It looks like I'll be getting a C in Systematic Theology (1st Semester). Not all is bad, however, as I got a 90% on my research paper. This is good, because I felt going into it that I might bomb that project.
Unlike my World Missions class, I didn't feel good about my paper as I turned it in. I feel a little outgunned when it comes to theology anyway, so turning in a paper for that class was pretty rough. Furthermore, my topic (of my choosing) was The fall of Satan: A theological study. I had no idea it would be that difficult.
In the end, my research indicated that the Bible isn't all that clear on Satan's initial fall from Glory. How did he really fall? Hard to tell. Some passages exist that have been interpreted as dealing with Satan's station before his fall and what his fall looked like, but they closely represent descriptions of people who really existed in history. So much so, in fact, that a number of scholars doubt that the passages (Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28) speak of Satan at all.
My research indicated that, in the end, God is much more interested in Satan's work here, including how we are to handle his presence and activity, and finally in Satan's end. I think this is a pretty strong statement on God's part. We shouldn't be worried about Satan's initial fall or his previous life in God's presence but in what he is doing now. Furthermore, we should be able to walk into any fight with him now with confidence, knowing his end is final and imminent.
If anyone wants to see my paper on the topic, let me know and I'll send it to you. Honestly, I think I could study Satan for months and not get everything down that I need in order to live a little more successfully in life. In fact, I'm considering putting some more effort into the subject and using that research later. We'll see.
Anyway, that's an update on Seminary. I'm hoping to slide right into the second semester of Systematic Theology so that I'll be done with that at the end of next semester. If any of you out there are Liberty Theological Seminary students, let me know how you think you did this semester.
I would like to see your paper. And congratulations, you let the Bible speak. Problem with the evil one is that there is so much disinformation about him that is NOT Biblical. I agree that Ezekiel and Isaiah are not about him.
I had the same experience with the Last Days, while in school. I wanted to do a bang-up sermon on the Second Coming. I found that much of what I'd been taught was extra-Biblical.
Stick with it. We need Berean men who search the scriptures to see if these things are true.
Don, I'll send it to you today. It's amazing to realize the number of things I grew up believing because it was what I was taught only to find out it might not actually be biblical. I look forward to more classes like this, although I truly do hope to be more fruitful in the future.
Hardest thing about Systematic Theology is that we want to systematize stuff that God doesn't care to. Angelology is one area the Bible really doesn't say much about but we like to write volumes. I agree with Don: glad you let the Bible speak and not you preconceptions.
I hear you on the dangers of speculation, but angelology is one area the Bible does speak on and where it does matter. Just because we ignore or pass over certain passages it does not mean they aren't important.
Consider Gen. 6; Dan. 10:13; 1 Cor. 11:10. How one interprets these passages and what we understand about angels & spiritual warfare should highly impact our prayer lives and ethics.
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