Who Are the “Sons of God” in Genesis 6?
The flood narrative itself is often regarded as mythological but the intermarriage of “the sons of God” and “the daughters of man,” is seen as blatant myth.
The assumption in this interpretation of Genesis 6 is that “the sons of God” refers to angelic beings. Why do some biblical interpreters make this assumption? The simple answer is that the Scriptures sometimes refer to angels as sons of God, and it is assumed that the reference in Genesis 6 means the same. This... Continue Reading
First Presbyterian Church, Columbia, SC, Makes Statement of Contrition on Race
Regarding the names James Henley Thornwell and Benjamin Morgan Palmer, the Session unanimously called for the “immediate removal of the Thornwell and Palmer names on church buildings, the summer lecture series, and church publications.”
“We reaffirm that all people are made in the image of God. We also reaffirm our historic stance that the Gospel should be offered freely to all sinners regardless of race or ethnicity through preaching and teaching of God’s holy, inerrant, and infallible Word.” At First Presbyterian Church, all people are welcome regardless of race... Continue Reading
The Angry Mob And Their Counterfeit Religion
The seditious words and violent deeds of social justice zealots show all the hallmarks of a religious fervor intent on establishing their one true “faith.”
How can a radical sociopolitical movement led by Antifa protesters and the Black Lives Matter organization find its power within the abandoned territory of a failing Christianity? Isn’t there a clear difference between issues of Church and State, or theology and democracy? The answer may somewhat surprise you: This isn’t primarily a political uprising we... Continue Reading
Do Chinese Lives Matter?
They do to Christ – and they should to us.
The new national security law makes it against the law to criticise the Communist government, allows for closed door trials, wiretapping and for suspects to be taken to mainland China. The People’s Daily tweeted: “All of us are also happy to see a peaceful society coming back again in recent days. Hong Kong residents warmly welcome... Continue Reading
Resurrection in the Old Testament
The Old Testament has a powerful message about resurrection that speaks to our lives today.
Job is the book of the Bible that was written first, and as such it asks important questions that the rest of the Bible will answer. One of those questions comes from Job himself in Job 14:14, “If a man dies, will he live again?” Job knows that death is permanent (14:10–11) and that once... Continue Reading
Groaning for Justice: The Theology of What is Happening
The people in the streets protesting don’t even know it, but their groans and cries for justice are part of the desire for the great revealing.
When Paul writes “the glory that is to be revealed”, he is writing about the apocalypse. The apocalypse does not mean an end, as so many people presume. It means a revelation. We are headed toward a great revealing. The things unseen will become seen. Every day moves us closer to that revealing. We do... Continue Reading
Salvation in Christ Alone: What Is “The Great Exchange”?
Christians know Christ paid their debt on the cross, but he did even more for every believer.
In his humanity, Jesus is the “last Adam.” He was born under the law, kept it perfectly, and was qualified as the perfect Adam (man) to save God’s people (Rom. 5:15-19). The apostle Paul makes it abundantly clear in Romans, chapter 5, that Jesus succeeded where Adam failed, and as death came to all through... Continue Reading
Righteousness which Exceeds that of the Scribes and Pharisees
The number one desire our Lord has for His people is that their Righteousness surpasses that of the Scribes and Pharisee so that their lives will bring Him glory.
Our Lord’s Sermon on the Mount was His manifesto which paralleled Moses giving the Law on Mount Sinai. In it we are given God’s requirements for us in living this Christian life. We are called to be Holy as God is Holy. We are called to be Right in our actions as God is, which... Continue Reading
Enlightenment Liberalism Is Losing Ground In The Debate About Race
The liberalism of Enlightenment philosophy starts with the assertion that all human beings have equal moral worth. Yet when it comes to race many liberals have failed to live up to their own values.
Though that is not all thanks to Enlightenment liberals, obviously, liberalism has prospered as Marxism and fascism have failed. But its poor record on race, especially with regard to African-Americans, stands out. Income, wealth, education and incarceration remain correlated with ethnicity to a staggering degree. True, great steps have been taken against overt racial animus.... Continue Reading
How Church History Will Help You Defend the Faith
John of Damascus (676-749) is a model for how rich theology fuels Christian evangelism.
John succeeded his father as a key advisor to the Muslim ruler, Caliph Abd al-Malik (r. 685–705). After a long life of service in the public realm John left his public position in the early part of the eighth century in order to embrace a monastic lifestyle in a monastery near Jerusalem. John was a... Continue Reading
Notes from the Revolution
How do we know the death of George Floyd was tied to race or racism?
Around our nation we have witnessed rioting and looting, mass violence, the killing (unintentional and intentional) of dozens of persons of various races, the burning of police stations, and the destruction of millions of dollars of property. In short, we are watching a level of violent revolutionary behavior that I have not witnessed in my... Continue Reading
It was a simple challenge, but it changed my life.
We shouldn’t be surprised at this simple approach to missions. When we consider missions through the lens of Scripture, we find that these twin roles of giving and going reflect the Lord’s approach, and this approach predates even the creation of the world. This is revealed clearly in the High Priestly Prayer of Jesus. In... Continue Reading
How to View Claims About Dreams and Visions
There are landmines on all sides of this subject, and one of those is that it tends to become a tier 1 issue.
People will make railing judgments about the salvation of an individual based on their position regarding how God may or may not use dreams, or if it is possible for someone to have some supernatural experience. It’s important to navigate these hotly debated waters with a great deal of grace, while still holding fast to... Continue Reading
Disciple-Forming Corporate Worship
While discipleship certainly involves teaching truth to the mind, that is not enough since discipleship is more than data transmission.
Many evangelicals today consider corporate worship as simply a Christian’s expression of authentic devotion toward God. Yet corporate worship is not merely expressive; corporate worship is formative. This is how corporate worship fits into the Great Commission: the liturgy of a church shapes the liturgy of life. Every church has as its mission the... Continue Reading
What Does a Christian Need to Grow?
What are the things that the Lord has given to us that are needed for us to grow?
Throughout most of church history, conferences didn’t exist. The closest you ever got to them were various councils to which the majority of people never went. Just a bunch of bishops who apparently had long faces, halos behind their heads and two fingers strapped together that look like they want to do a v-for-victory sign... Continue Reading
Race, Identity and Grace
Welcome to the increasingly febrile world of identity politics.
You’d have thought the English rugby authorities would be pleased that fans had adopted an anti-slavery anthem as their song, but no. Writing in The Times (19 June), Phillips argued that an obsession with symbols has overtaken a desire to change the world. Toppling statues and banning songs won’t deal with the issue of racial equality. But... Continue Reading
God Wills for His People to be Christlike
We must cooperate with our Lord in His character rebuilding within our hearts.
Our union with Christ makes us partakers of His death, first, so that our guilt is gone and second, that our former life in bondage to sin is gone replaced by our new life of fellowship with Him that began at our new birth. We are also resurrected with Christ. That means that we have... Continue Reading
The Peculiar Idol of Personal Opinion
It’s a time to quietly examine ourselves, to carefully consider the word of God, to refuse to build our thoughts and feelings into cheap idols to bow down to, remembering that God’s thoughts are so much higher.
We’ve learned to love the sound of our own voice and to love the feel of our personal feelings and to enjoy the thrill of putting ourselves on display on social media (whether we have anything godly or good to contribute or not). I know I’m being hard on us. But these are times that... Continue Reading
Are We There Yet?
Let us live, confident that one day we shall be wayfaring strangers no more.
Yes, it will take your whole life to get to heaven, and yes, your life may last longer than most, and yes, the Christian life will be a challenging journey from start to finish. But it’s worth it. Not only will heaven itself vastly outweigh the difficulties you knew in getting there, but the life you... Continue Reading
The Sweet Summons of Repentance
As much as the call to repent opposes sinfulness, it also promotes holiness.
As a loyal husband, God leverages His influence to plead with his wife. He names her sins, but also offers an opportunity to forsake them. The same One who disciplines His beloved speaks kindly to her with words of renewal and restoration (2:14ff.). The call to repent is a compassionate plea to return to the... Continue Reading
Then Comes the End
Even death will be extinguished so we have nothing to fear.
The conflicts of our day are not the time for Christians to be afraid. We must be willing to put ourselves in danger. Speaking the truth of Christ and biblical standards, especially when it comes to sexuality, will cause you problems. You will subject yourself to cancel culture. Your social media accounts could be censored... Continue Reading
The Danger of an Open Bible
Let's examine our own Bible reading and study for doubt, division and dissection.
Some try to delude themselves into thinking they can read the Bible without any framework…which is a lot like me driving without my glasses on. Our goal isn’t to read the Bible without a rubric, but to get the right one in our minds and hearts. The question isn’t whether to have a framework or... Continue Reading
Unsound Teaching Produces Unsound Churches
We must be striving for ongoing reformation as we seek to honor God through biblically informed worship and a lifestyle that is consistent with a pursuit of holiness.
The unadulterated Word of God is what the local church needs. Anything else will not fulfill the people and will lead to unrest, lawless behavior, and ultimately will be so dull that it will not penetrate the hearts of people and will be incapable of saving the soul (James 1:21; 1 Tim. 1:10; 2 Tim.... Continue Reading
The Fullness of Joy
There is a fullness that awaits us as the fruit of the Spirit is nurtured by the true vine.
The joy that Jesus wants to see in us is His joy. Earlier, Jesus spoke to His disciples about peace, saying, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you” (John 14:27). Where does the Christian’s peace come from? It comes from Him;... Continue Reading
The Skill of Living in the Future
The basic idea is to slow down and be thoughtful. Our hurried lifestyle works against this critical life skill.
With humility in hand, we imagine the future. The following questions help you do this. What are you doing that you want to remain private? Forecast into the future and imagine your life when the private becomes public, because it will become public. What have you learned from the funerals of the wise and funerals of the... Continue Reading
Love in the Time of Coronavirus: Isolation and the Church
The loss of community and the sense of isolation have been my normal off and on for months and years at a time for nearly two decades.
Part of the way we are instructed to love one another in the Epistles is to weep with those who weep and to bear one another’s burdens, actions that Jesus demonstrated for us during His earthly ministry. How are you loving fellow believers in this time of coronavirus isolation? How are you loving those who... Continue Reading
Lead Me to the Rock
When David prays, “lead me to the rock,” he not only knows that God is the only rock, but he recognizes his own inability.
Family is certainly a means of God’s grace, but eventually even family can let us down. The government and politicians can do a lot of good, but they are terrible rocks. Success might seem to provide protection for a time, but it will eventually move on to someone else. No, the only one who is immovable,... Continue Reading
Pastors, Covid, and Criticism
These are difficult days for everyone. Your fuse may be shorter than normal, your perspective skewed by weeks or months of enforced isolation – and so might your pastor’s. If you love them, support them.
Lockdown has removed this sense of intimacy and security for your pastor, so that his preaching has not been just to members, but in a marketplace. Most Christians will have (or ought to have) stuck with their own online ministry, but in the back of his mind and the depths of his heart there lurks... Continue Reading
What Sin Will Never Quench
Why we trust in broken cisterns.
The core evil of the original sin was believing the forbidden knowledge of good and evil would yield more satisfaction than God. The core evil of ancient Israel was believing idols would yield more protection and prosperity than God. The core evil in all our sins is believing some broken cistern will give us greater... Continue Reading
Jesus in the Gospel of John – the Lamb of God
As the true Lamb of God Jesus took on full and real humanity and died in our place to take away our sin and take on the punishment we deserve.
A sacrificed lamb referred to the provision of God for escaping His wrath. But those lambs were placeholders. They could not take away the sin of human beings. They were animals. They pointed to the day that God would provide the true Lamb who was able to take away sin by His death. That’s the... Continue Reading