Saturday, June 26, 2010

Reading Stott

Finished Basic Christian: the Inside Story of John Stott, the Stott bio. (Thanks, Macon!)

Picked up Stott's Through the Bible Through the Year, and am making it the center of my daily devotional. Also picked up his Why I Am a Christian, to see if it would be a good one to give to non-Christian friends (or do you think Basic Christianity would be better?). Also picked up The Living Church - Convictions of a Lifelong Pastor.

I like Stott's habit of an after lunch nap, his "horizontal half hour" or "HHH" and his one day a month getaway to think things over.

He got in trouble with other Evangelicals for his view of annihilation. I've thought about the issue for years, and I like his position. The link is to the Wikipedia article on "annihilationism." Here's a quote from the wiki article:

Stott first publicly commented on the issue of whether hell is eternal in the 1988 book Essentials: A liberal-evangelical dialogue with liberal David Edwards.[13] However in 1993 he said he had held this view for around fifty years.[14] Stott wrote, "Well, emotionally, I find the concept intolerable and do not understand how people can live with it without either cauterising their feelings or cracking under the strain."[15]

Yet he considers emotions unreliable, and affords supreme authority to the Bible.[16] Stott supports annihilation, yet cautions, "I do not dogmatise about the position to which I have come. I hold it tentatively... I believe that the ultimate annihilation of the wicked should at least be accepted as a legitimate, biblically founded alternative to their eternal conscious torment."[17]

(The footnotes in the wiki quote refer to Edwards and Stott, Essentials: a Liberal-Evangelical Dialogue.)

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