Monday, April 21, 2008

Reflections on Jonathan Edwards

1703-2003 Reflections on Jonathan Edwards 300 Years Later was a great little booklet that, I believe, was given out at the 2003 Desiring God National Conference. The booklet gives just a brief overview of the life, study habits, ministry, and the exceptional women that were in his life.

What convicted me the most was they way we (or rather I) study the scriptures. Edwards's 28th resolution is
"Resolved: To study the scriptures so steadily, constantly, and frequently, as that I may find, and plainly perceive, myself to grow in the knowledge of the same."

This comes as a rebuke to me.

John Piper follows by asking:

"How many of us have a plan for growing in our grasp of the whole terrain of scripture? Don't most of us use the Bible as a source for getting sermons and devotionals and personal devotional help? But do we labor over the scripture in such a way that we can plainly see that today we understand something in it that we did not understand yesterday?"

"I fear that many of us work at reading books on theology and church life with a view to growing, but have no plan and no sustained effort to move steadily and constantly forward in our understanding of the Bible."

That was a kick in the back side to get moving and study more in Scripture. I began last week in my morning devotional time going through the books of Galatians using John MacArthur's study guide to help guide. But just reading this has prompted me to think of ways that I can dive even more deeply into the text and pull out even more than I get from using the study guide.

If your able to get your hands on a copy of this booklet I recommend it. It's not long, but gives a great over view of Edwards's life and ministry and will challenge you as you read. By the way parts of this book were excerpts from "The Pastor As Theologian" a sermon/biographical sketch preached by Piper in April 1988.

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