In Screwtape’s second letter, he recounts the unfortunate development that the “patient” has become a Christian. We might think of this as their complete defeat. They don’t, however, see it that way. The demons maintain hope that they can destroy this man’s soul. Let’s put the question of eternal security to the side: we might … Continue reading "Screwtape Stings: The Convert's Pride"
If you’ve ever talked to broadly conservative Christians in the US about politics, you’re likely to have heard the claim the title of this post refers to. Skeptical of government welfare programs, they often argue that charity—meeting the needs of the poor—is not the government’s job. The government has other duties, like justice and national … Continue reading "Is Charity the Church's Job?"
Something occurred to me last night when I was reading Herman Bavinck on the infra/supralapsarian debate in classical Calvinism. (‘Twas a pretty good read, by the way. Bavinck is probably the best that classical, federal Reformed theology has to offer.) A strange dilemma seems to appear in the Calvinist doctrine of unconditional, individual election. Specifically, the relation between … Continue reading "A Riddle of Love and Election"
The title says it all. Here they are in no particular order with no particular rhyme or reason (all of tweetable length). No matter what the topic, there is a Christian way of thinking. When we forget this, or more commonly never learn it to begin with, we mess up politics, theology, and so many … Continue reading "Caleb's Rules of Theological Debate"
One of the primary goals of Evangelical Calvinism is to further reform the Reformed tradition. As I mentioned the other day, the Reformation will never be truly over, and EC focuses on what work still needs to be done. And if we’re going to try to keep reforming the Reformation, we might find it useful to extend the iconic Five … Continue reading "Evangelical Calvinism: I Suggest Four New Solas"
God’s wrath is of love. This is not something we normally think about, to be sure, but according to the Scriptures God’s wrath is in fact a function of His love, something He exhibits out of love. This is something which struck me a couple weeks ago when I read this text for a Sunday … Continue reading "The Loving God of Wrath and Covenant"
I was reading 1 Corinthians 13 the other day and learned something which I did not know. Apparently, all (or most?) of the descriptions of love are verbs in the Greek. Phrases rendered like “Love is kind” could be rendered ultra-literally as “Love kinds” or more dynamically as “Love acts kindly.” Love is active throughout … Continue reading "Love Is War"
Once upon a time, the Twelve Apostles (including Matthias) came together under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to write the Apostles’ Creed as the core of Christian belief. At least, so the story goes. While historically it’s probably not true, it cannot be denied that the substance of the Apostles’ Creed goes way back. … Continue reading "Apostles' Creed: I Believe in God"
Kill the miracle child. That was God’s demand to Abraham. An old man was told to take his young son, whom he had never thought would be conceived and waited patiently for years to see be born, plunge a knife into him, and burn his body. All of this for a God who had already … Continue reading "Abraham's Choice"
As Christians, we will always, until our resurrection and glorification, still be growing up. We have been born again, and after every birth one remains an infant for quite some time. The thing about the new birth is that, being a reality of the Holy Spirit acting upon our minds and hearts, it doesn’t always lead to … Continue reading "The Father Loves Baby Steps"