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Tag: Theology

How Not To Be a Chronological Snob (Post 16)

I’ve been discussing the thirteenth shift in thinking that came about during the Enlightenment and that shapes us to this day. Unfortunately, all these shifts had negative consequences for people of faith. For several weeks now I’ve been looking at the shift from facts to values in many areas of knowledge. This shift has had dire consequences in theology. I’ll offer three examples. I’m sure you can think of more.

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How Not To Be a Chronological Snob (Post 13)

A thirteenth shift in thinking that came about during the Enlightenment has surfaced many times in my posts. In fact, a day does not go by that we do not see this new way of thinking bubble up in conversations, news reports, editorials, books, and everywhere else we turn. I am speaking of the way we now assume there is a difference between “facts” and “values” and between “reason” and “faith.” But this has not always been the case.

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How Not To Be a Chronological Snob (Post 11)

The eleventh shift brought to us by the Enlightenment concerns how we think about growth in Christ. Our answers to these questions follow from a more fundamental question.

The more fundamental issue begins with the biblical idea that we have both a soul and a body. That is, we are a duality (this is known as “anthropological dualism” or “substance dualism”). How we think about growing as Christians depend on how we understand the nature of our souls, including how they are related to our bodies. From these beliefs, other conclusions are also drawn, including how we are to worship and serve Christ in the world.


How Not To Be a Chronological Snob (Post 10)

In the wake of the Enlightenment, we all struggle with a lack of connection to others. Not only has the broader culture become highly individualistic, but so has the church. The small group strategy is a main way to counter this tendency1. While promising, this strategy faces two significant challenges, which I have addressed in my last two posts: difficulty in building deep relationships (often because group members are connected only by geography) and a tendency to deteriorate into a superficial, subjective type of Bible study. I discussed how to address the first challenge two weeks ago; in this post I will propose ways to address the second challenge (though some may not be possible until COVID restrictions subside).

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How Not To Be a Chronological Snob (Post 9)

With the Enlightenment’s shift in thinking, we became much more individualistic. This shift has had some positive consequences but quite a few negative results, at both work and church. Last week I discussed one way the church attempts to respond to the loneliness and lack of community experienced by many in local congregations, and some ways we can do better. This week I’ll outline a second problem many small groups face, and the following week I will suggest some solutions.

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Predestination or Free Will? (Post 17)

We have concluded our review of biblical data discussing Calvinism and Arminianism, as well as internal and external conceptual problems that arise for Calvinism. This seems to tip the scales in favor of the Arminian understanding. But Calvinists argue there are three internal conceptual problems for Arminianism that are sufficient to disqualify this view. In this case, the Calvinist understanding of predestination and free will is vindicated. I’ll discuss the first of these in this post.


Predestination or Free Will? (Post 14)

We all desire to become better people. And so we work toward this goal. This includes choosing the beliefs and desires we will embrace and act upon. These choices in turn form our character. This common experience must fit our view of freedom. Yet, this reality doesn’t fit well with the soft determinist’s understanding of freedom. This is another external conceptual problem for soft determinism, and therefore, for Calvinism, which depends on soft determinism’s definition of freedom being true.


Predestination or Free Will? (Post 11)

One of the best ways to learn something is listening to others with different backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences. We often gain insights in our quest for truth only after their “outside” input. This is because we need one another to fill out our understanding and correct our errors. This is certainly the case as we wrestle with the question of predestination or free will.

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