Karl Barth (pronounced “Bart”) was, without question, one of the most interesting theologians of the 20th century. Certainly he wrote more than many of the rest combined. Originally trained in German liberal theology and higher criticism, he eventually reacted and made a sharp break back towards orthodox Christianity, reasserting the transcendent reality of God over and against the liberals who … Continue reading "A Taste of Karl Barth as His Best"
[For the first of my two “union with Christ”-focused eternal security essays, I will argue that salvation can be lost. In the next post I will argue that it cannot, and leave you readers to judge.] Against Eternal Security: Union with Christ, Tended by the Father “You have fallen away from grace!”[1. Galatians 5:4b. I … Continue reading "In Christ, Out of Christ? Against Eternal Security, from a Union with Christ Perspective"
The question of whether or not people can “lose” their salvation, to the extent that this language even makes sense, has been traditionally controversial. In the time in between the completion of the New Testament and, say, St. Augustine, competing views on how salvation works, who will enjoy it, and how we truly receive it proliferated. Augustine wrote … Continue reading "In Christ, Out of Christ? Two Essays on "Losing" Salvation"
[“Glimpses: Seeing Christ before Christ” is an ongoing series consisting of brief reflections on places in the Old Testament that the light of Christ can be seen.] Today I was reading Genesis 50:15-26 and I noticed something exciting. At the conclusion of the long struggle of Joseph’s story, his brothers come before him in fear, barely hoping on … Continue reading "Glimpses: Joseph and Jesus Say "Fear Not""
(Before I say anything, I just want to point that I would never actually condone hating anyone, Donald Trump included, even usually in jest. But it was the best title idea I had.) I believe that Donald Trump is an awful person, doesn’t know what he would really be doing in the White House, and has … Continue reading "Love the Trumpers, Hate the Trump"
Here are the major perspectives on baptism, what it is and does, within Christianity, really briefly: Baptist (aka Zwinglian) Baptism is purely symbolic. It does not do anything except make a public statement about what your new identity in Christ. It comes after salvation and plays no role in the process. It should be by full immersion, and … Continue reading "60 Second Overview of Perspectives on Baptism"
What is a Sunday morning church service for? As Christians, we meet together on the first day of every week, the day of Christ’s resurrection. We sing songs, hear preaching, and (hopefully) take Communion. But why? What is the purpose and goal of this meeting? To many people, our gathering together as the Church on Sunday is … Continue reading "Church Is for the Church"
What is a hipster, really? The Google definition is “a person who follows the latest trends and fashions, especially those regarded as being outside the cultural mainstream,” but if hipster culture could be easily represented by a dictionary definition it wouldn’t be very hipster. People have lots of different ideas about what being hipster means, … Continue reading "The God of Hipsters"
As many of you know, I’m in college right now. I’m also happily married. In fact, I can’t imagine doing my adult life single. Several other young couples seem to feel the same way, and I pray God blesses them. Marriage truly is a wonderful gift, and a powerful sign of the relationship between Christ … Continue reading "Don't Forget that Celibacy Is an Option"
If you’re not familiar with the term ordo salutis, it is Latin and means “order of salvation,” and is basically a framework for laying out the different parts and events of salvation in order. There are two common views on the ordo salutis, a Calvinistic one and an Arminian one. Here’s the a short version of the most common layout, … Continue reading "An Evangelical Calvinist Ordo Salutis"