Though a tired, old cliché pertaining to Baptist life, there nevertheless remains some truth: "Ask two Baptists the same question and you'll get three opinions." I suppose that stems, at least in part, from our historic commitment to the reformational idea of the priesthood of all believers...>>>
Many of our Calvinist brothers often assume that Southern Baptists possess really only one "official" heritage--Calvinism. Inevitably quoting as evidence The 1689 London Confession, The 1742 Philadelphia Confession or, as Dr. Timothy George asserts in our former post, that Southern Baptists' "earliest confession" is The Abstract of Principles, composed specifically for Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1859, Calvinists assure us the truth of their claim stands beyond question >>>
Today, I post part two of a two part series entitled "Calvinism: Herschel Hobbs & Timothy George." I thank The Alabama Baptist once again for permitting me to post this essay written by Dr. Timothy George originally published by them July 13, 1995 entitled "Amazing Love, Amazing Grace."
Dr. George presently is Dean, Beeson Divinity School, Birmingham, Alabama. He is a longtime Southern Baptist and an outspoken advocate of Calvinism's return in the SBC. Being a prolific writer, his works include "Baptist Theologians" as well as "Theology of the Reformers."
And, though his speciality is historical theology, Dr. George demonstrates able Biblical scholarship with his commentary on Galatians in the New American Commentary series. Today's essay originally appeared on the heels of Dr. Hobbs' editorial in The Alabama Baptist...>>>
“Restore us, O God; Make Your face shine upon us, that we may be saved” (Psalm 80.3)
The prayer concern of the worshipper is restoration. Restore us, O God. Restore us to what? Had the worshipper fallen into sin? Had his love grown cold? Was he failing to love neither his God nor his neighbor as himself? Was his marriage in trouble? Restore us, O God. Actually, it could have been either or all of the above.
Make Your face shine upon us. The worshipper saw clearly his only hope for restoration to whatever he needed restoring—God’s smile. The Hebrew had a saying that believed that if God looked at you and smiled, your life would be blessed. Make Your face shine! In your smile, O Lord, lies our only hope to be saved. Selah.
Father God. How we long for Your face to shine upon us…How we need to experience the smile of Your countenance. We need restoration! We need salvation! Not from others primarily, nor from our circumstances. Mostly, our Savior, we need salvation from ourselves—Especially, O Lord, ourselves! Save us, O God, from ourselves! Make Your face ever shine upon us…Smile upon us...Give us peace. Amen.
Surely, one of the most popular Reformed authors today is R.C. Sproul. I first began to read Sproul in the early 80s when I saw him on a John Ankerberg television show. I have devoured his taped lectures on Philosophy, Ethics, Theology and Biblical themes. Having read most of his books--many more than once--I cannot underestimate the impact he has had on me, especially in the turbulent years when, as a young theological student, I was trying to wade through debates about the Bible, Inerrancy and Authority, Neo-orthodoxy and Conservativism...>>>
Today is posted the first of two essays originally published in The Alabama Baptist in 1995. We thank that paper for their generosity in giving permission to post these essays here. I am following the order in which the essays first appeared in the original publication >>>
"I am the LORD, that is My name; And My glory I will not give to another, Nor My praise to carved images” (Isaiah 42.8)
Most of us go through a period in our life when we lose who we are. Ever searching, we attempt to chart a steady course through the turbulent waves of uncertainty. We experience, then, an identity crisis.
God, however, never has nor ever will experience a loss of knowing Who He is—I am the LORD, that is My name. From all eternity, God has been God. His name ever remains the same. And, His love toward us is as changeless as His name.
My glory I will not give to another. Since God ever knows Who He is, His glory never fades. It remains fully intact toward Himself. Nor will He allow His glory to be sold to the highest bidder. He allows no allegiance to be offered to another god. Our loyalty must remain toward Him. Child of God! Worship Him with unalterable allegiance and singleness of heart! Give your praise exclusively to no other. Selah.
Father. You deserve the totality of our praise. But we must confess to You, Merciful Savior, that sometimes we offer glory that rightly belongs to You…that You Yourself say You will give to no other…we offer that glory to things of our choosing. Forgive us, O God! Cleanse us, we pray! Magnify the glory You eternally deserve in our hearts, our lives, our actions. May today, O Lord, we live, giving all glory to Your Blessed Name. Amen.