Sunday, March 30, 2008

Dr. Roger Nicole, Theologian

Psa 37:23 The pathes of man are directed by the Lord: for he loueth his way.
Psa 37:24 Though he fall, hee shall not be cast off: for the Lord putteth vnder his hand.
Geneva Bible

Dr. Roger Nicole is Swiss and a Baptist Reform Theologian. He is considered one of the great theologians of the 20th Century. He is a friend though our friendship has been stretched by time and location.

I never dare call him Roger in his presence (though I do not think he would be offended) when he visited my home or when I had a discussion with him. I respectfully admit I spent my time listening, though he invited response. I have been thinking about Roger lately, one of my family members visited him recently and informed me that Roger’s beloved wife Annette went to be with the Lord.

I met Roger in 1953 as he preached to the students at Gordon College. After that I had time to see him on occasion and as a Baptist Deacon was sure our Church offered him a preaching slot when available. Dr. James Boice invited Roger to be a speaker at the first Philadelphia Conference for Reformed Theology and he was invited back on several occasions.

My reformed Baptist theological thinking is consistently influenced by Roger. I just completed a book on his sermons and was refreshed in the Word he preached. (Our Sovereign Saviour, The Essence of Reformation Faith). Over the years he addressed many doctrinal and social subjects, such as judgment, inerrancy, revival, and biblical equality. He is considered an expert scholar on the thoughts of John Calvin.

I share some of Dr. Nicole’s quotes:
"The idea of judgment, far from distasteful, ought to be recognized by any right thinking woman or man as essential for the proper understanding of life and for a wholesome world-and-life view."
“We are called upon by the Lord to contend earnestly for the faith (Jude 3). That does not necessarily involve being contentious; but it involves avoiding compromise, standing forth for what we believe, stand­ing forth for the truth of God—without welching at any particular moment.” Read
“Do not pray as if everything depends on God. Pray because everything depends on God.”
“Truth is that firm conformity to reality that proves to be wholly reliable, so that those who accept a statement may depend on it that it will not turn out to be false or deceitful.” Read
“You will be yourself a Calvinist when you get to heaven, for I say who will deny or seek to restrict the sovereignty of God when appearing before His throne?”
“Those who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ are thus to be absolved from the guilt of all their sins and are adorned with the perfect righteousness of Christ Himself.” Read

I recommend the man and the reading connected with his ministry. I know him as a tender servant of our Lord Jesus Christ and he still teaches Bible study at 93 years of age. A recent biography has been published about Dr, Nicole SPEAKING THE TRUTH IN LOVE: Life & Legacy of Roger Nicole, by David W Baker (Author), James I Packer (Introduction) and this too precipitated my reflections and thoughts.

1 comment:

David W. Bailey said...

Greetings, dear friend! My name is David Bailey, the author of the biography on Dr. Nicole. Thank you for mentioning the book in your blog entry. He is a dear brother in Christ. My email is pastor@rbcgrace.org if you would like to chat. Blessings, David