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

The Reformed Reader - Apologetic Report
Monday, 22 April 2019 01:20

Proverbs and OT Theology(?) (Waltke)

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image Some OT scholars find Proverbs problematic because as wisdom literature it doesn’t seem to fit into the OT.  Proverbs never mentions covenant for example, nor does it have a messianic emphasis.  G. E. Wright said that OT wisdom literature like Proverbs “is something of a...

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Friday, 19 April 2019 22:34

Lord’s Day Worship x2 (Lloyd-Jones)

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image In the history of Reformed churches, the Lord’s Day practice has been to gather for corporate worship twice, usually morning and evening.  True, there is no command in Scripture to worship twice on the Lord’s Day.  However, I would say that a person needs a good biblical...

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Thursday, 18 April 2019 01:28

What To Do With Our Emotions? (Groves Smith)

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image When it comes to emotions in the Christian life there are extremes to avoid.  For one thing, we don’t want to totally ignore our emotions or always suppress them.  Emotions aren’t necessarily sinful.  On the other hand, we don’t want to make too much of our...

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image Word studies are a helpful tool in the exegetical toolbox.  There is a lot more to studying Scripture than doing word studies, to be sure, but word studies are helpful in determining the meaning of a text or texts.  Now there are wrong ways to do word studies.  There are...

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Saturday, 13 April 2019 08:25

To Thy Grace I Ascribe It (Augustine)

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image Many of us have heard the story about Augustine stealing pears when he was a teenager.  Indeed, he stole them not because he was hungry or poor, but simply because he wanted to sin (he “lusted to theive”).  Afterwards Augustine even said that he didn’t even really...

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Thursday, 11 April 2019 22:58

Panic, Prayers, and Praise (Lloyd-Jones)

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image In Philippians 4:6 Paul says “Do not be anxious about anything.  Instead, in every situation, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, tell your requests to God” (NET).  D. M. Lloyd-Jones noted that Paul was being specific with his order of words in this verse:...

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Thursday, 11 April 2019 02:13

Regeneration: Spiritual Resurrection (Hodge)

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image As Christians, we’re familiar with the Bible’s teaching about the new life God has given us in and through Christ.  In his mercy, God has caused us to be born again to a living hope through Christ’s resurrection (1 Pet. 1:3).  We can’t give ourselves credit...

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image V. Philips Long wrote a helpful article for the NIDOTTE called “Old Testament History: A Hermeneutical Perspective.”  It’s a very level-headed discussion about interpreting the history recorded in the OT.  One section of the article gives three requirements...

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Monday, 08 April 2019 00:13

The Native Language of the Law (Gurnall)

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image Here are two sections of William Gurnall’s discussion of “the gospel of peace” (Eph 6:15):

The news which the gospel hath in its mouth to tell us poor sinners is good.  It speaks promises, and they are significations of some good intended by God for poor sinners....

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Saturday, 06 April 2019 01:26

The Problem of Evil in Atheism (Groothuis)

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image In chapter 25 of Christian Apologetics, Douglas Groothuis discusses the problem of evil from a Christian perspective.  In this chapter he gives five unsatisfactory answers to evil.  The first one is atheism.  I thought this was quite helpful:

Given the surfeit of...

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image There’s more to presbyerianism than this, but these points by Charles Hodge are for sure worth highlighting:

…The three great negations of Presbyterianism—that is, the three great errors which it denies are—1. That all church power vests in the clergy. 2. That the...

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Wednesday, 03 April 2019 04:41

Amos Then and Now (Motyer)

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image I’ve always appreciated Alec Motyer’s commentaries on various books of the Bible (e.g. Isaiah, James, Philippians, etc.).  I recently began studying Amos to prepare for an upcoming sermon series and I was immediately impressed with Motyer’s introduction to Amos in his...

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  I’ve always enjoyed reading various Systematic Theologies (STs). Whether in the Reformed tradition (e.g. Berkhof or Bavinck) or in the evangelical tradition (e.g. Grudem or Bird), I like to see how various theologians summarize the Bible’s various doctrines.

I recently took time...

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image I’ve enjoyed making my way through this 2012 Eerdmans publication: Hearing the Old Testament: Listening for God’s Address. This morning I read chapter seven by Stephen Dempster: “Canon and Old Testament Interpretation.”  Overall it’s a helpful chapter,...

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Friday, 29 March 2019 06:17

His Deeds + His Words = Witness (Warfield)

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image Benjamin B. Warfield’s 1907 publication Lord of Glory is an excellent resource for the NT study of Christ’s deity.  The subtitle is this: “A Study of the Designations of Our Lord in the New Testament with Especial Reference to His Deity.”  Here’s...

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 Sadly and unfortunately there are Christian books, blogs, and other Christian writings that contain coarse and vulgar language.  Although I don’t read blogs very often, I’ve read enough to know that some popular Christian blogs use edgy and crude language.  I’ve...

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imageOne of the many biblical proofs for the perseverance of the saints is the nature of God’s sovereign love (see Romans 8:35ff).  Here’s how Charles Hodge put it in a sermon on Romans 8:1:

Moreover the greatness of the love of God is such as effectually to preserve the believer. As...

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Sunday, 24 March 2019 23:16

The “Bright Light” of Romans (Tyndale)

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image In 1526 William Tyndale published a preface to his English translation of Romans.  The year before (1525), his English translation of the New Testament was printed in Worms.  [It was, of course, smuggled illegally into England, where church leaders quickly labeled it as a heretical...

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Saturday, 23 March 2019 01:31

Reformed Theology and the Kingdom of God

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image From time to time I read critiques that Reformed theology doesn’t really do justice to the kingdom of God, or that it is weak on kingdom theology.  In other words, some current theologians, teachers, and authors are critical of Reformed theology because (in their view) it relegates...

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imageOf the various aspects of John Calvin’s writings that I appreciate, I always love to hear him talk about modesty and humility when it comes to the study and interpretation of God’s Word.  More than a few times he mentions how we should never go further than God’s Word because...

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image Geerhardus Vos’ inaugural address as professor of biblical theology at Princeton in 1894 is one of the richest resources for gaining a Reformed understanding of redemptive history and biblical theology.  It’s one of those essays that I’ve gone back to so many times...

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Tuesday, 19 March 2019 05:58

None Shall Seek Thy Face in Vain (Cowper)

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image I just love the hymns and poems of William Cowper.  In fact, I’d recommend a book of his hymns and poems to use as a short daily devotional.  My wife and I have used this one: William Cowper’s Olney Hymns (Curiosmith, 2009). It’s not expensive but it is a...

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Monday, 18 March 2019 05:01

The Gospel Gives; The Law Demands (Walther)

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image The more I preach and teach in a historic Christian church, the more I see the value in properly distinguishing between the law and the gospel.  Luther and the subsequent Reformers were not exaggerating when they strongly emphasized the need to distinguish between law and gospel....

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Wednesday, 13 March 2019 21:42

When Sin Turns Into An Affliction (Bunyan)

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image Israel’s complaining and grumbling began early on in the wilderness years. In fact, if my count is correct, they complained around 5 times in the first year or so after God rescued them from Egypt.  In one instance of their grumbling, God gave Israel what they whined for: meat to...

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image Most of us have heard about the great work of William Wilberforce who used his God-given gifts and talents to work towards ending the evil practice of the slave trade.  There were others, of course, who worked so diligently with Wilberforce in attaining the goal.  In fact, William...

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