God’s love and forgiveness is not conditioned by anything

Confessional orthodoxy coupled with a view of a heavenly Father whose love is conditioned on his Son’s suffering, and further conditioned by our repentance, leads inevitably to a restriction in the preaching of the gospel. Why? Because it leads to a restriction in the heart of the preacher that matches the restriction he sees in the heart of God! – Sinclair Ferguson, The Whole Christ, … Continue reading God’s love and forgiveness is not conditioned by anything

The presupposition of the sovereignty of God is common among Christians

The decree of God has been the subject of too much debate in the history of the church. The reality is that the parties in these disputes are often much closer to one another than they admint. The happy truth is that those who dispute the absolute lordship of God check their arguments at the door when they enter their closets to pray. – Chad … Continue reading The presupposition of the sovereignty of God is common among Christians

All the benefits of salvation flow from the infallible certainty of God’s foreknowledge

Here the ascent backward from link to link ceases: calling — purpose — foreknowledge, and the descent begins from foreknowledge. The foreknowledge was such that a predestinating to the form of son resulted: “Those whom He has known beforehand, He has also ordained beforehand to be conformed to the image of His Son, in order that He might be the firstborn among many brothers.” Hereby the … Continue reading All the benefits of salvation flow from the infallible certainty of God’s foreknowledge

Toward an Athanasian Atonement Model

I had the privelidge of presenting a paper at the 2018 northeast regional meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society.

My paper was an exploration of the atonement theology of Athanasius of Alexandria. Here is the paper and the audio from the presentation, I hope you enjoy. Continue reading “Toward an Athanasian Atonement Model”

Tragedy in the Cosmos: A Plurality of Will within The Godhead.

Reflecting on the idea of Eternal Functional Subordination (EFS) the thought struck me: What if there was a plurality of will within the Godhead? What if the Son did willingly submit to the Father from all eternity, as has been asserted by those who argue for EFS? I argue that the potential exists for the headline of this post: Tragedy in the Cosmos: A Plurality … Continue reading Tragedy in the Cosmos: A Plurality of Will within The Godhead.

2 Chronicles 30, The Regulative Principle of Worship, and the Intercession of Christ

I was reading 2 Chronicles 30 the other day, and something jumped out at me that was a real eye-opener. Hezekiah, as many of the kings of Judah were, was a Reformer of sorts. At the beginning of the divided kingdom, one of the typological features which pointed to the remnant nature of Christ’s Church was that those who were under Jeroboam’s rule in the … Continue reading 2 Chronicles 30, The Regulative Principle of Worship, and the Intercession of Christ

A Plea Concerning Billy Graham’s Passing

I don’t know much about Billy Graham. I grew up in what you would call a “conservative evangelical” home but I had little to no interest in preaching or famous evangelists. So while Mr. Graham was busy preaching revivals, I hardly batted an eye. Flash forward to 2018 and I’m a senior at Bible college. I spend my days going to Bible and theology classes … Continue reading A Plea Concerning Billy Graham’s Passing

By Man Shall His Blood Be Shed

Murder is a terrible thing. It destroys more than just the lives of those who are killed. On Wednesday, February 14th, 2018, Nikolas Cruz walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and murdered 17 people. I will acknowledge from the onset of this short reflection, that I am reticent to even write this post. It seems almost crass to speak of anything besides … Continue reading By Man Shall His Blood Be Shed

Review of “Retrieving Eternal Generation” edited by Fred Sanders and Scott Swain (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

The doctrine of eternal generation is absolutely vital to the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. Without it, we are left not with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit… but with three nameless, faceless, and relationless divine persons. However, in recent years this doctrine has come under attack. On the other side of the equation, some have taken the eternal sonship of the Son, … Continue reading Review of “Retrieving Eternal Generation” edited by Fred Sanders and Scott Swain (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

Review of “Learning to Love the Psalms” by W Robert Godfrey (Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2017)

The Psalms are commonly known as the Hymnbook of the Bible. Beyond a notebook of praise, it also contains some of the most well known and well-loved prayers in Scripture. However, in modern times many evangelicals —even those who would be counted among the so-called New Calvinists— are simply unfamiliar with this deep treasure trove. In Learning to Love the Psalms, W Robert Godfrey takes us … Continue reading Review of “Learning to Love the Psalms” by W Robert Godfrey (Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2017)

Review of “God Is” by Mark Jones (Wheaton: Crossway, 2017)

The true and living God is too much for us to bear, to handle, to conceive, to adore, to know, to trust, to understand, and to worship. The Incomprehensible One is simply too much for us in every conceivable way. That is how Mark Jones starts out his book on the attributes of God. God Is is an entry in what appears to be a resurgence … Continue reading Review of “God Is” by Mark Jones (Wheaton: Crossway, 2017)

Calvin and Henry on Hebrews… contra Eternal Functional Subordination

This year, I have decided to do a deep dive read of the book of Hebrews. It is such a fountain of Christology, Soteriology, and Covenant Theology that it is in many ways the central cog upon which Reformed theology turns. As part of that deep dive, I am not only reading Hebrews repeatedly but have also decided to read various commentaries alongside it. First, … Continue reading Calvin and Henry on Hebrews… contra Eternal Functional Subordination

The Only Reason Not to Play the Lottery: A Rejoinder to John Piper and Brandon Takacs

Recently on the Two Thieves Podcast, cohost Brandon Takacs (flying solo… not easy to do. Well done Brandon) approached a 2016 article by John Piper. The article is self-explanatorily titled Seven Reasons Not to Play the Lottery. I think that Takacs did a great job questioning some of the assumptions of the article, but missed a significant argument. He missed this argument because Piper missed … Continue reading The Only Reason Not to Play the Lottery: A Rejoinder to John Piper and Brandon Takacs

Post Tenebras Lux: In Honor of RC Sproul

ἔσχατος ἐχθρὸς καταργεῖται ὁ θάνατος The last enemy to be destroyed is death. – 1 Corinthians 15:26 As I’m sure you have heard by now, the esteemed Reformed teacher, pastor, and theologian, RC Sproul, died this past Thursday (December 14, 2017). There are many moving tributes and comments flooding the internet right now, and rightfully so. I didn’t want to just add my voice to … Continue reading Post Tenebras Lux: In Honor of RC Sproul

Socinianism, Divine Simplicity, and the Eternal Functional Subordination Controversy

Broadly speaking, the Reformation can be categorized under two headings. The first and the one that most of us are familiar with is the Magisterial Reformation.  The Magisterial Reformation saw itself in continuity with Catholic Christianity and only sought to reform the doctrinal deviations which crept into the Roman Catholic Church through the medieval period. Due to the desire to remain in continuity with the … Continue reading Socinianism, Divine Simplicity, and the Eternal Functional Subordination Controversy

5 Reasons not to Use Images of Jesus

As we come into the season which is commonly known as Advent, which leads up to the day when millions of Christians around the world celebrate the incarnation of the Son, we are often faced with various images which purport to be more or less faithful representations of Jesus Christ. The historic Reformed position since has always been that any image of any person of … Continue reading 5 Reasons not to Use Images of Jesus

Psalm 1: Some Reflections

So, I’ve been using ScriptureTyper.com to memorize passages, and I really cannot recommend it enough. One of the first passages I memorized was Psalm 1, and I wanted to share some of my reflections. 1:1 – Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; There are real and concrete blessings, both temporal and eternal, that … Continue reading Psalm 1: Some Reflections

Deceptive Dust – A Response to Paul Zahl

For anyone who has followed my writing for any amount of time, it is clear that my blog is intimately tied up with the saga of Tullian Tchividjian. Things have been relatively quiet over the past year or so on this front, but it seems like Tullian has finally decided to restore himself to Christian ministry. He has recently launched Tullian.net, which so far has … Continue reading Deceptive Dust – A Response to Paul Zahl

A Review of “Calvinist” by Les Lanphere

Ladies and Gentlemen welcome to the Reformed Movie Cast. I’m your host Tony, and this isn’t a podcast… If you don’t get that joke, head over to ReformedPubcast.com, subscribe to the feed, and enjoy the history of a Reformed movement as it unfolds one RSS entry at a time. Les Lanphere, co-host of the meteoric podcast the Reformed Pubcast, co-founder of the Reformed Pub Facebook group (which … Continue reading A Review of “Calvinist” by Les Lanphere

Five Thoughts after Five Years of Marriage

My wife and I recently celebrated five years of marriage, and I wanted to offer some reflections that I had. Marriage is Hard I often hear it said that the first year of marriage is the hardest. To be honest, my wife and I haven’t found that to be the case. We chalk it up to good pre-marital counseling. However, that doesn’t mean that everything … Continue reading Five Thoughts after Five Years of Marriage

The Arsenal Statement

Last week, a prestigious gathering of evangelical pastors, seminary professors, housewives, book writers, women’s studies professors, and recording artists attached their name to the Nashville Statement. This has had no small amount of controversy, and I even added my own concerns to the fray. This week, I would like to release what I’m calling the Arsenal Statement. In times like these, Christians need to speak … Continue reading The Arsenal Statement

God the Son was Born of the Theotokos

Protestants often instinctively bristle up when hearing the claim that the title of Theotokos (God-bearer, Mother of God) is applied to Mary. Although this is understandable given the abuses of the Roman Catholic and, to a lesser degree, Eastern Orthodox Churches, it is vital that we understand the stakes of the argument. Since most of the arguments for denying the Theotokos are based on misunderstandings … Continue reading God the Son was Born of the Theotokos

Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, publishers of the Nashville Statement

The Westminster Statement (or Why the Nashville Statement is Unnecessary)

What is the Nashville Statement Yesterday (August 29, 2017) the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood issued a document called the Nashville Statement. This document contained a preamble, fourteen articles (consisting of both affirmations and denials), and comes with an initial list of over 150 signatories that reads like a who’s who list of the biggest names in conservative Christianity. This statement is similar in … Continue reading The Westminster Statement (or Why the Nashville Statement is Unnecessary)

Review of “Biblical Doctrine” by John MacArthur and Richard Mayhue (Wheaton: Crossway, 2017)

John MacArthur and Richard Mayhue have put together a mostly solid lay-level systematic theology. While over 1,000 pages, the work is very approachable, making few assumptions about the theological education of the reader. As a lay-oriented work, the depth may not suit the needs of a seminarian, possibly even frustrating such a reader by devoting more length to basic concepts they already firmly understand. This … Continue reading Review of “Biblical Doctrine” by John MacArthur and Richard Mayhue (Wheaton: Crossway, 2017)

Leviticus 15:16-24, Temple Prostitution, and the Regulative Principle

16 “If a man has an emission of semen, he shall bathe his whole body in water and be unclean until the evening. 17 And every garment and every skin on which the semen comes shall be washed with water and be unclean until the evening. 18 If a man lies with a woman and has an emission of semen, both of them shall bathe themselves in water and be unclean … Continue reading Leviticus 15:16-24, Temple Prostitution, and the Regulative Principle

Review of “Know Why You Believe” by K Scott Oliphint (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

In a culture where the Christian Worldview is constantly under attack, it is important to be able to give an answer for the hope that we have within us.. Sadly, many people that have grown up in broad evangelical churches have not been taught how to address even some of the most basic questions that unbelievers have about the Christian Faith or why anybody would … Continue reading Review of “Know Why You Believe” by K Scott Oliphint (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

Announcement that the Reformed Pubcast Podcast is going on hiatus

So You’ve Got an Extra Hour…

For those of you who haven’t heard, a major force —perhaps the major force— in the world of Reformed podcasting is taking a break. The Reformed Pubcast, a podcast hosted by Les Lanphere and Tanner Barfield, is “going on an indefinite hiatus.” Now, I have on good authority, ie Les and Tanner, that the intent is for the show to return at some point in the … Continue reading So You’ve Got an Extra Hour…

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – The Duplicitous Langage of Proposal (5.5)

Recently, Dr. Craig spoke on his podcast about his Christological Position. This was in response to an article forwarded to him from Richard Bushey titled Does William Lane Craig Have An Orthodox Christology? Some have asked me why this series has stalled out, wondering if I am done with my critique. I am not, but given that the second edition of Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview … Continue reading William Lane Craig – The Duplicitous Langage of Proposal (5.5)

Review of “Rediscovering the Holy Spirit” by Michael Horton (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

When I heard that Michael Horton was publishing a book-length treatment of Pneumatology, I did a little happy dance. This is a subject that is so often neglected, that it is to the shame and detriment of the Church. This book, however, is an absolute game changer. I say with absolute confidence that this book ranks in my top five books of all time. What … Continue reading Review of “Rediscovering the Holy Spirit” by Michael Horton (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2017)

Anthropological Manichaeism

Each of us has a vision of good and of evil. We have to encourage people to move towards what they think is good… Everyone has his own idea of good and evil and must choose to follow the good and fight evil as he conceives them. That would be enough to make the world a better place. – Pope Francis[note]https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/on-faith/pope-francis-stirs-debate-yet-again-with-interview-with-an-atheist-italian-journalist/2013/10/01/9e7a6790-2acb-11e3-97a3-ff2758228523_story.html?utm_term=.a303745ba42e[/note] Last week, an evil … Continue reading Anthropological Manichaeism

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – Neo-Apollinarianism (5)

In the previous entries in this series, we have seen how Dr. Craig’s denial of realism (a position he calls anti-realism, rather than nominalism) has led him down the path of partialism (in which the three persons are not properly unified) and unitarianism (in which he implicitly treats the Trinity as though it were a hypostasis, and that hypostasis is the one true God, with … Continue reading William Lane Craig – Neo-Apollinarianism (5)

Review of “Practicing the Power” by Sam Storms (Grand Raids: Zondervan, 2017)

Having come from a general evangelical background into Reformed thought, I had the same kind of hangover that most do. I was dispensational and charismatic… two things I was being told were unacceptable for a Reformed man. It was Sam Storms’ book Kingdom Come which helped me to see the logic of Amillennialism. My move toward cessationism was instinctual, and it wasn’t until later that … Continue reading Review of “Practicing the Power” by Sam Storms (Grand Raids: Zondervan, 2017)

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – Unitarianism (4)

Last time, we talked about how Dr. Craig’s position of anti-realism undermines the fundamental unity of the Godhead. It does this by functionally denying that such natures exist are a thing considered differently than persons. Where classic orthodox trinitarianism relies on the idea that natures, or ousiai, exist and that persons, or hypostases, are more-or-less instances of a given category of ousiai… Craig denies this … Continue reading William Lane Craig – Unitarianism (4)

Review of “Evangelical, Sacramental, & Pentecostal” by Gordon Smith (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2017)

What are the true marks of the Church? The Reformers, broadly speaking, argued for three basic marks. The Gospel would be preached, the sacraments would be properly administered, and church discipline would be justly executed. In the recently published Evangelical, Sacramental, & Pentecostal, by Gordon Smith, we see an argument for three different marks. These marks do not constitute a true church, as the ones … Continue reading Review of “Evangelical, Sacramental, & Pentecostal” by Gordon Smith (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2017)

Review of “The Triune God” by Fred Sanders (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2016)

I was recently forwarded a copy of the newest entry in Zondervan’s New Studies in Dogmatics series. The Triune God by Fred Sanders is an important contribution to the study of Trinitarian theology that couldn’t have come at better time. Sanders lays out in the introduction to this volume, the idea that most Trinitarian studies have a common problem. They spend way too much time … Continue reading Review of “The Triune God” by Fred Sanders (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2016)

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – Partialism (3)

In the last post, we discussed how Dr. Craig’s self-described anti-realism flows contrary to the metaphysical assumptions which undergird the Church’s historical articulation of the doctrines of the Trinity (Nicaea 325 and Constantinople 381) and the Hypostatic Union (Chalcedon 451). This leads him to argue that the Trinity itself is the only “instance of the Divine Nature.” (Moreland and Craig 2003) I argued that this … Continue reading William Lane Craig – Partialism (3)

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – Anti-Realism (2)

As I mentioned in my introductory post, I have embarked on a project to assess and critique the Trinitarian and Christological theology of William Lane Craig. The errors, in my opinion, are grave enough to render him a teacher that Reformed Christians should not emulate, even in part. In today’s post, we will discuss Dr. Craig’s Metaphysic of Anti-Realism and observe the deficiencies it produces … Continue reading William Lane Craig – Anti-Realism (2)

Patripassianism in an Unexpected Place

There has been a trend I’ve noticed lately going on in the Reformed world. Someone will post a quote that appears to be heterodox or heretical, and then everyone will gasp when it is revealed that the source is actually a well respected and orthodox figure. Usually, a conversation will ensue which clarifies what the author meant, or broader context will reveal that the quote, … Continue reading Patripassianism in an Unexpected Place

Neo-Apollinarian Philosopher William Lane Craig

William Lane Craig – Introduction (1)

Recently, I have noticed a flare-up of interest in philosopher and apologist William Lane Craig among young Reformed Christians in various circles I run in. I have been investigating Dr. Craig’s apologetics and theology on and off for close to seven years now. Because of what I have identified as serious errors in Dr. Craig’s positions on the Trinity and the Incarnation, I think that … Continue reading William Lane Craig – Introduction (1)

Review of “A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the New Testament” edited by Michael Kruger (Wheaton: Crossway, 2016)

Today I will be reviewing the second installment of a two-part Biblical Theology collection published by Crossway. A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the New Testament is a collection of essays written by the past and present members of the faculty of Reformed Theological Seminary. It shares many traits in common with the Old Testament volume so I would encourage you to check out my review before … Continue reading Review of “A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the New Testament” edited by Michael Kruger (Wheaton: Crossway, 2016)

A baby in a bath

By the Washing of Regeneration

But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according … Continue reading By the Washing of Regeneration

Augustine of Hippo

Augustine and Divine Processions

This year, as part of my devotional studies, I am working my way through Augustine’s magisterial volume On the Trinity.[1] I am hoping to provide some reflection and analysis here as I work through it. Today, I was reading 2.1.4 and 2.1.5 today (99-100) and came upon something I think is a very fruitful discussion. Augustine, toward the beginning of this chapter, discussed that there is a particular rule which … Continue reading Augustine and Divine Processions

Amazing Resource – Reformed Books Online

I wanted to share with my readers an amazing resource that I have known about for quite some time, but am just starting to dig into. The website Reformed Books Online is a website which has a collection of links to thousands of resources. Our purpose is to promote historic, reformed Christianity by providing in one location a collection of the best theological literature from 1800 to … Continue reading Amazing Resource – Reformed Books Online

Jory Loves Ben and Jerry's

Jory Micah – Education (1)

Charlatan: Noun – a person who pretends or claims to have more knowledge or skill than he or she possesses; quack. Jory Micah, for those who don’t know, is something of a viral phenomenon sweeping the internet by storm. She is a rabid egalitarian who considers herself to be something of a prophetess heralding the Church to include women in every aspect of Church leadership, including … Continue reading Jory Micah – Education (1)

Calvinist – The Trailer

My good friend Les Lanphere (Co-host of the Reformed Pubcast, founder of the Reformed Pub Facebook group) has been diligently working on a documentary film called Calvinist. The film, as I understand it, is a look at the rise of the New Calvinism (broadly speaking) and how it has effected and affected a whole generation of Christians. The trailer was just released, so check it out. Continue reading Calvinist – The Trailer

An Open Letter to Donald J Trump

Dear Mr. President, Today you took the oath of office. Upon taking that oath, you became the 45th man to hold the highest executive office of these United States of America. During your campaign, you made many claims as to what you intended to accomplish during your time as our President. You have many people who have and will give you advice. Among those people, … Continue reading An Open Letter to Donald J Trump

The 3rd Commandment and Images of Christ

In the Reformed tradition, both English/Puritan[1] and Continental[2], the second commandment is understood as prohibiting all images of Christ regardless of their intended use. However, a common objection is made that this goes beyond the boundaries of Scriptural prohibition, which only excludes the use of images for the purpose of worship. While this is exegetically unsound, for the sake of this post let’s grant the … Continue reading The 3rd Commandment and Images of Christ

Review of “Saving Calvinism” by Oliver Crisp (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016)

I recently received a copy of Oliver Crisp‘s new book, Saving Calvinism. The book is a work of analytic theology, with a dash of historical theology mixed in, and stands in continuity with his previous work Deviant Calvinism. (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2014) The basic thesis of the book is that Calvinism —or Reformed theology, he distinguishes the two in the introduction but indicates that he will be … Continue reading Review of “Saving Calvinism” by Oliver Crisp (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016)

Advent Series – WCF 8.5-6 (4)

Every year during the season of Advent I do a four part series in to match up with the four Sunday’s of Advent. In 2014 we explored the various heresies which facilitated the controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries. In 2015 we took an in depth look at the Niceno-Constantinopolitian Creed. This year, we will take a look at the eight clauses of chapter … Continue reading Advent Series – WCF 8.5-6 (4)

Tullian’s Current Membership Status

After my recent Open Letter to the South Florida Presbytery, and a Call to Repentance by many of Tullian‘s former confidants, I began to receive emails and messages asking what Tullian’s current status was. Did I know where he held membership? Was he going to be excommunicated? In order to begin to seek answers to these questions, I reached out to the Stated Clerk of … Continue reading Tullian’s Current Membership Status

A Response to a Call to Repentance

On Monday, several pastors and other prominent figures— who have been involved in events surrounding Tullian Tchividjian— issued a call to repentance. This statement has been received with —from what I can tell— three basic responses. Approval – There are those who see this and applaud it. They believe this to be an appropriate step taken by men and women who were involved in counseling … Continue reading A Response to a Call to Repentance

A Call to Repentance

The following letter was posted to the websites of Pastor Kevin Labby, Pastor Chris Rosebrough, Paul David Tripp, and Elyse Fitzpatrick. Let us all pray that this represents the beginning of what will ultimately be Tullian’s repentance. Dear Friends: We join with others in expressing our shared grief regarding these latest allegations, as well as our thankfulness for the courageous women who came forward to tell their … Continue reading A Call to Repentance

Tony and the Athanasian Creed (3)

As I mentioned briefly in a previous post, there have been some who have accused me of trintarian heresy —not just error or heterodoxy, but damnable heresy— as a result of some concern (note that I did not say objections) I have expressed regarding the Athanasian Creed and its use in Reformed theology. While I cannot address everything in the depth I would like to … Continue reading Tony and the Athanasian Creed (3)

Advent Series – WCF 8.3-4 (3)

Every year during the season of Advent I do a four part series in to match up with the four Sunday’s of Advent. In 2014 we explored the various heresies which facilitated the controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries. In 2015 we took an in depth look at the Niceno-Constantinopolitian Creed. This year, we will take a look at the eight clauses of chapter … Continue reading Advent Series – WCF 8.3-4 (3)

Another Open Letter to the South Florida Presbytery

On September 1st, 2015, I issued an open letter to the Ruling Elders of the South Florida Presbytery. That letter was a strong call to action based on the activities of Tullian Tchividjian. A few days later I published something of a retraction as new information came to light. Well, more new information has come to light. In a pair heart breaking posts by a … Continue reading Another Open Letter to the South Florida Presbytery

Tony and the Athanasian Creed (2)

Hilary of PoitiersAs I mentioned briefly in a previous post, there have been some who have accused me of trintarian heresy —not just error or heterodoxy, but damnable heresy— as a result of some concern (note that I did not say objections) I have expressed regarding the Athanasian Creed and its use in Reformed theology. While I cannot address everything in the depth I would … Continue reading Tony and the Athanasian Creed (2)

Tullian, Revelations, and Disgust

Recently, the Christian Post remarked on Tullian’s new marriage and return to preaching. The article, titled Tullian Tchividjian Emerges From Scandal With New Wife, Preaches Sermon on God’s Redemption, deserves a whole post to discuss it, and that will certainly happen, look for that in the week to come. However, another set of blog posts by Nate Sparks deserves a repost here. Full disclosure, I … Continue reading Tullian, Revelations, and Disgust

Red and Yellow, Black and White, They are Precious…

Recently, I have begun listening to a variety of podcasts while at the office. I primarily work a desk job and this allows me to listen to while I check emails and take care of paperwork. One of the shows that I recommend is the Confessional Collective. This podcast has been particularly impactful in my life recently because I have been attending a non-confessional Baptist … Continue reading Red and Yellow, Black and White, They are Precious…

Tony and the Athanasian Creed (1)

As I mentioned briefly in a previous post, there have been some who have accused me of trintarian heresy —not just error or heterodoxy, but damnable heresy— as a result of some concern (note that I did not say objections) I have expressed regarding the Athanasian Creed and its use in Reformed theology. While I cannot address everything in the depth I would like to … Continue reading Tony and the Athanasian Creed (1)

Review of “The Voices of the New Testament” by Derek Tidball (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016)

I was recently forwarded a new book published by InterVarsity Press. The Voices of the New Testament by Derek Tidball is an innovative new approach to Biblical Theology. In this book, Tidball sets up a panel discussion of sorts between the various New Testament authors. He then explores various themes by presenting the dialog that would occur if such a panel were possible. In addition to … Continue reading Review of “The Voices of the New Testament” by Derek Tidball (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016)

Advent Series – WCF Chapter 8: Of Christ the Mediator (1)

Every year during the season of Advent I do a four part series in to match up with the four Sunday’s of Advent. In 2014 we explored the various heresies which facilitated the controversies of the 4th and 5th centuries. In 2015 we took an in depth look at the Niceno-Constantinopolitian Creed. This year, we will take a look at the eight clauses of chapter … Continue reading Advent Series – WCF Chapter 8: Of Christ the Mediator (1)

SBLGNT, Robinson/Pierpont, and the Majority Text

One thing that I commonly hear repeated in discussions between Textus Receptus and Critical Text advocates is the idea that modern text critics always, or nearly always, favor the readings found in the oldest manuscripts as opposed to the readings found in the majority text. Now, it’s not an exact study, but this generally means that the Robinson/Pierpont text represents the majority text while Critical Texts … Continue reading SBLGNT, Robinson/Pierpont, and the Majority Text

Tullian Tchividjian Returns to Teaching

I have written in the past about the unfortunate saga of Tullian Tchividjian. A more detailed timeline is available in my recent post regarding his alleged remarriage. I have also been asked multiple times why I care so much, which I have also discussed in detail. Recently, a sermon by Tullian was forwarded to me. He preached on October 30th at Spring Hills Community Church … Continue reading Tullian Tchividjian Returns to Teaching

Looking to Jesus as our Example: A Word Study

“We are to be an example of Christ!” some exclaim. Sure,  Christians are to be following Christ’s example – no reasonable Christian would deny such a thing. Quite often, Jesus had compassion (and currently still does). However, what does compassion look like? What exactly is compassion? According to the Gospels, compassion is having such a deep sympathy for someone that action follows to improve the … Continue reading Looking to Jesus as our Example: A Word Study

The Lord Will Repay – JD Hall

Alexander the coppersmith did me great harm; the Lord will repay him according to his deeds. (1 Tim 4:14, ESV) As I’ve mentioned in the past, I don’t ever mention someone in a post without praying for them by name. There are two individuals who I pray for daily: Mark Driscoll and Tullian Tchividjian. The reason I pray for these people daily is because I care … Continue reading The Lord Will Repay – JD Hall

Culture of Death

The last enemy to be destroyed is death. – 1 Corinthians 15:26 I have been fascinated by Halloween and the supposed culture of death and destruction. Part of my fascination has been because of my Independent Fundamental Baptist background. I always viewed Halloween from an outsider perspective, and from seeing Halloween as a culture holiday of nearly total participation of Western culture. I do not … Continue reading Culture of Death

An Interaction with “Closer to the Edge” by 30 Seconds to Mars

Content Warning: The music videos referenced and linked in this post may contain profanity. Music has always been a powerful influencer in mankind throughout human history. This fact has been recognized by people throughout the ages. Music has been used in almost every situation: times of happiness, times of sadness, times of war, and times of peace. People listen to music for learning, for entertainment, and for … Continue reading An Interaction with “Closer to the Edge” by 30 Seconds to Mars

Comment Regarding Tullian

I received the following comment on an unrelated post. The commentator, named Stephen, was so intent on communicating it to me that he actually tracked down another post that had open comments. The purpose of this post is to give him a place to interact with me without derailing another very well written post. Had to come here since you closed comments on the Tullian … Continue reading Comment Regarding Tullian

13th: A Movie Review

What is the 13th documentary? It is a Netflix documentary about the creation and fallout of the 13th Amendment to the United States constitution, by Ava DuVernay. The 13th Amendment states: Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.[1] Purpose  13th … Continue reading 13th: A Movie Review

Eulogy in Honor of Lorenzo Amigo Arsenal Jr

On October 13th 2015, my father Lorenzo Amigo Arsenal Jr deceased. On November 21st of the same year I had the honor and privilege of delivering the eulogy at his funeral services. I hope that you are edified as you listen to that eulogy, which I post here in honor and memory of my father. Audio: https://archive.org/download/09Eulogy/09-Eulogy.mp3 Continue reading Eulogy in Honor of Lorenzo Amigo Arsenal Jr

Accept, Accuse, Arise

On October 13th 2015, my father Lorenzo Amigo Arsenal Jr deceased. On November 21st of the same year I had the honor and privilege of preaching the Gospel at his funeral services. I hope that you are edified as you listen to that sermon, which I post here in honor and memory of my father. Audio: https://archive.org/download/AcceptAccuseArrise/11-Gospel%20Reading%20and%20Sermon%20-%20John%2011%20-%20Accept,%20Accuse,%20Arise.mp3 Continue reading Accept, Accuse, Arise

Thoughts on Trump

Ok, in general I don’t post political thoughts on this blog, and in many ways this isn’t a political post. Recently, recordings of the GOP Nominee saying some absolutely vile things has surfaced. It baffles me, but this seems to have been a catalyst which has lead many evangelicals to reconsider their previous stances. Wayne Grudem, for example, has pulled down a previous article in … Continue reading Thoughts on Trump

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (6)

Wrap Up I originally intended to provide an in depth analysis for the entire book, but having finished it there are a number of factors which lead me to forego doing so for the latter portion of the book. First, the remaining two chapters focusing on biblical studies are largely a repeated argument, applied to a different author. As I noted in my analysis of … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (6)

Divorce, Remarriage, and Consequences

I originally prepared this post on September 19th, but decided not to publish it. At that time, after praying, I felt that since Tullian had not engaged (to my knowledge) in public teaching, writing, or anything else that seemed to represent a desire to continue to be a public personality, that I should treat him like I would any other Christian for whom I was … Continue reading Divorce, Remarriage, and Consequences

Text Criticism and Matthew 27:34

I recently had a discussion in an online group with a Textus Receptus (TR) advocate regarding Matthew 27:34. The nature of the discussion was a textual variant. The passage reads as follows: they offered him wine to drink, mixed with gall, but when he tasted it, he would not drink it. (ESV) They gave him vinegar to drink mingled with gall: and when he had tasted … Continue reading Text Criticism and Matthew 27:34

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (5)

Today marks the move into the exegetical chapters in the book, and I must admit it is a nice change from the prior entries. The first entry is by Joel Willitts, who is a professor of New Testament at North Park University. New Testament studies is not my strong point, so I will leave my analysis to be relatively superficial. The entry is technical, but … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (5)

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (4)

Having been disappointed thus far by the contributions by volume editor, Gerald McDermott, I eagerly moved forward to the first essay contributed by Craig Blaising. His presence among the writers was one of the factors which originally caused me to be suspicious of the repeated claim that what was being presented here was not simply repackaged dispensationalism. Blasing’s sole contribution is a chapter on hermeneutics. … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (4)

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (3)

As we’ve seen in the Introduction and Chapter 1, this work make some very specific claims as to its aims. However, when scrutinized does not follow through on these claims. Chapter 2, unfortunately, is not any different. The thesis statement for Chapter , titled a History of Christian Zionism, is as follows: The burden of this chapter is to show that Christian Zionism is at … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (3)

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (2)

According to the introduction of this book, one of the main aims of the New Christian Zionism (as both a book and a movement) is to displace Supersessionism (26-27). Supersessionim is defined by McDermott as The view that the Christian church has superseded or replaced Israel as the locus of the covenant that God has made with his people. McDermott opens the section titled Theology and … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” (2)

Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” edited by Gerald McDermott (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016) (1)

InterVarsity Press has been kind enough to send me a copy of a new collection of essays edited by Gerald McDermott. The New Christian Zionism: Fresh Perspectives on Israel is a handsome paperback that was released in July of 2016, and includes essays from a wide range of scholars. In its opening chapter, McDermott seeks to clear away what he calls “the underbrush” of the discussion. … Continue reading Analysis of “The New Christian Zionism” edited by Gerald McDermott (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2016) (1)

Review of “A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the Old Testament” edited by Miles Van Pelt (Wheaton: Crossway, 2016)

Today, I will be offering a brief review of a valuable new entry into the discussion regarding Biblical-Theology. A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the Old Testament, edited by Miles Van Pelt, is the first of two volumes devoted to the topic. The second volume is a similar entry on the New Testament, which shall have a review forthcoming in the coming months. The volume is a collection … Continue reading Review of “A Biblical-Theological Introduction to the Old Testament” edited by Miles Van Pelt (Wheaton: Crossway, 2016)

Biblical Support for Biblical Support

People fall on hard times. This isn’t a new situation. Ever since the land started producing thorns and thistles instead of fruit, people’s labor has at times come up short. In a post 9/11 world, with the collapse of the housing market, people of all types are struggling to make ends meet. Christians, with good intentions, begin to think about how it is that they … Continue reading Biblical Support for Biblical Support

Some Criticisms of Trevin Wax’s Christian Radio Article

This is a guest post by Austin Gravley. Austin is an intern at Redeemer Christian Church in Amarillo TX, and also works as a professional exterminator. He hopes to attend seminary once he finishes his B.A. in General Studies at WTAMU in Canyon, TX. You can follow him on Twitter at@gravley_austin Update: Shortly after this article was originally published, Trevin reached out to me via Twitter and we … Continue reading Some Criticisms of Trevin Wax’s Christian Radio Article

This We Deny Against the Trinitarians

If you’ve been following the controversy surrounding Bruce Ware and Wayne Grudem, you’ve noted that the salvo of articles seems to have slowed down a little. If I indulge myself in a small bit of speculation, it is because Dr. Ware’s recent Open Letter is quite lengthy and people are taking time to formulate appropriate responses. I was discussing this letter with a peer this … Continue reading This We Deny Against the Trinitarians

A Christian’s Homecoming

This is guest post by Dennis Boyer. Dennis lives in the Upper Valley region of New Hampshire, where he is the Postmaster of a small New England town. He worships at Providence Presbyterian Church (OPC), in Lebanon NH, and is the author of several fiction novels. I glance out my driver’s side window. The large banner impressively draped across the side of the building catches … Continue reading A Christian’s Homecoming

On Kings Kaleidoscope’s “A Prayer”

This is a guest post by Austin Gravley. Austin is an intern at Redeemer Christian Church in Amarillo TX, and also works as a professional exterminator. He hopes to attend seminary once he finishes his B.A. in General Studies at WTAMU in Canyon, TX. You can follow him on Twitter at @gravley_austin If you had told me Kings Kaleidoscope was going to be the next entry in … Continue reading On Kings Kaleidoscope’s “A Prayer”

A Simple Case for Postmillennialism

This is a guest post by Austin Hess. Austin is a student at Lancaster Bible College, in Lancaster PA, where he is working toward a BA in Pre-Seminary Studies. Austin enjoys reading the Puritans and Reformers, and hopes to progress to MDiv and PhD studies. He blogs at Studies in the Scriptures. Which millennial view is correct? It is an extremely difficult topic to navigate … Continue reading A Simple Case for Postmillennialism

The ERAS/EFS Controversy

For those who are involved in the Christian blogging community, there has been a battle raging in the past week or so regarding the EFS (Eternal Functional Subordination) or ERAS (Eternal Relations of Authority and Submission) positions. These positions are views of the relationship between the Father and particularly the Son, although the Father-Spirit relationship is implicitly involved as well. I guess it is time … Continue reading The ERAS/EFS Controversy

Unless You Repent – Luke 13:1-5

There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the … Continue reading Unless You Repent – Luke 13:1-5

Review of “Augustine on the Christian Life” by Gerald Bray (Wheaton: Crossway, 2015)

Augustine on the Christian Life is an entry in the Theologians on the Christian Life series, published by Crossway. This entry, written by Gerald Bray, focuses on the 3rd and 4th-century bishop, Augustine of Hippo. The Theologians on the Christian Life series is a combination of biography and historical theology. Each entry includes a chapter covering the biographical information, and the remainder of the book focuses on … Continue reading Review of “Augustine on the Christian Life” by Gerald Bray (Wheaton: Crossway, 2015)

A Calvinst Prayer for Zack Hunt

Recently, Zack Hunt posted an article in which he expresses his disdain and disgust for the Calvinist model of Divine Agency. He makes the strong statement that this model is “blasphemy against the Spirit disguised as systematic theology” and that the reason it is a “portrayal of God as a serial child rapist, unabashed murderer, unspeakable abuser, and creator of unimaginable evil.” I shudder to … Continue reading A Calvinst Prayer for Zack Hunt

Common Grace… Objections? (4)

I have been asked to engage a brief, four-part series on the subject of Common Grace. This concept, which is present in every Christian tradition to lesser or greater degrees, is especially prominent in Reformed theology. This is the final in our four-part installment discussing Common Grace. I wanted to close by acknowledging that there are some concerns and objections which are voiced in relation to this … Continue reading Common Grace… Objections? (4)

Review of Reformation Study Bible. New King James Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2016. (4)

I was recently blessed to receive a review copy of the much-anticipated revised Reformation Study Bible published by Reformation Trust. This is such a massive resource, that I’ve decided to dedicate several posts to reviewing it. Each post will be dedicated to reviewing a particular aspect of the tome (Book introductions, maps/charts, articles, study notes, etc). This review series will be slightly different from my other … Continue reading Review of Reformation Study Bible. New King James Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2016. (4)

The Eternal Appointment

Blessed is the one     who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take     or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord,     and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water,     which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—     whatever they do prospers. Not … Continue reading The Eternal Appointment

Common Grace Insights (3)

I have been asked to engage a brief, four-part series on the subject of Common Grace. This concept, which is present in every Christian tradition to lesser or greater degrees, is especially prominent in Reformed theology. Today we will look at some of the Insights that God has given to all humanity as a blessing. These insights serve a variety of purposes, but they serve the same purpose for … Continue reading Common Grace Insights (3)

Review of Reformation Study Bible. New King James Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2016. (3)

I was recently blessed to receive a review copy of the much-anticipated revised Reformation Study Bible published by Reformation Trust. This is such a massive resource, that I’ve decided to dedicate several posts to reviewing it. Each post will be dedicated to reviewing a particular aspect of the tome (Book introductions, maps/charts, articles, study notes, etc). This review series will be slightly different from my other … Continue reading Review of Reformation Study Bible. New King James Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2016. (3)

Common Grace Institutions (2)

I have been asked to engage a brief, four-part series on the subject of Common Grace. This concept, which is present in every Christian tradition to lesser or greater degrees, is especially prominent in Reformed theology. Today we will look at some of the institutions that God has given to all humanity as a blessing. These institutions serve a variety of purposes, but they serve the same … Continue reading Common Grace Institutions (2)

Common Grace in the Scriptures (1)

I have been asked to engage a brief, four-part series on the subject of Common Grace. This concept, which is present in every Christian tradition to lesser or greater degrees, is especially prominent in Reformed theology. To start, let’s explore the biblical passages that play into our topic. Genesis 3 and 9 Some may think that it is strange to look at the Fall, and the conclusion … Continue reading Common Grace in the Scriptures (1)

I See Mark Driscoll Things

As many of you know, in the past I’ve been critical of Mark Driscoll. This started before he resigned from MHC, and has continued through his return to ministry. I was quick to point out that his pornographic visions, coarse and offensive language, pugnacious and aggressive behavior, and a history of quarrel seeking and spiritual abuse disqualified him from pastoral ministry. I was also quick to … Continue reading I See Mark Driscoll Things

An Open Letter to Kevin and Chris

Dear Kevin Labby and Chris Rosebrough, Back in September I caught wind of something going on with Tullian that frustrated me. After a few exchanges, and a bit more information, I apologized for speaking rashly and asked for your forgiveness. I expressed concerns that I thought it was unwise for Tullian to be involved in ministry, and Kevin gave us all assurances that Tullian would not … Continue reading An Open Letter to Kevin and Chris

Ligonier Statement on Christology – Some Thoughts

Last year, Ligonier published the results of a study which showed that a concerning number of Americans don’t understand the essentials of the faith. I’m not sure that this was a surprise, but to see the numbers on paper was troubling. A large percentage of respondents answered in sub-Christian ways regarding essential statements regarding the person and work of Jesus Christ. Ligonier has since published an official … Continue reading Ligonier Statement on Christology – Some Thoughts

Trinitarian Sight Seeing

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God whose name was … Continue reading Trinitarian Sight Seeing

Mark Driscoll, Church Leadership, and Bad Hermeneutics

As my readers know, I have been openly critical of Mark Driscoll in the past. This started before Mars Hill imploded, but has found its focus on Mark’s behavior and return to ministry over the last year. Yesterday Mark announced that he will be starting a new congregation in Phoenix within the year (and “God willing” within the early part of the year). As I posted … Continue reading Mark Driscoll, Church Leadership, and Bad Hermeneutics

Review of “The Great Divide” by Jordan Cooper (Wipf & Stock, 2015)

Jordan Cooper is a former Reformed thinker, who converted to Lutheranism and now is a relatively well-known Pastor, Theologian, and Author. I was generously provided a review copy of The Great Divide by Wipf & Stock. Today I want to share some of my thoughts regarding this work. The primary thesis of the book is to provide both a description and evaluation of Reformed theology by means … Continue reading Review of “The Great Divide” by Jordan Cooper (Wipf & Stock, 2015)

Clarified Chalcedonian Statement by Dr. RC Sproul

A few days ago I posted an in-depth explanation regarding some of my concerns with Dr. RC Sproul’s articulation of the Hypostatic Union. Highlighting some specific comments that appeared to be an essentially Nestorian perspective, I explained what I saw to be the problem. I also commented that I didn’t like doing it, and have in other places commented that I would love to find … Continue reading Clarified Chalcedonian Statement by Dr. RC Sproul

Review of Reformation Study Bible. English Standard Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2015. (2)

I was recently blessed to receive a review copy of the much-anticipated revised Reformation Study Bible published by Reformation Trust. This is such a massive resource, that I’ve decided to dedicate several posts to reviewing it. Each post will be dedicated to reviewing a particular aspect of the tome (Book introductions, maps/charts, articles, study notes, etc). This review series will be slightly different from my other reviews. … Continue reading Review of Reformation Study Bible. English Standard Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2015. (2)

Review of Reformation Study Bible. English Standard Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2015. (1)

I was recently blessed to receive a review copy of the much-anticipated revised Reformation Study Bible published by Reformation Trust. This is such a massive resource, that I’ve decided to dedicate several posts to reviewing it. Each post will be dedicated to reviewing a particular aspect of the tome (Book introductions, maps/charts, articles, study notes, etc). This review series will be slightly different than my other … Continue reading Review of Reformation Study Bible. English Standard Version. Orlando: Reformation Trust, 2015. (1)

By the Power of an Indestructible Life

For it is declared: “You are a priest forever,     in the order of Melchizedek.” The former regulation is set aside because it was weak and useless (for the law made nothing perfect), and a better hope is introduced, by which we draw near to God. And it was not without an oath! Others became priests without any oath,but he became a priest with an oath when God said … Continue reading By the Power of an Indestructible Life

Sons and Daughters by Grace

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. There was a man sent from God, whose name … Continue reading Sons and Daughters by Grace