“Some make it a part of their religion to talk about and criticize others. They do not imitate their graces but reflect upon their failings. God grant that professors may wash their hands of this! Were people’s hearts more humble, their tongues would be more charitable. It is the sign of a hypocrite to censure others and commend himself.” -Thomas Watson
I can be a real hypocrite…Wash me Lord, grant me a humble heart and a more charitable tongue.
Do you tend to be more charitable or critical? You may be a hypocrite too!
Another very enjoyable, and edifying read from Manning. After reading ‘Ragamuffin Gospel’ a few months ago I went out and bought everything of Manning’s I could find. As in all of Manning’s works I was in awe of the love of God, and His grace in not only saving me from my sin, but loving me in spite of my sin.
While I believe Mr. Manning and I would disagree in some areas theologically(though we’ve never discussed it ) I wish more folks from my own “camp” would preach more about the love of God, and focus more on loving His people, and spend more time talking about that aspect(love, mercy, tenderness) of His character, and how that ought to flow out of us. Doctrine without love is worthless, and a theology devoid of love is really no theology at all. I too fell(fall) into this trap myself, and am thankful for stumbling onto Mr. Manning’s work.
I love Brennan Manning’s honest and straightforward style. He is a man with a lifetime of experiences across many areas and various church and denominational lines. This book didn’t contain a ton of new insights, as many of his books tend to repeat themselves, still I really enjoyed it, and would recommend it to others.
I’ve really been digging Joe Thorn’s blog series “Experiential Theology”. Check out his blog here. I especially enjoyed his interview with Ray Ortlund, who blogs over at “Christ Is Deeper Still“. I really loved Ray’s response to the following question. Check it out:
We know heretics are bad theologians, but can one be a bad Reformed theologian? How?
Our minds were created to admire grandeur and coherence and challenge. Reformed theology provides all that, plus more. So we like it. But given our wickedness, the very excellence of Reformed theology can make us weird. We can admire our theology of God rather than God, because the theology itself really is gorgeous – but only as a dim reflection of the One described there.
Worse yet, we can admire ourselves for being so smart: “We get it, we’re Reformed, we’re not like those Arminian idiots over there in that other group.” God hates pride. All pride. Reformed pride.
Final thought. Through the years I have learned a lesson: Everything man-made will let us down. Everything, eventually. Even theological systems. Only Jesus will never let us down. We appreciate Reformed theology. But let’s put our final trust here: the risen Lord Jesus Christ himself, our dear Friend, the only Savior of sinners.