Rather than the light of God, men seek to generate their own light and vision. They are men of darkness, seeking an escape by their own self-exaltation. They dream that their wisdom will give them the necessary light. Calvin felt that God was saying to all such men, You have rejected Me and sought to kindle your own light to escape the darkness. Well, now your life will take its course in your own fire, which will be, not your salvation, but your destruction: "at the place of torment ye shall lie down!" They will create the culture of death.
In the past few decades the field of Biblical archaeology has been secularized to the point that, in the mainstream of expert opinion, the Exodus story is now considered to be legend. Believers would probably be stunned to know the contemporary perspective of Biblical archaeology. Moses, Joshua, Elijah are all the stuff of myth. Perhaps they existed, perhaps not; but little or no archaeological evidence of these persons has surfaced, so their very existence is in question along with the events they inspired.
How do fads suddenly sweep through an entire culture, becoming practically ubiquitous overnight? What makes one craze abruptly passé and gauche while another instantaneously becomes chic and trendy? How do epidemics spread from small, contained, and isolated segments of a population to infect an entire region or nation or continent? What accounts for sudden changes in cultural behaviors-an unexplained drop in the crime rate, an unexpected demand for a particular commodity, or an unprovoked shift in public opinion? How do fashions take hold of an entire segment of the global marketplace? What is it that makes a heretofore obscure writer or musician or artist or film-maker into a bestselling international celebrity? Can any of these phenomena be understood in merely mechanical processes? Is it possible to foresee and predict such trends? Or perhaps even more importantly, is it possible to create and control them?
A supposedly "Reformed" author recently declared that the sign of a "just" society is that the "material needs of the poor are taken care of." He said this in the context of the supposed "inner contradictions of capitalism." The message was, "Capitalism is unjust because it doesn't take care of the material needs of the poor." And he claimed this in the name of the Bible, from his position as a "Reformed" author.
The virtuous woman of Proverbs 31 can best be described as deliberate in her actions and duties. Her decisions and undertakings are purposefully in line with her calling, resulting in such a well-run family that her husband's ability to carry out his dominion role is enhanced. Additionally, as her children mature, they praise their mother for her investment in them because they see the fruits of her efforts in their lives.
Rev. George Grant, pastor at Parish Presbyterian Church in Nashville, Tennessee, has packed an amazing variety into his career.
In his most recent book, Jesus Christ and the Life of the Mind, Mark Noll continues the discussion of Christian, and particularly evangelical, scholarship which he began in The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind (1995). He argues that Christian scholarship can best be advanced by recognizing the centrality of Christ and the Incarnation in the Bible. Using church creeds and the works of a variety of Christian scholars, Noll attempts to develop an overarching principle to govern Christian scholarship in a variety of disciplines.