring. We know we must guard our hearts. These false teachers you are reading are trusting the fallible conjectures of unbelieving scientists, and trying to conform their theology in hope, I assume, of appealing to the "intellect of the world" instead of accepting God's Word by faith! Is this what Paul did? Is this what he told us to do?

1 Corinthians 1
 18 For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written, "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart." 
20 Where is the one who is wise? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world?
21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe.
22 For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom,
23 but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles,
24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.
25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth.
27 But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong;
28 God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are,
29 so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.
30 And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption,
31 so that, as it is written, "Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord."

Are you, like the Jews, seeking a sign from a dream or something? Are you, like the Greeks, seeking wisdom from the world? Would it be wrong for me to call you to repentance? ...For doubting God at His Word... For standing in judgment of the clear teaching of the Almighty... For listening to the spiritual mystics and the "spiritual formation" garble-di-goop they push? Today it is doubting the historicity of the Scriptures... Tomorrow it will be doubting the authors... The next day, it will be doubting whether there is a God at all. Maybe this won't be the case for you... But what about your children? Or my children? Or their children?

I stand on the authority of the clarity of Scripture, from an author who "is not a God of confusion but of peace." I would suggest you be more cautious of the voices you are listening to. But if you choose to not take heed to my voice, so be it. If I am wrong, may God graciously show me. I am not "writing you off" any more than Paul was writing off the professing believers he corrected. He loved them. And I love you. And it grieves me to see you casting doubt upon the clear teaching of God. If you proceed, it will no doubt come with consequences.

(Sorry for my rambling, if it was so... But I've got the day off.)

Grace and peace to you and your family. All glory to God!

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