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, 19 August 2019 05:10

Fighting Cynicism (Keyes)

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image I have to admit that sometimes my cynicism level gets too high. And it brings with it a nasty form of apathy. I’m not cynical about the truths of the Christian faith, the reality of God’s existence, or the historic Christian church, but I am sometimes cynical about many other...

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Friday, 16 August 2019 22:42

Explaining Our Knowledge of God (Letham)

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  Here’s a helpful section of Robert Letham’s new Systematic Theology.  It has to do with the nature of our knowledge of and language about God.

Our knowledge of God is not univocal, identical to his in manner or content.  If it were, it would yield a precise identity...

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image The goodness, kindness, mercy, and love of God are major themes in all parts of Holy Scripture.  It’s always one of my favorite parts of theological reading when I come across good explanations of God’s goodness and love that are very much based on Scripture.  In volume...

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Tuesday, 13 August 2019 05:43

Christ’s Suffering, Our Suffering (Clowney)

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image Peter knew well what it means that Jesus suffered.  Peter witnessed the sufferings of Christ and he knew that Jesus’ suffering was redemptive.  You can read more about his teaching on suffering in his epistles, of course.  Peter also knew that our suffering as Christians...

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Saturday, 10 August 2019 01:20

Known by God; Knowing God (Futato)

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image  So far I’ve appreciated Mark Futato’s commentary on the Psalms in the Tyndale Cornerstone Biblical Commentary series. It’s somewhat brief, but Futato does a good job in giving enough textual, interpretive, and application details to make it worth reading.   For...

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Friday, 09 August 2019 05:02

Hospitality: Don’t Compare Yours to Others

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image Hospitality is definitely something that Christians should practice and show.  Hopsitality is part of Christian ethics since there are clear commands in Scripture for followers of Jesus to be hospitable (e.g. Rom. 12:13b, 1 Pet. 4:9).  However, Scripture doesn’t give a...

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Thursday, 08 August 2019 04:51

Sex, Humanity, Mind, Body

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image I’ve mentioned this book before: Hooked by Joe McIlhaney and Freda Bush.  While it’s not specifically a Christian book, it is a wisdom resource for thinking about sex, our minds, our bodies, our emotions, and our lives.  Below are two paragraphs from the last...

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Monday, 05 August 2019 23:51

The Biblical Understanding of Sin (Horton)

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 When it comes to the topic of sin, we for sure want a biblical view of it. We want to understand sin in the way that the Bible defines and describes it. It is a big topic, of course, since the Bible talks about it very often. The following paragraph from Michael Horton’s The Christian...

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image In his first volume of Reformed Ethics, Herman Bavinck spent quite some time discussing mysticism and pietism.  At the end of the section on mysticism and pietism, Bavinck wrote the following critique.  (For the record, I wish he would’ve expanded a bit on these points...

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Friday, 02 August 2019 01:35

He Gives to His Beloved, Sleep (NET)

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image As I’ve mentioned here before, the NET Bible has been a helpful resource in my Bible studies.  Even though I might not agree with every single translation choice or footnote wording, the NET Bible is one that I use daily.  I especially like the translators’ notes which...

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Thursday, 01 August 2019 05:36

A Useful Hebrew Syntax/Grammar Abridgement

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 I learned Hebrew in seminary using Mark Futato’s helpful resource called Beginning Biblical Hebrew.  In my view, it was very good and I still go back to it from time to time for a refresher.  I also try to keep up my Hebrew in other ways: primarily by studying the Hebrew Bible...

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Monday, 29 July 2019 01:01

The Infallibility of Scripture (Murray)

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image I appreciate how John Murray discussed the infallibility of Scripture in an address he gave to students in the Inter-Varsity Fellowship around 1960.  Here are a few excerpts of his speech:

“The doctrine of the infallibility of Scripture is derived from the witness of Scripture....

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image  Quite a few places in Scripture teach that God preserves his people.  The perseverance of the saints isn’t an obscure teaching found in one or two obscure verses.  Instead, it’s emphasized both in the Old and New Testaments.  Psalm 121 is one of the clear texts in...

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 This is a unique and helpful book: Hooked: The Brain Science on How Casual Sex Affects Human Development by Joe McIlhaney and Freda McKissic.  Hooked is an in-depth look at what sex does to a person’s brain.  Most people in our culture think that the casual, hook-up...

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Wednesday, 24 July 2019 06:38

The Lever of Truth (Warfield)

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image  Here’s a great excerpt from a chapel sermon by B. B. Warfield on Acts 26:18.  It’s especially for pastors or those who are studying for the pastorate:

Mark, then, first of all, the function which the Ascended Jesus assigns to His witnessing servants. It is summed up in a...

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Monday, 22 July 2019 01:42

You Are My God (Lloyd-Jones)

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image The first words of David’s prayer in Psalm 63 are, “[O] God, my God you are” (אֱלֹהִ֤ים אֵלִ֥י אַתָּ֗ה).  Or, in better English: “O...

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Wednesday, 17 July 2019 22:30

Faith Must Not Be Built Upon Works (Watson)

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image Thomas Watson (d. 1686) is one of my favorite Puritan authors.  He wrote clearly, concisely, and biblically. Here’s one great example from his discussion of faith and works in The Beatitudes.

Julian [a Roman emperor who renounced Christianity when he became emperor] upbraided the...

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Tuesday, 16 July 2019 00:14

Greek Humor (Wallace)

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 There are countless passages in the Hebrew and Greek texts that are relatively easy to translate and interpret.  On the other hand, there are some texts that are super difficult to translate and interpet.  After many hours/days of work (or more!), sometimes you just can’t...

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Sunday, 14 July 2019 22:19

Calling, Gifts, Service (Guinness)

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 If you haven’t read The Call by Os Guinness, you should put it on your “to read” Christian book list!  It’s an in-depth look at vocation (or calling).  I was looking over some of my highlights in this book today and came across the following quotes that...

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Friday, 12 July 2019 22:11

Ask Creation! (Augustine)

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image In the opening comments of Augustine’s sermon on John 14:6 he noted that some wise philosophers had some sort of knowledge of God.  He said that they saw the Truth from afar, but because of their errors they didn’t know how to attain the Truth or come to possess it....

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imageI’ve always loved the story in Acts about Lydia coming to faith in Christ when Paul was telling her about Jesus by the side of a river near Philippi.  Here’s how Luke summarized it: “A God-fearing woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, was...

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image Scripture quite clearly teaches that God is immutable.  This means he does not change, have mood swings, or go back on something he said.  God is the constant one.  James 1:17 says there is no change or shadow of turning with God.  Malachi 3:6 says, “I am the LORD,...

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Monday, 08 July 2019 06:36

The Church As Family (Eclov)

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image One of the images used in Scripture for the church is that of family.  For example, Paul uses the term “household of God” (Eph. 2:19, 1 Tim. 3:15).  Many of us know that Christians can rightly call each other “brother” or “sister” (James 2:15)....

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Friday, 05 July 2019 05:14

Self-glorification and Sin (Bavinck)

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image In the second chapter of the first volume of Reformed Ethics, Herman Bavinck discussed the organizing principle and classification of sins.  He mentioned, of course, that sin is disobeying God’s law and is the opposite of the good.  He also gave a good explanation of how...

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Thursday, 04 July 2019 05:37

The Spirits in Prison? (Clowney)

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image Sometimes when we get into the details of the exegesis, syntax, grammar, and interpretation of a passage we forget or miss the big picture.  I appreciate how Edmund Clowney discussed the “hard text” of 1 Peter 3:19-20 in such a way that he didn’t forget the bigger...

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