This article gives a broad outline of the biblical teaching on the kingdom of God.
The article reflects on preparation for the ministry. It focuses on three aspects: the advantages of studying Classical Greek and Latin, the advantages of a first-hand acquaintance with the works of the authors who wrote in such languages, and the advantages of an understanding of the background of both the events and thoughts they wrote on.
This article is a meditative reflection on Psalm 27.
In what way does the Lord still today use the Jews to witness to the gospel? This article reflects upon the significance of the words of John 4:22 that "salvation is of the Jews." The author argues that even if it is through God's present judgement over the Jews, they still witness to the reality of the truth of the gospel.
This article reflects on the significance of the title Jesus used for himself, "Son of Man."
Bruce gives a short survey of the function of the doctrine of justification by faith in the Gospels, Acts, and the non-Pauline writings.
What is the relationship between the New Testament church and the Old Testament people of God? Can we speak in any way of an Old Testament church? The thesis of this article is that throughout the history of the church there was a strong emphasis on the unity of the church with the Old Testament people of God. These convictions are expressed in most of the confessions produced in the time of the Reformation.
What does it mean to "do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God"? These are words of Micah 6:8. This article gives an exposition of these words in their literary context.
This article indicates how modern Luther research emphasized the real significance for Martin Luther for today. He was a gifted teacher that brought the great central truth of the Christian faith back to the life of the church. This article considers what Luther had to say about doctrine, the Bible, and church.
This article surveys the place and function of angels in the Bible.
When the apostle Paul describes the relationship between God and those who belong to him, he uses different concepts, one of which is "adoption" (huoithesia). He uses it five times: Romans 8:15, 23, Romans 9:4, Galatians 4:5, and Ephesians 1:5. The article explores the origin of the metaphor and then the different aspects of the life with God that it entails.
Are problems of racial discrimination, crime, public health, housing, and similar social issuues the concern of Christianity? This article wants to indicate how any authentic teaching of the gospel and Word of God will speak to every situation of human life including social and economic problems of our day.
This article places the life and work of John Calvin within its historical context. Reid believes that to understand the sixteenth-century Reformation, one must always keep in mind the radical and revolutionary character of Calvin's teaching, which made the Reformation such a dynamic movement.
This article offers us some exegetical remarks on 2 Corinthians 11:27.
What is the relation between revelation and history? The article indicates how Lessing responded to the near-veneration of the Bible by the Protestantism of the eighteenth century in Germany time by placing a great emphasis on ethics. Particular attention is given to Lessing's controversy with Goeze.
This article offers some exegetical notes on Micah 1.
This article is part of a series of studies on the author of the book of Jeremiah. The author notes the message and character of Jeremiah the prophet.
This article is a biblical survey of the person and work of the Holy Spirit.
This article focuses on two aspects of the marriage of the prophet Hosea that the Lord used to convey his message to his unfaithful people.
This article offers short exegetical notes on Micah 2.
This article suggests that early Christian teaching consisted largely of a new understanding and interpretation of the message of the Old Testament. The primary means through which the Christian faith was communicated was the Jewish Scriptures. It indicates that early interpretation treated the Old Testament as a historical narrative of God's dealings with his people.
This article makes some exegetical notes on Micah 5.
The article first indicates the centrality of the witness of the New Testament to the resurrection of Christ. Next, it surveys the search for a controlling principle of interpretation to express the continuity between the Old and the New Testament. The article then considers Old Testament persons, events, and passages that point toward the resurrection of Christ. The expectation during the intertestamental period is also considered.
Is there a way to live in reconciliation with God without Jesus Christ? There has always been the question whether Jesus can in one way or the other be co-ordinated with other figures. This article shows the New Testament's testimony to Jesus as the unique Son of God and only mediator between man and God.
Was Robert Rakes the pioneer of the so-called Sunday School movement? This article considers the claim often made that Robert Rakes is the father of Christian education who began the modem Sunday school movement in England in 1780. Other rival claims are mentioned and Rakes' practice of education is described.
This is a biblical meditation on the faith and obedience of Mary of Bethany.
What is the relation between Christ and God? Is he in some way inferior to God? This article must be read against the background of the ecclesiastical history of the author's native Ulster. There were certain "nonsubscribers" who were those Irish Presbyterians who opposed subscription to the Westminster Confession of Faith. Their primary motive was their Arian sympathies.
This article suggests that comparative studies, founded upon archaeology and linguistic evidence, constitute the most fruitful field for biblical research. The purpose in this article is to demonstrate with a particular example—the golden calves and the Egyptian concept of deity—the value of this approach for the understanding of the Bible.
This article treats the significance of the words "filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ" in Colossians 1:24.
The way commentators interpret Revelation 13:18 often reveals their exegetical approach to the whole of the book of Revelation. This article is a brief survey of the interpretation of that chapter in the seventeenth and eighteenth century in England]. Interpretations are often a reflection of the times; the mainstream of Protestant interpreters saw in the [[Beast a picture of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church.
This article addresses trends in the debate surrounding the nature of a Christian theology of missions. The considerations are also done largely against a background dominated by the situation of the church in Asia and Africa. The "missio dei" is considered together with the conviction that the church's existence should be seen as mission.
How should 1 Corinthians 12-1 Corinthians 14 be interpreted? Baker believes that the key to the three chapters is the correct understanding of the first phrase, "Now about the spiritual gifts,” in 12:1. He also discusses in some detail the meaning of "gift of grace" ("charismata"), "to be zealous," and "spiritual" ("pneumatikos").
This article is an interpretation of Jesus' words to Mary in John 20:17.
This article is an exegetical consideration of Genesis 2:6.
The article explores the biblical view of wisdom. To think in Christian terms about any or every aspect of the universe is true wisdom.
In the interpretation of the book of Daniel, how should the stories of Daniel and his three friends be viewed? Are they "traditional tales" originating in the eastern Jewish Diaspora during the Hellenistic period, like it is sometimes assumed? This article discusses the issues of interpretation of Daniel 1–Daniel 6 in relation to authentic history.
In the book of Acts, twenty-three speeches can be identified. The reliability, function, and intention of these speeches are reflected upon.
Does a reader's exegesis influence his translation of the Bible? Is a good exegete by definition also a good translator? This article clarifies the position of the United Bible Societies concerning the exegetical training needed for translators. Secondly, it works out the thesis that an exegete is rarely a good translator.
France responds to the provocative book of John H. Yoder titled The Politics of Jesus. He wants to look for renewed thinking among affluent Christians on matters of economic ethics. The article considers Jesus' practice and teaching in relation to wealth and property. Finally, the author wants to apply this to the contemporary issues posed in Christian ethics.
The article has two main focal points, the reality of the destructive powers of evil in this world and the victory of Christ over them. It wants to identify the nature of evil powers and Satan in the New Testament. In the second part, the article examines the nature of Christ's victory over the powers. It notes the supremacy of Christ, the role of the church in this supremacy, and the new life of believers as a consequence of this.
Important general aspects of the book of Ezra are highlighted in this article.
The article is written against the background of the absence of the economically marginalized from the church in Britain. This article looks into the ethical attitudes and moral lifestyle of the working classes and reflects on the implications for the teaching of Christian ethics. It wants to commend Christian ethics above rationalistic approaches to life.
This article refers to apocalyptic speculation in the present context of a generation of prophets, whether religious or secular, who are annoucning the coming of the end of the world. This article is directed against current misdirected apocalyptic speculation in the light of a similar development during the time of the French Revolution in the 18th century.
What is preaching and why is it so important? This paper considers the significance of preaching in its relationship with the Word of God. It indicates the importance of seeing Christ as the Word that God presents to the world. It also defines the relationship between God's Word and apostolic preaching. In the last section the article examines the relationship between the Word of God and contemporary preaching.
This article considers negative factors that result from an abundance of English Bible translations.
This paper is an exegetical consideration of John 1:45-51.
This article critically reflects upon recent studies done on Ephesians 2:14-16.
In Ecclesiastes 11:1-6 the phrase "you never know" can be found four times. Before expounding these instances, the author first considers the interpretation of verse 1.
Helm argues in this paper that John Calvin's theology and the covenant theology of the Westminster Confession of Faith are in essential doctrinal agreement. He describes what he understands covenant theology to be and what Calvin's conception was of the relationship between Adam and the human race, and compares that with Calvin's English successors.
How did the apostle Paul understand the ministry of the church? In this article, Fung wants to examine the mutual relationships of ministry, community, and "charismata." Various relationships are examined therein: the relationships between ministry and Church, ministry and spiritual gifts, and the nature of the ministry and its outward organization.
How should psalms be interpreted? This article demonstrates the significance of both the form and the original cultic context or setting for the interpretation process, making use of Psalm 11 as an example. Bellinger believes it is best to read Psalm 11 as a lament demonstrating trust and expressing thanksgiving. in the context of a crisis.
Wright surveys the way the early church viewed war. He demonstrates how complex the views were during the period of the early martyrs, i.e. the first three centuries. The prominence of idolatry in the Roman army complicated the attitudes of Christians. The church did not function with a worked-out public ethics.
This article wants to come to a biblical-theological perspective on war and peace. It starts by looking at Yahweh as a warrior God and war as a theme in the Old Testament. The impact of the teaching and person of Jesus Christ, who brought a new relationship between Israel and the nations, is considered next. Then follows a consideration of the early church's view of the Christian as a citizen of two "kingdoms" or "communities." Next, it notes the contributions of some modern theologians on the topic.
Instead of reading the apostle Paul as if he wrote from a Gnostic influence, this article wants to take seriously the Jewish context of the apostle. The Jewish environment in which Paul lived had a number of sects, like the Essene movement, the Pharisees, and the Sadducees, all of which had certain attitudes toward the law. The author considers Paul's attitude toward the law, and how that impacted his mission work and teaching.
In theology, the term "nature" has several distinct usages. Bauckham explains that he wishes to focus on the modern usage of the term, namely, as it refers to "the observable non-human world." He critiques such usage, explaining that it tends toward a focus on the natural environment of human life on "our" planet. Bauckham's concern is that a misleading distinction between "nature" and humanity can easily be supposed.
This paper reflects on Karl Barth's treatment of war in his Church Dogmatics. It indicates that this is in part a reflection of Barth's personal experience of World War I. It gives Barth's theological basis for his response to war. A final section of the essay deals with the contemporary relevance of Barth's view.
This essay makes a case for identifying the "offender" in 2 Corinthians 2:5 and 2 Corinthians 7:12 with the sinner of 1 Corinthians 5. The contacts between Paul and the Corinthians in the period between the writing of 1 and 2 Corinthians is also set out. Kruse considers the possibility that the offence was most likely committed during this period.
This essay focuses on the question, will God give the opportunity of salvation to those who have never heard the gospel of Christ? It wants to give a fair presentation of three different responses to this question: the unevangelized are lost, there is a future chance after death for the unevangelized, and the unevangelized are saved or lost depending on their response to the light they have.
This paper seeks to challenge the conviction that the Bible is obsolete when Christians seek for divine guidance in the matter of homosexuality. It re-examines some of the main texts and arguments commonly followed when the texts are applied. Texts considered include Genesis 19, Leviticus 18:22, Leviticus 20:13, Romans 1:26-27, 1 Corinthians 6:9, and 1Timothy 1:10.
The Holy Spirit and spirituality are two key aspects frequently noted in theological discussions. Wood finds it profitable to reconsider the approach of Martin Luther to these two themes in theology. He indicates the importance of the Holy Spirit in Luther's theology and the role of the Spirit in Luther's piety and experience of faith.
The gospel has important social dimensions. In this essay the author wants to show the considerations in the social and political thinking of evangelicals in times past. Wilberforce and Shaftesbury are remembered as some of the outstanding examples of a biblical Christianity that was prepared to take on the challenge of social reform.
This article includes a review by Max Turner of the book The Anointed Community The Holy Spirit in the Johannine Tradition, with a response by Gary M. Burge. The book is a work on the apostle John's understanding of the Holy Spirit and his work. Turner zooms in on the Spirit and sacraments, Spirit and eschatology, and Spirit and Christology.
This essay wants to focus attention on the career of Thomas Cranmer as a Reformer. A short historical overview is provided of his life and theological development before the author examines Cranmer's teaching on some of the major points of the Reformatlon. Particular attention is given to the Bible.
This essay offers an analysis of the theology and structure of evangelical spirituality. It also reviews the present practice of spirituality in the light of contemporary trends. It wants to give a critical review of the practice and sources of evangelical spirituality, in order to show the strengths and weaknesses of evangelical spirituality. It also wants to determine whether other traditions of spirituality are compatible with it, and how they might be used to enrich it.
The purpose of Peter's sermon on Pentecost is reflected in Acts 2:37-42. His audience is exhorted to call upon the name of Jesus Christ to be saved from a perverse generation. This study wants to examine Luke's theological method. The article reflects on how Peter attains his stated missiological purpose and confessional goal as reflected in the Pentecost sermon. He accomplishes this by arguing in the salvation-historical pattern of the traditional kerygma.
What are the implications of the discovery of 11QMelchizedek for the interpretation of Melchizedek in Hebrews 7? In this essay Cockerill wants to show that the differences between 11QMelchizedek and Hebrews are too significant to consider the possibility that any close contact between the authors or readers of these documents was possible.
This essay considers the possibility of a uniquely Christian approach to education. The author writes from the angle of Christians in the Third World. This paper takes a look at some aspects that the author feels have been lost in the field of biblical studies. It makes a modest proposal for the recovery of the Christian mind in biblical scholarship.
Is it possible to develop a uniquely Christian approach to the various academic disciplines? This article responds to the views of Oliver Barclay in order to defend the possibility of Christian education. The article highlights a number of areas of disagreement with Barclay, such as the areas of a biblical mandate for a theoretical Christian mind, personal versus social ethics, and the basis of a Christian mind.
Often Jesus called his disciples and followers to leave everything. What is the content of this call? There are also passages in Luke and Acts that seem to require voluntary poverty. Other passages require a right attitude to the continuing possession of wealth. What was Jesus' teaching on possessions?
This article contends that many misunderstandings of Paul's use of allegory in Galatians 4:21-Galatians 5:1 are the result of Paul's argumentative strategy. Perriman suggests that the allegory is meant only to show the applicability of the command to throw out the slave woman and her son to the Galatian situation.
What is the state of Evangelical theology in Germany? Since the Enlightenment, theology in Germany has gained an unfavourable reputation for innovation that is very critical of Scripture. Today the work of theologians like K. Haacker, G. Maier, L. van Padberg, and E. Linnemann deserve careful study and attention.
What is a good Christian theological basis for protecting and developing the environment and the ecological system? After giving an overview of the environmental crisis the world is in, the author reflects on the threefold office of believers as prophets, priests, and kings, as it applies to the Christian and the environment.
What is religious toleration? Is it the same thing as freedom of conscience? How is this toleration related to God's toleration of sinners? This article gives primarily a historical overview of how toleration functioned since the sixteenth century Reformation. It starts with the classic development of a theory of toleration first expressed by Tertullian.
This article evaluates the work of T. F. Torrance as a critic of evangelical orthodoxy. One of the main criticisms of Torrance is the alleged separation between the Word of God as Scripture and the revelation of God in his work of redemption. The article acknowledges much of Torrance's concern, yet also attempts to show a problematic disjunction in his thought at this very point and to show a way to salvage and enhance Torrance's own Christocentric-Trinitarian theological purpose.
This article is written against the background of a controversy within the Anglican Church in Australia. It makes use of two categories of theologies of homosexuality, the essentialist and constructionist. The constructionist category interprets sexuality within the relative framework and context of culture.
This article concerns itself with the French Reformed church polity and church government. Important decisions concerning church government were taken at the First National Synod of the Reformed Churches of France, which was held in Paris from May 25 to 28, 1559. A Presbyterian form of church government was chosen instead of an Episcopalian.
This article's thesis is that Luke 17:34-35 is about the sudden coming of the kingdom. Its concentrates on this coming as an occasion when some people are irrevocably separated from others without any apparent warning. The patterns of Lot and Noah and the exodus form the background for understanding this sudden and final separation and judgment.
This is an article on theological anthropology, and in particular the anthropology of Irenaeus of Lyons. Was Irenaeus responsible for the distinction between the image of God and the likeness of God in man? This article looks at the importance of the theme in Irenaeus' thought in which he speaks of the Son and the Spirit as the "two hands" of the Father.
This article explains how salvation and suffering are inseparable in the life and message of Jesus. The kingdom of heaven has been inaugurated while Satan still acts through sin in the world. The obedience of believers to God often implies sacrifice and suffering. The struggle between the kingdom of God and the revolt of Satan is a reality today.
Most often in contemporary Christian understanding, worship is considered to be the acts of a local gathering of believers. This article suggests that this is misleading and argues that the Greek word "proskuneo" is never used in the New Testament in the sense of "worship." It is rather an expression of a relationship to the Spirit and truth of Christ, as demonstrated in John 4.
What is the nature and function of the prologue of the Gospel of John? This article contends that John 1:1-18 provides the exegetical key to the right understanding of the entire book. It contains a summary of the main theological positions of John. The prologue is a "microcosm of the gospel" that anticipates John's presentation of God's purposes of salvation through the incarnation of the Son.
In this article, the contribution of J. Gresham Machen to understanding the relationship between the church and contemporary culture is discussed. His vision of Christian involvement in cultural life was different from the pietistic and revivalistic otherworldliness of many fundamentalists of his time.
This article identifies some of the most influential ways in which biblical interpretation was formed in the context of modern academic sciences. The author argues that most of the exegetical programmes of interpretation were apologetic. This apologetic goal was achieved by using neo-Kantian ideas to separate historical exegesis from theological interpretation.
Was the apostle Paul an ascetic who saw marriage and sex as ungodly evils? These and related issues like celibacy are examined in the context of 1 Corinthians 7. The author argues against such interpretations. He offers a careful examination of the situational and discourse context and the structure of the chapter.
This article is a detailed study of James 2:14-26. Its main argument is that the purpose of that chapter is practical and pastoral rather than polemical. The author provides a detailed exposition of the text, noting its context, shape, and genre. The examples of Abraham and Rahab form two focal points.
A number of questions come out of 1 Samuel 16:14: What should we understand by the description "evil spirit"? How should we imagine the relationship between the Lord and these spirits? This article argues that the Old Testament fully accepts the existence of supernatural beings, good and evil. The aim of this article is to look at how the Old Testament views spiritual beings and evil spirits in particular.
Are those who have not heard the gospel excluded from the blessing of a life with God? More evangelical scholars have recently questioned the conviction that those who die without faith in Christ are excluded from eternal blessings. In this paper it is argued that an unqualified inclusivism undermines the urgency of mission and evangelism. Two scholars, Clark Pinnock and John Sanders are placed in the spotlight.
Adoption as sons is an important motif and theme in the letters of Paul (Romans 8:15, 23, Romans 9:4, Galatians 4:5, and Ephesians 1:5). In this article Burke wants to explore the relationship between the Holy Spirit and adoption in Romans 8. The relevance and importance of adoption for the Christian life are also indicated.
This article argues that the plan of God played a big role in the writings of Luke and thus in the book of Acts. The author argues that the "plan of God" forms the theological basis for what Luke understood as preaching. It was God who acted through the preaching of the apostles. The preaching of the disciples is a result of God working out his plan for the nations. The plan of God also determines the content of the preaching.
This article focuses on the understanding of Augustine of hell. In his approach to the doctrine, he was concerned with the right perspective on the justice of God. The article also indicates how Augustine responded to attempts to tone down the nature or duration of hell. Next, the article gives an evaluation of Augustine's position and the role the demonic played in his views of sin and punishment.
What is the relationship between the Christian faith and other religions? What is a good biblical theology of religions? In this paper, the author goes into a dialogue with the inclusivism views of Clark Pinnock. Yong argues that there is a lurking danger of relativism in the critique of Pinnock against exclusivism.
What is the relationship between the promises of God for Abraham and the way the New Testament makes use of the Old Testament narratives? This article wants to affirm that the New Testament's use of these promises is in line with the original intentions of God with Abraham to be a blessing to the nations.
What are the identity and theological significance of the "wretched man" of Romans 7? The thesis of this essay is that Romans 7:14-25 should be studied in relation to, on the one hand, what is called the Jewish doctrine of the "two Impulses," and on the other hand the immediate rhetorical context of Romans. It is argued that Paul is protecting himself from accusations of apostasy from the law of Moses and that he wants to indicate the universal need for the gospel.
What was the nature and function of speaking in tongues in the New Testament? Is there any relationship between what functioned in the New Testament and contemporary charismatic glossolalia? What was the linguistic nature of New Testament glossolalia? This article concerns itself with these questions but does not give a direct answer. It does, however, provide a survey of the main views on the matter within New Testament scholarship.
In this study the story of the temptation of Adam and Eve is placed in the wider context as a prelude to the Pentateuch. The article wants to demonstrate its significance for Israel as the people of God. It sees the two trees in the Garden of Eden as part of retribution theology functioning in the same way as the blessing and curse of Moses.
A proof-text used for the doctrine of eternal torment in hell is Revelation 14:11. Bowles examines this text and argues for a new interpretation, suggesting that the traditional reading of this verse misses much. Thus, in contrast to the traditionally accepted viewpoint on this text, the author argues that God will bring his enemies to judgment, with absolute destruction and extinction as the result.
This article examines the views of Thomas Torrance as a significant development of Karl Barth's theology concerning natural theology, general revelation, and natural science. It first wants to make clear what is meant by Barth's rejection of natural theology on Christological grounds. Next, it examines how Torrance integrates natural theology into his Christology.
What is the Christian approach to the study of the Old Testament? Are there specific characteristics involved in the study? This article surveys a number of features of what he sees as a typical Christian approach to a reading and teaching of the Old Testament.
This article argues for the authenticity of John 12:24. Its vocabulary, form, style, and content fits naturally into its context and is, therefore, not a fabrication of John but part of his witness as apostle.
Martin Luther is well-known for his theology of the cross. This theology of Luther is based on his view of the love of God and how it relates to suffering and evil. The author introduces into the discussion a Finnish school of interpretation of Luther. This school offers a new understanding of these themes in Luther's theology. In particular the real presence of Christ in the believer is highlighted.
This article deals with the book of Judges from an ethical perspective. The author writes from the conviction that Judges is rich in ethical insight even though there are not direct prescriptions by way of laws or rules of conduct. Judges deals with the community of faith as the place and context for moral formation. The concept of irony is worked with to indicate how life without God looks like.
Are Christians responsible for much anti-Semitism found in many societies? This article surveys Christian attitudes towards Judaism over the span of 2000 years.
The allusions to the Old Testament in the book of Revelation form a key to its interpretation. This article is a survey and evaluation of recent studies on the role of the allusions in how Revelation is to be interpreted.
This article considers some criticisms against the redemptive-movement hermeneutic. Should the redemptive intention in the Bible be taken beyond certain time-locked limits of the New Testament? Is it possible to take the redemptive intention of the New Testament beyond the Bible? What are the limits placed on our interpretation and application when we acknowledge the revelation in Jesus Christ as God's final revelation? The author responds to specific criticisms of Thomas Schreiner.
What is the current state of the evangelical movement? The article gives insight into the different groups that are part of the movement and indicates some of its distinctive features. The author notes its character as a protest and renewal movement within Christendom, the resulting combative mentality, its centres of dynamism, etc. The author also identifies two challenges: the need for self-definition and identifying of boundaries, and the need to maintain ecumenism and avoid fragmentation.
This article is the second part of a longer article. It summarizes the core beliefs of evangelicalism and their significance for the movement. These core beliefs include the authority of God exercised through Scriptures, the majesty of Jesus Christ in and through the cross, the lordship of the Holy Spirit, etc.
This article is a review of the influential work, Justification and Variegated Nomism, edited by D. A. Carson, Peter O'Brien, and Mark A. Seifrid. The volume concerns itself with the question whether E. P. Sanders got early Judaism right or wrong, and thus in general the book considers the New Perspective on Paul.
What does it mean that the final judgment will be according to works? This article analyzes the apostle Paul's different statements about the criteria by which the works of a person are measured in the last judgment. The study concludes that the same criteria applies to believers and unbelievers, i.e., the Torah as fulfilled by Jesus Christ. It is argued that the whole Torah is still valid in the time of the new covenant, but in a transformed and intensified way.
Does Jesus teach in Matthew 5:28 that sexual attraction should be viewed as sinful? This article takes a closer look at the immediate context of Matthew 5:28. The context indicates that Jesus is intensifying the application of the Torah. He does not, however, add restrictions on women's clothing. Jesus is holding men rather than women responsible for possible lust.
What is the connection between the ascension of Christ and the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost? The church fathers made use of the antithesis between descent and ascent, often found in Scripture, for their understanding of the relationship between Christ's ascension and the coming of the Spirit.
Is there a disparity between the Old and New Testaments on the doctrine of the invisibility of God? This article considers the evidence, suggesting to take seriously the Old Testament statements that God can be seen, and to reconsider what the New Testament passages (e.g., John 1:18, John 5:37, 1 John 4:12) claim when they refer to God's invisibility.
Was it compulsory for the earliest Christians in the book of Acts to share their possessions? This article considers this question in the light of passages like Acts 2:44-45 and Acts 4:32-35, which speak of sharing of possessions among the earliest believers. This article is a response to the view that Luke presents this practice as mistaken.
This article addresses the relationship between the church and Israel as it is reflected in the different views on Jesus as Messiah. The history of the early church reflects a vigorous debate between Jewish scholars and the church about the true identity of the Messiah. Probably the most well-known interaction from the patristic period is Justin Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho, who was the Jew from the second century.
What is the main focus of the book of Acts? In this article, Walton argues that the focus of Acts is God and his redemptive purposes being carried out. As evidence, Walton analyzes the subjects of clauses, sentences, and terms assuming divine action. He further considers the focus of the speeches and the development and growth of the mission in Acts.
This article responds to and interacts with Kevin Giles who wrote in the same journal about his concerns with American evangelicals' view of the Trinity and in particular the "subordination of the Son" to the Father. This article acknowledges some valuable criticisms made by Giles and his defense of the full equality of the trinitarian persons opposing hierarchical relations.
How does the Bible function in Christian spirituality and spiritual exercises? The article argues that the Bible's potential to facilitate an encounter with God is underestimated. The author reflects on the way Psalm 119 relates to the believer. The psalm is acknowledged as acting upon the reader and is not seen merely as a passive object of study. The article argues for a more central place for the Bible in spiritual practice and makes suggestions for how to put this into practice.
The thesis of this article is that a neglected area of the New Testament’s teaching on the cross is the imitation of Jesus and his cross. The author illustrates the negative effects of overlooking the imitation of the cross. He uses the work of Peter Bolt as his conversation partner and in particular the way that the call to take up the cross functions in Mark 13 and its literary context.
Was Gottschalk, the ninth-century monk of Orbais, standing alone in his preaching of the sovereignty of God? This article indicates that it was not the case that in a time when Semi-Pelagianism dominated, he stood alone. Investigation of eighth and early ninth-century literature reveals an influence of Pelagian and Semi-Pelagian soteriology.
Amyraldianism (following the teaching of Amyraldus/Amyraut) is often portrayed as a balanced alternative to both Calvinism and Arminianism. This article reviews the publication Christ for the World: Affirming Amyraldianism. This book is an Amyraldian commentary on developments in Reformed theology after the Synod of Dort.
This article examines the doctrine of Christ expressed in the songs of four contemporary worship songwriters: Matt Redman, Tim Hughes, [Martyn Layzell], and Paul Oakley. The author's thesis is that the songs do indeed focus on Jesus, but the Christology is very limited and poor. Insufficient attention is given to the doctrine of the Trinity.
What does it mean that man is called the image of God (Imago Dei)? What is the nature of the "image"? This article surveys three interpretations: the substantialist, relational, and vocational, and concludes that the vocational view reflects the biblical evidence best. The ethical implications flowing from this view are then considered.
How is work to be viewed? How do we evaluate the work done by either believers or unbelievers? This article argues that there is an uncomfortable relationship between British evangelicals and ordinary work, and wants to understand the reasons for this state of affairs. It also wants to point a way forward for a better development of a theology of work. This article focuses on the work done by unbelievers in the context of common grace.
Does the traditional antithesis between law and gospel indeed function in the Mosaic covenant? The article gives specific attention to the use of the contrast between the principles of inheritance by works and inheritance by grace through faith. Can it be argued that the Mosaic covenant is in a certain sense a republication of an original covenant of works?
How should the reference to bread in Matthew 6:11 and John 6:35 be best understood? This article argues that it is an error to presuppose that this is a prayer for physical bread. and wants to remind readers of the distinction between literal bread and its use as a metaphor. The author refers to texts like Deuteronomy 8:3 and Isaiah 55:1-4 as support of a metaphorical understanding.
What does 1 John 5:1 teach about regeneration? Does this text prove that regeneration precedes faith, and does it teach an order of salvation? This article argues from linguistic insights against such an interpretation, noting that it is questionable whether the tenses in 1 John 5:1 suggest any chronological or causal relationship between faith and regeneration. The distinctive and crucial role of faith in 1 John's theology is duly noted.