Careful Theology

As I have been pulling some thoughts together on theology/doctrine for a future post or two I came across a passage in Calvin's Institutes'that I read for the first time in 1993 when writing a paper on reprobation. The sad thing is I remember reading these words in the library of Moody and thinking, "Wow, Calvin was so balanced and biblical!" and then forgot these words and proceeded to become a know-it-all, theology hound who pressed far into issues where Scripture is silent. I complimented that with arrogance and a tendency to pick theological fights. More on that later. For now, check out the man's words, and may they encourage humble, careful, theological inquiry and development built on sola scriptura.

It is not right that man should with impunity pry into things which the Lord has been pleased to conceal within himself, and scan that sublime eternal wisdom which it is his pleasure that we should not apprehend but adore, that therein also his perfections may appear. Those secrets of his will, which he has seen it meet to manifest, are revealed in his word - revealed in so far as he knew to be conducive to our interest and welfare.

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If we give due weight to the consideration, that the word of the Lord is the only way which can conduct us to the investigation of whatever it is lawful for us to hold with regard to him - is the only light which can enable us to discern what we ought to see with regard to him, it will curb and restrain all presumption. Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 3 Ch. 23