Some go to seminary to recover, to heal, to catch their bearings. For myself, the process was inverted.
Raised in a conservative Evangelical home, attending a very mature and spirit-filled Mennonite Church, I went to seminary with a fairly functional worldview and hermeneutic.
Within a few years, however, academic instruction – in conjunction with a difficult ministry experience – rocked my stable wordlview. I spent 2008 questioning everything and looking for truth and relevancy within the Emergent Movement (I hope to have a Kindle-book written on that shortly).
Towards the end of that year, however, the flaws of that movement began to be apparent to me. When my questioning of “Emergent” brought an angry back-lash, (see links under “Emergent” in “Index of Posts”) I felt propelled out of that phase and began pursuing truth (paradoxically!) by digging to the roots of both Reformed and Mennonite traditions. (Posts to come on that shortly)
I stumbled upon some very high-quality resources from the Reformed Church, and began to work my way down to the roots of Liberalism and Modernity (see posts under “Liberalism” in “Index of Posts”) In so doing, I was finally able to undress and deconstruct the illusions (and also good points) of the Emergent Movement (see later posts in “Emergent” under “Index of Posts”).
My worldview was finally beginning to come together again! However, when I attended a much-anticipated class on Karl Barth, all of my hard work was brought under critique again, as Barth – who was both opposed to and sympathetic towards both Reformed Orthodoxy and Liberalism – threw my world upside down again. Most of this past winter has been spent trying to regain my footing, within the context of Barth’s critiques and opinions (see posts under “Barth” in “Index of Posts”)
Presently, I have been enjoying the rest and solace of a study-break in which I studied only Biblical books, spending my time almost exclusively looking at the texts of Scripture. I have been involved in my local church, and have been reconnecting with my family and God. Recently, God has called us to missions and we are eagerly pursuing several possibilities.
I am amazed at how God has been clearing away the fog of academia, to lift me into a world of certainty, simple faith and obedience through a simple study of His Word. However, the journey has not been wasted.
Through it all, I have been challenged to form convictions on Liberalism, Gender-Roles, Modernity/Postmodernity, Pacifism, Environmentalism, Hell, Homosexuality, and Philosophy/Metaphysics. (You may see my posts on these topics under “index of posts”) However, my journey is not yet completed.
Still on my list of topics to examine thoroughly are: hermeneutics, creation-science, and eschatology. I need to re-examine my philosophical assumptions and worldview. No doubt these topics will occupy considerable space on my blog in the upcoming years.
Through it all, I have learned one thing: knowledge puffs up, but love edifies (1 Cor. 8:1). Jesus is a person, not a concept and even though thoughts about Him are important, my relationship to Him is ultimately internal and relational, not intellectual.
Thus, I am not questioning God, but rather beginning with the truth that “God is, and there is none besides Him,” (Isa 43:10) I am then seeking to reason outwards from this point, to “destroy speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ,” (2 Cor. 10:5), until Christ is fully formed in me (Gal. 4:19) and I
As a result, I hope one day soon to no longer be a child, tossed about by every new wave of doctrine, but rather to attain to a mature man, and the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ,” (Eph 4:13), being clothed in all the armor which God supplies so that I may be able to stand in the evil day (Eph. 6:13). That I may be able adequate, equipped for every good work, and able to teach (1 Tim. 3:2), reprove, correct and training in righteousness by the power of the Word (1 Tim. 3:16-17).
I would invite you to come along with as I enter the final leg of my journey, to finish my post-secondary education and complete the process of making my faith my own, in preperation of a lifetime of service to my great God and king and friend, JESUS CHRIST.