I am a Christian given to the perspective of Reformed theology.  Reformed theology is the theology of the Reformers, Augustine, Luther, and Calvin, among many others.  It is the richest and deepest vein of theological literature in Christian history.  It is a theology founded on the truths of the Bible.  Reformed theology represents the truest expression of the Christian faith by attempting to thoughtfully deal with all of Biblical revelation in a clear, logical systematic fashion.  Herman Hoeksema wrote in Reformed Dogmatics,
We believe that the truth is more than a system; but we also believe that the truth is one, even as God is one. And we believe, therefore, that the truth is systematic, and that the different truths are related. Chaos is never truth, because God is not chaos. In other words, the logical system is not merely in the mind of the dogmatician, but in the truth.
There was a time in my own life when I cared nothing for Christ or Christianity.  Perhaps like many of you, my lack of concern about Christianity sprang from my ignorance about it. I suppose that I preferred to covet my ignorance rather than seek an informed perspective about it.  I had decided that whatever I had imagined Christianity must have been about was more important than actually knowing what it was about. There are scores of people today that feel certain that they need not know any more about Christianity than they know about it in their ignorance at this moment. 

There is a lot to comprehend in Christianity; but first and foremost, one must realize that it is an "all-or-nothing" religion. By that I mean that it has the highest price tag of any religious system.  From a Biblical perspective, men are described as either knowing  religious truth, or they are ignorant of religious truth.  They are either committed to Christ as the Truth, or they are committed to untruth.  They are either walking in faith with Christ, or they are walking in blindness, opposed to His teaching. I like the way that Iain Murray expresses it in Evangelicalism Divided.
All the major differences which have been the subject of controversy lead back to two irreconcilable starting points: either Christianity is just another variation of human thought and imagination, with no right to teach certainties; or it is the one God-given means by which sinners are brought to Christ and heaven. The practical consequences are equally antithetical: either one lives trusting in oneself or believing in Christ.  The Scriptures know no other alternative. It is either, 'Cursed is the man who trusts in man', or, 'Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD' (Jeremiah 17:5-7). 'He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe in the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him' (John 3:36).
I think it easier that Christianity does not allow for middle ground.  Those who truly know Him are His, and follow after Him because they know the truth.  Those who do not know Him are said to be darkness (as opposed to being in darkness).  Ephesians 5:4 says, 'For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord'.  Scripture does not even teach that men who do not know Christ are in darkness about Christ.  Rather, their ignorance about Christ certifies that they are in an abyss of darkness about life; in a state of total spiritual unawareness regardless of how committed they are to any other religious system.

Calvin said it best I think: 
"... for there is no one who anticipates the Lord; but we [believers] are all, without exception, delivered by his free mercy from the deepest abyss of death, when there is no knowledge of him, no desire of serving him, in a word, no conviction of his truth" (Commentary on Romans, 315).
Calvin says that there is no one ‘expecting or awaiting’ the Lord. Everyone lives in this abyss of ignorance about God. There are no exceptions, except that to be delivered from the abyss of ignorance is to know Christ! His mercy rescues us from the vast abyss of ignorance, even when there is no knowledge of Him in us! Even when we have nothing to offer as meriting this mercy! Even when we do not know the truth about Him, but are rather lost in this abyss of spiritual darkness, He rescues us. We are more than simply lost though, according to Calvin.  So unfathomable is our ignorance of God and Christ that it is said that without the knowledge of either, we exist in an abyss of spiritual death, in an abyss of utter darkness.   And it is only by God's grace and mercy that are we rescued from this state and brought to an understanding of the reality of our condition, and consequently, freed from it.  

Hence, the title of this web site: Encountering Life in the Abyss

No comments: