Why Was the Reformation Necessary?
Calvin looks at four great areas in the life of the church that needed reform. These areas form what he calls the soul and the body of the church.
We might be surprised that Calvin placed the worship of God as the first of the Reformation issues, but this was a consistent theme of his. Earlier, he had written to Cardinal Sadoleto: “There is nothing more perilous to our salvation than a preposterous and perverse worship of God.” Worship is where we meet with... Continue Reading
Arlington Statement on Bible Translation
A new statement on faithful boundaries in Bible translation.
The Arlington Statement on Bible Translation was released on October 22, 2020. It contains a set of principles of Bible translation that have been drafted carefully by Bible translators and scholars worldwide from many organizations who are passionate about preserving the integrity of the truths found in God’s eternal and unchanging Word. The statement emphasizes... Continue Reading
The Importance of the Connection of Elders to Those Whom They Serve in the Local Church
A basic principle of Presbyterianism is the right of members to be ruled by officers of their own choosing.
There might be great benefits to local churches and to teaching elders if more of those presently without connection served on local sessions. Churches would be blessed with able men who could assist (even if only part-time or as needed) with the ministry of the church. The men would benefit from the oversight of a... Continue Reading
The Covenantal Hermeneutic
These covenants were parts of God’s redemptive plan under the one covenant of grace.
These hermeneutical systems affect the way we read and interpret Scripture. Covenant theology, for example, sees much more continuity across all of Scripture. It also rejects the idea that God has two separate peoples. Dispensationalism sees much more discontinuity, on the other hand. It argues that much of Scripture applies only to Israel and not... Continue Reading
In Praise of the Average Pastor
The world needs more average pastors who show up, week by week, faithfully discharging the call that God has given them.
We measure things differently than God does. We look for the impressive, for the gifted, for the extraordinary. God seems to show up in ordinary, forgotten places, and to use the people that everyone else passes over. We like the spectacular. And yet God does some of his best work behind the scenes through the faithful,... Continue Reading
What The Court-Packing Debate Teaches Us About Defining The Adjective Reformed
I raise the question about the apparently newfound passion among Baptists for the fluidity of language because I perceive that their support for this approach to the meaning of words is selective.
One of the arguments that has been made most frequently in favor of the relatively recent attempt to re-define Reformed along minimalist, theologically inclusive, and even latitudinarian lines, has been: the meaning of words change. This argument has been made to me in the comments box in this very space. Never mind the fact that... Continue Reading
What Is Keeping You From Your Church?
The interruptions of 2020 have made it very easy to make church attendance optional.
We used to say that you should be at church unless “providentially” hindered. In other words, unless something that is in the Lord’s control keeps you from being here. If you are in a high risk category today, you could definitely say that you have been providentially hindered from begin here. But, unless you are providentially... Continue Reading
When Revival Comes…
Heaven is filled. One by one the converts die, and it even gets fuller; the harps of heaven are louder.
The revival of the church then touches the rest of society. Men, who do not come forward and profess religion, are more punctual in attending the means of grace. Men that used to swear, give it up; they find it is not suitable for the times. Men that profaned the Sabbath, and that despised God,... Continue Reading
Will The PCA Go Woke?
The PCA's good-faith efforts to address historic racism are falling into wokeness and critical race theory. But there is still a way forward.
Perhaps the best criticism of the PCA might be that the efforts especially of young ministers—often from Evangelical and Fundamentalist backgrounds—at racial reconciliation, instead of being increasingly “woke” have been rhetorically vague and socio-intellectually contrived, and have led to certain forms of social and intellectual naïveté regarding the consequences of adopting modern taxonomies of social... Continue Reading
When Preaching Is Restricted
God’s plan may be to place you and me, and the people in our churches, into divinely ordained one-on-one situations where we can speak of Jesus.
What do we find in Acts 8-12? We see the gospel spreading to Samaritans and then Gentiles – a massively significant step of progression. But we also see a change of ministry opportunity. After the stoning of Stephen, we read this: “…there arose on that day a great persecution against the church in Jerusalem, and... Continue Reading