The value of books

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Aug 4, 2014.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Books are very valuable as they help one understand the bible, the history of the Bible, or even to defend inerrancy of the Bible. Books such as 7 Reasons why we can trust the Bible do a very good job at defending the Bible. Far deeper books are out there but that one is a good introduction to inerrancy.

    Some here do not read any book but the Bible and I have to disagree. Granted books loaded with psychology and mans opinions over the Bible I generally toss as I have many in the last few months. Lately I gave a Dave Ramsey book away as I found ones by Crown, and Randy Alcorn to be more rooted in scripture. Also I have tossed certain success type books due to the low view of the doctrine of sufficiency and the high view of psychology.

    Folks always test your book by the Bible but mature Christians do read books and commentaries and theology and such books.
     
  2. Don

    Don
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    "Mature" Christians?

    What books did Paul read? What books did Peter read? How about the Ethiopian eunuch?

    The fallacy with what you posted is in your own post: Dave Ramsey was fine, until you found something different; then you threw it away. Books with psychology and man's opinion, you were fine with; until you realized they weren't good, and threw them away.

    But the one foundation you've apparently kept is the scriptures themselves.

    And then you go on to say: "test your book by the bible."

    Evangelist, it's okay to read books; but you seem to place them on the same level as the scriptures themselves. You don't seem able to study just the bible without having to consider someone else's opinion on what it says.

    When was the last time you read scripture that wasn't in a study bible? Just the scriptures themselves, and let the Holy Spirit lead you to an understanding?

    I'm NOT saying don't read other books; but as you yourself pointed out, they *must* be tested against what scripture says, and therefore will ALWAYS be inferior.
     
  3. evangelist6589

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    All the time. I have a compact ESV and NIV bible on my desk and a pocket NKJV in my car. Neither are study bibles and they are highlighted all over the place. Don't assume things...
     
  4. exscentric

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    "What books did Paul read?" We don't know but we do know he wanted them around him, we might assume he probably read them.

    II Tim. 4:13

    One might have been "101 Sermon Illustrations and Jokes". :) Well, probably not :)
     
  5. Don

    Don
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    "Don't assume things"?!? Ain't that the pot calling the kettle black?
     
  6. Rolfe

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    Question: Is it possible for the illiterate to mature in their Christian walk?
     
    #6 Rolfe, Aug 4, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 4, 2014
  7. Crabtownboy

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    Books are invaluable! Through them the great minds of the past can talk to us.
     
  8. Rolfe

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    Absolutely agree. :thumbs:
     
  9. Don

    Don
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    Agreed!:wavey:
     
  10. evangelist6589

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    Who would believe you?
     
  11. JonC

    JonC
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    Brother, I think that you are fighting windmills and many of those dragons are in your head.

    The issue that I have is when people use these books in defense of their position of Scripture. For example, even if John MacArthur was considered a scholarly source in theology (which he isn’t) and even if his interpretation was correct (which I believe to be the case most of the time), it is pointless and inappropriate to offer a MacArthur book in support of your position. What gets old is when someone consistently defends his position by asking others to read this book or that book (and when someone declines they are accused of being afraid to read).

    But you are right that Bible commentaries are excellent tools in understanding Scripture. Given language and cultural barriers, I do not know how one would study without consulting some extra-biblical source. There is a difference, however, in reading an author’s opinion or interpretation and understanding not only what the author is saying, but the context and argument itself. What you tend to do is simply offer an author as an authority. I would encourage you to think about this: until you are able to defend the opposing position, you are not on adequate ground to argue your own views. There is a difference between accepting something you’ve read as truth and understanding what you have read so that you own that belief.

    My suggestion is to use commentaries and such to gain insight and understanding. But before you think of arguing someone else's position, go back to Scripture and make it your own.
     
    #11 JonC, Aug 4, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 4, 2014
  12. Don

    Don
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    JonC explains exactly what I'm trying to get across to you.
     
  13. Greektim

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    I would almost guarantee Paul read way more than the OT. Considering his pharisaic background, he was probably well rooted in the pseudepigrapha and other extant 2nd temple books of literature. He knew pagan sources as well (well enough to quote on the spot), so he was well versed in various kinds of literature. And he exudes rhetorical prowess which suggests he studied ancient rhetoric. Paul was most certainly a reader.
     
  14. JonC

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    Yet he found it appropriate to ground his doctrine in Scripture and God's revelation - not other books, which I believe is more the point here. No one advocates a life of extra-biblical illiteracy...regardless of Evan's opening statement.
     
  15. Greektim

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    I think he was greatly influenced by apocalyptic works whether canonical or not. That much is observed by many.

    But your point is taken.
     
  16. Van

    Van
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    Great thread, with valuable insight on the supremacy of scripture as the authority for faith and practice. Many thanks!
     
  17. evangelist6589

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    But you often completely misunderstand me and take me out of context. What I said is that scripture is the authority and that books need a foundation in it. I also said that I have tossed books that had a weak foundation in scripture. I mentioned this but you ignored it because if did not meet your agenda to discredit me.
     
  18. JonC

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    I am sorry, Evan, if you believe that I have an agenda to discredit you. If I have genuinely come across that way, I do apologize. My intent was not to discredit you but to point out areas where I believe you could grow and perhaps correct what I see as error. I will agree that I often do not understand you, and I do ask that you be patient with me and take the time to explain where I misunderstand.

    I did not acknowledge that you tossed books that have a weak foundation in Scripture because I did not understand what bearing it held to your position. I have books that have weak foundations in Scripture…many that advocate what I would consider unorthodox views (Brian McLaren comes to mind). I do not read them to adopt their views, but to understand what they are saying and to strengthen my own position. So please do not understand me to be saying that you need not read books. This is not the issue.

    Please know that if I ever had an agenda to discredit you, or held any animosity against you, then I would simply remain silent. Someone has said that the opposite of love is not hate but ambivalence, and I suppose there is some truth to that. I communicate with you on this forum because I admire your heart for evangelism and you are my brother. Take what I say to heart, or dismiss it. That is entirely up to you.
     
    #18 JonC, Aug 5, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 5, 2014
  19. Yeshua1

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    the end result though was as the Spirit intended. correct?
     
  20. evangelist6589

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    Thank you so much for this. Yes understandings occur. I agree I am growing and yes if I were to learn and regurgitate the authors views in line with the Bible that would be better than just telling one like WinMan to read a book which I know he won't do as he does not read books. I believe I have this capability in strong areas such as evangelism and eschatology however I have not tried to debate eschatology here much.

    But yes all the author does is point one to scripture.
     

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