Tuesday, August 25, 2009
The Third Way for Me
I remember the exact day I became a convinced Calvinist. Second year of seminary something clicked and I saw the beauty of the system. God's sovereignty, man's responsibility, it all made sense. My warm evangelicalism became a consistent Calvinism.
I remember the conflict my Calvinism caused when I lived, worked, and taught among very consistent Arminians for seven years. Covenant Theology meets Dispensational believers at the height of the Left Behind, Y2K mania. What an adventure in missing the point we enjoyed during those rapture ready years.
I remember the day I realized that both Calvinism and Arminianism were systems of theology trying to understand how salvation works. I remember when my reading began to show me there were other ways of addressing the fundamental issues of God's plan, and I became a lonely but not uniformed seeker, determined to use the skills of my educational methodology, my healthy doubts and skepticism's spawned by twenty years of dealing with every type of theological question and confusion out there.
I love the joy of being not so sure. I thrill at the deep consistency of word studies and breakthroughs and questions that lead to other questions. I am grateful for some of my conclusions that seem to harmonize essential issues of God's character and how mercy and justice meet at the cross.
I fear that you will attack my progress or laugh at my breakthroughs. If you can live with what you believe, be blessed. If your life pushes you out of the comfort of your system, seek and you shall find, knock and the door will open, at least enough for you to see another step down the path. Finally I love the fact that this Internet revolution allows people and ideas and experiences to be shared, and that it is part of a birthing, an emerging, a reforming, a recovering,an evolving of a new way of living and believing.