Monday, August 4, 2008

Summer Reading Update: Part 4

Well, my summer reading has taken a slightly different turn. I had five books on my list and I made it through four before I got sidetracked by Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre—not to mention other unexpected summer happenings (excellent books by the way). So I will save Losing Our Virtue for another semester break when I have more time. But, I did finish Evangelicalism Divided, which was a really insightful (and convicting) book. What stood out to me most was the fact that my staying the course is only by the grace of God. My own ability will not keep me from sliding into doctrinal error—God will. This is a humbling and challenging thought. This heightened the importance of the spiritual disciplines for me. If I am not seeking His face I am more prone to backsliding. So even though this book was probably not meant for a “devotional,” it ended up speaking much needed truth to my soul regarding my own walk with the Lord.

I was reminded that there is much to learn from history. The phrase “history repeats itself” is true indeed, and not because of chance, but because human nature never changes. It simply manifests itself in different cultures and contexts. Our propensity to error and sin is always before us. History reminds us of that. We can very easily think that we have arrived at some “new” idea or phenomenon if we are not aware of all that happened before we were even a blip on the radar screen. So, I am grateful to the men and women in the faith who have gone before us. It is encouraging to be reminded that perfection is not required of us because Someone else was already perfect for us. But it is also a sober reminder that the things that make us in such desperate need of that Someone, called Christ, will come back to haunt us if we are not mindful.

So my summer reading list is now complete (with the exception of 80 pages left of Jane Eyre). Now I must tackle a head start on Hebrew vocabulary—and get ready to bury myself in theology until December. Thanks for keeping up with my summer reading! I won’t bore you with the Hebrew vocabulary, but if you have any helpful tips—I would be very appreciative.

3 comments:

debt said...

I've read this book too. Good read and an eye opener. It really shows the seeds planted that began the process of where we are at today in evangelicalism. Other good reads are the biography of J. Gresham Machen. He was fighting a battle of relativism, error, and compromise. He stood alone for the most part. His words said over 70 years ago ring true. He was the founder of Westminster Seminary and a leader in the Presbyterian USA, until he felt compelled to leave. He started the Presbyterian Church in America. Just look where the PCUSA is today. History is a good teacher. Also, check out the Downgrade Controversy and the issues surrounding Martyn Lloyd-Jones in the sixties. All taking place today began many years ago and continues to this day. It is why Paul wrote the Corinthians and warned them and told them to remember,"Now these things took place as examples for us, that we might not desire evil as they did.....Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come"(I Cor. 10:6,11). May the Lord grant us eyes to see, hears to hear, and hearts to learn and a steadfastness in the truth, lest we fall into the same deceptions. Apart from Christ we cannot do it. We need His grace. Thanks for a good reminder, Courtney!

ChapelNext said...

Courtney:

In regard to learning Hebrew vocab, here are a few suggestions:

1. Buy the vocab CD. It is worth its weight in gold. It may not match your vocab list, but it will help you in the long run.
2. Tackle only a few words at a time. Don't work on twenty-eleven words at once. Group them in threes.
3. Get someone else to help you learn them. It's fun.
4. Make up funny sentences that help explain the word.
5. Find verses that have the word. Memorize the verse and think of the word.
6. Write out the word with the vowel pointings.
7. Do word studies on the words.
8. Make your own index cards. Don't buy the big box: too many.
9. Learn one word at a time.
10. Understand how you will be tested. One prof used multiple choice; another prof used matching; one used fill-in-the-blanks; and another dictated the word.
11. FOCUS ON LEARNING THE SOUND NOT JUST THE SIGHT.
12. Never quit.
Your cousin's husband, Rudy

cdt said...

Thanks for your insights, Mom. We do need Christ's grace every hour. I am thankful for your encouragement of my reading, too. :)

Rudy,
Thank you so much for your tips. My roommates and I are taking the class together--so we are grateful for all of the help we can get! Hope you guys are well!