The Creedal Imperative

A review of Carl Trueman's book on the need for creeds and confessions

Thus, my response to the biblicist pastor would simply be this: do not precipitately abandon creedal formulations which have been tried and tested over centuries by churches all over the world in favor of your own ideas. On the whole, those who reinvent the wheel invest a lot of time either to come up with... Continue Reading

Truth in Beauty: Cinderella and Frozen

Sacrificial love. Redemption. Forgiveness. In Disney movies? Yes!

Movies have power. It’s refreshing to see that power used to portray truth with such stirring beauty and artistry. I’m glad these are my daughter’s favorite movies. They’re teaching her to have courage, to be kind, to forgive and to put others ahead of herself. Not bad for Disney!     This past Friday night,... Continue Reading

On Jonathan Crombie, Gilbert Blythe, Anne Shirley, and Stay at Home Daughters

Part of what drew me to Gilbert was his love of the opinionated, strong and gifted Anne Shirley

Any Christian man worth his salt is going to want a strong woman who will confront him in love when he is wrong. In fact, I would counsel any young woman contemplating marriage to a man who doesn’t encourage this to run far, far away! Any Christian man should want his wife to be confident... Continue Reading

“Religion in the Oval Office”: An Interview

An interview with Dr. Gary Scott Smith on his new book, “Religion in the Oval Office”

I want readers to understand that faith matters. It significantly shapes the thought and actions of many Americans. Few of their biographers have recognized how powerfully their faith affected our chief executives. Only a handful of scholars have comprehended how much the religious convictions of presidents helped shape their policies.   Editor’s note: The “V&V... Continue Reading

Bannerman Take One: Culture Wars and Ecclesiology

The Banner of Truth’s retyped and reissued edition of James Bannerman’s The Church of Christ is, like so many of their books, beautifully produced. It is also most timely.

“Evangelicalism as a movement is ill-equipped to handle the questions which current sexual identity movements are posing, and that for several reasons to which Bannerman provides biblical answers.  And these questions, even more than, say, abortion, are going to be pressing issues for church members in every place of work they find themselves.”   The... Continue Reading

40 Questions About Creation and Evolution

A review of a new book by Kenneth Keathley and Mark Rooker

This book will prove to be helpful for those who want to survey the state of this debate in Evangelicalism today. The authors don’t sugarcoat the controversy and are at times painfully honest. They bring a wealth of research together, surveying the historical background to the controversy and marshal an impressive array of scientific arguments... Continue Reading

RFRA & My Wedding Ring

Had we been noisy enough, I might have gotten the thing I wanted at the time. But at what price to the commonweal?

The way to protect religious liberty is not to bleat for it but to expose the distortions, conjectural ploys, and rabble-rousing used against it. It requires tooth. By contrast, the bishops’ bridge-over-troubled-waters approach signaled to RFRA antagonists that self-serving outbursts really do work. It cooperated with bootlicking politicians in ceding ground that was never in... Continue Reading

Hymns We Should Sing More Often: ‘Stricken, Smitten, And Afflicted’

Most of the hymns in this series are not unfamiliar, just underutilized

Thomas Kelly (1769-1855) wrote more than 750 hymns, including Stricken, Smitten, And Afflicted in 1804. Kelly planned to be a lawyer but after his conversion the Irishman decided to enter the ministry. He was ordained as an Anglican priest in 1792, but later became a “dissenting” minister.   This is part of an intermittent series... Continue Reading

Material Dimensions of Spiritual Friendship

Part historical survey, part Biblical analysis, and part personal reflection, Spiritual Friendship manages to be informative and insightful but also unnerving and challenging

The need for intimate friendship and the practices that foster it is all the more pressing in our day and age, as our culture has not only drained friendship of its public social benefit but placed a variety of economic, technological and political counterweights against it. The local church can be a place to nurture... Continue Reading

Inerrancy Is Not a New Idea, Just Ask Irenaeus

Irenaeus based the fidelity of the apostolic writings upon the absolute truthfulness of the Lord Jesus Christ and the conviction that truth and falsehood are polar opposites

Haykin argues that this framework was the foundation for Irenaeus’s dispute with Gnostics and others over the truthfulness and sufficiency of Scripture. As Haykin notes via Norbert Brox: “[In] Irenaeus this principle stands at the beginning [of his thought]: that the Bible is in every respect perfect and sufficient.”   Okay, okay. I do need... Continue Reading