Why the Local Church Is More Important Than TGC, White Horse Inn, 9Marks, and Maybe Even ETS

The overwhelming majority of the occurrences of the word "church" refer to local churches

“The local church is the historical manifestation, under the new covenant, of this massive, blood-bought assembly. It is characterized by certain marks and order, yet behind it all lies the love of God, the love and sacrifice of the Son, and the life-giving and transforming power of the Spirit.”   Most of us, I’m sure,... Continue Reading

An Unlikely Convert

At the time of my conversion, my colleagues and students treated me with suspicion and confusion

“When a person comes to Christ and repents of sin, this turning around makes enemies out of former allies. And while this aftershock eventually led to Bible studies and many opportunities to share the gospel, it also destroyed friendships and allegiances. The exclusivity of Christ has rugged consequences.”   Tabletalk: Your book is titled The Secret... Continue Reading

Why Religious Conservatives Want The Supreme Court To Consider Other Nations In Its Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Supporters of traditional marriage hope the Supreme Court will exercise judicial restraint in redefining marriage by taking a cue from other nations

Despite the dominant media narrative in the United States, there is no international trend toward same-sex marriage. Of the 193 nations that belong to the United Nations, only 17 have changed the definition of marriage or allowed for unions that disregard male-female complementarity as no longer essential to the meaning of marriage. Out of those... Continue Reading

The Disciple’s Prayer Life 101

If you’re a beginner in the school of prayer, start with these thoughts in mind

“The Lord is not saying to his disciples, make sure you never pray in public. He is not ordering, never ever pray over your meal when you are in a public place. He is not advising, ‘never stand up and pray at Prayer Meeting,’ and he is definitely not saying, never have a prayer in your... Continue Reading

Don’t Be Too Quick To Look For Fruit In New Believers

Don’t be discouraged if you know someone who has professed faith but seems to be bearing little fruit

“Yes, some people come out of the gate like gangbusters, turn wholeheartedly from sin, and begin to share the gospel like zealots. But others, like myself as a young believer, though they have the spark of grace, put forth a lot of smoke and change very slowly.”   A bruised reed he will not break,... Continue Reading

7 Books I Would Definitely Read

What really good books have not yet been written? Here are some.

“This one may not be realistic, but I would love to read a book written by each of these authors that was intended as his final book. This would be a book each of them intends as his last word to the church, the last word at the end of a long and faithful ministry.”... Continue Reading

God Goes to Harvard

Harvard University was founded in 1636 with a clear Christian mission statement

“Mei Sheng, a Harvard University graduate student studying Biological and Biomedical Sciences, says she has been hugely impacted by a Christian conference uniquely geared for Ivy League students. Originally from Malaysia, Mei grew up in a Christian home but said she only truly recognized Jesus as her personal Savior six years ago.”   Harvard University... Continue Reading

The Rebirth of Martin Luther

By teaching the Psalms, Luther saw Christ as judge but also his Savior

“As to Romans, the source from which we thank Luther for his cry of “Sola Fide!” in the face of works-salvation, his long-held view of a wrath-ready God who judged the always impure by His perfect righteousness transformed when he saw justice met in Christ who gave His righteousness to him. Romans 1:17 caught Luther’s... Continue Reading

The New Reformation Study Bible is Out–and It Looks Great

A brief look at the new Reformation Study Bible

It’s an honor to be a contributor because this new study Bible is packed with wonderful articles and essays from some of the top Reformed thinkers today. Included in this list is a number of professors from Reformed Theological Seminary (past and present): Guy Waters, Roger Nicole, John Currid, Sean Lucas, Mark Futato, Bruce Waltke,... Continue Reading

Complementarian Organizations and Where Women Belong

If a woman speaks and a man learns something, did she teach him?

When we confuse parachurch organizations with the local church, we end up with a muddled mess. We can’t definitively answer a question of “where does a woman belong in a complementarian organization?” because applications about teaching and authority only make sense in context of a community that actually possesses authority. Some would say to simply... Continue Reading

Martin Luther’s Definition of Faith

Faith is a living, bold trust in God’s grace, so certain of God’s favor that it would risk death a thousand times trusting in it.

Because of it, you freely, willingly and joyfully do good to everyone, serve everyone, suffer all kinds of things, love and praise the God who has shown you such grace. Thus, it is just as impossible to separate faith and works as it is to separate heat and light from fire! Therefore, watch out for... Continue Reading

The Ditches of Discipline

What disciplines will saturate our lives with the truth of God’s communing presence, shape our hearts, and develop sound judgement?

The Holy Spirit works in us to will and to do, but it seems his work of both motivating and enabling is deeply related to our earnest efforts to desire and do his will (Col 1:29). Instead of trying to find the starting point of the circle, let us simply remember that what Spirit-prompted flames... Continue Reading

The Sweet Direction of the Law

Some quotes showing how Francis Turretin (d. 1687) discussed the use of the law for the regenerate

“In the first covenant, man was bound to do this in order that he might live (to deserve life); but in this [covenant of grace] he is bound to do the same (not [so] that he may live, but because he lives) to the possession of the life acquired by Christ and the testimony of... Continue Reading

What Should the Church Say to Bruce Jenner?

Is there a word from God to the transgender community?

The hope for Bruce Jenner, and for others like him, is not to alter the body with surgery or to flood their system with hormones. The answer is to realize that all of us are born alienated from what we were created to be. We don’t need to fix what happened in our first birth;... Continue Reading

How Do You Know You’re Repentant?

Here are 12 signs we have a genuinely repentant heart

Repenting people, typically, are zealous about casting off their sin. That’s what God’s Spirit does inside of them. When this happens, one can expect to see a willingness to accept outside counsel. A willingness to inconvenience their schedules. A willingness to confess embarrassing things. A willingness to make financial sacrifices or lose friends or end... Continue Reading

A Love that Sharpens

The watered-down, wishy-washy, sentimentalized version of “love” that is propagated by our self-indulgent, perennially-adolescent culture is not love

To “love” someone, according to our society, is to affirm every decision they make and to applaud them just for being them. In fact, there is nothing more hateful, according to our corrupt culture, than to tell someone they’re wrong, and that they need to change in some considerable way in order to be pleasing to... Continue Reading

Christians Thrown Overboard By Obama

What do you call it when 12 men are drowned at sea for praying to Jesus? Answer: Religious persecution.

Religious persecution of Christians is rampant worldwide, as the Pew Research Center has noted, but nowhere is it more prevalent than in the Middle East and Northern Africa, where followers of Jesus are the targets of religious cleansing. Pope Francis has repeatedly decried the persecution and begged the world for help, but it has had... Continue Reading

My Father Was Gay. Why I Oppose Legalizing Same-Sex Marriage.

In Canada, parents experience state interference when it comes to moral values and teachings about family, parenting and sex education in schools.

When same-sex marriage passed in Canada in July 2005, parenting was immediately redefined, removing parentage from its biological origins. Canada’s gay marriage law, Bill C-38, included a provision to erase the term “natural parent” and replace it across the board with gender-neutral “legal parent” in federal law. Now, all children have “legal parents,” as defined... Continue Reading

Bells, Loneliness and Scripture

Same-sex marriage is one of the most divisive, burning issues in contemporary Western culture. It is important to get it right.

This is what Scripture is meant to do. It is written for our encouragement (Romans 15:4) and our “instruction” (1 Corinthians 10:11 cp. 2 Timothy 3:15). We ignore what Scripture teaches about God’s intention for human sexuality at our peril. We will end up in the lonely place of an imploded cultural wasteland with only... Continue Reading

Shepherding: The Rest Of The Story

Faithful shepherding will not only produce growing sheep, it will promote going sheep, deployed in service to and to the glory of the Chief Shepherd.

To say the Lord is my shepherd is to say more than the Lord is my guardian. It is to say the Lord is my captain, and He is the captain of others conscripted to serve with me. He leads me not only beside still water and into green pastures, he leads me into battle... Continue Reading

‘OPC Singles’: A Place for Singles in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church to Meet

Looking for that special someone? Committed to marrying in the Lord? If you are part of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, visit OPC Singles

Many smaller congregations seem to have too many single men or too many single women. But by making the pool of potential spouses a bit larger, Bressler believes that the Internet can increase fellowship with others by providing a godly environment for single adults in the OPC to meet and build God-blessed relationships.   Looking... Continue Reading

Faith No More: How The British Are Losing Their Religion

Counter-cultural religion, Christian or Muslim, is thriving in the UK. But the God that many people still more or less believe in won’t be found in Church of England services

For the past two or three hundred years, at least since the civil war, most British Christianity has been like that. Then, in the last 50 years, it fell off a cliff.. In the last 30 years alone attendance at mainstream churches has just about halved. The way this has happened is also important: adults... Continue Reading

Shaken Family

Josh Burns is one in a long line of parents jailed over shaken baby syndrome, an abuse diagnosis facing new scrutiny, fighting his guilty verdict

During Josh’s civil and criminal trials, a total of five doctors testified in his defense, arguing Naomi’s medical condition was not conclusive for abuse. They pointed to a crucial factor: Naomi’s traumatic birth. Brenda labored for four hours before hospital staff unsuccessfully attempted to extract Naomi with a vacuum device. When the baby finally emerged... Continue Reading

U.S. Military ‘Hostile’ To Christians Under Obama; Morale, Retention Devastated

Christians are leaving the U.S. military or are discouraged from joining in the first place because of a “hostile work environment” that doesn’t let them express their beliefs openly

Mr.  Berry said he thinks the “hostile work environment” that is forcing the most religious persons out of the military is only getting worse, and that while in the past problems were mainly in the Air Force, religious liberty issues have spread throughout all the services. “The problem is getting worse, not better, despite our efforts,”... Continue Reading

Update on R.C. Sproul’s Health, Now Home

Dr. Sproul is home from the hospital

Nathan Bingham of Ligonier Ministries sent this update on Dr. Sproul’s health. Dr. Sproul is home from the hospital. As many of you know, he suffered a stroke, which required an extended hospital stay. We give thanks to God that there has been no paralysis and he remains his same jovial self. But there are... Continue Reading

Al-Shabab, Christian Persecution, and Psalm 23

Persecution of African (and Middle-Eastern) Christians continues to increase

“Today, I remember the Good Shepherd in light of the persecuted church. As I write, headlines tell of the murder of some 147 students in Kenya. At 5:30 AM on Thursday, April 2, students attending Garissa University College—a school seated near the Kenyan/Somali border—were battered by gunfire.”   Persecution of African (and Middle-Eastern) Christians continues... Continue Reading

Christological Ultrasounds

How could Christ be preached centuries before His coming?

“The Old Testament is filled with “ultrasounds” of the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, I believe–as our own David Murray has said–“on every page”, we will find our Savior, if we only have the eyes to see Him. He does however, appear in the rough and sometimes two-dimensional form that ultrasounds present our children in the... Continue Reading

Dangerous Calling – A Review

The book looks to expose the danger of hypocrisy in the life of the Pastor

“Paul Tripp, in his book Dangerous Calling, takes a look at Christian ministry from another angle. His contention is that there is something desperately wrong with ministers and ministry culture. The book is really trying to expose the danger of hypocrisy in the life of the Pastor. Many have found this book hugely helpful and... Continue Reading

Why Is Sola Fide So Important?

The Reformation was a return to the Word of God unencumbered by rationalist, a priori assumptions

“In the medieval and later Romanist program, God was said to recognize as just those who are completely sanctified. The Protestants rejected that scheme as contrary to the biblical teaching that sinners are justified by divine favor alone (sola gratia), through faith alone (sola fide) which rests and trusts in Christ alone as the Righteous One.”... Continue Reading

Calvin the Exegete

Calvin maintained a high view of the text and a mind for theological application

“When passages of Scripture are taken up at random, and no attention is paid to the context, we need not wonder that mistakes of this frequently arise.  Yet it was an instance of very gross ignorance, to imagine that Lucifer was the king of devils, and that the Prophet gave him this name.  But as... Continue Reading