Rationalism Can Be Deadly

And my speech and my preaching as not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

—1 Corinthians 2:4-5

There is today an evangelical rationalism not unlike the rationalism taught by the scribes and Pharisees. They said the truth is in the word, and if you want to know the truth, go to the rabbi and learn the word. If you get the word, you have the truth….

But revelation is not enough! There must be illumination before revelation can get to a person’s soul. It is not enough that I hold an inspired book in my hands. I must have an inspired heart. There is the difference, in spite of the evangelical rationalist who insists that revelation is enough….

In His day, Christ’s conflict was with the theological rationalist. It revealed itself in the Sermon on the Mount and in the whole book of John. Just as Colossians argues against Manichaeism and Galatians argues against Jewish legalism, so the book of John is a long, inspired, passionately outpoured book trying to save us from evangelical rationalism—the doctrine that says the text is enough. Textualism is as deadly as liberalism.   FBR021, 023-024

Lord, I believe strongly in the inspiration and authority of the Scriptures: I am committed to expository preaching. I see the danger and pray that You might keep me from this error of textualism. Amen.

 

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