Borrowing from John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, this article encourages those who struggle with doubts to fix their attention on the promises of God’s Word.
Dr. Guinness demonstrates that resolving doubt leads to deeper and more mature faith.
This article provides clear biblical encouragement and advice to believers who struggle with doubt.
This article offers encouragement to those who are struggling with doubt, to direct their attention to the things that are certain and sure.
This article provides solid, biblical insight into worry, and concrete advice to fight against it in faith.
This article provides a brief meditation on Paul’s encouragement in Philippians 4:5b-7 to overcome anxiety by prayer.
This article addresses fear that is often stirred up by the media, and reminds of what believers ought to fear, and how to overcome wrong fears by faith.
Just like Timothy who was commanded to do the work of an evangelist, pastors must also do evangelism. How do they do that? This article suggests four ways in which pastors must carry out this work, starting with themselves.
Do you want to learn to evangelize? The book of Proverbs offers eight basic lessons on evangelism, which this article considers.
Has the church not lost repentance as one of the most important parts of its piety? This article addresses the question by briefly looking back to King David's life.
The article addresses a few themes from the account of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. These include being lured by the sinful luxuries of this world, and the need to be alert in the face of the impending judgment of God. Above all this, the article shows that it is by God's grace that some are left behind while others are swept away in judgment.
The article revisits the great sins of Sodom and Gomorrah, seeking to understand the nature of the sexual sins committed there. This is done as a warning and instruction to believers to teach them that environment does matter and what people desire in their hearts is of great importance. Main texts referenced include Genesis 19, Leviticus 18:22, and Leviticus 20:13.
The article deals with the main aspects of differences between the Roman Catholic, the Lutheran, Reformed (Anglican), and the Baptist views on the presence of Christ in the bread and wine of the Lord's Supper. The Catholic view is transubstantiation, while the Lutheran view is consubstantiation. The Reformed view is that of the real presence of Christ, without the need to identify his physical body in the Supper.
The author describes most of the lives of believers as closely associated with covenants in one way or another. He focuses on the community of believers who have to learn to keep the covenantal duty of living with others as brothers and sisters together in a covenant community. Other aspects of the covenant life include marriage and parenting.
The article provides a perspective on what it is to be a covenant community. This is applied to a typical congregation where the believers practically apply the view that as a covenant community they are to live and care for each other. This is supported by passages such as Romans 14:7-8 and Ephesians 4:25.
This article is introduced with the question, "Does God take risks?" The intention is to answer the basic question whether God changes his mind due to human influence (such as prayer) and therefore whether he absolutely knows the future. Open theism takes as one of its key texts Genesis 18:22-23. The article considers this passage and concludes that here God is condescending to our human weakness and frailty.
The article shows how the history of covenant theology extends beyond the Reformation, all the way back to the time of the early church.
The author reviews our understanding of a covenant. Involved in the analysis are comparisons with the present-day secular understanding of contracts and litigation and the sinfulness of humanity. The author finds an example of a covenant or contract in the one between the creator God and the created man, Adam and Eve, at the beginning of creation.
The author focuses on work ethic and traces the understanding of it from the time of the Reformation. He takes into consideration the reasons why the rise of capitalism has been attributed to a change brought about by the new view among Protestants of work ethic.
The article focuses on the ethics of work, citing laziness as one great sin of our day.
Martin Luther refuted the view that the true Christian calling involved becoming a monk. He began affirming the spiritual value of the ordinary profession as part of one's high calling. But the Christian church has since abused this teaching as well, and man is once again faced by his own greed versus a true godly vocation.
This brief account looks at the period in which Roman civilization ended with the fall of Rome to the barbarians. The subsequent period is known as the Dark Ages, which was short lived as the barbarians were also converted to Christianity, ushering in another historic period that has come to be known as the Medieval period.
This article concerns the covenant that God makes with Abraham after he returned from defeating the the kings of the east. It is an account that continued to unfold how the seed of the woman will triumph over the seed of the serpent. In Genesis 15, God strengthens the promise of this seed, although there is nothing yet to prove that the seed will come. The only thing Abraham holds on to is the promise of God.
The article provides a survey of a Christian thinker of the Middle Ages, Boethius. His contributions to Western civilization in general and to theology in particular are significant. One of the questions he had to address in his philosophical debates was the relationship between foreknowledge and freedom.
The article considers the threat posed by the worldview of posthumanism, a view that human beings should have the right to improve themselves in whatever way, especially scientific ways, such as genetics and genetic engineering. The article warns against this, noting that human beings must confine themselves to being image bearers of God.
The author attempts to summarize the gospel message according to Paul, as a message of the sacrifice of Christ for the sake of the propitiation of the wrath of God, and for reconciliation and redemption. This gospel message also highlights the aspect of justification by faith, Spirit-authored sanctification, and the glorification of believers.
This article looks at the life of Paul as the apostle to the Gentiles. The article explains his work, which includes the three missionary journeys he undertook in his calling. It also reflects on his crucial understanding of the promise of God to Abraham that pointed to the blessing of all nations. It was an understanding that drove him in his missionary journeys, along with much suffering for the gospel.
The author goes through the life of Abraham, in order to demonstrate how his faith in God is an example for those who believe today. Those who believe will take hold of the promises by faith and also get to receive the title of being Abraham's children, even though they have not obeyed the Law of Moses, and have sinned against God.
Our problem, this article says, is evil. It traces the origin of all evil in the world to the sin of Adam and Eve. Subsequently, it states that repentance and faith in Jesus Christ are the only remedy to this problem.
How can we understand the meaning of Hebrews 2:18? This article attempts to answer this question, focusing on the importance of experiencing suffering in the life of believers, which will be helpful in comforting and reaching out to others, just as Christ has learned empathy through what he suffered.
The author focuses on the promise of God in Genesis 3:15, where the curse and the blessing are introduced as operative for the rest of redemptive history. He cites key moments, especially in connection with the blessings, where he notes that the blessing as pronounced later to Abraham would provide a people, a place, and God's presence with his people.
The article struggles with the problem of the existence of evil in the world and presents it both as a Christian problem and as an atheistic problem. Amid the various perspectives, the author seeks a more God-centred perspective that will recognize that God has purposes beyond those that we can presently understand.
The article attempts to define and discuss the problem of evil, citing its existence in creation where an omniscient, omnipotent, and omnibenevolent God could have made certain it does not affect people, at least his chosen ones. In the discussion, the article engages the views of anti-theists, proponents of the free-will defense, and other Reformed theologians. The conclusion answers the question whether God would and did create a world containing evil.
The author gives a short discussion of the problem of evil, especially from a biblical perspective. In the discussion, the author deals with the church's description of it as privation and negation as well as (actual) privation. Despite its existence, the believer is expected to experience it and come out of it victorious.
While The Da Vinci Code is a work of fiction, many people believe it to be truth because Dan Brown makes some claims of truth in the book. As a result, some people now claim that the Bible has twisted the history of Jesus. In the end, the actual truth is confused with fiction, and many other deceptions about the truth. A few of them are outlined in this article.
This article addresses the important gift of discernment, particularly with reference to how believers are expected to handle such deceptive publications as The Da Vinci Code. Knowledge of the Word of God is a primary necessity for exercising this gift, but also a heart that is enabled by the Holy Spirit to be able to distinguish between what is right and what is wrong.
This article discusses the human sinful motives behind the Tower of Babel, which include pride, passion for power, and other sinful delights. The author contrasts Babel with Jerusalem, the call of Abram, and the day of Pentecost. His emphasis is on the contrast between two loves: love of self and love of others.
The author of this article looks at the spiritual background to The Da Vinci Code, noting that Dan Brown was advocating for believers to embrace "pre-Christian" symbols. The religious view he advocates is paganistic pantheism, which generally includes a number of cultic groups and religions including Freemasons, Gnostics, magicians, satanists, and Hinduism.
"Let the buyer beware." This is the warning that is contained in this article for those who would read The Da Vinci Code. Some of the problems pointed out are the twisting of truths with regard to Jesus' alleged marriage to Mary Magdalene, the fallacy of the woman perceived to be Mary Magdalene in Leonardo Da Vinvi's portrait The Last Supper, and the gnostic texts discovered at Nag Hammadi.
The author of this article pinpoints a small sample of erratic statements in Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code. Some of the errors have to do with the alleged changing of the biblical text by Constantine, the exclusion from the New Testament of a vast number of about eighty gospels, and the alleged omission from the Bible of Jesus' human traits.
How do we explain the Trinity? Or how does one understand the statement, "God is one being in three persons"? These are the different questions that this article attempts to answer in detail on the relation between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
The author explains that God should be understood as a monarchical God (one ruler) while on the other hand can be understood as the Triune God. One therefore has to correctly understand the distinctions between the persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) as well as the lack of distinction in their essence.
The author revisits the crucial story of Noah.
This article focuses on the importance of taking time to consider the weightiness of sin and its consequences. The article traces how sin affected Old Testament figures such as Adam and Noah, as well as the flood victims. From the flood, Noah was delivered but not on account of inherent qualities in him.
The article addresses the matter of lying. This sin stems right at the start of creation with the lies of Adam.
The author discusses the difficulties brought to the church in North America by both modernism and postmodernism. While the fundamentalists did well to stand well against modernists, the subsequent generation of fundamentalists and evangelical fundamentalists are giving in to the persuasions of postmodernism in very subtle ways. This has negatively affected the effectiveness of the gospel they preach.
This article evaluates the historical differences that emerged between the fundamentalists and the evangelicals in North American church history. The author notes that it was the uncompromising zeal of the fundamentalists that won them the position of being better able to guard the truths of the Christian faith.
The author brings forth important lessons from the Christian life of J. Gresham Machen. The godly values identified in Machen's life include honesty, building Christian institutions to preserve the heritage of the gospel, and unashamed confrontations with the ungodly teachings of our age.
The article looks at the history of the church in North America, especially the effect of liberalism on the church. In this analysis it focuses on the nature of reactions by conservatives. An observation is made that over time, the general membership of the church has not taken seriously the value of doctrinal confession.
The author argues against the liberal views that the Bible is a collection of myths or that it is not a historical account. The author uses the knowledge of literature experts such as C.S. Lewis and Auerbach to demonstrate why the Bible cannot be viewed as other types of common literature of their times.
This article traces God's promise of a king to his people, Israel. The account shows the difference between God's plan and the people's expectation of what a king should be like.
The author shows believers the difficulty of loving Jesus and his glory more and more in a sinful world in which believers are constantly drawn towards the attractions of the world.
The author attempts to explain what "creation ex nihilo" would mean to today's believer. This sovereign act of God means that believers are to worship him constantly as the Creator.
The author discusses the teachings that deny the virgin birth of Christ, identifying them as heretical. The author argues that Scripture witnesses sufficiently to the virgin birth.
The article traces the meaning of the phrase "the fullness of time," which relates to the various times in which God fulfilled his promises and will fulfill remaining promises to his people.
The author of this article reminds believers of the right attitude they should have as they wait for the second coming of Jesus Christ.
The author attempts to emphasize the importance of the Reformed doctrines of grace. He focuses specifically on the teaching of total depravity. It is based on Scripture's teaching that God saved us while we were yet dead in our trespasses (Ephesians 2:1). In the final place, the author emphasizes the importance of equipping believers with these teachings so that they can be able to teach them to others.
This article makes use of the method called "via negativa" (the way of negation), which is a way of defining things by stating what they are not. Some of the statements made in this article are that Reformed theology is not a set of disconnected ideas, but is systematic; Reformed theology is not anthropocentric, but theocentric; it is not anti-catholic, where "catholic" refers to catholic Christianity.
The cults are "the unpaid bills of the church." By this statement, the author places some blame for the proliferation of cults today on the church's failure to answer some of the most pertinent questions of our day. When Christians appear to be unable to make their stand in some of the crucial matters of man's existence, the devil takes advantage.
It is becoming increasingly difficult to use the word "cult" from a Christian point of view. This is because those who have been lured by the culture of relativism (including Christians) have developed their own definition of a cult, which is identified as a religious group that stands on the truths of the Word of God.
The article handles the important issue of being able to identify false teachings and false religions that lure people from salvation in Christ. Knowledge of Scripture is one good tool and defence weapon against these false teachings. The other is the testimony of the assurance of salvation in the redemptive work of Christ.
The author asks this crucial question in the face of a lot of false teachings about the identity of Christ. With reference to 1 John 4:1-6, believers are encouraged to distinguish between the testimony of the Spirit of God (who speaks the truth about Christ) and false claims and teachings of the ungodly.
In this article, the love for God shown by those who were beheaded for their faith is compared to the selfish kind of love that Christians tend to live out today. The article therefore encourages us to lay down our lives for others by way of showing the love of Christ. In this reflection 1 John 3:16-18 is instrumental.
The author attempts to communicate the deep truths of the love of God for his children by considering the love that he as a father has for his own children.
This article bemoans the prevailing anti-intellectual trend in today's popular culture as one of the reasons for the rise of cultic groups that lead people astray from true teachings of the Word of God. Other factors mentioned include the hyper-individualistic culture, as well as the coming of the internet. To recover from this, believers must regain the desire and the ability to think, loving God with all their heart and mind.
The article identifies religious liberty as one of the main causes for the gradual rise of cults in the United States. Though religious liberty has allowed Christians to confess their faith without fear, it is also the gateway through which cultic worship has entered the American social system. Two specific examples of cultic movements have thus emerged are given, namely, the Mormons and the Jehovah's Witnesses.
The author identifies apostasy and moral degeneration as some of the most important signs that a church has ceased to be a church. The author also adds descriptions of what are called cultic churches, whose confessions may go against the faithful traditional confessions of the church as defined by the Word.
The author unfolds his experiences of his meetings and discussions with various members of some sects, such as the Jehovah's Witnesses, whose main error is that they deny the deity of Jesus Christ. He warns that those who have developed such teachings and led many astray will not escape the punishment of God.
The author reviews the publication by Steve Chalke and Alan Mann on their view of retributive justice. He rejects their views that God's wrath and punishment have no place in the preaching of the gospel, but rather love. The author emphasizes that the love of God is fully demonstrated in his giving his Son to die for us while we were yet sinners.
What does it mean that believers rely on Christ as their advocate and atoning sacrifice? This article responds to this question, explaining that Christ is the one who has turned away the wrath of God against the believer. In the rest of their lives, believers live by acknowledging their dependence on God's grace demonstrated in Christ.
What does limited atonement mean? This article attempts to provide an answer to this question.
What did Christ accomplish for us by his active obedience and passive obedience? This article notes four things in answer to this question: Christ accomplished expiation, propitiation, reconciliation, and redemption. In the process, the author attempts to explain these terms and their individual meanings within the context of Christ's atonement.
The article provides a reminder to believers on the dangers and difficulties involved in the work of discipleship and evangelism. This includes the importance of understanding the depths of the grace of God towards sinners who may still continue to sin even after being converted, and indeed the believer's attitude towards sin.
The author provides a short history of Patrick, known as the "apostle of Ireland," indeed one of the most successful missionaries to Ireland. The article draws important lessons from the life of Patrick, including Christ's command to "love your enemies and do good to those who hate you" (Luke 6:27).
Based on Peter's prophetic announcements in 2 Peter 3:10, the author attempts to prepare believers for the end time when the Lord Jesus will return to take his people. The article emphasizes the fact that it will not just be a quiet end: it will be disastrous for those who are not in the Lord, but joyful for those who are in the Lord, who are already anticipating meeting the Lord.
In this article, the author provides a simplified understanding of christology on the subject of the divinity and humanity of Christ as expressed by the Council of Chalcedon in 451. In the process the author gives background developments that led to Chalcedon, especially the Alexandrian and Antiochene views of christology.
The article provides a short biographical account of Augustine (354-430). It touches on, among other things, his childhood, parents, schooling, and training, till his conversion. Some of the confrontations he made in his search for truth and in his teachings include those with Manichaeism, Pelagianism, and Donatism.
The author provides a preview of the Pelagian controversy from early church history, which involved Augustine and Pelagius (a later development of Pelagianism became known as semi-Pelagianism). The controversy in question centres around the nature of the fall of man, saving grace, and the will of man.
The article calls the church to realize the extent of the infiltration of popular culture and hence ungodly values in the church, especially with respect to sexual morals.
What does it mean that a believer dies to the flesh in Christ and lives to righteousness in Christ? The article addresses this question by referring mainly to 1 Peter 2:24 and Colossians 3:1-11. It then discusses what should be the Christian's response in view of this gracious transformation in his life.
How do believers understand and carry out their role in the church? This article discusses a proper perspective on individual ministry, and what ministry involves.
This article discusses the major works of B.B. Warfield, a reformed scholar who specialized in apologetics.
This is a short biographical account of the life of reformed theologian Benjanim B. Warfield and his commitment to defending the faith.
This is an article about the theologian B. B. Warfield, who was a specialist in apologetics.
This article evaluates modern methods of evangelism which seek to contextualize Jesus. Modern pop culture "celebrates" Jesus in many ways - but is this biblical?
What significance does Christ's resurrection have in God's redemptive plan?
Devils and damned men have knowledge of God, and yet this knowledge is different from the saving faith of the righteous.
Why do we not delight in the Pentateuch? Is it just a matter of preference? What should our perspective toward the Pentateuch be?
What should a believer's reaction to suffering look like? This article discusses James' exhortation in James 1:2 which encourages Christians to rejoice in trials. This joy acts as a testimony to the world of the presence of the Lord Jesus in the believer's life. To withdraw and dwell in self-pity is to sin against God, who has blessed us with many things in this life and the next.
What kind of worship does God require? The author of this article emphasizes that worship should be God-centered, with everything in the service pointing towards God. Indeed, there is also an element of individual experience of God's presence in the worship service, but this must not be the central focus.
This article revisits the history of liturgical worship in the Reformed tradition from the time of the Reformation through the various ages. The author highlights differences in how worship was viewed in the Roman Catholic, Lutheran, and later Presbyterian Churches. The author commends the early Reformed Churches' principle of conforming to the Word of God in regard to worship.
Nowadays, the question of how we should worship is a hotly contested issue in churches. The author of this article emphasizes that how believers worship should be determined by Who they worship, and not by personal taste. Believers should offer worship that is befitting to a holy and awesome God.
This author laments the fact that most modern churches are falling into the trap of seeking to please people in their worship rather than conforming worship to God's demands. Worship is becoming increasingly man-centered.
This article addresses some of the arminian doubts concerning the teaching of the perseverence of the saints. The author refers to the Canons of the Synod of Dort (1618-1619), focusing on the means of grace that God has provided so that believers might be ble to persevere. These means of grace include prayer, the Holy Spirit, the proclamation of Scripture, and the sacraments.
The article explains the teaching of the perseverance of the saints. There are some verses in Scripture that seem to contradict each other on this topic. These verses must be read and understood in their proper context. Examining these verses, the author affirms the perseverance of the saints as being of great comfort to the believer.
Perseverence of the saints is not something that believers have to do or achieve on their own. It is God who makes believers capable of finishing the race of perseverence.
Believers may easily become distracted from focusing on Christ as they face day-to-day challenges in their earthly calling. Hebrews 12:1-2 reminds believers of the need to have their actions, hopes and motives guided by a focus on Jesus.
What is the nature of God's grace? The article describes the differences between God's common grace and God's special grace, in line with the reformed teaching of election. Common grace is extended to all men, but does not lead to salvation. Special grace is extended to the elect, and leads to righteousness in Jesus Christ, and thus salvation.
How should we interpret the book of Revelation? This article evaluates five approaches to interpreting this book.
Why did God give us the book of Revelation? God gave the book of Revelation so that Christians would see their situation in its true perspective, know the enemy, see Christ in His triumph, display the beauty of the church, and receive encouragement to endure, remain pure, and witness.
This article shows that church discipline is a sign of the true church, and that God uses it to promote godliness in His children.
The Epistle to the Hebrews was written to encourage Jewish believers who had professed faith in Christ not to backslide from Him in order to return to the still impressive Temple rituals of pre–A.D. 70 Judaism.
"You want to know what your problem is? You don’t love Jesus enough. I know this not because I know you, but because I know me. I’ve got the same problem. My wife has the same problem, as do my kids. The sheep in my flock suffer from the same problem". This article looks at the relation of love for God and sanctification. The author also discusses seeking God and our holiness, and holiness in society and culture.
Does the fact that the old covenant is the old covenant mean that the new covenant was “plan b”? The answer is no. God did not make a mistake with the old covenant. This article looks at the relation of the old covenant to the new covenant (the relationship between the Old Testament and the New Testament).
Will this earth be thrown on the scrap heap? This article looks at creation, redemption and consummation, and the relation of this world and the new heaven and earth. The author also discusses the curse on the earth, and the fall of creation and the work of Jesus Christ. Romans 8:18-25 is an important passage in this article.
A deeply distressed father sat for two weeks in a pediatric ICU, watching his three-year-old son slowly die. During those two weeks he read through, quite surprisingly, a book on the Gospel. He later wrote to me, “I want to say to you the Gospel really is for real life.” This article is about sin and the forgiveness of sin.
Cardinal Robert Bellarmine (1542–1621), Pope Clement VIII’s personal theologian and one of the most able figures in the Counter-Reformation movement within sixteenth-century Roman Catholicism, once wrote: “The greatest of all Protestant heresies is _______ .” What do you think he said? This article is about assurance of faith (assurance of salvation).
The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit has a perfect coincidence of will and purpose. They have a covenant of redemption in which they made promises to one another, and in which their different tasks in salvation is distinguished but not separated. This article specifically also looks at the role of the Holy Spirit in the covenant of redemption.
This article is an overview of the church history of the 4th Century A.D.
This article looks at the supremacy of Christ, especially in the book of Hebrews. The author also looks at the new covenant as being better than the old covenant (relation Old Testament and New Testament): it is more inclusive (it includes Gentiles); it has a better Mediator; a better High Priest; a better King; and a better revelation of God.