Who: You, me, and other people
When: Wednesday nights, starting Jan. 14 (7-8 weeks)
Where: The Adams’ House
What: An introduction to the doctrines of grace, also known as the 5 Points of Calvinism
Why: should I care about John Calvin or what he said?
Well, the class isn’t about John Calvin, and it’s not really about what he said either. Charles Haddon Spurgeon, famed 19th century London preacher put it quite well when he explained:
“I have my own private opinion that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what nowadays is called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else. I do not believe we can preach the gospel, if we do not preach justification by faith, without works; nor unless we preach the sovereignty of God in His dispensation of grace; nor unless we exalt the electing, unchangeable, eternal, immutable, conquering love of Jehovah; nor do I think we can preach the gospel, unless we base it upon the special and particular redemption of His elect and chosen people which Christ wrought out upon the cross; nor can I comprehend a gospel which lets saints fall away after they are called, and suffers the children of God to be burned in the fires of damnation after having once believed in Jesus. Such a gospel I abhor.”
Why does it matter though?
Why should I learn more about the gospel?
Why should I waste my time learning man’s doctrines?
First off, the doctrine’s of grace are not man’s doctrines. They are the most anti-man doctrines around. No man would invent the idea that he is wicked and depraved and unable to help himself. Yes, Matthew 15 warns against teaching the doctrines and commandments of men… but that does not mean that all doctrine is the doctrine of men. Consider what the Apostle Paul wrote to Timothy:
1 Timothy 4:6-8 “…be a good servant of Christ Jesus, being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine that you have followed. Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”
Paul says we are to be trained for godliness. How? By being trained in the words of the faith and of the good doctrine.
Mark Driscoll has a great blog post called “The Studying Christian” in which he begins by saying:
In following Jesus’ command to love God with “all our mind,” the Christian life is supposed to include regular times of study and learning. The goal of such study is to have what Paul called “the mind of Christ” so that we can live the life of Christ by the power of the Spirit of Christ.
I first took this class several years ago and it forever changed my understanding of who I am and who God is. If you are at all interested, let me assure you this is the best possible setting to be learning in. It will be a small group of people openly discussing the topic, and there will most likely be something good to eat each week.
If you’re interested, contact me ASAP because we like to keep the classes small.