Moral Contradictions

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Baptist Heritage

Tonight I finally took advantage of one of the perks offered to me through my wife being a student at the Baptist Theological Seminary at Richmond (BTSR). I'm auditing Dr. Cecil Sherman's Baptist Heritage class which meets once a week for two hours.

This is the first class I've started in two years since my senior year of college. I'm a bit rusty, but excited at the prospect of learning who we Baptists are and where we originate from someone who made a bit of history himself. Just studying some of the ideas resulting from the Reformation tonight made me scratch my head at some of the teachings today by those who call themselves Baptist.

At the very least I'll post an entry shortly after class as reflection of my thoughts. As more classes go by and I chew on the material longer, the more of what I learned and what I've been challenged with will make its way here.

The point that stuck out the most tonight is something that the Rev. Jim Wallis of Sojourners stresses: why spend so much time on items such as Armageddon (mentioned once in the Bible) or the Virgin Birth (mentioned 2-3 times) at the expense of focusing on forgiveness, love, or grace, all of which are mentioned countless times? Sure many folks are passionate about the former issues, but shouldn't we respect the Bible enough to not ignore repeated calls for the latter?

Meandering back into the academic world tonight reminded me of the age-old truism: If the professors repeats something, write it down - if he mentions it three or more times, highlight it. Doesn't it make sense to give more attention to commands in the Bible mentioned more than just a handful of times?

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