Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Idolatry of the Bible (By Edward Irving) II

Resuming at the point where we left off:
"But the Spirit of God having no visible representation as the word hath, no form of a holy dove or consecrated oil, the danger is that His needful part should be lost sight of in an unspiritual age, and that the visible form of the word should carry it before the observation of the sense... there is a constant danger lest we should place our chief expectation of Spiritual knowledge upon the perusal of the word itself, and forget that a spirit hath to be born within us of the Spirit of God, which, like a mistress of all spiritual art, shall sit at the centre and weave the web of spiritual wisdom out of the revelations which are contained in the word of God.
Now that this safeguard, most clearly percieved by our fathers, and by them constantly presented to view, hath, through the wonderful mastery of things visible over this age, fallen out of sight of the godly among us, and the written word become proportionately more prominent than it ought to be, and in so far become an idol, appears manifest to my mind from the following characteristic features of our days."
By Now you are no doubt thinking that Irving was a way-out Charismatic. Bear with him.
"First, that the main current of our enthusiasm hath set towards the written word of God to a degree hitherto unexampled in the world; which would be to my mind the source of unmingled joy and glory, did I witness consentaneous therewith an equal enthusiasm for the preaching of its spiritual doctrines. But I witness the imperial ordinance of preaching Christ postponed in the estimation of the religious to pleadings for charitable and religious benevolence, to the reading of the liturgy, to public meetings, and other such inventions of men, and find, moreover, that there never hath been an age in the Church wherein spiritual doctrine was at so low an ebb, and the gifts of the preacher so little cared about, and the work of preaching so miserably put by..."

More to come (God willing), including Irving's plea for longer sermons.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm wondering if you have ever read "Pretrib Rapture Diehards" which I ran into while Googling. A truly different read! B.N.

6:52 am  

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