Grace, the Two Covenants, and Merit

Mark Jones' posts regarding grace as pertains to the covenants of works and grace raise some perennial questions in covenant theology.

This is why the clear commitment in our confessional tradition to the two-covenant scheme, in which the covenants of works and grace are categorically distinguished and contrasted is so important to theological discussions of merit and grace.  The two covenant scheme of the Westminster Standards has been absolutely essential in combating the Neonomianism of both Norman Shepherd and... Continue Reading

Perspective is Key

Seven thoughts on perspective that will help us stay the course in ministry and to learn contentment

We are being sanctified through our suffering. One of the chief ways that God grows His people is through suffering. The writer of Hebrews ties together the suffering that the Hebrew Christians are enduring with the loving chastening of God (Heb. 12:3-11). They were tempted to turn back to a ritualistic religion that avoided suffering, but... Continue Reading

Why Following Your Heart Is a Really Bad Idea

There’s a difference between following your heart and being led by God

This is the method that God has given us in making decisions when asking those all-important questions: What should I do? When should I stay, or when should I go? When do I speak up, and when do I listen? Jesus has given us His Spirit. The Spirit (our Helper) that now dwells inside of... Continue Reading

Messy Community

The true test of friendship is when life gets messy.

When a friend is suffering and their life is falling to pieces or when they are trapped in sin and the fallout is great or when there is conflict and unkind words or when they’ve hit a wall in their faith, that’s when friendship gets messy. And how we react to seeing our friend at their worst shows more... Continue Reading

Fire? No. Repentance? Yes.

It is a sadly misguided practice to be silent in calling sinners out of their sin supposing to do so is unloving.

The souls of men and women are at stake. Certainly we must meet sinners with kindness and compassion. We must remember that we are saved sinners whose only hope is the mercy of a sovereign and gracious God. Thankfully I see a great deal of kindness in the church. But I do not understand how... Continue Reading

From DG Hart on Can Humans Merit Before God

Do you really want to position yourself as Norman Shepherd 2.0?

Does Jones really want to maintain that the fathers of the reformation, who together wrote the Protestant Creeds, along with all their spiritual sons, men like Turretin, Hodge, Berkhof, and John Murray, have all misread Scripture and have all misunderstood the doctrine of justification by faith alone? Those of us who read you fear that... Continue Reading

ISIS and The USA In Review

ISIS is the latest contemporary Muslim movement designed to impose Sharia Law through a world-wide Theocratic Fascist Islamic Caliphate.

It is also right for us, as our Lord’s church, to send our sons and daughters with the Sword of the Spirit and the Gospel to encourage His people and to reach His enemies. While remembering we too, were enemies of Christ when the Gospel came to us through His people proclaiming Jesus who will... Continue Reading

The Elephant In The Room

Similarities and differences between the LGBT movement and the Civil Rights Movement.

God’s creative design is irrevocable. To demand he changes it is not in step with the Civil Rights Movement. The blank check society is writing the LGBT community is extremely dangerous. It shows a serious ignorance of the core tenets of the Civil Rights Movement, a hijacking mentality in politicians and businesses who are seeking personal... Continue Reading

Battle Hymn of the Ministry Mother

But I also want my children to see I have a rich life that isn’t just about them.

I want them to overhear my conversations with other adults—about the mission of the church, and the substitutionary atonement, and the real presence of Christ in worship—and to wonder over these profound mysteries. I want them to watch me peck away at my laptop and know that their mom is writing a book for the... Continue Reading

Rooted and Reaching Explored: Worship, Outreach, Discipleship, Mission

As we look forward to the launch of Forest Hill Presbyterian later this year, I thought I'd explore this "rooted and reaching" idea a little more

Being a rooted and reaching church is a vital and challenging calling, one that requires the full engagement of every member in worship, ministry service and outreach. In a living, active, rooted and reaching church, no member is unimportant, disengaged, passive or disinterested. Everyone is committed to prayer, participation, service and outreach.   In late... Continue Reading