Articles

The Road Not Taken: Peter Martyr Vermigli and the Lost Cause of Catholic Reform

Article by   October 2014
As we commemorate the 497th anniversary of the Reformation this week, those who stop to think about the anniversary (too few of us, no doubt) will probably either celebrate it as the birthday of the Protestant churches, or lament it as the beginning of the great schism that still divides the western church today. We will think of such revolutionary figures as Luther and Calvin, men iconoclastic and charismatic enough to have whole traditions named after them. This way of thinking about the Reformation, though, is liable to blind us to its most significant feature: it was a reform movement, an attempt to purify and heal the Catholic Church of its corruptions continue

"Show Us How to Seek You": Discovering the Love of God in Terrence Malick's To the Wonder

Article by   October 2014
"What is this love that loves us?" asks Marina, the lead character, in one of the many voice-overs that stand in for dialogue in this spectral, mesmerizing, maddeningly unorthodox film. To the Wonder takes as its starting point this fundamental... continue

What's Your Worldview?

Article by   October 2014
James N. Anderson. What's Your Worldview? An Interactive Approach to Life's Big Questions. Wheaton, IL: Crossway. 112pp. $10.99To say that books on worldviews are something of a cottage industry in evangelical circles would immediately stand me in good stead for... continue

What Luther Says to this Confessional Age

Article by   October 2014
We live in a confessional age. Not in the good sense of, say, the Westminster Confession or of principled Presbyterianism. Rather, the grim cult of counterfeit authenticity seems to mean that every scoundrel and charlatan can find absolution for their sins simply by declaring them in public. We have come to expect this from Hollywood stars and politicians but it has started to make inroads into a Christianity which has been subject to the corrosive effects of sentimental emotivism and had its tastes shaped by an age which loves to excuse its excesses. continue

Hope and Healing

Article by   October 2014
The Bible provides numerous examples of God delivering his people from suffering, oppression, and violence. In Gen. 6-9, we read of God's judging the "violence" (6:11) of a world gone wrong, and through that judgment, delivering Noah and his family. The book of Exodus tells of God "remembering" His covenant and "hearing" (Ex. 2:23-24) the groans of His people suffering violence under the domineering hand of Egypt. God's people suffer, they cry out, and God hears. continue

The Briarpatch Gospel

Article by   October 2014
Shayne Wheeler. The Briarpatch Gospel: Fearlessly Following Jesus Into the Thorny Places. Tyndale Momentum, 2013. iii + 257 pp. $14.99.Shayne Wheeler has written a wonderfully challenging, encouraging, and deeply personal work of pastoral theology. The Briarpatch Gospel challenges believers to... continue

Deviant Calvinism

Article by   October 2014
Oliver Crisp, Deviant Calvinism: Broadening Reformed Theology. Minneapolis, Fortress Press, 2014, 260 pages, $27.99/£21.99Oliver Crisp has a deservedly high reputation for his clear expositions of Christian doctrine from an analytical and philosophical angle, notably in regard to the Incarnation, and... continue

An Interview with Oliver Crisp (Deviant Calvinism)

Article by   October 2014
This is Deviant Calvinism week. The author of this new book is Oliver Crisp and I'm delighted and incredibly grateful that he has taken the the time to be pestered with some questions about his new work. We have also provided a review of the book by Ref21 stalwart, Paul Helm. continue

Those Who Choose to Abuse

Article by   October 2014
As we mentioned in the last article, statistics point to the fact that the overwhelming majority of domestic violence victims are women. Conversely, the majority of documented perpetrators of domestic abuse are men. A number of studies have shown that anywhere from 22-33% of American women will be abused by an intimate partner in their lifetime. This means that abusers are not only men, but men that are known by the victims. continue

What do Systematic Theologians talk about?

Article by   October 2014
The short answer is that they talk about exactly the same things as Biblical Theologians. As we have already noted, however, while Biblical Theology traces the progressive revelation of the divine mind, pausing over the contribution of each individual era and each individual biblical writer, Systematic Theology assumes that salvation-history has come to an end and that in the Scriptures we now have God's last word (for the present). Its subject-matter, then, is 'the whole counsel of God'. continue

Protestant Liberalism in Modern American History

Article by   October 2014
David Hollinger, After Cloven Tongues of Fire: Protestant Liberalism in Modern American History. Princeton, Princeton University Press 2013, ix + 248pp. $24.99/£17.99The trajectory of mainline American religion has suffered significantly since their peak in the 1950s. Decreases in number of communicants... continue

Those Suffering Domestic Violence

Article by   October 2014
The month of October has been designated Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The goal of this month is to raise public awareness about domestic violence and to educate communities and individuals on how to recognize, prevent, and respond to domestic violence. This article is part two in a series on domestic violence. We began the series by defining domestic abuse, its widespread nature, and its threat to children, along with the frequency and duration of statistically documented cases of domestic abuse. In this article we will briefly discuss the victims and/or survivors of domestic abuse. continue

Biblical and Systematic Theology: Speaking from Different Premises

Article by   October 2014
The most obvious difference between Biblical Theology and Systematic Theology, as already noted, is that while the former adopts a chronological approach, tracing the history of revelation, Systematic Theology treats the Bible as a finished product in which God has spoken his last word. continue

Abraham Kuyper

Article by   October 2014
Jan De Bruijn. Abraham Kuyper: a Pictorial Biography. Grand Rapids, MI/ Cambridge, UK: Eerdmans, 2014, x + 418pp, $40.00/₤25.99From the cover of James Bratt's recent and fine biography, Abraham Kuyper's eyes look out at you and ask the question: 'Are... continue

What is Domestic Violence?

Article by   September 2014
The month of October has been designated Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The goal of this month is to raise public awareness about domestic violence and to educate communities and individuals on how to recognize, prevent, and respond to domestic violence. This article is the first in a series that will focus on the topic of domestic violence. For more on this issue, you can read Is It My Fault?: Hope and Healing for Those Suffering Domestic Violence, which is written by Justin and Lindsey Holcomb. continue

Fallen: A Theology of Sin

Article by   September 2014
Fallen: A Theology of Sin. Theology in Community. Edited by Christopher W. Morgan and Robert A. Peterson. Wheaton: Crossway, 2013. 320 pp. $19.99/£12.99One might not expect to walk away from a book on the theology of sin feeling very edified... continue

The Cure for Shame

Article by   September 2014
"Shame. Boatloads of shame. Day after day. More of the same. Blame. Please lift it off. Please take it off. Please make it stop." Those words are not just the lyrics to a famous Avett Brothers' song, they are also words under which a lot of us live. To live in this world is to experience shame. Boatloads of shame. continue

Systematic Theology, Volume 2

Article by   September 2014
Douglas F. Kelly. Systematic Theology, Grounded in Holy Scripture and Understood in Light of the Church, Volume Two: The Beauty of Christ: A Trinitarian Vision. Mentor, 2014. 567 pages. $39.99/£24.99A number of systematic theologies have appeared in recent years from... continue

The Problem of Theological Cataracts

Article by   September 2014
C. S. Lewis once famously said: "I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else." If, as Christians, we see everything through the lens of Holy Scripture, we can, by the grace of God, understand the world as it really is, rather than how it might appear on the surface. continue

Biblical versus Systematic Theology?

Article by   September 2014
Systematic Theology is often contrasted unfavourably with the relatively new discipline of Biblical Theology. The very terminology immediately sets Systematics at a disadvantage, as if Biblical Theology alone were 'biblical' and anything that sets out to be 'systematic' should be viewed with profound suspicion. continue

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