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

Dr. Reluctant - Apologetic Report
Wednesday, 14 August 2019 09:39

Jeremiah’s Great Eschatological Vision (Pt. 3) Featured

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Part Two

The Guarantee of the Lord of Creation and Providence

Returning to where we left off in Jeremiah 31, after Jeremiah has revealed a New covenant to replace the Mosaic covenant, he is given revelation which underlines its validity.

Thus says the LORD, Who gives the sun for a light by day, the...

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Wednesday, 07 August 2019 05:49

Jeremiah’s Great Eschatological Vision (Pt.2) Featured

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Part One

The Locus Classicus of the New Covenant

Then we arrive at the prophecy about the New covenant (Jer. 31:31-34).  The verses are immediately followed by a Divine guarantee of future fulfillment (Jer. 31:35-37).  So it behooves us to look at it carefully:

Behold, the days are coming,...

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Wednesday, 31 July 2019 05:49

Jeremiah’s Great Eschatological Vision (Pt.1) Featured

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Excerpts from the book The Words of the Covenant: A Biblical Theology  (forthcoming)

As far as biblical covenantalism goes, the prophecies in Jeremiah 30 through 33, supported by chapters 34 and 35 are critical.[1]  After the prophet is heard in his own right, the covenantal picture that...

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Wednesday, 24 July 2019 05:25

The ‘Structure’ of Biblical Covenantalism Featured

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I was thinking about how one might visualize “Biblical Covenantalism.”  Traditional Dispensationalism has its seven dispensations; Progressive Dispensationalism its four.  But BC does not regard dispensations as basic to the system.  That is to say, dispensations do not...

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Review of Michael Behe, Darwin Devolves: The New Science About DNA That Challenges Evolution (New York: HarperOne, 2019), 342 pages, hdbk. 

The author of this new book is well known for his earlier works Darwin’s Black Box and The Edge of Evolution.  In the former book Michael Behe...

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Friday, 12 July 2019 03:24

Jeremiah and Covenant

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Another excerpt from The Words of the Covenant: A Biblical Theology

A Concern for God’s Covenants  

The prophet Jeremiah is certainly concerned about covenant.  He refers constantly to the Mosaic covenant (e.g. Jer.11:1-12), especially as understood in Deuteronomy.  But...

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This is an older post which I have taken the opportunity to revise and update, hopefully in light of more mature thinking.

A Little Back-Story

As many of my readers will know, I have spent a lot of time and energy trying to place Dispensational theology on what I believe is a more secure...

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Wednesday, 19 June 2019 10:58

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt.6)

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Part Five

The Kingdom of God and the New Heaven and New Earth

The prediction of a new heaven and a new earth seems to throw a spanner in the works of those interpreters who think they see a kingdom-age after the second coming of Christ but before the New Creation.  I think McClain is right in...

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Wednesday, 12 June 2019 09:30

The “Day of the Lord” in the Old Testament

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The Day of the LORD in the Old Testament[1]

     The expression “the Day of the Lord” is sometimes thought to refer to the time of the end of this age.[2]  Unquestionably, there are passages which do refer to the eschaton, and we shall look at them, but not every...

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Wednesday, 05 June 2019 04:25

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt. 5)

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Part Four

God and Israel: A Special Bond

Isaiah 54 is a reminder to Israel that she bears a special relationship to Yahweh, who is both her Redeemer and Husband (Isa. 54:5).  This role of husband has been seen already in Hosea (2:16), and will be repeated in Jeremiah (Jer. 3:14; 31:32).  It...

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Friday, 17 May 2019 09:45

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt.4)

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Part Three

The Suffering Servant

God’s Servant reappears in Isaiah 52:13-53:12. This passage is of great significance because in it the Holy Spirit puts emphasis not on the reign of Messiah (if I may at this place call Him that), but upon His sufferings.  It is a singular fact that the Old...

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A Review of J. P. Moreland, Scientism and Secularism, Wheaton: Crossway, 2019, 222 pages, pbk

J. P. Moreland is a seasoned Christian philosopher who has provided the Church with some very good tools in defense of the Faith and the Christian Worldview.  He has been Professor of Philosophy at...

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Tuesday, 30 April 2019 08:55

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt.3)

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Part Two

The Intertwining of the Covenants: A Little Summary of the Coming Kingdom

In these kinds of passages Isaiah presents a picture of the future kingdom of the Branch that is glorious in many respects.  It is fair and just and safe and beautiful.  After the initial battles, there will...

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Friday, 19 April 2019 08:13

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt. 2)

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Part One

Isaiah 11

A great monarch, called the “Branch” (Isa. 11:1. Cf. 4:2) will be possessed of the Holy Spirit (11:2).  His wisdom and justice will be equal to Yahweh (11:2-4).  Already Isaiah has taught us that this person will be miraculously conceived by a virgin (7:14 cf....

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Wednesday, 10 April 2019 05:04

Covenant in Isaiah (Pt. 1)

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This post and those to follow are extracts from a draft chapter in the book ‘The Words of the Covenant: A Biblical Theology’ Vol. 1 (forthcoming d.v.)

The prophet Isaiah prosecuted his ministry between around 755 to 685 B.C.[1]  Isaiah has a lot to say about both the developing...

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Wednesday, 03 April 2019 05:55

God and Time (Pt. 2)

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Part One

Carl Henry proposes the following view of God’s relationship to time:

The biblical view it seems to me, implies that God is not in time, that there is no succession of ideas in the divine mind, that time is a divine creation concomitant with the origin of the universe, that God...

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Wednesday, 27 March 2019 04:52

God and Time (Pt.1)

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The well-known biblical scholar James Barr, in his book Biblical Words for Time, wrote that the dispute about whether God is timelessly eternal or eternally time-bound cannot be decided by going to a Hebrew and Greek lexicon and looking at the terms.  The evangelical scholar Carl Henry claimed...

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Wednesday, 20 March 2019 08:03

How Might We Glorify God in His Attributes? (2)

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Part One

As we contemplate God’s perfections, we need to pay attention to what God has disclosed about Himself, linking these qualities together as they are linked together in His person.  The perspectival aspect that is so important to grasp when we are dealing with the attributes should...

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Wednesday, 13 March 2019 09:03

How might we glorify God in His Attributes? (1)

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Calvin on God’s Powers

John Calvin’s treatment of Psalm 145 offers some great ruminations about the attributes of God.  The psalm can be broken down into three parts:

Verses 1-3 are David on his own speaking of the greatness of God celebrating God’s praise.

Verses 4-9 speak...

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Wednesday, 06 March 2019 07:07

Recommended Books for Studying Calvinism

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Having been asked to recommend a few books on Calvinism I thought it might make a good post at Dr Reluctant.  I myself am about as much a modified Calvinist as I am a modified Dispensationalist.  Although many will not agree with me, I believe that “plain-sense,” old fashioned...

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Part Three

Block’s Challenge

Recently the Old Testament scholar Daniel Block has vigorously challenged the whole Cosmic Temple thesis.[1]  Even if his counter-arguments are somewhat provisional[2], and he retains certain questionable positions on some matters (e.g. the presence of a...

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Part Two

Objections to the Cosmic Temple Motif in Scripture

In Beale’s book The Temple and the Church’s Mission, both the garden of Eden and the Jerusalem temple are types of the Church, which is confusingly called the literal non-physical temple.[1]   Beale’s thesis,...

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Wednesday, 13 February 2019 04:21

The Cosmic Temple and Spiritualized Eschatology (Pt.2)

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Part One

Firmer Ground

Following the biblical narrative it appears that the design and furnishings of the tabernacle/temple have some correspondence with the Paradise which Adam forfeited.  This “remembrance” would only increase the sense of what was lost and what the Promised One...

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Wednesday, 06 February 2019 03:22

The Cosmic Temple and Spiritualized Eschatology (Pt.1)

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“Israel’s temple was a symbolic shadow pointing to the eschatological “greater and more perfect tabernacle” (Heb. 9:11) in which Christ and the church would dwell and would form a part.  If so, it would seem to be the wrong approach for Christians to look in hope to the...

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Tuesday, 29 January 2019 04:36

Personal Thoughts About Commentaries (8): Mark

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Mark’s Gospel is terrific for the preacher.  It really comes into its own when expounded.  Any commentary on this book that keeps flipping back and forth between Mark, Matthew and Luke should not be considered a first choice.  There is now an embarrassment of fine...

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