I continue to be perplexed by the subtleties of the will of God. That’s probably a bad sentence to start on, but the other openers I thought of really weren’t much better.
I’ve just finished reading, at a friend’s request, a book on finding the will of God, and why you shouldn’t. It’s literally titled Finding the Will of God: a Pagan Notion? by Bruce Waltke. But it’s not nearly so bad as it sounds. He’s mostly against something he calls Christian divination – that practice of fumbling about looking for cryptological Providential hints God might have hidden concerning any major decisions – which admittedly sounds more like perusing the horoscopes than any faithful pursuit of God’s plan for your life. He also seems to be against asking God to communicate directly to you about your plans (a point on which I differ), mostly I think because he believes God does that relatively infrequently, and only on His own schedule.
The odd thing has been that, as Waltke pounds out his method of Biblically and theologically ciphering the will of God, he keeps undermining himself. And I don’t mean that he makes arguments I don’t like to support positions I don’t care for. I mean that, in the process of making a point with which I expect to agree, he makes frequent use of non sequitur and choppy reasoning. So by the time he gets to the finale of a point where I expected to agree with him 100%, he’s so bungled it that I end up suspicious of myself for intending to agree with him. It’s made it really difficult to finish the book. But finish I did, all the while dreaming of writing my own book, which says all the things he said, only… better, and in the right order.
Then I turn to the last chapter, an afterward, and everything changes. Continue reading “Big Frothy Mess”
I fear that Reformed Christians are often in danger of making the same mistake about the glory of God that most evangelicals tend to make about God’s love: Having managed somehow to distill the nature of God and all his plans and purposes under the unifying heading of a single word, we then proceed to demolish our own system by mis-characterizing that word according to human standards. Love degenerates into sentimental affection and glory into public acclaim, neither of which comes close to the true Biblical meaning of those terms.
The love of God is a frightening thing. The glory of God is often hidden.
It looks like my blogging is going to go way down for a while, since my new job doesn’t involve sitting much at a desk, where I might type up a few thoughts now and then as I work. However, I did have this little nugget to share:
As I was talking to one of my new coworkers, I noticed that he had a copy of Sex, Romance, and the Glory of God sitting on his shelf. I made some comment on it, since it was probably given to him by a Sovereign Gracer (which it had been – another coworker). But the guy had a strange response – he said he wasn’t very happy about it, and it sounded like the book brought down his opinion of CJ Mahaney (the book’s editor). The issue was the title: Sex, Romance, and the Glory of God. After a little discussion, I made out that his problem was related to the likelihood of dishonoring the glory of God by associating it with things like sex and romance. He understood, he said, that the goal of the books contributors was to explore how things like sex and romance could be related to the glory of God, but that Christians need to be aware of what a title like that might imply, namely that sex and romance could somehow be put on the same level as the glory of God.
I’m really not quite sure what to make of such a position.