Monday, November 12, 2007

'Self-Deceit' Sermons & Heart vs Head Knowledge

From Old Truth:

Quoting Joel Beeke . . .

Self-esteem messages that do not center upon a triune God would have been viewed by the Puritans as "self-deceit" messages. We have nothing to esteem in ourselves apart from God, the Puritans said. Apart from His grace, we are fallen, wretched, unworthy, and hell-bound. The Puritans were very aware of the deceitfulness of the human heart. Consequently, Puritan evangelists took great pains to identify the marks of grace that distinguish the church from the world, true believers from imposters and merely professing believers, and saving faith from temporary faith. This kind of discriminatory preaching is extremely rare today.

Even in conservative evangelical churches, head knowledge of scriptural truth is often a substitute for heart experience; or, what is equally unscriptural, heart experience is substituted for head knowledge. [Right] preaching calls for both head knowledge and heart experience; its goal, according to John Murray, is "intelligent piety."

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