When we turn to bible scholars we need to always keep in mind we’ll come across both good and bad, and if we rely ONLY on the work of those “scholars” we’ll never know the difference. We’ll merely adopt what we ourselves find most appealing and what tickles our own intellectual ears.
I’ve seen far too many Christian bloggers who do little more than make reference to one man’s words after another; Quoting this teacher, then that writer – maybe throwing in an occasional verse of scripture to give everything “biblical legitimacy”, but no real indication that they’ve addressed scripture for themselves and come to terms with what it says.
When we choose to read and listen to the teaching of others we need to be sure to search the scriptures to see whether their teaching REALLY conforms to scripture. And if it IS valid teaching, then pass on the understanding that has been gained by referring to SCRIPTURE rather than continually noting that Spurgeon said this or MacArthur said that, etc.
If it IS biblical truth, note it as such and not as the teaching of _ _ _ _ _ (fill in the gaps with name of any popular teacher).
Shouldn’t we be more excited about the discoveries we’ve made FROM SCRIPTURE as we checked their teaching rather than giving recognition to a man?
The big danger is the lack of personal involvement with scripture and the lack of trust in the Holy Spirit. The danger is that people put ALL their trust in the scholarship of others instead of in the Spirit and scripture; reading commentaries and study bible notes and assuming they’ve been studying the Bible.
Christians need to be freed from the idea that scripture is beyond their understanding and therefore they will need someone to interpret and explain it to them. That attitude is a major problem across the “church”, from the mainline traditional denominations through to Charismatic/Pentecostal groups. Man’s teaching is exalted and placed entirely in the hands of a “qualified” elite. Traditional churches promote a seminary education as the requirement for ministers, charismatics look to people they see as specially “anointed”.
The poor average man-in-the pew is encouraged to be dependent upon the appointed or anointed “minister” instead of being encouraged and taught to search the scriptures for themselves, with the Holy Spirit being ignored altogether.