Due to recent discussion on evolution and Darwin's intentions, I want to draw attention to a post that Phil Ryken wrote at Reformation 21 a while back. Ryken points out the significance of the title of Darwinâ€™s magnum opus The Origin of the Species in light of it's subtitle. The subtitle? The Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life. Dr. Ryken shows t...Keep Reading
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The more we understand the relationship between Satan and sin--keeping them in biblical perspective and viewing them in light of the person and work of Christ--the better equipped we will be to put sin to death and to avoid the temptations that so easily ensnare us. ...
Since the preaching of the gospel is the primary means by which God saves His people, ministers of the gospel should concern themselves with pursuing growth in their ability to skilfully communicate the truth of Scripture. Pastors should avail themselves of all the means of growth that are at their disposal. In so doing, we may never become the best preachers in the world, but we will--by God's grace--become more skillful in making known "the unsearchable riches of Christ." ...
I sometimes fear that there is a willful naïveté in the church with regard to the presence and power of Satan. One doesn't have to look far into the Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, or the New Testament Epistles to discover the reality of the spiritual forces of darkness and to develop a theology of the assault tactics of the evil one. But it might surprise some to see what exactly these tactics are in their more subtle forms. ...
If the church is to be rooted in the timeless truths of God’s word, it needs leaders who are standing on the shoulders of giants in whom the Spirit of God was at work. If pastors are to navigate the overwhelming challenges of an increasingly secular and antagonistic society–not to mention the internal attacks from strong willed and self-seeking individuals within the church–they need to counsel of older and wiser saints. ...
In recent years, our society has rapidly embraced what has come to be known as the "cancel culture." If someone has said or done something--at any point in his or her life--that cuts across the grain of the suppose moral rectitude of society, he or she is swiftly excoriated to the point of irremediable social ostracization. An immediate sentence is determined by the masses and pronounced on social media in order to ensure its execution. There is no mercy, no call to repentance, and no hope of restoration...The rashness and widespread nature of the execution is, in part, the thing that makes cancel culture so brutal. The bitter and self-righteous speech of those pronouncing judgment gives the unremitting banter a veneer of justice. This is what makes cancel culture such a powerful weapon; yet, I suggest, a weapon to be avoided by Christians. ...
When we come to Christ, we learn to live in a way that is pleasing to God. We seek after His instruction and walk in His ways. Jesus is the rarest commodity–the eternal wisdom of God and sole source of righteousness and life. It is Him we must seek, find, and acquire more than any other commodities we may come to possess in life....
There is a clear pattern in Scripture of the way in which God uses the praises of His people for their future deliverances and the evangelization of the nations. May we enter into His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise, knowing that our God is enthroned on the praises of His people. We need His deliverance and the watching nations need His salvation....
By restraining wrong opinions about His person and work...
Commenting on the book of Hosea, Vos wrote: Jehovah strengthened Israel's arms and taught her to walk [7.15]; although the Giver of all nature-blessings, of corn, wine, oil, silver, gold, wool, flax, Jehovah is distinguished from the Baals, in that He has something more and finer to given than these: Â loving-kindness, mercy and faithfulness [2.19]; in reality He gives,...Keep Reading
In his sermon on Acts 4:33-5:3, "The Unseen Reality," Martyn Lloyd-Jones makes an interesting point about the honesty with which the historical narratives of Scripture are written. He observed: You find the same honesty with the Old Testament. Of course, the modern critic is so confused that he contradicts himself. On the one hand he tries to tell us that the Bible is a co...Keep Reading
Here is the video from the Sunday Morning Worship service at New Covenant Presbyterian Church in Richmond Hill, Ga. The Text was Acts 4:23-31 and the title was "Ground Shaking Prayer." We apologize about the quality of the video. The camera was set on cinema mode and makes the video too dark.
James McGoldrick, Professor of Church History at Greenville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, has written a helpful article on mankind's need for the imputed righteousness of Jesus Christ. You can read it here....Keep Reading
Dr. David Murray has a post, over at the Gospel Coalition Blog, in which he considers the numerous ways that pastors (especially gifted, younger ministers) are liable to fall into the trap of ministerial pride. Dr. Murray notes the particular causes, pastoral consequences, and personal cures with regard to ministerial pride. When he comes to consider the causes Murray sugg...Keep Reading
James Grant points out that audio from L'Abri is now available online. You can read about it here. You can find the audio here....Keep Reading
Brian Najapfour, a Ph.D. student at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, has posted a paper he had written on John Knox's theology of prayer. These studies are rich in history, theology and practical emphasis. John Knoxâ€™s Theology of Prayer (outline) John Knoxâ€™s Theology of Prayer - Part 1 John Knoxâ€™s Theology of Prayer - Part 2 John Knoxâ€™s T...Keep Reading
Here is a very helpful post on Samuel Miller's advise to those who wish to engage in controversial debates. Jim O'Brien has done a great service by writing this post. I was certainly convicted and instructed by it....Keep Reading
Tony Reinke, has a post over at Miscellanies, in which he considers Bruce Waltke's recent statements concerning evolution, in light of what Herman Bavinck had to say about macroevolution and microevolution. Reinke concludes, contra Waltke, that the rejection of macroevolution will not inevitablyÂ "marginalize the Church into a cult," rather it will "free the Church to b...Keep Reading
Since it has somehow become uncool to use the word catechism, and cool to call it Q A, I will direct you to Ryan McGraw's Q A on Israel and the church. This is a very helpful way to understand the Bible's teaching on this difficult, but important subject. By the way, Q A times are great ways to teach your kids about Christ. You can find it here....Keep Reading
The audio for Westminster Seminary California's den Dulk lectures is now available online. Dr. Sinclair Ferguson gave three lectures under the title â€œNot ourselves, but Jesus Christ . . . with ourselves: The Heartbeat of Gospel Ministry.â€ You can listen to or download them below: The Pastor and His Heart The Pastor and His Type The Pastor and His Preaching...Keep Reading
Sean Lucas has a post over at Reformation 21 in which he explains the importance of embracing "biblical authority and its necessary hand-maiden, confessionalism."...Keep Reading
Here is a recent sermon Jeff Waddington preached at Calvary OPC in Ringoes, NJ. The text was Daniel 9:1-19 and the title was "Daniel's Model Prayer."...Keep Reading
The panel of Christ the Center recently picked up the discussion, begun on Feeding on Christ, about the historicity of Adam. You can listen here....Keep Reading
I never knew the song by Bach many people play at weddings is about Christ! He is the joy of man's desiring. Every joy in all of man's desiring points to the greatest Joy and the Giver of both all joys and all joy-producing gifts: Â Christ!
Apparently Redeemer Presbyterian Church's Center for Faith and Work is hosting N.T. Wright, on April 20th, to speak about his latest release, After You Believe: Why Christian Character Matters. How is this not a tacit approval of Wright?...Keep Reading
The video from the Sunday morning service at New Covenant Presbyterian Church is now online. The text was Acts 4:1-22 and the title was "In Battle Array." You can listen to or download the audio here. You can watch the video below:
Roger Wagner, in his outstanding work Tongues Aflame: Learning to Preach Like the Apostles, explains the nature of the heightened opposition that ministers of the Gospel should expect, regardless of how many degrees they have. Wagner writes: When you enter the â€˜marketplace of ideasâ€™ expect to be mocked. Even if you have spent thousands of dollars and years of...Keep Reading
You can listen to a sermon series on Marriage by Alfred Poirier here. If you have never heard of Rev. Poirier you must read his outstanding booklet The Cross and Criticism....Keep Reading
Genesis 3:15Â is the sum and substance of the Biblical meta-narrative. If you want to understand the Scriptures you must come to terms with what this verse teaches about the war that God establishes between the Kingdom of darkness and the Kingdom of the Son of His love. It is interesting to see how, in the unfolding of Redemptive-history, Genesis 3:15 finds its ultimate...Keep Reading
Seems like all the concerns about Pete Enns were not in vain. Enns has recently denied that Adam was a historical being. You can read the article here.Â Camden Bucey has a helpful post, in which he considers the relationship between Enns' theology and his apparent affirmation of the teaching of the Westminster Standards. You can read that post here. The question that mu...Keep Reading
Scott Thomas posted the following charts over at the Acts 29 website. Churches may seem to mirror one another as far as growth, finance and activity are concerned, but if they are not driven by the word of God and the Gospel the inevitable outcome--though it may be somewhat postponed--will be disastrous at every level. ...Keep Reading
There is an interesting, predictive structure in John chapter 10 and 11. John 10 contains the Good Shepherd discourse. It is the first time, since John 3 that Jesus explicitly explains His death. He has certainly mention His death in His interactions with the Jews who do not believe, but He did so under the veiled language of "going away."Â He was going away by means of...Keep Reading
If you are anywhere near Greenville, SC, I want to encourage you to consider going to the Philadelphia Conference on Reformed Theology (PCRT) at Second Presbyterian Church on April 16-18. My good friend Gabe Fluhrer has written some very persuasive arguments why you should attend. You can read them here....Keep Reading
Some people complain about ministers being too repetitive. This may be a real problem in some cases, but we cannot forget that the Scriptures frequently use repetition. Jim O'Brien has a post on the Puritan John Arrowsmith's explanation of the Bible's use of repetition. You can read it here....Keep Reading
Jonathan Edwards has frequently been noted for saying, "there is perhaps no part of divinity attended with so much intricacy, and wherein orthodox divines do so much differ as stating the precise agreement and difference between the two dispensations of Moses and Christ.â€ It should be no surprise then to find a great deal of material in Edwards on the relationship b...Keep Reading
Here is the link to a rich post by Tim Keller on reading Proverbs chapter 3 as a guide to life.Â I have personally benefited from Proverbs chapter 3 more than almost any other chapter in the book....Keep Reading
Should a minister preach Christ and the Gospel in every sermon? Or the question may be asked, "Does God expect a minister to preach Christ from every text of scripture? The first question can be answered quite easily: If we want people to be saved we should! The second needs to be more carefully addressed. I have recently heard several ministers express that it is sufficie...Keep Reading
Walter Brueggemann once said, â€œWhen we pray we participate in the ultimate act of humanness as we yield to a power greater than ourselves.â€ There is a faint echo of Brueggemannâ€™s statement in William Fennerâ€™s (1600 â€“ 1640) treatise on prayer: The Sacrifice of the Faithful â€¦ shewing the nature property, and efficacy of Zealous Prayer: ...Keep Reading
We recently had the great privilege of interviewing Dr. Richard Gaffin with regard to his teaching on the theology of Luke Acts. The content of the interview was essentially a digestion of what is taught in Perspectives on Pentecost. I read this work many years ago, and, sadly, did not benefit from it then as I have now that I am presently preaching through the book of Ac...Keep Reading
Here is the most recent sermon preached at New Covenant Presbyterian Church. The text was Acts 3:1-26 and the title, "The Restoration."...Keep Reading
Charles Spurgeon in his sermon "Apostolic Exhortation," explained the necessity of preaching Christ. Note especially what he says about the time when Peter preached Christ: It is noteworthy that Peter, in addressing this crowd, came at once to the very essence and bowels of his message. He did not beat the bush; he did not shoot his arrow far afield, but he hit the very ce...Keep Reading
Rudolph Bultmann famously asked, â€œIs exegesis without presuppositions possible?â€ Many Biblical scholars since have made clean distinctions between exegesis and eisegesis, sometimes for good reason. Aichele and Phillips (Semenia vols. 69-70) contrast Bultmannâ€™s statement with the discipline of intertextuality: they maintain that the distinction between ex...Keep Reading
There continues to be confusion about the precise relationship between the Law and the Gospel, the Law and the Covenant people, and the Law and the Mosaic Covenant. This is the case because there is confusion over the different uses of the Law, as taught in Scripture. There have been a plethora of views, even within the writings of Reformed theologians from the Reformation...Keep Reading
There is a striking progression in the life and ministry of our Lord Jesus, in which He is shown to be the One who alone can bear the wrath of God on behalf of His people. At the beginning of the Gospels He has multitudes surrounding Him. Then He narrows it down to the seventy. From that group He chooses twelve. Then He takes eleven into the Garden and pulls three aside wi...Keep Reading
There is an interesting development in the account of the lost and found parables of Luke 15. There are 1 out of 100 sheep, 1 out of 10 coins, and 1 out of two sons. Sinclair Ferguson notes: Luke 15 contains three parables. In some ways, they are three parts of one larger parable--a single message about lost things being found, each episode told in a context of increased ...Keep Reading
In the midst of current debates over the precise relationship between the pre-lapsarian Covenant of Works and the Mosaic Covenant, it would do us good to remember that many of the Reformed theologians of the 17th, 18th, and 19th Centuries understood that the Law given at Sinai, with its promise of blessing and cursing in accord with its subsequent demand for perfect obedie...Keep Reading
The inability to know Godâ€™s essence is not a puzzle to be solved. It is instead the motive of worship and adoration. Bavinck saw the best minds of his generation destroyed by madness attempting to find God without the aid of sense-mediated signs and signifiers. For them the result was agnosticism steeped in a rejection of all metaphysical inquiry. So how does a dogm...Keep Reading
I have frequently heard men express reservations about listening to other men's sermons on a particular passage upon which they are preparing to preach. While I understand the desire to do one's own work and to wrestle with the text before God, I find it hard to believe that the same individuals would not read commentaries or written sermons on the passage they will preach...Keep Reading
Here is the audio from the last Sunday morning worship service at New Covenant Presbyterian Church. The text was Acts 2:40-47 and the title was "The Growing and Living Church."...Keep Reading
If you are in Christ Jesus, by grace through faith, you will be married forever. And Jesus will be married too. He will not remain single forever. Jonathan Edwards wrote: The end [goal] of the creation of God was to provide a spouse for His Son Jesus Christ that might enjoy Him and on whom He might pour forth His love. And the end of all things in providence are to mak...Keep Reading
There is an interesting and important representation that runs through the Old Testament, concerning the process by which idols were removed from God's people. Israel's history was marked with idolatry. From the moment they were redeemed out of Egypt, Israel worshiped other gods. Standing at the foot of Mount Sinai, where they were to wait for God's Law, Israel made a gold...Keep Reading
Last week Bavinck led us onto the negative path to knowing God. Even in the modern age, John Lloyd has humorously noted that we canâ€™t see anything that matters. We know little about the world and we know even less about God. In Bavinckâ€™s day the doctrine of Godâ€™s incomprehensibility tended to agnosticism (Hegel) or a theology equal to anthropology (Fi...Keep Reading
I really like Thomas Sowell. He is not a Christian. I wish he was. He does not use the Bible as the basis for his logically consistent ethical argument; but he has a great mind and a great sense of the inconsistency of the liberal worldview. He is a prolific writer and outstanding economist. His book Marxism: Philosophy and Economics is extremely helpful, as is his Quest f...Keep Reading
My good friend Gabriel Fluhrer has recently finished editing a series of lectures given by J.I. Packer, James Boice, R.C. Sproul, John Gerstner, Sinclair Ferguson, John R. Dewitt and Alistair Begg on the atonement. You can order a copy here. I am sure this will be a very beneficial volume for anyone wanting to grow deeper in their knowledge of the Gospel....Keep Reading
Below is the video from the Sunday Morning worship service at New Covenant Presbyterian Church. The text was Acts 2:14-39 and the title is "Hear These Words."