Posted in bible study, Uncategorized

Biblical Doctrine Study week 1 thoughts

Are you desiring to try a thorough study in Systematic Theology but don’t know where to start? Have you excitedly bought or were given the John MacArthur/Richard Mayhue tome Biblical Doctrine but are too intimidated to start?

Jessica Pickowicz of Beautiful Thing has written a Study Guide to go along with the book. She has also created a Facebook group of women to gather and discuss it. The Study will take about two years. It just began this week and it is certainly not too late to join!!! I blogged about it earlier.

This is the first essay with thoughts from what I’ve studied.

I love theology. I love knowledge, and I love wisdom. The word “theology” comes from two Greek words that combined mean “the study of God.” Knowledge is the accumulation of facts and information. Wisdom is the synthesis of knowledge with appropriate applications to life. If you study God through His Bible and speak about Him in ways where people can find application of His precepts to their life, you are a theologian speaking knowledgeably with wisdom.

The first lesson was to read the preface. I found this passage to be worthwhile:

The ultimate goal of writing such a systematic theology and to study such a systematic theology is

“to elevate one’s holy worship. The posture of theology is on one’s knees. The model of theology is repentance.”

The quote is from Sinclair Ferguson who was quoted in James Boice and Philip Ryken’s book “The Doctrines of Grace.”

I think that quote cuts to the chase. If I have any inclinations of accumulating knowledge for knowledge’s sake, this cuts me off at the knees. More importantly, it brings me to my knees. The only purpose of such study is to better know God and to offer him increasingly elevated holy worship. This is His due. This is the chief end of man and the reason for our existence: relationship though worship and giving Him glory.

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EPrata photo

Posted in discernment, Uncategorized

Biblical Doctrine: Ladies, Study along with Jessica Pickowicz, & #ReadWritePlan2017

Ladies, Jessica Pickowicz, wife of Nate Pickowicz, who authored Why We’re Protestant and Reviving New England, wrote a Bible study to go along with MacArthur’s and Mayhue’s tome, “Biblical Doctrine.”

I have a dear friend who is attending The Master’s University. He returned home for summer break and arrived at my door in July with a surprise gift of this wonderful book. Even more wonderful, it is signed by John MacArthur and a verse was selected to include with the signature!

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I can’t figure out if the verse is an encouragement or a warning to me. Hmmm. Likely both, since I need both!

I love that he did this and I put it proudly on my theological bookshelves. And there is sat, all 1000 plus pages of it. Once in a while I’d look at it as I passed my shelf, and mourned its size and how I was going to approach this study.

Providentially, Jess had been writing a study guide and lessons to go along with the book, and announced it about a month after I’d received the book! The study began this week.

Concurrently, an internet annual organization plan for writers is going on. It’s by Alexandra Haughton and it’s called #ReadWritePlan. What you do it post one photo a day for a month, according to their schedule, showing your favorite pens, planners, papers, highlighters, bulletin boards, desk area, etc. In other words, what does it look like where you write and study?

I love this stuff! But I missed the first week of ReadWritePlan2017 and decided to forgo it until next year. Then the Biblical Doctrine study came up, complete with its choice of binder covers (color, or B&W), papers to be printed, and pads and pens and highlighters suggested. So now I’m back in on ReadWritePlan.

Here is my first post, the preface to ongoing thoughts about the Biblical Doctrine Study I plan to post, combined with a ReadWritePlan once for all post. This is my place, the spot where I study the Bible, read the Bible, listen to sermons, and write my blog essays.

I live in a 425 sf apartment. Mainly it’s two rooms with a small kitchen and a tiny bathroom. I love it. My dining table was a garage sale find of one of those 1950s with formica top and metal legs. Since everything HAS to be both organized and available, yet fit into the tiny space, here is what I did. The dining table has become my office with the laptop prominently located. Next to the table is a bookcase containing a good light, speakers, and office supplies as normal. It is all within reach without me having to get up out of my office chair.

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Coffee, tea, or water is always on the coaster, out of the way of the cat who likes to jump on the table and curl up on his bed. Below, take a tour of my bookcase with me. Top shelf, printer, pencil and pen cup, brown leather notebook I take to church. Second shelf, MacArthur Study Bible and smaller Bible with Grant Horner bookmarks for my ongoing Reading Plan.

Next to that is the laminator and the scanner. Bottom shelf, notebooks, legal pads, printer paper, binders of ongoing studies, like the Biblical Doctrine textbook, and books I’m currently reading.

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The weekly Biblical Doctrine Pickowicz Study is issued on Thursdays but my Thursdays are straight out 14 hours, and I don’t arrive home until about 9:30pm. So I dedicate Friday evenings for delving into the week’s study. It’s perfect. I come home, take a nap, awake refreshed and settle in to the quietude with a cuppa and all the time in the world.

Below, doing the first week’s lesson, yay!

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Jessica offers tips on highlighting for various study-reasons. However, I never, ever, ever, ever write or highlight in any of my books. Ever. Instead, I buy thousands of transparent Post-It arrows in neon colors and put them happily all around. I love my Post-It arrows.

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I encourage you to look into the Biblical Doctrine Bible Study. Jess has not only created a Study Guide but also a Facebook Group of like-minded women who are participating in the study, which is expected to last two years. Women from their 20s to their 70s have been added, women who are homeschooling or not, married and not, disabled and healthy, living rural or citified. We are all different but have Christ in common.

Here are the pertinent links for you.

Jess Pickowicz at Beautiful Thing: Biblical Doctrine study, articles

Beautiful Thing’s Biblical Doctrine Facebook Study Group

Biblical Doctrine the book for purchase at Grace To You

For purchase at Amazon, it’s $20 off right now.