But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

Reformed Forum - Apologetic Report
Thursday, 05 July 2018 22:41

Crossing the Finish Line

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In High School, I ran track. I struggled with endurance, as I was born with athletically induced asthma. There were times when the asthma seemed to go away. However, it always seemed to worsen when I competed. On one occasion, in the middle of a 5000m race, my lungs felt like they were going to...

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Thursday, 10 May 2018 20:32

The Hope of Forgiveness

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I recently asked a group of church members if they had ever struggled with assurance of salvation. There was an overwhelming affirmation that all had struggled in the quest for that sweet subjective assurance for which believers often long in their souls. This is not at all a strange thing in the...

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Sunday, 15 April 2018 22:05

God’s Metrics

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God’s metrics are not our metrics. The way in which we seek to measure fruitfulness and faithfulness is often quite skewed. No one understood the issue of faithfulness and fruitfulness so well as the great Apostle Paul. In 1 Corinthians 3, he first explained the nature of a fruitful Gospel...

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Monday, 02 April 2018 20:53

It Only Takes One

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Sometimes believers mistakenly conclude that God is stricter and more swift to bring judgment in the Old Testament era than He is in the New. This is, in part, an understandable conclusion. There is a sense in which God’s judgments seem to be suspended on account of the atoning death of...

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Saturday, 24 March 2018 22:41

The Glory of the Son

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Jonathan Edwards, in Notes on Scripture, left us with one of the most penetrating meditations on the glory of the Son of God at the transfiguration. He wrote:

“’But were eyewitnesses of his majesty,’ etc. They, the apostles, had not only ‘heard’ him say that...

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Tuesday, 20 March 2018 05:06

From the Sea to the Conquest

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There may not be any better theologian who masters the art of viewing the overarching biblical story of redemption than that of G.K. Beale. Every time I read his New Testament Biblical Theology, my mind is filled with renewed astonishment at the way in which Jesus came to fulfill everything...

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Monday, 05 March 2018 08:03

The Sickness Substituting Savior

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Sin and misery are the two categories by which we frame everything that plagues us in our daily experiences as fallen image bearers. By one act of disobedience, Adam brought all of us “into an estate of sin and misery” (WSC 17). Additionally, these two categories help us to better...

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Tuesday, 20 February 2018 04:02

Planning, Planting and Pastoral Ministry

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My dad carried a little note pad with him throughout the entirety of my childhood. I watched him write down what he had to accomplish and then watched as he systematically did all that he had planned to do. I never asked where he learned to do this. He would often tell me that so much of life...

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Wednesday, 07 February 2018 21:40

Which World View?

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Many have written books, essays, articles and posts about the role that Christians are to play in the transformation of the current world with its politics, literature, art, music, education, etc. The variation of opinions leaves many believers confused as to where they are to place the better part...

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Tuesday, 30 January 2018 10:42

Calmer Than You Are

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The Bible everywhere commends patience, gentleness, quietness and kindness. Though Jesus overthrew tables in the Temple, in righteous anger–and drove out the moneylenders with a whip–Scripture primarily characterizes him as being “gentle and lowly in heart” (Matt. 11:29)....

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Friday, 26 January 2018 08:42

Keeping the Cross in Focus

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John Calvin, in his commentary on Galatians, wrote, “Let those who would discharge aright the ministry of the gospel learn, not merely to speak and declaim, but to penetrate into the consciences of men, to make them see Christ crucified, and feel the shedding of his blood.”1

Wha...

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Wednesday, 24 January 2018 22:26

The Mechanistic Church

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Many wrongly view the local church as a social society that exists to meet their needs or desires. On the contrary, the church exists to bring glory to God, to spread and defend the Gospel, to build up and equip the saints unto mutual edification in love and to carry out the good works for which...

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Monday, 22 January 2018 11:20

Faith to Dry Up Puddles?

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In his autobiography, Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners, John Bunyan recalled a time in his life when he sought to test whether or not he had true faith. He stood in front of a puddle to see whether or not he could perform a miracle and make the puddle dry up. As he stood there, he...

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Friday, 12 January 2018 20:49

The Doubting Believer

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Fifteen to twenty years ago, prominent figures in the missional movement began saying things like, “Our churches have to be safe places for doubters,” or “You should feel like you can come to our church with all of your doubts.” I always felt somewhat uncomfortable whenever...

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Friday, 05 January 2018 02:05

The John Murray Collection

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I was weaned on the writings of the members of the original faculty of Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA. The older I get, the more I realize how much I especially owe to the work of the late Professor John Murray. Murray served as the professor of systematic theology at...

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Sunday, 31 December 2017 21:41

The Genesis of Theology

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For those who have decided to go back to Genesis at the beginning of 2018 as you restart your Bible reading plan, here are a few theological themes that emerge when we meditate on the opening two chapters of the Bible in light of the fullness of biblical revelation:

A Theology of Creation and New...

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Wednesday, 13 December 2017 21:33

The Pastoral Year in Review

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At the end of each year, I draft a summary of all of the preaching, teaching, visitation, writing, counseling, speaking, church outreach, ecclesiastical meetings and other labors in which I have been pastorally engaged in over the course of the year. This summary then goes out to our...

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Tuesday, 12 December 2017 20:54

The Grace of Confessing Sin

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“He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy” (Prov 28:13). The Scriptures explicitly teach that the confession of sin is one of the most important aspects of the Christian life. Nevertheless, in our day, it...

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Monday, 04 December 2017 09:32

On Being a Lifelong Learner

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Over the years, I have heard many professing Christians say that they don’t read very much. This has to be one of the most discouraging things that a pastor can hear a Christian admit. It may only be more disheartening to hear young men complain about how much they have to study in seminary....

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Tuesday, 28 November 2017 22:26

The Judgment-Mercy of God

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Whenever some particular natural disaster occurs–e.g. an earthquake, hurricane, Tsunami, etc.–a segment of Christians vocalize their opinion that the particular disaster was God’s specific judgment on a specific people for a specifically egregious sin. As soon as these...

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Sunday, 12 November 2017 22:10

The Social Media Echo Chamber

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Social media parlance and procedure are constantly evolving. Phraseology and expectations are mysteriously codified into the minds of the masses. In the social media echo chamber, parameters develop progressively and often imperceptibly. Paranoia and subtweets, expectations and ultimatums,...

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Wednesday, 01 November 2017 02:14

When Speaking About Jesus’ Bride

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It has become all too common for men and women to attack the church for all of the ways in which they believe that the church has failed. Almost every day professing believers rant online about the failures of “the evangelical church,” “the Reformed church,” “the...

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Tuesday, 24 October 2017 21:01

The Prophets and the Prophet

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In Miscellanies 1044, Jonathan Edwards made the following profound observation about the contrast between the mediated authority with which the Old Testament prophets spoke the word of God and the immediate authority with which Christ spoke the word of God:

“The ancient prophets, when...

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Monday, 23 October 2017 23:23

Criticizing Our Camp

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As we make our way through the Gospel records, we find that Jesus frequently warned and criticized both his opponents and his disciples. This is a point of no small significance for those of us who live in a time when, at every level of society, men tend to focus exclusively on the error of their...

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Thursday, 12 October 2017 02:16

Doctrine, Denominations and Division

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The 20th Century will be likely be remembered as the Century of ecclesiastical ecumenism. The 21st Century is shaping up to follow suit–not simply because of a widespread desire for co-belligerency, but on account of a doctrinal reductionism that seeks to dilute Christianity down to the most...

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