Saturday, October 4, 2008

Pursuit of HIM or knowledge

Below a quote from Lloyd-Jones:
My family in Christ i beg you in all your learning don't miss the pursuit of Him. Be careful to put your finger upon the reason you do what you do. WHAT IMPRESSES you? Is it Him!? Does you heart just explode with thoughts of Him, does it sometimes feel like you are on the road to Emmaus and Jesus is opening the scriptures to you as you read them (in context of course).
AGAINST this i warn: Let NONE be remembered for their passion for 'Theology, Calvinism, Lectures, Preaching, Reading or Activity, but for Christ, a hot zeal for knowing God. A man who isn't impressed with Christ, won't reach many people, he might reach other men who love classroom settings but that's all: He'll bore the common man, the teenager, the child, the wife, the mother, the older saints, he will be LIMITED to reaching ONLY those of like mind and temperament. Let me ask this: IF given the choice would you wish to have the mind of Solomon or the heart of David? When i think of a preacher, i don't CARE what school he went, or how many degrees he has, i have ONE question can he give me CHRIST (i don't mean it in a weird way). I like something Don Kistler always points out about the Puritans, how many of these men held prestigious degrees, yet they didn't refer to them or sign their books by them, they refereed to themselves as ministers of the gospel (something like that). WHY? Well for them (the good ones-there's a dark side to anything) theological study was just a means, and they used this mean to pursue God. That's why if i was to recommend reading to someone, especially to a very sound person i would direct him to the Puritans, because they were masters at applying theology, it was always used to humble, to convict, to motivate, and to convince men of God- Learn this art, learn how to engage the affections: HOW??? First you must recognize those you turn off (not the lost church member) but true believers, and repent of your cold-intellectualism, face the fact that you have CUT (removed, stolen) the heart from truth (you're not even stirred-sports stir you more) and then do something you probably don't do enough; SEEK THE FACE OF GOD and cry out for HIM! Don't intercede or give your list of wants, but pour out your heart begging God to reveal His presence to you (weird? No biblical, LIVE you stoic!) just commune with Him! Search the Psalms for the heart cries of knowing and experiencing God, Search the gospel, the epistles, the law and more for these longings.
You don't admire the men of past, you IDOLIZE them, because you won't go to HIM who they are pointing to, you won't use the means they used, you just parrot their words (without the power). Away with the thought that prayer is for women, or old guys, get in that closet and find great delight; Where I ask are the men who can say these things (have these EVER been your cries)
Psalm 42:1 As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?
Psalm 27:4 One thing I have desired of the LORD, That will I seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD All the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the LORD, And to inquire in His temple.
Psalm 63:1 O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You In a dry and thirsty land Where there is no water. 2 So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory.
Ps 84:2 My soul longs, yes, even faints For the courts of the LORD; My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.
2 Cor 5:2,8 2For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, 8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.
Ex 33:18 And he said, “Please, show me Your glory.”
Lam 3: 24 “ The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “ Therefore I hope in Him!” 25 The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the soul who seeks Him.
Pursue HIM! SEEK Him! Enjoy HIM! Glorify HIM!
God bless you All
A quote from Martyn (the dr.) Lloyd-Jones (Puritans: their origins and their successors)
1 Corinthians 8:1-3:
‘Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth. And if any man think that he kn wet anything, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. But if any man love God the same is known of him.’

..............The same thing can apply also even in the process of studying theology. It can become just a subject set for an examination, or a subject essential to obtaining a certain degree or diploma. And the very fact that this is the system may result in a man viewing the knowledge of God entirely in this way. But even without examinations this is still a possibility. A man can take a purely academic and theoretical interest in theology. I have known many such men. They happen to have had that as their hobby, whereas others turned to crossword puzzles. It was essentially the same approach—there was no question about that at all. It was purely theoretical, and thus it had become this false type of ‘knowledge’. Are we entirely free from this danger?
The second particular cause is that we approach truth purely in terms of intellect—intellect only. There is nothing so dangerous as to isolate the intellect. We are all agreed about the priority of intellect. But there is all the difference in the world between our asserting its priority and talking only about intellect and regarding man as if he were nothing but an intellect. There is nothing that is so calculated to lead a man directly to this ‘false knowledge’, about which the Apostle is speaking, as a purely intellectual interest in truth, in which the heart is never engaged at all and the power of the truth is not felt, indeed in which feeling does not enter at all. The man is merely concerned to absorb knowledge with his mind. And it is precisely the same when the will is not engaged. If the interest does not lead to any action, or move the ill, it is equally bad. We need not stay with this. The text for all this is, of course, Romans 6:17: ‘But God be thanked’, says the Apostle, ‘that ye have obeyed’—will!—‘from the heart’—heart!—‘the form of (sound) doctrine delivered to you’— to the mind. There you have them together. If you isolate the intellect and leave out the heart and the will, it is certain that you will end in this position of having a false view of knowledge, and indeed as I want to show, with false ‘knowledge’ also. To vary the expression, this danger is one of knowing ‘about’ a subject rather than knowing it! What a vital distinction this is. What a difference there is between preaching about the gospel and preaching the gospel! It is possible to preach round the gospel and say things about it without ever presenting it. That is quite useless—indeed it can be very dangerous. It may be true of us that we know ‘about’ these things, but do not really know them. And this, of course, becomes all–important when we realize that the whole end and object of theology is to know God! A Person! Not a collection of abstract truths, nor a number of philosophical propositions, but God! A Person! To know Him!—‘the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent!’ There we have what I would regard as the main causes of this trouble...


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