Category Archives: Porter’s Laws

Theology, Epistemology, Relationships

Law Three: Know Where You’re Goin’

porter'slawsI once worked for a pastor who said if you’re going to choose between Bible study and hearing me preach, I encourage you to come to Bible study.  The pastor in question proclaimed the gospel with enthusiastic acumen, but as the years went by, only later did I understand fully.

As our senior pastor has often taught, the purpose of the church @ Myrtle Lake is to glorify the Lord God by preaching and teaching Christ and Him crucified.  But, how does “Bible study” glorify God?

yogiberraWell, when Yogi Berra was asked about the chances for the Yankees winning the 1957 pennant, he answered, “If you don’t know where you’re goin’, you’ll probably get there.”

Until we know where God wants us to be, we won’t know where we’re goin’.  If we don’t know where He wants us to go, we’ll probably get there.  We will not know what He wants nor where He wants us to be—without Bible study.

Bible study is a lamp at our feet.  It helps us see the Way because the way is narrow—it is neither broad, nor easy to find, according to my Jesus.

I’d love to see you next Sunday in Bible study, or next Wednesday, or at Band of Brothers on Mondays, or Sunday afternoon in Logos Academy classes, or Sunday evening in Logos Prep classes.  As you can tell by all these opportunities, the church @ MyrtleLake loves God’s word, for He is the Word, and the Way, and the Truth, and the Life.

Bible study:  Know where you’re goin!

Porter’s First Two Laws of Human Behavior

Porter’s First Law of Human Behavior
“Human beings see, hear, remember, understand, and do what they want to see, hear, remember, understand, and do.”  Porter’s First Law of Human Behavior—Simplified: “People believe what is useful to them.”

Porter’s Second Law of Human Behavior
redflagGiven Porter’s First Law, “When confronting our beliefs, we must raise an epistemological red flag whenever said belief is useful.  When things are useful, all historical, empirical, and experiential data which contraindicate our belief must be brought to bear.  Otherwise—we’re not thinkers as God intended, merely narcissistic lumps.”

Remember, why and how we believe (epistemology) what we believe is often more important than what we believe.  If our epistemology is weak, then our beliefs are easily weakened, but if our historical, empirical, and experiential evidence is strong?  Beliefs become Truth, and not just truth.

Porter’s First Law of Theology: “God is Smart”

God is not very smart, for “very” implies a non-existent continuum.  God is smart, period, in the absolute.  Therefore, we can better understand God’s revelation in history, the natural world, and in Scripture if we continually ask—Why did God allow that in history?  Why did God create the world with such beauty, and trauma?  Why did God give us these commands in Scripture?  With every answer, we learn how and why… God is smart.  “God is smart” thus becomes a potent hermeneutic.