Good News! The Dividing Wall Is Gone

There is essentially one people of God.

Believers under the Old Testament, i.e., meaning in every epoch of redemptive history prior to the New Covenant, were all looking forward to Jesus’ coming. They were all trusting Jesus, who was revealed to them under types and shadows (Col 2:17; Heb 8 [all]). Types and shadows were revelations of future realities that we veiled... Continue Reading

Herman Bavinck on Men And Women

"People and nations were very different from each other in various times and circumstances, but the man has always been a man and the woman has always been a woman."

“Open marriage and free love, the emancipation of the woman, and the socializing of society, fail to take into account reality whether it be sound or sick. They all suffer from the illusion that by means of external measures, by means of abolishing old laws or implementing new laws, they can change human nature or... Continue Reading

Conquering Jealousy Through Christ: Our Example and Help in the Time of Need

If we are His children, we have Him, and whatever we have in this life besides is ultimately an expression of His sovereignty, wisdom, and love for us.

“We are unwilling to leave God to be the proprietor and do what he will with his own, and as a Creator to do what he pleases with his creatures. We assume a liberty to direct God what portions, when and how, he should bestow upon his creatures. We would not let him choose his... Continue Reading

What Was God Doing before Time?

It is an odd question but one that, I think, has an answer that leads to profound worship.

God, as eternal, unchanging, timeless, acts singularly and simply apart from any created conception of sequence since sequence involves change, development, growth. Such things belong to created beings, not to uncreated beings. And God is an uncreated being. So he cannot change nor work in sequence at least in ways that we conceive of sequence. ... Continue Reading

A Shepherd and His Dog

This partnership, it seems to me, illustrates the desired relationship between pastors and the Lord they serve.

On diversified farms like ours, cows would be let out to graze in pasture between milkings. A disciplined dog was a great asset in rounding them up and bringing them in. I say disciplined because it was essential for good milk production that the cows not be harried or hurried, but merely guided twice a... Continue Reading

Lloyd-Jones On Numbers

"I presented myself as one who had come among them as a stranger, had come a second time, liked everything that I saw and heard, and was obviously continuing to come."

“Members of the group began making suggestions along the lines of more music, livelier music, special musical numbers, shorter sermons, sermons not so deep, more variety in the services, etc. I was listening to all this with mounting consternation, and when, in response to the idea that the church members could help fill the galleries... Continue Reading

‘I Am Doing God’s Work’

How Abortion Normalizes Unjust Killing

Abortion advocates insist that we make peace with abortion. In her book Pro: Reclaiming Abortion Rights, feminist Katha Pollitt says we should stop apologizing for the practice. She asks, “Why can’t a woman just say, This wasn’t the right time for me?” (10). Only those with a deep contempt for the female sex question her... Continue Reading

The Cost of the Kingdom

Jesus tells two short stories of men who found something of great value, and whose desire for that object was greater than any other they had.

Would you be willing to part with everything you prize—your reputation, your income, your accomplishments, your relationships, your comfort, or even you very life, if it meant the difference between being saved or damned?   Geoffrey Chaucer wrote his famous Canterbury Tales in the 14th century. One of the stories in this narrative is the Knight’s... Continue Reading

The Sabbath Rest of Creation

Seven observations tying the end of the bible with the beginning of the bible.

Revelation 21:3 says, “And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them.’” God dwelt in the garden with Adam and Eve but they were exiled from that... Continue Reading

Giving Thanks for Particular Graces, Particularly

A heart of gratitude is a gospel gift.

If you are struggling to be thankful today, what it would look like for you to simply recount before the Lord 10 particular graces He has poured out on you within the past day? Your points of thankfulness can be deep and profound: new theological insights, spiritual conversations, transformative times in His Word, etc. They... Continue Reading

The Tyranny of Narratives

Have you adopted a narrative masquerading as unbending truth?

Our day, even in the body of Christ, is fraught with a lack of engagement with actual sources. We rely more and more on the brief thoughts of others to form opinions. Many undergraduate students today barely know what a primary source is, and those of us who are past those years are increasingly bent... Continue Reading

How to Know the Difference Between the Spirit of Truth and the Spirit of Error

Jesus has chosen to reveal His words and deeds through apostolic witnesses, and he has directed us to listen to the likes of Paul.

When we read the apostolic testimony in the New Testament, we are hearing directly from Christ himself. It was not a generic spirit that inspired the words of Scripture. It was the Spirit of Christ that moved the authors to write what they wrote. Jesus describes the Spirit this way in John 15:26, “When the... Continue Reading

God Doesn’t Say, “I Love You, but…”

His prohibitions are not exceptions, but evidences, of His love.

The word “but” indicates some kind of exception. Time and time again. And perhaps if that’s the way we say it, then there’s actually a little bit of revelation of our own hearts in that. Perhaps we think, down in the dark places of our own hearts, that any prohibition is an exception to love... Continue Reading

Lovers of God and Lovers of Self

The happiness that Sara (and all of us) longs for comes as we stop focusing inward and turn our gaze upward and out.

Every one of us has the inclination to make the Christian life all about us rather than recognize that it’s all about Jesus. We’re susceptible because we are sinful, and because a self-oriented brand of discipleship appeals to our deep craving for both autonomy and pleasure. That’s why it hooks us. It just feels so... Continue Reading

On Being a Kwitter

Paying close attention to what’s trending on Twitter leads me farther away, not closer to, the concerns of the people God.

There was a time when I felt it was good and necessary for me to keep up with the all the news, information, and opinions flying through Twitter—especially information about who has done what, who has said what, who’s in, and who’s out. I thought I might miss crucial information if I didn’t stay closely... Continue Reading

God Does His Greatest Work Through Simple Acts of Obedience

Sacrifice and compassion—done with hiddenness and humility—are never wasted in God’s kingdom.

What Jesus says to you is not, “OK, here’s your perfect parenting manual. Better get it right.” Sure, the Bible instructs us on how to raise our kids, but he mainly calls us to obey and trust him as he fights the battle through us. That should be an encouragement especially to those of you in... Continue Reading

Since God Is Sovereign, How Are Humans Free?

When we come to the attributes of God, we must understand that God is most free.

Some say that God’s sovereignty is limited by human freedom. If that is the case, then man is sovereign, not God. The Reformed faith teaches that human freedom is real but limited by God’s sovereignty. We cannot overrule the sovereign decisions of God with our freedom, because God’s freedom is greater than ours.   God... Continue Reading

The One Phrase That Is Helping Me Embrace The Cost Of Relationships

God will take care of me.

Nobody’s going to give me what I need so I have to guard what I have…But God will take care of me. That’s why I can give some time to the person on the other end of the phone even though it means I’m sacrificing my priorities – God will take care of me. That’s why I... Continue Reading

Minor Prophets in My Home

How children reveal our idols.

The abortion industry, which Christians tend to attack the most, is one (glaring) piece of evidence for a much larger cultural idol: limitless freedom. Kids hinder us from doing (or being) what we might do (or be) if they weren’t around to limit our options. We view them as weights around our ankles. It is... Continue Reading

The Utmost Importance of the Bible

Like our Lord, then, let’s be people of the Book.

We must relate to God his way: through his written, authoritative word. The Bible is of utmost importance because if we lose it, we literally lose God. Jensen described this well above; we must grasp what’s at stake here.   God created the universe by his word (Genesis 1), then he ruled Adam and Eve... Continue Reading

Complacency

We are not to be complacent and sit back and be presented a worship service.

Our society trains us to be complacent in how others live. “You do you and I will do me” is the motto of a whole generation. But the gospel doesn’t allow us to be complacent in relationships. We don’t let relationships just drift along; we pursue people for Christ and we build one another up... Continue Reading

He Will Not Forget Your Works!

He has seen it all.

The days and nights of faithful service are now filled-in with the sands of time – no evident trace remains. Praise God that the grace empowered endeavors of the saints, indeed their lives, are never forgotten by the Lord.   This is a guest post by David McCullough – Minister of Woodstock R.P.C., Belfast –... Continue Reading

Listening Puts Patience into Practice

As an act of mutual respect and concern, listening is a building block for true fellowship and understanding.

Given our consumer mindset, we can tailor our lives to cater to our interests so all our input is from people we agree with and all our output is toward those who will nod their heads in favor. There’s no need to be patient if everyone is like me, thinks like me, votes like me,... Continue Reading

The Bible Is the Story of Us

The bible is a beautiful, unique text, and its story informs ours.

As we sit with God’s story, it not only informs us and makes us more complete; it also teaches us about the consistent character of God — his faithfulness and love, his mercy and justice. Reading the Bible gives us the opportunity to see God through the lives of others. While the times may change,... Continue Reading

What’s Wrong With A Theology Of Glory? (1)

Many Christian leaders have decided that Luther was wrong.

Ask yourself these questions: Was our Lord a theologian of glory or a theologian of the cross? Did he promise an earthly utopia where all social ills are remedied? Did he promise perfection in this life? Did he promise 7 steps for anything, ever? Was Paul a theologian of glory or a theologian of the... Continue Reading

PCA Minister Ted Strawbridge Called Home to Glory

The Rev. Theodore Robert Strawbridge (1960 – 2019), 59, died Saturday, October 5, 2019.

Ted was serving as Director of Development and Church Planter Training for Mission to North America, of the PCA denomination. While he and Mary Lu were able to remain in Lookout Mountain, Ted maintained an active travel schedule in serving pastors and churches across the nation.   The Rev. Theodore Robert Strawbridge (1960 – 2019),... Continue Reading

What Is a Girl Worth?

A hard, but important, book to read.

It’s a deep sorrow that What Is a Girl Worth? had to be written at all. Though it is at times a sad and sickening read, we cannot and must not flinch from the reality it describes. My hope and prayer is that Denhollander’s long labor on this book will make a difference within the... Continue Reading

The Problem with Commonplace Religion

The way to find glory and joy in God is to do the exact opposite of what you think you should do.

For the man or woman rooted in scripture, it does not take much to see behind the façade. This type of religiosity is covered in references to self. Personal experience, feelings, self-esteem, and self-referential misuses of the words “love” and “justice,” litter its linguistic canon.   We live in a culture that is saturated with... Continue Reading

PURITAN: All of Life to the Glory of God

It was their firm commitment to the Word of God that distinguishes them from other groups throughout church history.

In the documentary, PURITAN: All of Life to the Glory of God, you will walk through the hallways of history to discover this group of people who sought to purify the Church of England and would eventually flee for religious freedom. You will learn names like John Bunyan, Thomas Goodwin, Richard Sibbes, John Owen, Richard... Continue Reading

Why God Made Us in His Image

What is the purpose of being created in the image of God?

I contend that God is, in His Trinitarian self, an orderly community of selfless love. And He made us in His image for this purpose: to create, sustain and extend orderly communities of selfless love across the globe.   “What do Christians mean when they say ‘the image of God.’”   That was the question... Continue Reading