I hope some of you know the reputation I have, a bad reputation with some, of being an unreconstructed, Aristotelian logician. I get that criticism all the time. I am told, “Sproul reduces the faith to logic.” Actually, I hope people keep saying that about me. I hope it gets worse. I think we are living in the most anti-intellectual period in the history of the church, and I think the most important thing that has to happen on Sunday mornings is a spiritual awakening of the mind.
As downloaded from http://theresurgence.com/r_c_sproul_1993-01_the_recovery_of_worship on 3/21/07.
It is no secret to many who know me that I like R. C. I own and have read every book that he has published, including a couple that are out of print. I own much of my interest in theology to him. He was the first theologian that I ever read who did not shy away from philosophy.
In medieval times, teachers in the church said that God wrote two books: the Bible and nature. Theology studied the Bible, and science studied nature. They believed that science and theology would always agree because God, who cannot lie or contradict Himself, wrote both books. The more I study and think, the more I agree with medievalism.
I am constantly reading books on religion. Living in a small West Tennessee town, I buy many of the popular Christian books on the shelves of our local Wal Mart. The popular Christian books are almost always disappointing. I find myself having to special-order the really good (read unpopular) Christian books I read from our local Christian book store. (This helps keep them in business with Wal Mart in town.)
I find book after book that does not reflect clear thinking. I find that many of the books don’t even ask the questions, much less find the answers. It’s not that I disagree with most of them; it’s that I don’t think they have touched on the subject matter of theology: God Himself. When they do touch on Him, they don’t apply sound reason and logical thinking to the subject.
I hope we will see a resurgence in the near future of a through-going attempt to set out in a systematic, logical fashion who God is. I hope to find that the conversations encouraged by the up and coming generation serves as a platform for this Systematic Theology. I seem to be finding this as I teach High-school age students in a Sunday School class. They are not afraid to ask good questions, and they are interested in frank discussion.
This imperfect generation (and all the generations in history have been imperfect) may well be the best thing that has even happened to our churches. I do not find that they are given over to philosophical relativism. I find them more willing that I was at that age to apply clear logic and reason to the great questions. We must learn to present theology in a winsome, tightly-reasoned way, and it is my prayer that we will.
May God bless R. C.’s ministry and the ministries of others who follow the same path.