to understand what we believe and why, and to make informed decisions.
ith so much to teach our children and Church History Helps Us to Appreciate so little time, why should we include God’s Sovereign Plan church history? What did Isaac Newton mean when he said he could look further In spite of the church’s problems, failures, and because he stood on the shoulders of giants? divisions, Christ has kept and is still keeping the Should we limit ourselves to stand there, taking promise he made in Caesarea, “I will build my advantage of the accomplishments of our great church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail predecessors, and against it” (Matt. only look forward? 16:18). It’s important THE PAST IS PART OF US. This conclusion may for our children to CHURCH HISTORY IS EMBEDDED seem natural in our know that the story IN THE DOCTRINES WE TAKE age, when we’re told of God’s preservation we should live in the FOR GRANTED, IN OUR of his people in present and look to INTERPRETATION OF THE BIBLE Jesus Christ—the the future. Newton’s AND IN OUR LITURGY. IT EVEN overarching theme reasoning, however, of Scriptures—didn’t INFLUENCES THE WAY WE SEE was most likely very end with the Book of OTHER CHRISTIANS AND THE different. There are Acts. It has continued WORLD AROUND US, AND THE many reasons why throughout the 2,000 WAY WE FACE CERTAIN CHOICES we should look to years of history the past and guide AND CHALLENGES. STUDYING from the apostles our children in that CHURCH HISTORY HELPS US until today and will discovery. TO UNDERSTAND WHAT WE continue until the consummation. It BELIEVE AND WHY, AND TO MAKE We Can’t Hide includes us and our from the Past INFORMED DECISIONS. children. When we read Studying church Newton’s quote, it’s history helps us to see beyond our limited and easy to forget he could benefit from the discoveries immediate situation. It gives us confidence in of the giants who went before him because he God’s promises and moves us to praise him for thoroughly studied their teachings. The past is their historical fulfillment, saying, like the prophet part of us. Church history is embedded in the Samuel, “Till now the LORD has helped us” (1 doctrines we take for granted, in our interpretation Sam. 7:12). This appreciation of God’s help and of the Bible and in our liturgy. It even influences sustenance in the past is frequently encouraged in the way we see other Christians and the world Scriptures. around us, and the way we face certain choices and challenges. Studying church history helps us www.credomag.com | 23