Evangelical Outpost has a great post today on the blog, @ Large. Evangelical Outpost was especially taken by this comment:
Reformed theology is consistent, logical, and nearly irrefutable. True seekers find it attractive, even seductive in its intellectual beauty. And therein lies its biggest flaw: Perfection.
If Satan cannot discourage a man from believing the Scriptures, he will have him idolize them, to find them precious not as the breath of God, but as a system of logic, beautiful in itself. We might name this idol Bibliolatry.
Interesting thoughts. And something I see happening a lot, especially in college ministry. College ministry is done in a very academic context, and students are wanting to express themselves, and their faith, in very logical and philosophical ways. This is not a true statement across the board for every student I have in ministry, or for every college student. But there is a large majority who feel that their faith is unfulfilling, or incomplete because they cannot properly debate apologetics, formulate pristine confessions of their faith, etc. They take the ambition that they have acquired in life, and that has been magnified in college, and they often transpose that onto their spiritual lives, pushing, and pushing, and striving, and striving, hoping that their faith, and the expression of it can be displayed and practiced in very logical and perfected ways.
And after a while, it ends up sapping them dry, and they wonder what has happened. This is not only a problem in college ministry, but it is a problem for all ages. I just think that the academic context of college ministry makes it ripe for this to happen. Following God, reading the Bible, and meditating on His words, becomes more of a task that can be checked off, and more of a task that only requires more and more perfectionism. An A student tackles their spiritual lives in much the same ways that they tackle their academic lives.
As @ Large mentions above, we then begin to worship the idol of bibliolatry. To be a follower of Jesus Christ is not simply about following His words, but it’s about following Him. The two are interconnected, yet they are also distinct. I know of Jesus Christ, and how to follow Him, because of His words, the Scriptures. But Jesus Christ is also revealed to me in Scripture, and in the working of the Holy Spirit. There is then, both an adherence to words, and to the Word. To only follow the words, leaves one to begin to worship only that…..But to follow the Word as well, is intimate, and breathes life into one. It is not always logical, it is not something we can always wrap our minds and hearts around.
To follow the Word keeps us from being simply worshippers of words, and keeps us from idolizing the wrong things.