Anti-Scholasticism, Revival(ism), Pietism, Or The Reformed Theology, Piety, And Practice?
Why would those who actually subscribe to the Reformed confession pursue revivalism and pietism?
I and others have been trying to persuade the Reformed to recognize that the 18th and 19th century revivals are not as distinct (the first supposedly a good revival and the second supposedly a bad revival) as we have been told nor were they a natural outgrowth of the classical Reformed theology, piety, and practice.... Continue Reading
The Doctrines of Grace: By His Grace and for His Glory
There is really only one point to the doctrines of grace, namely, that God saves sinners by His grace and for His glory.
This is why the doctrines of grace are so desperately needed in our churches. They give glory to God alone. They define salvation as being all of God. When salvation is correctly perceived in this way, then—and only then—God receives all the glory for it. Only sola gratia produces soli Deo gloria. “Those who have received salvation are to attribute it... Continue Reading
Faith & Repentance
Which comes first, logically? Is it repentance? Is it faith?
“In grammatical terms, then, the words repent and believe both function as a synecdoche—the figure of speech in which a part is used for the whole. Thus, repentance implies faith and faith implies repentance. One cannot exist without the other.” When the gospel is proclaimed, it seems at first sight that two different, even alternative,... Continue Reading
Alzheimer’s Locks Up Its Victims, but Christ Holds the Key
Many Christians, myself included, fear not only Alzheimer’s, but any mental illness that robs us
“Many Americans today live in fear of Alzheimer’s, for that terrible disease seems able to steal our soul and obliterate our personality. But it does not. It only has the power to lock it up for a season, until the One who made it calls it back from its troubled slumber.” On September 15,... Continue Reading
Bad Examples of Women Pastors (But Great Examples of Godly Women)
Women serve an incredibly important role in the church
“God made men and women different from day one of creation… sorry, day six. He meant for men to fill certain roles and women to fill certain roles. We are one body in Christ made of individual parts, each functioning in their own way. One person is not to infringe upon another or take it... Continue Reading
Sexual Identity: Doing What Comes Naturally
Since the fall not one of us, in our natural state, and to greater or lesser degrees depending on our sanctification, can rely upon what feels natural to guide us or what we think seems normal.
If our inclinations or desires (or habits, to use the technical philosophical term) are infected with sin then what comes naturally to us whether with regard to our relationship to God, to one another, or to our environment, needs both the Word of God spoken to us from outside of us and we need the... Continue Reading
3 Reasons God Sends the Bread of Adversity
The Bread of Life ate the bread of adversity so that we could break bread with him in eternity.
God is faithful to give us what we need, whether it’s white Italian bread, whole-wheat bread, a stone, or even a snake. Though we might not like the latter gifts, we know that the Giver is good, and that each gift will ultimately benefit us if it comes from his kind hand. There’s a tiny... Continue Reading
What if Herod Succeeded in Killing Baby Jesus?
If Jesus would have died at 2 years of age then it would directly change things for us. Chief among these changes is the reality of our justification.
Justification is the glorious doctrine that sinners are declared righteous before God. It is an instantaneous declarative act whereby God says that one who is guilty of sin is declared to be perfect in his sight based upon the merit of another, namely our Lord Jesus Christ (cf. Romans 3:18-5:1). “Ruthless, barbaric, and depraved.” This... Continue Reading
The Lawmaker Made Under the Law to Save Lawbreakers
There is one Lawmaker, who, though he really was above the law, yet came under it far more than anyone else did.
Christ’s passive obedience began as soon as he was conceived in Mary’s womb. As soon as he was made of a woman, he was made under the law and subject to its curses. Not that he deserved this penalty, but rather he took the penalty his people deserved. Their liability to punishment was transferred entirely... Continue Reading
The Promise Is for You and Your Children
God is not only the God of Abraham, but also the God of Isaac and Jacob.
That is why Abraham was to circumcise his children: they needed to know they were not free to choose their own gods. They were to receive the sign of the covenant to show them that they were part of the covenant people. They belonged to the one true God, and they were to submit to... Continue Reading