Saturday, September 19, 2009

At L’Abri: A Personal God

Several months ago, I began a series of blogs entitled, At L’Abri: Learning from Francis Schaeffer. My plan was (and is) to read as much of Schaeffer’s writings as possible in one year. My hope was to read Schaeffer exclusively, but alas, that has not been the case entirely. A few other books have crept in... However, of (or on) Schaeffer, I have read the following:

Francis Schaeffer: An Authentic Life by Duriez (biography)
True Spirituality
Mark of a Christian
Art and the Bible

I am currently reading Escape from Reason and my church is going through Schaeffer’s How Then Shall We Live film series.

What I have been meaning to do for quite some time is blogpost about some of the nuggets of wisdom I have been mining from the mind of Schaeffer; and, there have been plenty of precious nuggets along the way so far.

Let me offer one nugget Schaeffer repeatedly stresses: our God is a personal God, who knows and deals with us personally, intimately and individually.

The power of this point has become increasingly clear both from my reading of Schaeffer and from my study of other faiths. I am presently teaching an Apologetics course during our Christian Education hour at my church. The series is focused on World Religions. As I have been preparing for this course, I have been struck by the vision of god (or gods, or supreme entities, supernatural force, etc), which so many religions in the world cling to. The vision is of an impersonal, aloof “power”, which lacks personality and which has little (or no) specific interest in the affairs of individual human beings. What a contrast to the infinite, personal God---the God of the Bible---who is not only infinitely interested in human beings, but also interested in individual people. He knows me better than I know myself. He loves me; He died for me. He works in me. His dealings are not general, but specific. He deals with me personally.

“How beautiful Christianity is---first, because of the sparkling quality of its intellectual answers, but second, because of the beautiful quality of its human and personal answers. And these are to be rich and beautiful… But these human and personal answers do not come mechanically after we are Christians. They come only on the level of what God made us to be in the first place, and that is personal. There is no other way to have beautiful answers.” True Spirituality

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