Spending more time reading systematic theology?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by gb93433, Dec 4, 2008.

  1. gb93433

    gb93433
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    What do you think of the following response by Patterson? Personally I think pastors need to be using the language skills they learned in seminary and be reading and studying their Bible not a commentary on the Bible or systematic theology but rather learn what the Bible teaches. It certainly disagree with what I was taught in seminary and what the languages professors taught.


    Source: http://founders.org/journal/fj42/article2.html

    Dever: So, Paige, would you encourage pastors to spend more or less time reading systematic theology?



    Patterson: I would encourage them to spend more time reading systematic theology. The commentaries are important but a man has to understand the whole of what God has said and to get a biblical worldview and perspective. The Bible says that God said our ways are not His ways and our thoughts are not His thoughts. Well, just exactly how are we going to come by His thoughts and His ways? We have to see the broader picture. I think the pastor ought to be reading not only systematic theology and not only his commentaries, but he ought to be reading a good diet of good biography, not only for the influence of the spiritual lives of people that he reads about, but also for cogent illustrations for a segment of his preaching.
     
  2. Rippon

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    Dr.Patterson is right on here.But I would add Church History as a requirement.
     
  3. Crabtownboy

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    We can always learn from the great Christian minds of the past. God still uses their writings to teach us.
     
  4. Rippon

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    C.H.S. On Commenting And Commentaries

    Need I after my previous lectures commend to you the judicious reading of commentaries! These are called "dead men's brains" by certain knowing people,who claim to give us nothing in their sermons but what they pretend the Lord reveals direct to themselves.Yet these men are by no means original,and often their supposed inspirations is but borrowed wit. They get a peep at John Gill on the sly.The remarks which they give forth as the Spirit's mind are very inferior in all respects to what they affect to despise,namely,the mind of good and learned men...So to rely upon your own abilities as to be unwilling to learn from others is clearly folly;so to study as not to judge for yourselves is imbecility.(pages 29,30)
     
  5. Pastor Larry

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    Patterson is right. Too many people come up with bad doctrines because they don't correlate passages together. A systematic theology is a correlation of Scripture and prevents finding something in one passage that is contradicted by another.
     
  6. Jim1999

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    I think we all believe that nothing replaces the Bible. It is, however, a scattered garden and can be a tough read for a novice,,,even some of us oldies have or hands full. A good theological text aligns the Bible into a cohesive and systematic order of doctrines. It helps to correlate the doctrines into an orderly thought. It relates each doctrine to the whole.

    The first read I recommend is a good book on hermeneutics. This gives us an understanding on how to read the word.

    Commentaries cannot be ignored as some have said. I love to pick the brains of other people who love and served the Lord.

    I am not a Greek and Hebrew scholar. Yes I passed the grade and can read them, but I am not the most efficient with them. Hence, I depend on men who are trained in the original languages. I have seen men absolutely destroy a text with their use of Greek. To-day, there are enough translations in English to help us reach a firm conclusion in thought and interpretation aligned with that systematic theology.

    I know how German helped me when studying the old German theologians because German is so often inserted in even their English books. So, I am not downgrading a knowledge of Greek and Hebrew. I just think there are enough helps in English to put Greek and Hebrew aside for the average pastor.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  7. Revmitchell

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    Looking for more reasons to denigrate Dr. Patterson are you?
     
  8. thomas15

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    good article, good thread

    One of the things I think we do (not anyone here in particular) is that we complain about not being taught about this or that doctrine. Actually I think it is our responsibility to hit the books and study these things for ourselves instead of blaming our teachers and pastors. Also, I don't think that any trully informed, well studied church goer is going to find any church or teacher that they agree with 100%. We should be willing to change our views if we can be shown by scripture that we are in error.

    I understand and appreciate traditional teaching regarding beliefs but I don't think we need to be completly loyal to them in ever aspect if scripture study shows something different. The Bible is perfect, the creeds and statements of faith are not.

    Tom
     
  9. gb93433

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    If people really believed that then we would not less Bible and more worldliness from the pulpits of America. It amazes me how many leaders among denominations push pastors to bow to the kind contemporary preaching with little teaching of today.
     
  10. Jim1999

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    During my ministry, in the morning service I preached to a perceived need. A topical (s0-called) sermon addressing what I perceived as a need in the congregation or area where we lived. The message was always biblically based.

    Quote: I think we all believe that nothing replaces the Bible...........In context this was in relation to us reading theological texts as a form of Bible study and not to the church services per se.

    In the evening I generally spoke on a specific passage of scripture, not always a series or even a whole book verse by verse.

    Wednesday night was always an in depth Bible study, chapter by chapter and going through a book.

    It worked in my churches.

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
    #10 Jim1999, Dec 4, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 4, 2008
  11. gb93433

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    I think that is similar to what the founder of Calvary Chapel did.

    Eccl. 12:9, 10, "In addition to being a wise man, the Preacher also taught the people knowledge; and he pondered, searched out and arranged many proverbs. The Preacher sought to find delightful words and to write words of truth correctly."
     
  12. gb93433

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    I agree. History shows the results of a particular theology and practice.
     
  13. Rippon

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    Are you mistakenly putting it in the singular form;or is it intentional?History (among many other things)shows the results of many varieties of theology and the practices of such.
     
  14. LeBuick

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    I think you said that well.... I study views I know I don't believe in so that I can recognize it's teachings and explain why I don't agree. Nothing like seeing a guy trying to build a whole doctrine on one verse (out of context usually).

    A guy came by the Church the other day with a pamphlet that took the "should not perish" in Jn 3:16 and tried to argue eternal security. I asked the guy if he read verse 17 and 18 and he responded, "I'm not the one who wrote the pamphlet". Needless to say, I invited him in so we could sit down and discuss this thing. Turns out this guy got these things from his Pastor whose got his whole Church going door to door with that trash.

    Undoubtedly, another guy who gets his material directly from God... No need to study, God will bring to my remembrance what I never knew... </sarcasm>
     
    #14 LeBuick, Dec 5, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 5, 2008
  15. gb93433

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    I am talking more about religious/church history. If a group of people have poor theology it tends to show results that are not consistent with the Bible. It is easy to look back on history and see what happened to people as they went down a particular road. It seems that very few theologies today have not been present in the past. In fact some ancient religions are showing up today. A few years ago someone asked me about Mithraism because her dad was following it. Paganism is gaining popularity.
     
  16. gb93433

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    While I believe your point has some merits. The cults keep changing their doctrine and ways of approaching people. You cannot begin to keep up with them.

    An elderly man who taught me carpenter work made the comment to me, "How do you tell a crooked stick? You lay a straight one next to it." I have not met one person or pastor who had personally led more people to Christ and so many on the mission field today because of him. He did not spend any time reading about cults but every day studied his Bible. For years he had been memorizing the Bible and read and studied each day. It was obvious he loved God and people. He knew his Bible well.
     
  17. LeBuick

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    To add, there are a lot of things to know about Bible times in order to understand the Bible. Taking everything literally might have you trying to put a camel through the eye of a needle.
     
  18. LeBuick

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    How did he do on doctrinal issues? Like eternal security or the depravity of man?
     
  19. gb93433

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    I saw him as solid as a rock and still do today. He was an absolutely first class teacher. The man knew his Bible well and he was constantly making disciples. He taught a Sunday School class of about forty who were wanting to be missionaries. When I was on the job the first time with him I was shocked. I had never seen a Christian exude Christ to such a degree. He shared his faith with such ease and boldness. You could not be around him and not be affected in some way. He died in 1995 and people still talk about him.

    It was a sad day when he died. I called one of my friends and told him. He said, "What will ______ be without ______________." Some of the local businesses closed for the funeral and several city officials were there. His wife told me that there were people at the funeral she did not know, and she was born in the same town. There were over 600 people at the funeral. Many today are in full time Christian work because of his life. It is exciting to see funerals like that, especially those of a man who was devoted to Christ and made disciples.
     
  20. LeBuick

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    Good to hear Brother, I know some exclusively Bible studiers who are great at quoting scripture but don't usually do well on doctrines. Glad this isn't the case.
     

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