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
Saturday, 12 October 2019 07:38

Arguments for God’s Existence (Keller)

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image  Many Christians throughout history have argued for the existence of God in various ways and using various methods. For example, there’s the moral argument for God. The argument goes something like this: there are objective morals in the world that transcend local communities....

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image  David Pao’s commentary on Philemon has been helpful for me as I’ve preached through this letter Paul wrote to Philemon and the church that met in his (Philemon’s) house.  Today I read Pao’s concluding application remarks and found some good and...

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Thursday, 10 October 2019 06:42

Full-Time​ Sermon Critics (Bucer)

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image I’m thankful that God’s people I serve in my pastoral ministry do not bombard me with harsh critiques of my sermons.  It’s a blessing to minister to people who generally listen carefully and respect the preached Word.  Now, it is true that some people in the pews...

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Wednesday, 09 October 2019 00:44

I Paul Write This With My Hand…

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image  In Philemon 19 it says: “I, Paul, write with my hand: I will repay…”  Paul is telling Philemon that if his runaway slave Onesimus owes him (Philemon) anything, he (Paul) will for sure repay whatever it is to help restore the relationship between the two....

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Tuesday, 08 October 2019 05:52

He Justifies the Ungodly…

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image  One of my favorite phrases that the apostle Paul wrote is found in Romans 4:5.  The NASB translates it like this: “…Him who justifies the ungodly….”  I like how W. G. T. Shedd commented on this aspect of justification.

The justification of the...

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Sunday, 06 October 2019 23:51

The Word Is Greater Than The Preacher (Luther)

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image Last year I posted this section of a sermon Martin Luther gave on Luke 2, but it’s worth mentioning again in our celebrity preacher situation.  In this part of the sermon, Luther was talking about how the shepherds outside of Bethlehem heard the angels’ words proclaiming the...

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image Some people wrongly think that the biblical teaching of unconditional election is a frightening and dark teaching that hinders evangelism and makes people into fatalists.  It is true that wrong views of election (such as a hyper-Calvinist view, for example) do get in the way of...

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Wednesday, 02 October 2019 05:24

The OT, Hebrew, and Ugaritic Studies (Williams)

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 Around the 18th century BC to around the 12th century BC there was a region 200 miles North of Israel called Ugarit.  It probably existed before the 18th century BC, but most of the information archaeologists have found about this area sheds light on the time period between the above two...

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Monday, 30 September 2019 01:16

The Marrow of Modern Divinity Simplified (Wilson)

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image Edward Fisher’s Marrow of Modern Divinity is a classic Reformed text that explains the law, the gospel, justification, faith, and works in great detail.  It’s been a blessing for me in my Christian walk and many others have said the same.  But it’s not an easy...

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Saturday, 28 September 2019 01:57

Young Children at the Table? (Letham)

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image Here’s a good short summary of why confessionally Reformed churches have historically not allowed young children to participate in the Lord’s Supper:

Recently, a growing number have advocated paedocommunion – giving communion to infants and very young children who have not...

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imageCalvin’s commentaries, as many of our readers know, have stood the test of time because of their insight, clarity, faithfulness to the teachings of Scripture, and because they are applicable for the Christain life.  These commentaries are for sure some of my favorites in their category!...

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Thursday, 26 September 2019 04:44

Marriage Isn’t the Gospel (Miller)

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image The Bible speaks of marriage as something God instituted for the good of humanity.  Even before the fall, it was good that man (Adam) and woman Eve) were united.  Christians should uphold the biblical teaching of marriage, for sure.  However, marriage isn’t at the center...

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 If you 1) have a few semesters of Greek under your belt and 2) want a concise resource to review the basics of Greek grammar, here’s a book to check out: Exegetical Gems from Biblical Greek by Benjamin Merkle.  It’s not a standard shortened Greek grammar....

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Monday, 23 September 2019 01:02

Rightly Ordered Love (Keller)

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image I’m very much enjoying Tim Keller’s Making Sense of God.  Here’s a section I read this  morning that really resonated with me since Keller was discussing Augustine’s view of love rightly ordered:

You harm yourself when you love anything more than God....

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Friday, 20 September 2019 06:26

They Dwell…As Sojourners

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image  I’ve posted this before, but it’s worth putting here again:

This is such a great section of the 2nd century Chrisitan letter called “The Epistle to Diognetus“.  It is a good commentary on the teaching of Christ and his apostles that this present age, this...

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Wednesday, 18 September 2019 06:46

Paul, Philemon, and Onesimus (Baugh)

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 While imprisoned in Rome (or possibly Ephesus) the apostle Paul wrote a letter to Philemon to address the situation about Onesimus, Philemon’s slave who had most likely run away.  It seems as if Onesimus was not a Christian when he first met Paul (Philemon 1:10).  The question...

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Monday, 16 September 2019 04:53

Philip and the Ethiopian (Hays)

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image The story in Acts 8 where Philip meets an important Ethiopian man is a great story.  The Ethiopian was on his very long trip home after worshiping Yahweh in Jerusalem.  The Holy Spirit led Philip to the point where he eventually shares the gospel with the Ethiopian starting in...

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Saturday, 14 September 2019 00:34

The Standard for True Piety and Godliness (Kuyper)

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imageSometimes when one Christian sees another Christian’s practices of piety he or she thinks, “That’s a good practice, I should do it.” At one level, this isn’t a bad thing. Those who follow Jesus in faith and obedience...

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Wednesday, 11 September 2019 01:14

Reading Scripture Like the Ethiopian Eunuch (Calvin)

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image The Ethiopian eunuch in Acts 8 can teach us today quite a bit about reading Scripture.  While on the long ride home from Jerusalem to Ethiopia, this man was reading Isaiah (presumably someone else was driving!).  He kept reading even though he didn’t understand it all....

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image There are various ways to define hyper-Calvinism.  For example, we might explain it as a system of doctrine that rejects the free offer of the gospel based on a low view of man’s responsibility.  We might also explain it in terms of biblicism or rationalism.  Some have...

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Friday, 06 September 2019 05:26

A Balanced View of The Christian (Stott)

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image  If you follow Jesus and want to learn more about yourself as a Christian one excellent place to turn is 1 Peter 2:1-17.  This is that great text where the Apostle calls God’s people living stones, a holy priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, etc.  ...

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Thursday, 05 September 2019 06:22

God Is Strong to Carry Your Burden (Luther)

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image  Martin Luther’s exposition of 1 Peter 5:5-11 is a very helpful commentary on the Apostle’s words.  I was especially encouraged by his comments on verse 7: all your anxiety place on him because he cares about you(my translation). Here are some of Luther’s notes:

Let...

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 The Bible teaches that in a marriage relationship the wife needs to submit to her own husband (e.g. Eph. 5:24).  However, the Bible says so many other things about wives and women.  If we focus too much on the call to submit and nearly ignore the other biblical teaching on wives and...

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Monday, 02 September 2019 01:14

The Brute Historical Facts of the OT?(Provan)

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image Iain Provan’s essay, “Hearing the HIstorical Books” in Hearing the Old Testament is an excellent, helpful, and thought-provoking read.  I really appreciate it and I highly recommend it.

One of the main points Provan makes in this article is that the OT is not just a...

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image I’ve been enjoying Herman Ridderbos’ Studies in Scripture and Its Authority.  It’s a collection of six essays Ridderbos wrote on Scripture, including “The Christology of The Fourth Gospel” and “The Biblical Message of Reconciliation.”...

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