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
Self-Care or Sabbath?
Many Christians have a complicated relationship with the psychological concept of self-care.
On the one hand, Jesus calls us to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Him. Bearing a Roman execution stake doesn’t seem like it has a lot to do with taking time off. On the other hand, Jesus calls us to care for others, especially the needy and the poor. Who are we... Continue Reading
Love and Hell
What does speaking of hell have to do with love?
Love commands that the church warn people about their eternity. Yet the church struggles to do so. On the one hand, too many churches do not want to offend those in attendance. So they endanger souls by failing to teach and warn properly about sin, the final judgment, and hell. On the other hand, I... Continue Reading
“Christians” Who Revile
How can we refuse to allow divorce from a reviler (or any of the other crimes on this list), when the scripture forbids us from even eating with a so-called brother who is a reviler?
So, for all who think that if there aren’t bruises there can’t be divorce, answer me this. What are you wanting to happen? A man systematically tears down his wife for years with his words. He doesn’t use fists, for he is skilled at destructive speech. He comes to church every Sunday and professes Christ.... Continue Reading
Against The Star Trek Christology
Hebrews teaches us that Jesus humanity is consubstantial with ours both in his crucifixion, before the resurrection, and in his ascension after the resurrection.
In truth we do not know how Jesus entered a room with locked doors but there is good biblical evidence and ecumenical Christian truth to make us reject the “celestial flesh” Star Trek Christology. If anything changed, why not the door? After all, our Lord walked on water without changing his true humanity. That was a defiance... Continue Reading
Loving God with Our Minds
True knowledge of God always bears fruit in greater love for God and a greater desire to praise Him.
To love God with our minds is to hold Him in high esteem, to think about Him with reverence and with adoration. The more we love God with our minds, the more we’ll be driven to do that other thing that is alien to us in our fallen condition, namely, to worship Him. To pursue... Continue Reading