"Where is this guy coming from?"--

A Discussion of Important Issues and Influences on the Author--


By Duane L. Smith

The major influences on my life are very eclectic in origin. After all, I was raised to be Pentecostal, became a Southern Baptist at my conversion, and later became a Charismatic. And so, I now consider myself a conservative, evangelical-charismatic Christian, with definite calvinistic inclinations!

Besides my various church affliliations, I have been heavily influenced by such people as C.S. Lewis, A.W. Tozer, Josh McDowell, Walter Martin, as well as Watchman Nee, Pat Robertson, and Keith Green.

As far back as I can remember, I always had a terrific curiosity and awe of nature. I wondered about the way, why, and how things worked the way things worked. For this reason I got involved with various fields of study within the science, such as Biology, Zoology, Herpitology, Micro-biology, and, later on, Psychology, and Sociology. Because of my early involvement with such scientific endeavors, unfortunately I was force-fed an extremely strong dose of evolutionary theory. And so I started out on this spiritual journey as a theistic evolutionist.

I struggled intellectually for years over this issue, until gradually, inevitably, finally, and inexorably I became convinced of creationism centered in Christian theism (theism as opposed to Deism).

With extreme Deism, to put it in more modern terminology, one could solve the problem of the First Cause, in that the Creator, or Supreme Being, could have had a role in the formation of the Big Bang Singularity, and helped in causing this particular paradigm of Natural Laws which determine the characteristics of this Space/Time Continuum--that is, this paradigm out of all probable paradigms of Reality.

Thus, the Creator or Supreme Being set up the conditions necessary for the evolutionary processes of the universe to begin, and these supposed processes of evolution presumably led to the evolution of mankind. Beyond this, the Deist would have no more need for a god. (For more information on this, please refer to "A Brief History of Time," by Stephen W. Hawkins, P.H.D.; also for information concerning Theism, please click on my article, "An Introduction to Biblical Science.")

Another drawback of my background is that sometimes I was taken in by anything sounding scientific, or even "pseudo-scientific". I refer to Scientology, Para-psychology, and self-hypnosis for holistic reasons. For a refutation of Scientology, I recommend studying, "The Kingdom of the Cults," by Walter Martin, also "Encyclopedia of Cults and New Religions," by John Ankerberg and John Weldon. To avoid the pitfalls of Para-psychology and self-hypnosis, please read Watchman Nee's "The Latent Power of the Soul."

But praise to God! He has broken the chains of spiritual bondage that enslaved my heart, so that I may be free to serve the Living Lord!

"..."when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth..."--John 16:13

"And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."--John 8:32

"Therefore, if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."--John 8:36

"...where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty."--2 Corinthians 3:17

If I can teach my readers/students how to think for themselves and to ask valid questions, not just blindly following or accepting everything on face value, thereby remaining in ignorant, obsequious obedience, then I have achieved my primary goals and objectives. It is not enough to be content with knowing what you believe, we should know why we believe it.

Dear Christians, let me also add, be not content in acquiring more spiritual knowledge, but let us thirst after God, the True and the Living God!

Let us become more acquainted with His ways, let us learn to love the Lord our God with all of our hearts, our souls, our strength, and with all of our minds; let us share that love with others, for He has provided us a Savior, Christ Jesus our Lord.

Please look up Matthew 22: 37, 1 John 3: 16, 1 John 4: 10, Psalm 42: 1.

I am not interested in simply spouting spiritual truth in a manner which I would call "spiritual regurgitation". I do not know what is worse, the "First Church of the Frigid Air," or the "Lethargic Church of Christ." I am not interested in stale dogmatism, cold hearts, and phony religiosity.


Sometimes the truth isn ot one thing and not another. Sometimes it both, or somewhere in between. As a result, I always try to strive toward Biblical balance and to be firmly grounded in the Holy Word of the Almighty God.

I try to integrate what I consider to be the best of various christological and/or theological concepts, regardless of apparent logical contradictions. I could not care less whether everything I believe fits into a nice, neat, logical system of Theology. "You cannot put God in a box"!

Such is the case with paradoxes. If the Bible teaches a particular doctrine, I am duty bound to believe it, meanwhile praying that God would grant me wisdom and understanding. As an instructor of mine at school would say, "Can you live with the theological tension?"

Where my logic fails me, my faith will take up the slack. "If the Bible says it, I believe it, and so that settles it!" You see, I believe the whole Bible, even the parts I do not like.


If I have a question abut a particular doctrine, I first and foremost see what the Bible itself has to say about that topic. I pay strict attention to the context in which that passage is found. A text taken out of context, it is said, becomes a "pretext."

Next, I try to seek the whole counsel of God. I ask, "Are there any more passages of scripture located elsewhere that perhaps can shed more light on the topic in question?"

"This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom, but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truth."--I Corinthians 2: 13

"Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing, rightly handling and skillfully teaching, the word of truth."


Article: (c) 2007, Duane L. Smith Estate, All Rights Reserved

Format: (c) 2007, Butterfly Productions, All Rights Reserved