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

Reformedish - Apologetic Report

image “Perhaps no other theologian was so honored in his day and rebuked in ours as St. Anselm of Canterbury.”

So opens Katherine Sonderegger’s essay, “Anselmian Atonement” in the new T&T Clark Companion to Atonement. There are many reasons for this disparity in...

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Monday, 12 February 2018 20:48

The Best Apologetics Is Good Systematics

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imageYesterday’s post on the shape of atonement doctrine raised the issue of how the wrong sort of apologetic mindset when it comes to preaching and forming doctrine can distort our understanding of how and why we believe what we do.

After the fact, I recalled some comments by Oliver...

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image With his various works on the subject, especially his Atonement: A Guide for the Perplexed,Adam Johnson has become something of a go-to guru on the subject matter. Editing the recent T&T Clark Companion to Atonement cements the deal. While I plan on reviewing it more fully later on, I wanted...

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Sunday, 04 February 2018 22:16

No “Mere” Anthropomorphism

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image One of the perennial problems for a theology that is trying to speak of God on the basis of God’s word is wrestling with the sense of the Bible’s anthropomorphic language. The Biblical authors have no problem speaking of God in very human terms, attributing to God emotions, activities,...

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Wednesday, 31 January 2018 00:49

The Proper Use and Abuse of Hypocrisy-Checking

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Everybody’s an inconsistent hypocrite. At least, that’s the lesson the internet is teaching us in 2018. (In case we hadn’t learned it from Scripture already.) I’m referring, of course, to the ever-present (and much commented-on) practice of hypocrisy-juking and various forms...

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Wednesday, 24 January 2018 23:41

How to Keep Your Languages in Just 2 Minutes a Day

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image I will let you in on a little secret today: I am not, by nature, a language guy. I know, I know. All ministry people, theologians, students of Scripture are supposed to be delighted at the intricacies of Greek and Hebrew and the wonders it can unlock. And, well, I am. Kind of. I do enjoy finding...

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image John Stott’s work The Cross of Christ is one of my favorite books on the atonement. A modern classic, its overall balance of exegesis, theology, pastoral insight, and existential application makes it worth returning to regularly. Beyond his many worthy commentaries, this book alone could...

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image In his stimulating work The Politics of Redemption(88), Adam Kotsko calls attention to a fascinating, if a bit counter-intuitive, passage on the judgment of God in Irenaeus’ Against Heresies. We encounter it in a series of chapters written against the Marcionites and...

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Friday, 12 January 2018 04:12

Lying Sacrifices (An Addendum from Radner)

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image Earlier this week I discussed the alleged split between the prophets and the priests based on problematic readings of the prophetic critique of the cult. In it, I summarized the work of Jonathan Klawans, who has shown the ideological split has been exaggerated and absolutized.  Better to...

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Sunday, 07 January 2018 20:58

Must We Choose the Prophets Over the Priests?

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‘‘has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Surely to obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed than the fat of rams’’ (1 Sam. 15:22–23).

‘‘what to me is the multitude of your sacrifices? Says the...

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image “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” has long been my favorite Advent hymn. It’s marriage of rich, biblical theology and pathos perfectly capture the pain, longing, and anticipated joy of this season of expectation.

I’ve noticed that each year I return to it, a different line or...

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Wednesday, 08 November 2017 21:10

Herman Bavinck on Preaching and Preachers

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image I allow myself few reviews during the school semester, but I wanted to take a little pause between papers to highlight a new Herman Bavinck book. James P. Eglinton, lecturer in Reformed Theology at New College in Edinburgh and author of the groundbreaking study Trinity and Organism, has...

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image This week on Mere Fidelity we had the pleasure of hosting Carl Trueman, professor of church history and theology at Westminster Theological Seminary, author of a good many excellent books on Reformation and Post-Reformation theology. On this episode, we asked Trueman about a number of the recent...

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Tuesday, 31 October 2017 23:13

Mere Fidelity: Confessions, Book 3

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image This week Alastair, Matt, and I take up and read Book 3 of Augustine’s Confessions. If you’d like to read along–which we encourage you to do–Henry Chadwick’s translation is available widely at a reasonable price. Otherwise, we really have been having a blast...

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Today is a special Reformation Day. On this day, Protestants everywhere celebrate the 500th anniversary of the “beginning” of the Reformation—Martin Luther’s nailing of the 95 theses to the door of Wittenberg Castle. Or at least some of us do. Others seem to have trouble...

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