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I’m more likely to do it, so I guess I should


During the wedding, we played the shoe game. For those of you unfamiliar with this tradition, here’s a brief explanation: The bride and groom sit on chairs, back to back so that they are not looking at each other. They each take off their shoes and hand one of their own shoes to the other person so that each person has one of each kind of shoe. Someone then asks them questions along the lines of “who is more likely to….” or “who was the first to…”. Each person raises the shoe of the person who they think is the best answer to the question. This game is quickly turning into a staple at weddings, and it gets a laugh every time. Tons of fun.
Anyways, where am I going with this and a picture of John Calvin on this post? Funny you should ask. My good buddy Ethan was the one asking the questions at the wedding, and one question he came up with is as follows: “Who is more likely to read John Calvin’s The Institutes of the Christian Religion cover-to-cover, multiple times?” Since Stephanie didn’t exactly understand the signifcance of this particular masterpiece, the obvious answer was me. So we both raised my shoe in response to the question. Since we both thought that I was more likely to do it, I’ve decided to do it. So far, I’ve read about 50 or so pages, and it has been quite interesting and enlightening. Briefly, here are some things I have gleaned. Feel free to question, comment, or discuss. (Calvin, although pure genius, wasn’t always right.)

I may have this wrong, but I am under the impression that Calvin argues that trying to understand the essence of God is futile because we will never be able to comprehend Him. Instead, we need to understand his works and his actions.

Also, he argues that creation (i.e. General Revelation) is enough for all people in all places to understand that God exists and to see his glory. Creation is too amazing to come to any other conclusion. He follows it up by saying that although we can see God in creation, it will never be enough for us to come to a redemptive knowledge of God. However, even though creation is not enough, we don’t have an excuse for not knowing God in a redemptive way because this “not knowing” is bred out of ignorance which has its seeds in man, not in God. In other words, it’s not God’s fault, it’s ours. The obvious argument it seems, though, is: aren’t we God’s creation? And shouldn’t he be in control of both our knowledge and ignorance? If all knowledge comes from God, is it really our fault?
I don’t exactly know how to answer that question yet, but I am sure that I will have an idea at some point. All I know at this point is that somehow and in some way, God is glorified in all of this. And if that is the case, then I’m ok with that.

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2 Responses

  1. Interesting questions…what does Steph think?

    I’m glad you explained the shoe game, because I was wondering what those pictures were about…now can you explain those pictures with all the guys on one side of the dance floor and all the girls on the other doing strange poses? I didn’t know what that was about either.

    Regardless…it looked like the funnest reception ever (no exageration. it looked so fun!), and I wish I could have been there, but thanks for posting pictures so that I could enjoy the big day from far away.

    Many blessings

  2. God is in control of everything. I believe that ultimately our redemptive knowledge or or ignorance will be determined on whether or not we are one of the elect.

    We can’t blame God for our ignorance. We can’t blame God for anything. His will is perfect and He is sovereign in everything He does. Right now our family desires to have another child. Ultimately there is nothing Daniel and I can do that will guarantee that will will or won’t get pregnant. God alone holds that control. He knows when and if we will add another child to our family. Because I haven’t been pregnant for 2.5 years, does that mean that God is to blame? No, it’s just not in His plan for our lives right now.

    + + + + + +

    “He follows it up by saying that although we can see God in creation, it will never be enough for us to come to a redemptive knowledge of God.”

    Scripture clearly says that (Rom 10:17) “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” We can’t be saved without hearing the Word. General revelation won’t saves us because Scripture says it won’t. Hearing the Word and having the Holy Spirit work in our lives to bring us to faith is the only way to salvation.

    + + + + + +

    Here’s a great definition of ignorance

    IG’NORANCE, n. [L. ignorantia; ignoro,not to know; ignarus, ignorant; in and gnarus, knowing.]
    1. Want, absence or destitution of knowledge; the negative state of the mind which has not been instructed in arts, literature or science, or has not been informed of facts. Ignorance may be general, or it may be limited to particular subjects. Ignorance of the law does not excuse a man for violating it. Ignorance of facts if often venial

    Have you seem the DVD “Amazing Grace”? I highly recommend it!

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