An Illustration of Repentance

Do we have a sense of what repentance looks like when God is working repentance in us?

In God’s work in the believer, He takes a little time to bring the believer to an awareness that his course is actually a sinful one. Then there is the process of coming to a stop, the process of the turn itself, and the process of getting up to speed in faithfulness. But some sins... Continue Reading

What “Every Thought Captive” Means In Its Original Context

Did Paul have in mind, as he wrote 2 Corinthians 10:5, the transformation of Greco-Roman culture? If so it is not obvious.

The arguments to be destroyed are those of the Judaizers (as in ch. 3) and especially those of the self-exalting, self-described “Super Apostles,” who were teaching a theology of glory (we may be sure that everything they did was said be “huge!” and “magnificent!” and “fantastic!”) whereas Paul was a theologian of the cross. He... Continue Reading

I Can Fumble And Strike Out Through Christ Who Strengthens Me

No one seems to quote Philippians 4:13 after he gave up the game-winning touchdown or struck out to lose the game; why quote it when you win?

Everyone has the tendency to compare the highlight reel of others’ successes to our daily failures and lose heart. But baseball, for those of us who love it, provides a constant reminder that everyone (even the superstar) strikes out, but the game still goes on. Angell was right, “There is more Met than Yankee in... Continue Reading

Does God Forbid Images Of Christ?

Are images of Christ allowable in non-worship contexts?

I have defended the right of artistic representations of Christ. I have not defended – and in fact, stand against – images of Christ being used in worship. In Deuteronomy 4:15 God expressly warns Israel: “So watch yourselves carefully, since you did not see any form on the day the LORD spoke to you at... Continue Reading

Lifting Your Soul

What does it mean to lift your soul? How do you actually do this?

Lift your soul to the Lord by trusting him to teach you how to walk in his ways. Psalm 25 says directly and simply, “To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul. O my God, in you I trust” (Ps 25:1-2a). After asking that the Lord would not let him suffer shame from others,... Continue Reading

Taking Back Christianese #5: “Just Ask Jesus into Your Heart”

Despite the association with modern day revival-style churches, this phrase actually has a long pedigree, even in Reformed circles.

In this way, as noted above, this phrase can actually backfire on itself.  While intended to prevent false conversions, it can (if misused) actually lead to false conversions.  People can think they are saved because they “asked Jesus into their heart” with no awareness of how to evaluate their own spiritual condition.   Some of... Continue Reading

Should Christians Feel Guilty All the Time?

I’m convinced most serious Christians live their lives with an almost constant low-level sense of guilt.

Most of our low-level guilt falls under the ambiguous category of “not doing enough.” Look at the list above. None one of the items are necessarily sinful. They all deal with possible infractions, perceptions, and ways in which we’d like to do more. These are the hardest areas to deal with because no Christian, for... Continue Reading

Powerful Promises to Give Us Hope for Our Children

Let us pray regularly that Jesus would save each of our children, grandchildren and descendants and that each one would follow Jesus wholeheartedly as a disciple until the he returns.

Though Scripture doesn’t absolutely guarantee their salvation, God gives us many strong reasons to pray and hope for our children. Charles Spurgeon urged parents to pray Isaiah 59.21, which I have written in my prayer notebook at the top of the page of requests for my family: “And as for me, this is my covenant... Continue Reading

Masculinity and the Priority of Love

The characteristic quality of the true man of God is a Christlike love

In Ephesians 5, the apostle sounds two abiding keynotes, one for the woman and for the man. The primary element for the woman of God is submission, and I recognise that that must be carefully and scripturally defined and worked out. Paul, in this passage, then moves on to the keynote for the man. And what... Continue Reading

The Most Valuable Aim of Apologetics

Apologetics is to provide an answer to the critics of the Christian faith, to those who seek to undermine the rational basis for Christianity or who critique it

“The toughest three years of my life were my seminary years, because I was a zealous Christian studying in a citadel of unbelief. Every day, the precious doctrines of our faith were attacked viciously by my professors.”   Exodus 3 narrates the well-known account of God’s revealing Himself to Moses in the burning bush and... Continue Reading

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