Experimental Religion

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My favorite part of chemistry class was lab. In lab we were able to do experiments that demonstrated the scientific truth of what we had studied in our books. We could test, observe, and measure chemical reactions and formulas. How boring would chemistry have been if the extent of our learning was only listening to the professor lecture and reading a text-book? Experiments were, in some sense, what the books and lectures were for – to show truth in action and experience, and to prove the reality and power of chemistry.

The old-school Puritans used to talk about “Experimental Religion,” because they knew that their faith was not just described in a book or merely cerebral, nor did they think that the limits of their spirituality were to be found under the “lecture” of a “spiritual-professor,” their pastor!  They knew that their lives were the “lab” of the Holy Spirit to show the truth of the gospel in action and experience. Rather than simply be biblicists – always learning yet never applying the Bible – the Puritans wanted to experience God in their daily lives and prove His power.  Rather than simply going to church – always attending but never applying – they wanted to see God prove his grace in their lives and show to everyone they interacted with by experiment, or as we might say today, experience, the love of God in Christ.

This week, if you go to church or when you read your Bible, don’t just attend the service or merely read the Word, but rather take it to the lab of your life and experience it!  Let the power of God’s presence express and prove His truth in your life and to everyone  you interact with this week.  Go old-school Puritan and experiment and experience God in your life!

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