I'm going on a road trip with my friend to Montreal, Quebec City, and then back through Ottawa, and we leave tomorrow. So I won't be posting anything. The only theology book I'm bringing is Hans Urs Von Balthasar's biblical defense of the Petrine office, which should be interesting. But more than that, I hope to really just read my bible, and finish Acts. So far I've noticed some interesting things this time around.
I really notice how everything is about the Preaching of the Gospel in Acts. It's been interesting reading over the council of Jerusalem, and the conversion of Paul again. The phrase "having cleansed their hearts by faith." (Acts 15:9) really struck me for some reason. I also really am seeing a different emphasis. The Resurrection is so central to things, the church is called a witness to the resurrection (1:22). I'm also really enjoying reading the Psalms again, I read Psalm 50 today and I think I could write a book just on that one. Calvin was right in calling them the anatomy of the soul.
I am really looking for the two things that have been the contentions in my journey all this way: the mention of salvation and the doctrine of the church.
I thought it was very telling that Acts 1:20 says Judas' position which Matthias fills was that of "overseer" or in the Authorized Version (KJV) "bishoprick". That to me seems to be a pretty solid apostolic succesion prooftext. While that doesn't solidify Roman Catholic claims, the verses preceding it are at least worth pondering "In those days Peter stood up among the believers" (1:15).
I am very confused, as I find the issue of concupiscence/free will/original sin and by connection, Justification, to be weak for Catholics, but I find the doctrine of the Church to be strong for Catholics.
Perhaps B.B. Warfield was right in his famous axiom on the Reformation.
By God's grace, and in his word, may I find the answers, and if and when I do, may I have the courage to voice them, despite the influence of friends on either side of the Tiber. Even in my writing I try to balance things out so that people don't get angry or lose hope. I need to hear Christ's voice again and follow, wherever that is.