Self-Examination Speaks a Thousand Lies

Many of us tend to examine ourselves in a way that is excessive, inaccurate, and leads to discouragement.

God calls us to examine ourselves (2 Corinthians 13:5; Lamentations 3:40), but healthy self-examination is a difficult and dangerous duty. The flesh seizes self-examination as an opportunity to turn our thoughts against us. Introspection is deceptive because it often looks like we’re doing the right thing: we’re not indifferent to our sin — we want... Continue Reading

The Reformation and Work I

The Legacy of the Reformation

The new emphasis on the priesthood of all believers brought with it a new appreciation of the value of work. As was the case with science, Protestant contributions to this area were firmly anchored in the historic Christian tradition, though by the time of the Reformation, the clergy and elites had largely forgotten the positive... Continue Reading

Is a “Churchless Christian” an Oxymoron?

As Christians become members of the church, they are obeying God’s Word, submitting to her leaders, and serving one another in love.

Being a member of the church includes receiving the blessings God has provided for our growth and maturity, especially as we submit to the church’s leadership. God established the church with a structure for pastoral oversight and spiritual leadership. Like weak and defenseless sheep, members of the church are blessed to have the guidance and... Continue Reading

Thoughts on Psalm 68:11

The joyful tidings are to be sung and proclaimed and announced throughout the world, and the women ALSO are to make the proclamation!

I do not believe that this has any bearing on the New Testament offices of the church – pastors, elders, or deacons – and I know that there are those who disagree with me. But I DO think this has a great deal to do with the dignity, worth, and value of the women in... Continue Reading

We Need Community

We need our brothers and sisters in Christ. God made His people that way, and He uses each of them for good in each other’s lives.

The New Testament calls this new community “the church.” It often uses familial terms to describe the relationships between the members of the church. “I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty” (2 Corinthians 6:18). “Do not rebuke an older man but encourage... Continue Reading

Are Unhappy Christians a Poor Witness?

When I go through one of my seasons of darkness is it true that I’m a poor recommendation of the gospel?

But what did the gospel aim to do? Make people happy? Meet our unmet needs? Or did the gospel aim to set God’s children from death to life and begin the work of total redemption? If I believe the gospel is meant to make men happy here then I have to concede that in some... Continue Reading

How to & How Not to Repent: Best and Worst Practices

True repentance is not just sorrow over particular idols or behavioral failures but brokenness over our condition as a sinful person

The recognition that there are healthy and unhealthy forms of repentance is both common sense and biblical (2 Corinthians 7:8-13). On this everyone agrees; secular and sacred. The difficulty is in discerning disingenuous repentance. Mature and discerning people can witness the same conversation and walk away with distinctly different impressions about whether a given expression... Continue Reading

Suffering, Love and Glory

What are we to make of hardships which make God’s providence and God’s promise appear to collide?

The suffering that we endure in this life is not in spite of God’s love, but because of it. It is not out of God’s control, but firmly part of His plan. He is giving us all that we need, rather than giving us what we desire in order that we might see our Savior... Continue Reading

Are The Remonstrants Heretics (2)?

In 1610 they made their Remonstrance against the confession of the Reformed churches.

In 1611, the contra-Remonstrance replied to the Remonstrants in a series of 5 articles that would form the core of the Canons considered by the various committees and finally adopted by the Synod. The international Synod of Dort (1618–19) convened to respond to this challenge. Did they regard these proposed revisions as heresy and if... Continue Reading

Two Ways to React When Death Comes

How will you be a light to those around you and display the hope you hold in the Gospel?

Death is such a taboo subject. We don’t like talking about it let alone think about it. But time and time again the Lord has used death to bring about His glory and give believers an opportunity to model what it looks like to be someone filled with hope rather than despair. So, Christians must... Continue Reading