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"Systematic Theology" by Wayne Grudem

Discussion in 'Reformed Book Review Room' started by AndOne, Apr 25, 2006.

  1. AndOne

    AndOne Deliver me oh Lord, from evil men

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    ....from my blog site:

    10 on a scale of 1-10

    I have very recently put a stipulation on myself to not read any author's work who is still living (physically that is). Thank goodness in the case of Wayne Grudem I made an exception! In fact I wish I would have read this book before I developed an interest in John Calvin, Martin Luther, Jonathan Edwards, the writings of the puritans, etc. The reason for that is because Grudem does an excellent job of taking a difficult subject to grasp and to make it easy to understand. I would have really been able to grasp the concepts and ideas of the reformers better had I read this great introductory work into theology first. I've already made it a priority to re-read Calvin's "Institutes of the Christian Religion" since reading this fine work.

    Wayne Grudem is a highly credentialed professor who is currently teaching at the Phoenix Seminary in Arizona. He is probably most notably known for his continuationist stand in regards to the gifts of the spirit today - but he has gained wide acceptance and support from many on the cessationist side of the coin. He was a major contributer amongst the scholars who put together the ESV standard version of the Bible and I noticed that in my own "Spirit of the Reformation Study Bible" (NIV) that he contributed and added many notes to that as well. He is also a top dog at the Center for Biblical Womanhood and Manhood organization.

    The single best aspect of this book is Dr. Grudem's commanding use of scripture to lay out his points of discussion. He lays out a solid reformed doctrine that is supported fully and logically by scripture. It is also quite obvious to me that he knows his Greek - and puts it to good use in areas that need added clarity for understanding.

    I also like how well documented the book is. He references many, many others from all different facets of Christianity - while all the while maintaining a solid representation of Calvinism. Grudem does this in a very respectful manner and he does a fine and fair job in representing other views from within Christianity that run contrary to many of the Reformed Doctrines that he supports.

    In my own journey through the book I have either changed my position on certain things or had a particular stand that I was already making solidified through his clear explanation of scripture. Part of this was because not long after reading this book I realized I had better seek to understand scripture for what it says - and NOT for what I WANT it to say. Once you adopt that attitude and then (coincidentally) dive into a book that is so scripturally solid in regards to explaining things - you are bound to have something like this happen.

    One area in which this has occurred is in the area of the "gifts of the Spirit." I am now solidly convinced that the gifts of the Spirit have not ceased and that they are still in use today. Grudem lays out the scripture and particularly clarifies through the Greek language used at the time to support this position - and because it is so scripturally solid I cannot deny the truth of this doctrine. Whereas before I was "Open but Cautious" I am now a solid "Third Wave" Charasmatic of the Reformed Faith. Since embracing this I have already seen a tremondous change (for the better) in my walk with God.

    One other note of particular interest is that each chapter concludes with questions for reflection, a memory verse, and a hymn. This made for a very edifying experience in reading the book. Also, the appendix at the end of the book contains many of the confessions such as the Westmintser Confession of Faith and the London Baptist Confession.
    I highly recommend this awesome book!
     
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  2. Renee Arisen

    Renee Arisen Member

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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  3. BryanW92

    BryanW92 Hey look, it's a squirrel!

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    I've been intrigued by Grudem's Systematic Theology since I had to read one of his MUCH shorter books for a business class in college last year. Since my church offers nothing in the way of bible study, I've decided that 2015 is the year that I will read and study Grudem's Systematic Theology. I think this will be my best year of bible study ever!

    Thanks for your post. It motivated me.
     
  4. Renee Arisen

    Renee Arisen Member

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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  5. BryanW92

    BryanW92 Hey look, it's a squirrel!

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    I'm majoring in Business Administration at Liberty and I find it fairly neutral on the Left-Right scale. Much better than all the secular colleges in my town, for sure, where anything other than being a red banner waving Progressive is considered Right Wing. ;)
     
  6. Renee Arisen

    Renee Arisen Member

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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  7. AndOne

    AndOne Deliver me oh Lord, from evil men

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    Interesting to see this responded to after 9 years!! Ironically since making that post so long ago I got a bachelors degree from Liberty.... Go Flames!!! (yes they let a Calvinist graduate). Still think this is a great work... Though my tune has changed regarding continuationism over the years and don't quite see eye to eye with Dr. Grudem any longer on that point...
     
  8. Renee Arisen

    Renee Arisen Member

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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  9. BryanW92

    BryanW92 Hey look, it's a squirrel!

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    I always incorporate the applicable portion of the WCF in my papers at Liberty that require scriptural support, making it very clear that I am a Calvinist. I've had professors comment by saying things like, "I like the way you use scripture and your Confession in your papers." They seem very open-minded about which flavor of Christian you are, as long as you are Christian. I'm sure that the theology in their seminary more tightly controlled, but you choose a seminary that agrees with your theology (or if you are a Progressive "christian", you choose the one that matches your politics).
     
  10. AndOne

    AndOne Deliver me oh Lord, from evil men

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    Well said, Rene!

    My degree was in multi-disciplinary studies...
     
  11. AndOne

    AndOne Deliver me oh Lord, from evil men

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    I never shied away from being Calvinist while I was there and never caught any flack for it. I do remember being told by a professor that my 16 page paper on Romans 9 was too one sided because it had all Calvinist sources and no Arminian sources - just a constructive criticism I guess because I got a perfect score on it regardless.

    I went there because it was the best school that I could find that worked with the military. For example they had a program that allowed me to get my textbooks for free because I was active duty. Stuff like that is what sold me on Liberty. Regardless - no regrets for going there and I would even do a seminary program with them if I were so inclined - because of their fairness.
     
  12. BryanW92

    BryanW92 Hey look, it's a squirrel!

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    In one of my first classes at Liberty, I had to write a DB post on something where the textbook was very Calvinist. I began my thread with a notice that I am (was at the time) Arminian and I will write from that perspective, even though it disagrees with the textbook.

    The professor wrote back and told me that I can write it from any theology I choose, as long as I can defend my reasons for having it. That's compared to my experience with secular college where I was told that a paper on the US Constitution was "too Right-wing" and it cost me a letter grade for that. I love Liberty for its sense of fairness.
     
  13. Renee Arisen

    Renee Arisen Member

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    Last edited: Feb 18, 2015
  14. BryanW92

    BryanW92 Hey look, it's a squirrel!

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    I was Arminian at the time. Not anymore. Like you, the more I studied, the less I believed it.
     
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