The Advantages of Informal Mentoring

The best learning comes not from simply listening to a mentor but from seeing truth lived out in the mentor’s life.

The greatest impact I have made as a teacher and a minister has been not through preaching to crowds or teaching classes, as vital as those are. It has been those individuals who have walked with me beyond the classroom or small group in normal, everyday life, talking about ministry and theology to be sure,... Continue Reading

Don’t Be Embarrassed By Your Ordinary Church

When we think about the church in general and our church in particular, we might be a bit embarrassed to call it “ordinary.”

Is your church ordinary? Small? Well, my Christian friend, if it is preaching the gospel and endeavoring to help others to know and follow Jesus then it is not insignificant. It is powerfully important and surpassingly glorious. And, you should praise God for it–even as you get to work in it!   In the grand... Continue Reading

I’m Not Being Fed….

People need truth that shapes their hearts into the obedience.

We don’t need more didactic moments that simply tickle the minds of those who thirst for more information; we need the forming of the heart though great sermons powerfully delivered. People need truth that shapes hearts into the obedience that comes through faith so people can be doers of the Word and not just hearers... Continue Reading

Death, The Prosperity Gospel and Me

I am 35. A few months ago, I got a call from my doctor’s assistant telling me that I have Stage 4 cancer.

The prosperity gospel has taken a religion based on the contemplation of a dying man and stripped it of its call to surrender all. Perhaps worse, it has replaced Christian faith with the most painful forms of certainty. The movement has perfected a rarefied form of America’s addiction to self-rule, which denies much of our... Continue Reading

Joint Declaration of Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill

Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia met in Havana, Cuba on Friday (2016-02-12) to sign an historic joint declaration.

By meeting far from the longstanding disputes of the “Old World”, we experience with a particular sense of urgency the need for the shared labour of Catholics and Orthodox, who are called, with gentleness and respect, to give an explanation to the world of the hope in us (cf. 1 Pet 3:15).   Pope Francis... Continue Reading

In The Light Of Home

What is this earthly, tangible thing called home, and why do we attach such deep emotions to it?

I like to think that our lives are burned into places like the negative of a photograph. The film is not the story, but it is the carrier of the story. Imagine if we could take this earth into a photographer’s dark room and develop it. What stories we would see there, carved by light... Continue Reading

Common Ground on Poverty

Discussions on seeking bi-partisan ways to alleviate poverty

The point is this.  This article sees hope in a possible consensus among conservatives and liberals regarding what to do about the poor.  It’s good for conservatives and liberals to talk; I am all for it.  But as long as the talk always assumes that the government is the first responder to the needs of... Continue Reading

We Will Never Let Our Daughters Die for Us

If someone has to die in battle, it won’t be our daughters. As men of God, it will be us.

Unlike a secular, gender-blurring culture, we honor women and view them in the highest regard. As complementarians, we are committed to the biblical truths that men and women are completely equal in dignity, value, worth, and honor; however, men and women are different in role and function. This–warfare–is a key arena in which we see... Continue Reading

7 Lessons I Learned From My 7 1/2 Years As A Missionary In Honduras

Simple Christ-centered lessons I have learned over my years of missionary service.

It is wonderful to be reminded that I am not as important as I think I am. We as individuals are not that vital to God’s cosmic plans. I will never understand why God doesn’t use the rocks and the trees to accomplish his will. However, he has chosen to use us. He doesn’t need... Continue Reading

Boys Need Their Moms

Boys need their moms—I am convinced of it. I see this when I look back at my own life.

“Even in Christian circles there is little attention given to the relationship of boys and their mothers, at least once they pass the toddler stage. It is rarely mentioned and rarely celebrated. We still look askance at a boy who spends a lot of time with his mom or a mom who is close to... Continue Reading

Hostages to Homogeny: Why I’m Done with “Racial Reconciliation”

A rebuke to some Evangelicals' indifference and insincerity towards race relations

“Amidst the public handshakes and hugs, the coffee and conferences, there is a platforming of a type of humility that isn’t changing much of anything. I’m not a nationally known preacher or author, but in many ways I’ve found it more helpful to be a pastor on the ground level. What I can do at... Continue Reading

My Indebtedness to the Puritans

As a theologian I have read a lot of books about the teachings of the Bible, but none affect me more than the writings of the Puritans, and its parallel movement in the Netherlands

The Puritans not only commended love, but called Christians to excel in love with godly zeal. Oliver Bowles said zeal “is a holy ardor kindled by the Holy Spirit of God in the affections, improving a man to the utmost for God’s glory, and the church’s good.”   My life has been profoundly shaped and... Continue Reading

Old Princeton: Archibald Alexander’s Letters to the Aged

Rev. Alexander’s last letters close with getting closer to eternity

May the Good Lord grant we who are younger with deeper appreciation that, The hoary head is a crown of glory and the beauty of old men is the gray head (Proverbs 16:31; 20:29).  For, as Rev. Alexander writes in Letter One, “There is something peculiarly lovely as well as venerable in the silvery locks... Continue Reading

Don’t Just Pray About It

In the 5th Psalm we read of a believer exercising highly developed prayer reflexes

“Much like a eager and expectant child who has dropped a seed into the ground, the believer is to look through the eyes of faith knowing that God is for them, loves them, hears them, and works all things together for their good (Rom. 8.28; 1 Pet. 5.6-8). The same heart of faith that comes... Continue Reading

True Reformation

God’s awakening power is not activated by our schemes and tactics, but by His Spirit and His ordinary means of awakening

“When God awakens, He always brings revival, whether it is the revival of a single soul, the revival of a family, the revival of a community, or the revival of a nation. When God brings revival, He always brings deep and convicting repentance that leads to a life of faith, repentance, and obedience.”   Awakening... Continue Reading

Don’t Count on Deathbed Conversions

Lots of people have remorse over their sinfulness, but that is not repentance that leads unto life

This reminds of when Mickey Mantle died back in the 1990s. There was news of his deathbed conversion and the evangelical world rejoiced. “We got one!” This has always bothered me because when you heard about what Mantle said concerning his faith, it wasn’t very comforting. Realize, I’m not saying that Mantle was not saved,... Continue Reading

Supreme Court to Hear Westminster Seminary’s Case

The United States Supreme Court has accepted for review Westminster Theological Seminary’s lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

“Westminster filed the lawsuit because it objects to the regulations enacted under the Affordable Care Act that require the seminary to provide abortifacients (drugs and devices that can cause abortions), including the morning-after pill, to its employees under its health insurance policy. The Supreme Court will hear our case on March 23rd, 2016.”   Under... Continue Reading

Why the Media Need to Stop Hounding Dan Walker

Christian TV presenter Dan Walker has been criticised in the media this week for believing that God created the world. David Robertson responds

Why did the Daily Mail, Times, Independent and Telegraph (amongst others) run lengthy articles about Mr Walker? Is Dan the first Transgender presenter? Is he the secret love child of one of the Royals? No. It’s worse than that – he’s a Christian! And not just a Christian, but a Baptist Christian. Even worse than... Continue Reading

Lent…if borrowed should be returned

It saddens me to see the growing excitement over such high church traditions in our churches while simultaneously diminishing the ordinary and historical practices.

Please know that I am not on a crusade to wipe out all traditions and practices that are not my own. My crusade is to wipe out the mindless and sentimental borrowing from other traditions.  And, I am really not even on a crusade to convince all of my PCA brothers that they ought to return to... Continue Reading

Worldview Loneliness in the Church

This is what it’s like to feel alone because of your Christian worldview in the Church.

My worldview loneliness is not provoked by the awkward discomfort that comes from sharing the Christian faith with an unbeliever in secular culture. Which is not to say evangelizing is easy for this introvert. No, that challenge is different. I expect a lost soul to find the Gospel offensive. The mocking, callousness and avoidance of the... Continue Reading

Is It Possible To Be Too Pie in the Sky?

What does the Bible say about the relationship between longing for the day to come and this side of heaven helpfulness?

The non-Christian world has long made this accusation, but in recent years the accusation has come from inside the Christian camp as well. Within our own circles some are claiming the church has been unhelpfully influenced by Plato. If you remember back to your college philosophy class you’ll remember Plato’s allegory of the cave. In... Continue Reading

Minds, Books, and the Fruit of Traditionalism

How much has this traditionalism discouraged women from using their brains and thinking wisely for themselves?

I believe this is reflected in the books that are marketed to Christian women. These numerous volumes are long on subjective experience and stories and short on objective doctrine. Thus dubious content can find cover under emotional appeal and perceived personal rapport with the author. They are also driven by application, usually related to the... Continue Reading

Speedos or Shorts? Bikinis or Bathing Suits?

Two things in the last week have brought to my attention that those who wish to maintain anything approaching traditional Christian standards are facing a brave new world.

Religious and social conservatives, and even traditional liberals, may well have disagreed over the years about what constitutes modesty (Speedos or shorts? Bikinis or bathing suits?) but they have typically accepted that the concept itself is legitimate and appropriate. In a world where Reichian quackery rules, we do not debate the limits of modesty for... Continue Reading

The Essence of Faith: Neither Obedience Nor Love

In Reformed theology when we talk about the essence of justifying faith, we exclude love and obedience.

In other words, love and works are not the same as justifying faith; love and works are not the essence of  faith.  The sinner is not justified by faithful obedience, or by faith working through love, but by faith alone, only, period.  True faith always results in love and good works, but love and good... Continue Reading

A Prayer for When Life is Disappointing

Disappointment is part of life in this fallen world. Things don't work the way they are supposed to.

God is preparing us now, in this life, for eternity. He uses our struggles and challenges to sanctify us and make us holy. He is making us increasingly more like Christ by stripping away the layers of sin and removing the counterfeit loves in our heart. So when disappointments come, we can ask ourselves, “What... Continue Reading

Joyful Noise: Praise with the Volume Pumped Up

There is something that generates an impact that reverberates through this world, the spiritual realm, and the Universe: a joyful church.

This is the reason we worship: he deserves it. God is good, loving, and faithful. This is why we sing, this is why we make a loud noise – because he is worthy of worship. We can worship him sincerely because he is indisputably worthy of our worship. Only in heaven we will grasp fully... Continue Reading

The Impact of Calvinism on Culture

First, what is “culture”? Second, what is “Calvinism”? Third, what is “impact”?

“First, for the purposes of this series, we will limit the word ‘culture’ to six particular areas: education, politics, economics, marriage/the family, the law, and the arts. As we shall see, Calvinism has had a significant impact on these central components of Western culture, and consequently on American culture.”   Over the next few weeks,... Continue Reading

The Fingerprints of God

Lost in the revolving news cycles of the last few weeks was a finding that has rocked the scientific world.

In a paper published in the open-access journal eLife, researchers say they have pinpointed the single mutation that allowed our ancient protozoa predecessors to evolve into complex, multi-cellular organisms. “Incredibly, in the world of evolutionary biology, all it took was one tiny tweak, one gene, and complex life as we know it was born.” As... Continue Reading

What a Super Bowl Ad Reveals About Our Abortion Culture

Social media lit up during this year’s Super Bowl over the abortion lobby’s outrage about a chip commercial; “humanizing fetuses.”

We cannot “humanize” what is already human, but we can certainly dehumanize the humanity around, or within, us. The abortion lobby wants the “fetus” to be thought of only in clinical language, as though he or she were merely an “it,” tissue to be disposed of. Those who oppress the poor want them to be... Continue Reading

Top Generals: Women Should Register For the Draft

Top Army and Marine generals testified that women should be required to register for the draft now that the Pentagon has lifted exemptions for women from ground combat.

The Selective Service question came during a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee about how the services would begin to integrate women into combat units and training programs for combat-related jobs. The sometimes contentious hearing also exposed the reluctance of Marine Corps leaders to bring women into certain demanding infantry, armor, and special operations... Continue Reading