Shared Flashcard Set


Theology Midterm Study
what to know for the midterm
Bible Studies
Undergraduate 3

Additional Bible Studies Flashcards





first things in theology Includes…. 1. Nature of theology 2. Theological language 3. Creator/creature)


like the introduction to a book. it is the introduction of theology or the very first things in theology. 

1. Nature of theology


1. Church praises God by ordering its thinking toward the gospel of Christ.

2. theology directs the Church’s attention to the realities which the gospel declares and attempts to make those realities a matter of responsible thought.”


3. “Coming to a truer knowledge about God”


John Webster’s Definition of Theology (Holiness) – - “theology is that delightful activity in which the Church praises God by ordering its thinking toward the gospel of Christ. Set in the midst of praise, repentance, witness, and service of God’s holy people, theology directs the Church’s attention to the realities which the gospel declares and attempts to make those realities a matter of responsible thought.” “Coming to a truer knowledge about God”

What Theology is commonly thought to be, but, in Webster’s mind, is not a correct definition –
- “Theology is often caricatured as the unholy science that reduces the practices of piety (of worshiping God) to lifeless propositions (disscussion). But far from it […]”
***Certain Aspects of theology (3 major motifs of theology) three ways to think about God.

1. Worship- Exchanging false gods for the true god ---


a. Ludwig Feuerbach said that “God is a projection of human thoughts or desires”

b.  ---John Calvin said: “the human heart is a factory of idols […] every one of us is, form his mother’s womb, expert in inventing idols.” (Institutes of Christian Religion, 1.11.8)


2. Drama/Grammar – Scripture as a record of the dramatic action of God, theology as a grammar ---


a. Dorthy Sayers: "the dogma is drama.” Theology is not dull: creation, fall, redemption, etc. ---“The Divine Drama”



3. Theology and Baptism – dying/rising; mortification/vivification


---Romans 6:3-4 “Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”


Theological correction—dying “to sinful self” (mortification)


---Theological growth – coming to life “becoming a new creation in Christ” (vivification)

***Why We Need Systematic Theology

1. Example: Arius & Nicaea

 Arius just “read” his bible and he came up with and propagated a skewed heresy of the relationship between the father and son in the trinity.


 He believed that Jesus was created by God and was subordinate to him.



2. Scripture & Theological Interpretation

 We need to have a “systematized [organized] understanding” of the whole breath of scripture…the “sense of scripture” on topics so that we understand the small passages and how to interpret them in light of the whole Bible and what it says.


*** Why Systematic Theology?

1. John Webster’s reason from Holliness - “Dogmatics (Christian principles that are accepted as true) is … a. complementary but strictly subordinate to the exegetical task.


b. It is NOT an improvement upon Holy Scripture, replacing the informal, occasional language of Scripture by conceptual forms which are better organized, more sophisticated or more firmly grounded.


c. Rather, dogmatics seeks simply to produce a set of flexible accounts of the essential content of the gospel as it is found in Holy Scripture, with the aim of informing, guiding and correcting the Church’s reading. Dogmatics attempts a ‘reading’ of the gospel which in its turn assists the Church’s reading.”

2.Theological language

1. What’s the canon – a collection of varied texts that are united by their divine source (the Father’s speaking), their content (the Son’s work of redemption), and their power to generate the world of which they speak (the Spirit’s work of inspiration, illumination, and regeneration). (Horton, 27)


2. What’s Biblical Studies (OT/NT) –How to reconstruct texts and exegete Scripture


3. What is Historical Theology and/or Church History–How the church has interpreted Scripture over the centuries (faithfully/unfaithfully)


4. What is Moral/Ethical Theology–

How Christians ought to live with respect to the church and the world


5. What is Biblical Theology

 Language and thought patterns of Scripture  Topographical Map (shows the connection within Scripture. (Ex. Temple = OT, JC, HS.)


6. What is Systematic Theology

 Synthetic and Conceptual Account of Scripture  Street Map (showing all the details and small roads that connect together.)

3. Creator/creation ***Models of God/world

1. Overcoming Estrangement: Creator and creature overlap; salvation is simply to overcome that estrangement either in perception or in reality – we reach toward the “god” already inside of us (pantheism; panentheism)


2. The Stranger we Never Meet: Creator and creature are utterly distinct; they are never related in history or in salvation (God is distant = deism, or does not exist = atheism) 3. Meeting a Stranger: Creator and creature are ontologically different – uncreated/created. That difference is good, it is not the problem. The problem is ethical difference because of the entrance of sin. Since this difference is bad, it is the problem. The overcoming of sin requires not us reaching inward, but rather God coming to us from the outside doing for us what we could not do for ourselves. Salvation is coming back into fellowship or communion with God. We always remain God’s beloved creatures, not gods, and that is a created good.

***Creator/creature Knowledge
1. Archetypal (original) – God’s perfect knowledge of himself and all things which is unlimited by finitude or sin
2. Ectypal (copy) – creaturely knowledge of God and what he has made which is limited by finitude and sin. This difference is also good, not bad. Our knowledge is true and adequate as creatures – it is, however, not God’s knowledge in the sense that: God’s thoughts are not our thoughts (our minds are no more divine than our bodies).
***Competing Views of Knowledge
“three main “isms” of knowledge: rationalism, idealism, empiricism. (gathered as “The Sovereign Self” in Horton)”
1. Rationalism – Rene Descartes was a key figure here. Descartes wanted a sure and certain foundation for knowledge in himself – apart from external authority… “I think therefore I am.” The attempt to use autonomous reason alone is described as rationalism.
- Critique from Horton (via Migliore) suggested that Christians say counter this sort of rationalism with: “God is, therefore we are.”
2. Idealism – G.E. Lessing was a key figure here. Lessing said there was an ugly ditch between the necessary truths of reason and the accidental truths of history. and we couldn’t cross that ditch. So we can only truly know the universal – idealistic truths – not the stuff of history.
- Critique: This cuts off all notions of revelation and makes apprehending truth rely solely on us.
3. Empiricism – David Hume was a key figure here. Hume taught that only our sense experience produces objects of knowledge – everything else can be radically doubted.
- Critique: This cuts off all knowledge of history/revelation/Christ.
*** Important Modern Figures
1. Immanuel Kant – Tried to harmonize human reason and sense experience (rationalism and empiricism) by separating the reality into “things out there” AND objects of sense experience: noumenal & phenomenal. We can know the phenomenal but not the noumenal. He is a hugely influential figure who sets up some modern dualisms (objective v. subjective).
- Critique: We should contend as Christian that our knowledge is grounded in God’s own knowledge and we truly can know things as creatures.
2. G.F.W. Hegel – Hegel responded to Kant’s separation – his dualism – by bringing everything together very rationalistically as one (monism). So God is becoming himself in the world – Father/Son/Spirit – and we can know God because he is immanent within the world. Hegel can almost sound Christian except he betrays the Creator/creation distinction to secure knowledge of God.
*** On Modern Views
1. Conclusion: In contrast to these competing stories the Christian account maintains a clear and permanent distinction between Creator and creature. This distinction is maintained not simply with respect to ontology (being) but with respect to epistemology (what we know). In his existence and knowledge God transcends us and at no point do the lines intersect and we become God. It is, perhaps, the chief human temptation to think the creature becomes the Creator.
Theology Proper
 Definition of Theology Proper – the study of God in his attributes and internal work as Trinity
***Knowledge of God (according to John Calvin) Institutes of the Christian Religion
1. Without the knowledge of self, there is no knowledge of God
2. Without knowledge of God, there is no knowledge of self
3. So we should look both at ourselves (creatures and sinners) to realize who God is… and look to God (Creator and Redeemer) to realize who we are.
4. When God speaks to us he uses human language. That is one way in which God condescends/accommodates to our capacities – he speaks to us in ways we can understand.
5. This can be seen tracing the names of God in the OT/NT (might/strong one… lord/Lord). It is always using creaturely language, and even anthropomorphic language at times.
***Divine Attributes/Perfections
1. Incommunicable attributes:
1. Incommunicable attributes: belong to God alone
 Simplicity
 Aseity
 Immutable
 Impassible
 Eternal & Omnipresent
2. Communicable attributes:
2. Communicable attributes: those which God shares with us
 Intellectual: Omniscience and Omnipotence
 Ethical: Goodness, Mercy, and Love
 Ethical: Holiness Righteousness, and Justice
 Jealousy and Wrath
(Remember: The incommunicable v. communicable distinction is meant to help us categorize, not to be hard and fast.)
Trinity (slides 25-37)
Fact: Trinity is concealed in the OT, revealed in the NT
Trinity: ***Biblical Paths
1. Biblical Path #1
 Jesus from the end – his passion/suffering to his glorious exaltation provide clear manifestation of the mystery of the Trinity; exaltation to right hand of the Father and the outpouring of the Spirit
2. Biblical Path #2
 Jesus from the beginning – incarnation by the Spirit, Baptism Father/voice Spirit/dove…; even his pre-existence before his incarnation (Word with God, was God – and together with the Spirit in Gen 1 God created all things by)
Conclusion: Both paths focus on the mission of Jesus and the Spirit.
***Trinity: In Revelation
1. Revelation of Father
1. Revelation of Father
 Meaning of the Name
o Origin
 –Sending of the Son/Spirit (origin)
 –Descent/ascent of Son (origin)
 –Commanding/Obeying the Son/Spirit (origin)
Definition of the “Relation-of-origin”: All point to a relation-of-origin, that is what it means for Father/Son is that the Son is from the Father; that he is begotten from the Father; what it means for Spirit is that he is from Father & Son – that he proceeds from the Father & Son… this is what we mean when we say divine “persons”
o Good loving carer
 –Intimacy/Unity
 –Reciprocal love/knowledge
 –Unity of Action/Power
 –I and the Father are One
2. Revelation of Jesus the Son:
2. Revelation of Jesus the Son:
 Accomplishes the works of God
 –Is sent from the Father
 –Presents himself as the Son of Man
 –Is the Son of God
 –Is the object of worship
2. Revelation of Jesus the Son:
2. Revelation of Jesus the Son:
 Accomplishes the works of God
 –Is sent from the Father
 –Presents himself as the Son of Man
 –Is the Son of God
 –Is the object of worship
3. Revelation of the Holy Spirit:
 Is the gift of God
 Is the agent who accomplishes salvation
1. Therefore: When you consider the mission of the Son and the Spirit and what we can ascertain from the Scriptural revelation of the Son and Spirit we say: Trinity. There is a correspondence between God’s outer work (mission) with his inner work (processions).
2. The Trinity is the mystery we confess to say the One God acts in three persons. It’s the grammar of the gospel (we are saved by Christ, joined to him by the Spirit, wherein God becomes our Father).
*** Trinity: Historical Paths
1. Historically, the doctrine of the Trinity developed in response to heresy. Three particular heresies to take note of:
1. Adoptionism – becomes son (honorific title)
2. Modalism – appears as son (mask)
3. Subordinationism – son is a creature (intermediary figure)

2. Defense against the heresies:
 We said the Son has been confessed as the eternal Son (against adoptionism), who is truly the Son of the Father (against modalism), thus he is begotten not made (against subordinationism).
3. The Council of Nicaea in 325:
 was the first ecumenical council to meet. There, the church wrestled with the questions associated with the status of the Son. And from Nicaea in 325, to Nicaea-Constantinople in 381, the church refined its Trinitarian confession.
4. Summary of Nicaea:
 As a summary of the work of Nicaea from the fourth century (325 then Nicaea-Constantinople 381) and through the Cappodocians, we said a clear grammar developed. We can speak about God two-ways:
o –Essentially – we talked about what God is = Oneness (attributes – shared by the three); COMMON
o –Personally – we talk about who God is = Threeness (relations – persons – Father/Son/Spirit); PROPER
5. Treasures that came from the Trinitarian debate:
 One of the treasures of Trinitarian theology is the clear grammar to speak about the: One God who exists in Three Persons. Thus, part of holding the mystery of the Trinity is by speaking about God two ways: essentially and personally. We need both – and we can’t collapse them to be the same thing OR just speak of the One or just speak of the three. The grammar holds together the mystery of the Trinity.
6. Trinity is a mystery not a contradiction.
 It marks the difference between the Creator and us as his creatures. No created illustrations work: water/shampoo/family – they don’t actually hold that mystery together. So, does the professor like triniatarian illustrations? No. Unless they are a picture that just illustrates the grammar: One God, who exists in three persons.
Bibliology (slides 38-51)
Definition: Bibliology – the study of Scripture
*** Concept of Revelation
1. What is revelation?
 And we said there are many models approaches people use to wrap their heads around that (5 in text).
 We focused on Horton’s definition, which tried to incorporate the best said revelation is:
o –“God’s free and gracious self-disclosure through particular events and words of the prophets and the apostles through whom he communicates these events and their meaning.” (Horton, 128)
2. Forms of Revelation
1. General Revelation: general in time/location – generally accessible
 Major example: creation
a. What can General Revelation do/not do?
 Can bear witness to its Creator. Can’t develop a Christian theology, so can’t save. The witness of general revelation is quite something, but the problem is on the side of the human – we don’t perceive general revelation correctly – particularly because of sin. Because of this, general revelation must be seen in light of special revelation to be properly understood.
1. Definition: Inspiration: “The Father speaking in the Son by the perfecting agency of the Spirit.” (Horton, 157)
 The result is the Bible is God’s Word to us – it’s unique amongst all other books.
2. Inspiration means: verbal-plenary inspiration – the very words and all the words.
3. The inspiration of Scripture includes divine and human agents. So not mechanical dictation on the one end – just God; not religious geniuses on the other end – just people; instead God uses the whole life/personality of the author.
4. Key Passages on Inspiration:
o –2 TIM 3:16-17 – God-breathed
 “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness”
o –2 PET 1:20-21 – not human origin, but men moved by God
 “Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. 21 For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”
1. Definition: Illumination: “the Spirit opens our minds to Christ which leads us to the Father.” (Horton, 167)
2. Distinctions between Inspiration and Illumination.
 Inspiration is the act of God initiating communication to us through the emissary of the prophets and apostles. (outside us)
 –Illumination is our creaturely reception of that communicative act that God gives through Scripture. (inside us)
1. Definition: Inerrancy – Scripture is absolutely trustworthy. Scripture is true in all it affirms.
 The doctrine is an implied argument from the character of God and inspiration of Scripture
2. Logic of Inerrancy
1. Truth is an attribute of God (2 Sam. 7:28; Heb. 6:18)
2. God speaks truthfully (John 3:32-33)
3. Inspiration establishes that Scripture (graphe) originates (God-breathed = theopneustos) from God (2 Tim. 3:16-17)
4. So Scripture is the word/speech of God (2 Peter 1:20-21)
5. Therefore Scripture is true
3. The Chicago Statement of Inerrancy (1978)
 takes those main points from Hodge/Warfield and puts them into a formal document. It makes lots of careful qualifications, and in the end gives a pretty reasonable account of why Scripture is trustworthy. The BIG reason why inerrancy matters is Scripture’s authority. Is all of it authoritative for us? Do we stand under it?
1. Definition: Scripture is called the canon – from rule or standard; and canonicity refers to the process of recognizing what that canon was.
2. The process involved the church’s act of recognition, not of determination – the church recognizes God’s voice in and through Scripture (external proofs help, but come after)
3. Yes, it is circular to say: The bible is God’s word b/c God speaks through it… BUT all appeals to ultimate authority work this way.
***Perspicuity/clarity of the Scripture
1. Definition: perspicuity or clarity of Scripture, which means: Scripture is intelligible to anyone with the normal reading ability of an educated adult.
a. It’s basic – saving/gospel – teachings are clear.
b. –The clear parts interpret the unclear parts.
c. –There is a task of interpretation, but it is not hopeless because of the Spirit.
d. –Some will reject the clear message of Scripture because of human sin and ignorance. We are optimistic towards God’s work by the Spirit and pessimistic toward sinful human responses.
***Doctrine of sola Scriptura
1. Definition: The doctrine of sola Scriptura – Scripture alone or by Scripture alone.
 This speaks to the normative (standard or norm) role of Scripture to judge all our faith and practice.
 AND it speaks to the sufficiency of Scripture for the Christian life and belief.
 Even the church stands under Scripture – and ministers rather than rules under God’s word.
2. Logic of sola scriptura
 All authority comes from God (Gen. 17:1)
 Inspiration establishes that Scripture (graphe) originates from God (2 Peter 1:20-21)
 Nothing else originates from God the way Scripture does
 Since Scripture uniquely originates from God, it alone is His authoritative and sufficient word (2 Tim. 3:16-17)
 Therefore, Scripture is the only trustworthy and final authority for Christians in matters of faith and practice
Creation (slides 52-62)
1. Definition: Creation – the study of all that God made
***Faulty Views of Creation
 Emmanationist (dualist)
o Creation is bad since it is physical; it needs to return to God as spirit (e.g. – Gnostic host of spirit beings)
 Panentheist (monist)
o Creation is a sort of extension of God; it needs to overcome all difference and live in harmony as/with God (e.g. – McFague world = God’s body)
 Materialist (monist)
o Creation is an accidental state of affairs within eternal matter; it should live as it will with no end goal (e.g. – science and eternal particles)
***Creation: Ex Nihilo
1. In contrast is the Christian doctrine of creation ex nihilo (out of nothing).
2. This is not explicitly taught in Scripture, but does arise naturally from a synthetic reading of all Scripture.
3. Key texts: Gen 1:1-3; John 1:1-3; Heb 11:3
4. It is a difficult concept because it requires us to think outside of our existence (faith).
***Aspects of creation ex nihilo
1. Creation is a personal act of the triune God
2. The triune God is free as Creator
3. The triune God directly makes his creation
4. Creation is contingent
5. Creation is good
6. Creation has integrity
***Creation: Origins
1. Speaking about Christianity and science is a sensitive subject.
 It’s important because:
o The integrity of Scripture is in question
o Our Christian Witness is on display
2. When all the facts are understood, we trust there is no final conflict between Christianity and science.
***Geological Data (age of the earth)
1. Rock Layers
 Rock layers with fossils appear to have been deposited, eroded, and other layers deposited over millions of years
 Silt layers (2 per year – spring/winter) are evident in river beds, some with several million
2. From this, scientists think the earth must be at least a few million years old.
3. Radiometric Dating
 The process looks at radioactive material that decays at predicable rates (precision clocks are made on the basis of this decay).
 Looking at parent material (original) and daughter material (decayed) scientist calculate the age of the rocks.
 Using radiometric dating some rocks have been estimated to be approximately 4.5 billion years old.
***Biblical Data (age of the earth)
1. Creation in Six Days: Young Earth
 Literal Six Days
 Gap Theory
 Flood Geology
All of the above establish an younger age for the earth combined with reading biblical genealogies as “closed.”
2. Creation in Six Days: Old Earth
 Day-Age Theory
 Days of Proclamation
 Literary Framework (analogical days)
All of the above establish an older age for the earth combined with reading biblical genealogies as “open.”
***Non-negotiables of Creation
1. Creation in Six Days – the language of the six days of creation must be plausibly interpreted
2. God is Sovereign in the Process – the sovereignty of God as maker/sustainer must be upheld
3. Humanity is God’s special creation – humanity is made by God as his image, distinct from animals
“A number of theories about the age of the earth (old and young) attempt to hold those three non-negotiables together, and all are evidenced amongst evangelical Christians. We should be patient and humble as we converse with others about this.”
 God of the gaps is not a profitable way to reconcile Christianity and science.
Providence (slides 63-82)
1. Definition: Providence – the study of God’s work in and through all he has made
2. Providence – The Father’s sovereign ordering and sustaining of all things through the Son in the power of the Spirit for our good and his glory.
 Some have suggested we think about three aspects of creation: original (creatio originalis); continuing (creatio continua); new (creatio nova) (Horton, 345).
***Providence “ex nihilo”
1. Yet there is something unique about creation ex nihilo – the unrepeatable act.
2. God is creative with what he has created, but the act of creation itself only occurs once ex nihilo.
3. Providence describes the rest of God’s continuing work.
4. Best to have some clear distinction between these two.
***Providence: creation as the original act
1. Saying: creation is the original act that God does ex nihilo and providence is God’s ordering and sustaining of all that resulting creation we can clearly affirm:
 That creation is in fact ex nihilo - not from
pre-existing stuff
 That God is active and working today in His
already existing creation as it’s Maker and
***Important clarification:
1. Miracles v. Providence – the difference is not
natural/supernatural or no-God/God, BUT
God’s ordinary v. extraordinary work (sunset
v. burning bush).
2. God is always at work in ordering and
sustaining the world, yet he typically works
through ordinary means.
***Providence: Three kinds of passages to consider
1. Soteriological Passages – those which are connected specifically with salvation
2. Common Grace Passages – those which refer to God’s more general governance
3. Theodicy Passages – those which defend God’s ways in the world despite the reality of evil
***Cultural Challenges to the Doctrine of Providence
1. It’s difficult to acknowledge gifts/Giver when the world seems full of givens.
2. It’s a challenge to appeal to providence in a culture where the notion has been historically misused by some to cause oppression (manifest destiny)
***Theological parameters in considering the doctrine of providence
1. Direct/Indirect Cause - God is always the primary cause, but typically works through secondary causes. God’s normal work in the world is through ordinary means.
 –Concursus – God’s work and our work “run together” – that is we can’t precisely draw neat dividing lines between what God does and what we do.
2. God’s Hidden/Revealed Will – We also make a distinction between God’s Hidden and Revealed will. Since the “secret things” belong to God (Deut 29:29) and that which is “revealed” belongs to us (Deut 29:29), we can actually take comfort that we know in part not in full.
 We can rest in God because he truly does know the secret things that we do not and is working together for our good and his glory (Rom 8:28).
 We can stop striving to know every aspect of “why”
***Providence: Problem of Evil (PoE)
1. Six basic rules/concepts
1) Evil exists.
2) An all powerful God could eliminate evil.
3) A good God would eliminate evil.
4) Therefore, God is either not all powerful, not good, or not existent.
5) For all people, especially Christians, this is a very serious problem.
6) How do we respond?

2. Redefine/Reduce God
 God must not exist
 –God must not be all powerful
 –God must not be good (in the sense we assumed)
3. Redefine/Reduce Experience
 –Attempt to explain why it happened
4. PoE Redefine God
1) Not Existent (Atheism, Christian Science)
 Idea of evil doesn’t mean much.
 Shifts the problem to illusion which still exists.
2) Not All Powerful/Limited (Open Theism)
 How do we know future will “turn out”?
 How can God comfort if He can’t control?
3) Redefined Goodness (Gordon H. Clark)
 Whatever happens is caused by God…
 –Whatever God does is good…
 –Whatever happens is good.
 –Doesn’t really address the reality of suffering.
5. Common Christian response
1) We try to “make sense” of the events by explaining why they happened.
 The “evil” must really be “good” because the ultimate outcome will be good.
 Romans 8:28 “All things work together for good to those who love God.”
 In this way, we redefine that which is evil as good.
6. The danger of answering why
 Minimizes the reality of evil–Call evil what it is – evil
 God does use evil for good, but that does not make the evil itself good.
 God permits injustice to continue, but He neither causes it or delights in it.
 Evil is always the result of sin (Adamic).
 We must not make sin and evil reasonable by attempting to explain why they occurred.
1) Biblically there’s rarely a why:
 Job suffered greatly, but as far as we can tell God never told Job why he suffered so much. Job’s ultimate response was to trust in the goodness of God.
 In Psalm 73 Asaph did not find out why the wicked prosper, instead he saw their ultimate destruction. His resolution was future – justice will come, but not yet.
2) We must not rob people of grief and hope.
• Our hope is for a day in which there will be no mourning, crying, or pain. Our grief is that today is not that day. Evil reminds us that we are not yet fully redeemed and the world is not yet remade.
7. A Christian Response
• Why does God permit evil?
o Avoid the temptation to answer to this question, since it is unlikely that anyone except God knows.
• God is “on the hook”, shouldn’t we answer for him?
o Leave him there.
• God has promised never to leave or forsake us.
o We do not face evil alone.
• God works redemptively in the world.
o Creation/Fall/Israel/Christ/New Creation
8. Theology of the Cross
• Suffering must be seen in light of the cross:
o On Good Friday the death of Christ seemed like a failure of God… God had been absent and failed to rescue Christ.
o On Easter Sunday the death of Christ was shown to be quite another thing… God used that evil for good, but this outcome was completely unseen on Good Friday.
“Experience cannot be allowed to have the final word—it must be judged and shown up as deceptive and misleading. The theology of the cross draws our attention to the sheer unreliability of experience as a guide to the presence and activity of God. God is active and present in his world, quite independently of whether we experience him as being so. Experience declared that God was absent from Calvary, only to have its verdict humiliatingly overturned on the third day.”
-Alister McGrath
• We cannot give all (any) answers as to why. But we can draw courage from the fact that the one who loves us so much He died for us asked the same question: “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (OK & normal to ask of GOD, but don’t answer)
• In the midst of suffering God may be found precisely where He was on Good Friday: identifying with us in our suffering, acting to resolve that suffering in ways we may not see or imagine, and yet sovereign in the heavens, accomplishing His eternal purposes.
• Comfort is not in a why, it’s in a Who
***A Return to the Argument
1. Evil exists.
2. An all powerful God could eliminate evil.
3. A good God would eliminate evil.
4. Therefore, since God is both all powerful and good, He must ultimately eliminate evil.
5. And that is what He has promised to do.
6. God has broken into our suffering by becoming a man – and by raising Jesus from the dead… as believers our hope is in resurrection.
7. Today: Comfort is not in a why, its in a Who
Supporting users have an ad free experience!