Man's intellect seeks for peace and by nature seeks it apart from the Lord Jesus Christ. Men of education are apt, even when converted, to look upon the simplicities of the cross of Christ with too little reverence and love. They are trapped in the old net in which the Greeks were taken and have a hankering to mix philosophy with revelation.
The temptation with a man of refined thought and high education is to depart from the simple truth of Christ crucified and to invent, as the term is, a more intellectual doctrine. This led the early Christian churches into Gnosticism and bewitched them with all sorts of heresies. This is the root of unorthodoxy and the other high-sounding notions that in the past were so fashionable in Germany and are now so enthralling to certain classes of divines. Whoever you are, good reader, and whatever your education may be, if you are the Lord's, rest assured that you will find no peace in philosophizing divinity.
You may receive the dogma of one great thinker or the dream of another profound reasoner, but what the chaff is to the wheat is what these notions are to the pure Word of God. Reason at its best can only discover the ABCs of truth, and even that lacks certainty, while in Christ Jesus there is treasured up all the fullness of wisdom and knowledge. All attempts on the part of Christians to be content with the systems that Unitarian and liberal-church thinkers approve of must fail; true heirs of heaven must come back to the grandly simple reality that makes the plowboy's eye flash with joy and rejoices the pious pauper's heart—"Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners."1 Jesus satisfies the most elevated intellect when He is believingly received, but apart from Him the mind of the regenerate discovers no rest. "The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge."2 "All those who practice it have a good understanding."3
11 Timothy 1:15 2Proverbs 1:7 3Psalm 111:10
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From Morning & Evening revised and edited by Alistair Begg copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187, www.crossway.org.