Saturday, March 11, 2006

What Do We Believe?

As we have become introduced to the blogosphere, I have paid particular attention to blogs done by young men and women (and some parents) who find it meaningful to include their position statement of faith on their site. I think that is admirable. It's like hanging it on your doorpost, so to speak. The paternal side of my family has a crest, which hangs on my father's wall. I plan to get a copy of it and put it on mine. This caused me to ask myself why I don't assign the same status to our family position of faith. So, as a family exercise, we'll be developing that position statement to hang on our wall at home and on our blog.

We know that at this point, with a little exception, only some of our family and friends make purposeful visits to our site and most of them...or should I say...most of YOU ;-) don't even really know what we believe. Maybe you don't see it as an issue or it could be that you're hesitant to ask, because you fear that the answer is not in line with your own set of beliefs. I'll just say for now that OUR faith is central to all that we do in our family. We do get sidetracked sometimes. It's called sin. But praise God for grace through Christ. We can see our error according to His laws. We repent, and come back inside the fences of God's truth and love.

So, once we post our statement, if you have questions, then please let us know. Let's discuss them carefully and not fall into blindly moving on without sound Godly reason. Remember the young newlywed, who' s husband asked her why she cut the ends off of the ham (obviously not an Israelite...maybe a wayward one) before she put it in the oven? She said it was because her mother had always done it. When the mother was asked, she said she was following grandmother's example. The young girl finally asked her elderly grandmother, who admitted that she could never fit the whole ham in the oven. Habit/Tradition/Circumstances.

Let there be Godly foundation to our reasoning. Let us not hold on to the traditions of men but rather search out these matters in the spirit of truth and rightousness in our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus.

Ephesians 3:9-KJV

"And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ"

-The Arkanblogger


David said...

Looking forwards to hearing what you believe. Thanks for the story, got me laughing. :)

Bryce said...

Excellent thoughts on statements of faith. I especially concur that the standard must be the word of God and not tradition or a man's system of thought.

Arkanblogger Family said...

David-Glad you liked the story. I grew up on the southeast prairies and deep woodlands of Arkansas around a family that had the ability to storytell. I'm working toward being half as good as my maternal granfather was at it, with one difference. He liked to take a little more creative lisence with the art, although it did add color to the story. The position statement is a work in progress. Hopefully the progress will come swiftly. I enjoyed your blogsite, by the way. I checked it out earlier today. Nice job on the school system post! It inspired me to put my detective hat on.

Bryce-Thanks, and I anticipated your response. Do either of you guys look for confirmation of ideas/philosophies in say, nature? When I'm looking for answers or ways to prove division from or unification with an idea, I try to work under the principal used througout the Bible (2 Corinthians 13:1 for ex.), which to paraphrase is, don't judge a matter but on 2 or 3 wittnesses. The scriptures are one witness and I find that uncorrupted nature (certainly created by God) is full of truth and so many times can be used as an additional accurate witness to scripture.

Look at the way a tree grows for example. It has limitations per species and climate on it's hardness, height, diameter; it's very survival. The bark that is used to protect the tree. The veins that carry the water (blood) to it's branches/"limbs." You see the parallels. Those are pretty simple..but beautiful to me. What do you guys look to?

Unrelated to the above, I'm looking for a great book on the founding fathers of America and what they believed...specifically. There is so much out there to pick from. Any thoughts? I'll even take recommendations from Canada. ;-)

I am encouraged by both of you and now I have to go "do hard things" and finish painting my kitchen cabinets.

Arkanblogger Family said...

now I have to work on the word, grandfather. Commit and grandfather, commit and grandfather...

~ Renée ~ said...

While some say that "nature is the 67th book of the Bible", I have heard it argued by Christian apologists that while nature is created by a perfect God and does reflect His inventive genius throughout, we cannot use nature alone to interpret Truth because 1) it is tainted by sin (animals turned into carnivores, the ground cursed, etc) while God's Word remains inspired, unchanged, and infallible; and 2) our own perception is obscured by sin, rendering us unable to know truth apart from the Living Word of God brought to bear on our hearts by the Holy Spirit.

Of course untouched-nature is a true witness of what God created, but only so far as it reflects the character of God, and then we may as well look at what the Bible says; if nature is accurate, it serves to be a reflection or example of what is found amid the sufficiency of Scripture.

That is my belief, however roughly stated. I suppose the "2 or 3 witnesses" applies to anyone except our all-knowing, all-consistent God. Oh, and the Bible does speak of familiar things in nature, like what you spoke of about trees, in the parables for instance.

Arkanblogger Family said...

Renée-Thanks for your comments and just to clarify what I said, (I get to qoute myself here)..."I find that uncorrupted nature"..."many times can be used as an additional accurate witness." I wouldn't use nature as my ONLY source of anything. That would be the 'gaia mother earth' worshipping crowd and is of course-idolarty. Additionally, I personally see not only God's character in nature, but His mathematical perfection as well.

As I approach our Father to gain understanding, I do it believing that He will either give me revelation in His time, because I "knocked" or that he will not, because He knows that although I seek it, I may not need it to complete my task.

Isn't it GREAT to be able to get these things out in the open for examination?

Speaking of nature, I'm looking at a sugar maple tree outside of my upstairs office window. It has little red buds all over it. A sign of things to come.

Bryce said...

I agree with my sister and your points that nature cannot be the only standard. Yet it does confirm the truth's expressed in the Word of God. It bears witness to the glory of God, Psalm 19.

It seems that going to nature first for truth can give a broad range of conclusions depending on the person and their presuppositions. Thus I think that the Bible must be our standard with the understanding that nature bears witness to the truth of God. I wouldn't want to change my interpretation of the Bible based on something I saw about an animal.

An athiest can go to nature and find so-called "evidence" for their theory of origins. A Christian can go to nature and find "evidence" of a creation which spanned millions of years. Yet both of these contradict the clear Word of God. Basically whatever a person wants to find in nature, they can find it.

One person may look at a pair of ducks and decide that monygamy is best, while another may look at a deer herd and decided that polygamy is fine for people.

Arkanblogger Family said...

"idolarty"...another word butchered by the arkanblogger. Let's try it again, shall we..."Idolatry"...that's better.

I love using these little d...o...t...s

Bryce said...

Bruce, I am in the process of writing a post about "calvinism". I am unsure what your specific question is in your comment.....or are you generally qustioning the whole idea of calvinism? In other words do you have a specific concern or general? If specific, what exactly?

I am presently at a loss of what to write about, so that would help my scattered mind organize my thoughts.

Arkanblogger Family said...

Bryce-I'm just getting in from traveling on business for a couple of days and saw your comments. I've got a little work to do this evening, so let me "mull it over" as my dad says and I'll post my answer. I'm right with you on the scattered mind syndrome right now. I just got word that one of the projects I'm working on (a new medical tower in Memphis) has 360 rolls (6 ft by 75 ft. each) of my defective floor material. So, I have what one might say is a "little situation" on my hands. This is a job that I took away from a competitor. Maybe I should have let them have it???....I don't think so. I'll come up and sell a business for you tommorrow if you'll come deal with this.
;-) Be back in touch.


Bryce said...

I know what it is like to have business "situations". I had a nail biter situation last party got cold feet and pulled the plug unexpectedly.

360 rolls. You're just the salesman, so blame it all on the factory. They're in bankrupcy anyway, so what do you expect?...

No rush on anything, after all Calvin lived a half a millenium ago. :-) I have scattered brain syndrome too right now, so am in no shape to write anything.

P.S. I am at your in-laws again.

~ Renée ~ said...

Ooh, I hope your "little situation" got taken care of.

After seeing that you plan to put a statement of faith on your blog, I thought that sounded like an excellent idea, too; Thanks!
I now have a new addition on my sidebar, just so you know.

Arkanblogger Family said...

Hi Renée-I'm still in the middle of resolving my little situation, but thanks. Still working on the faith statement but I have an idea that I got from one of Richard Wheeler's cd's. Thanks for the tag on your blog. Take Care!