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

Kevin DeYoung - Apologetic Report
Monday, 15 April 2019 19:35

Salvation by Propitiation

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There are many biblical ways to describe Christian salvation.

Salvation can be understood ritually as a sacrifice, as the expiation of guilt through the death of Christ on the cross.

Salvation can be understood commercially as redemption, as a payment made through the blood of Christ for the debt we...

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Tuesday, 09 April 2019 19:15

When Churches Can’t Do Everything

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I’ve never met a pastor who enjoys telling people no. I suppose such ministerial creatures exist, but all the pastors I know (myself included) find it much easier to say “Yes, that’s a great idea!” or “Yes, we can do that!” as opposed to “Sorry,...

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Monday, 25 March 2019 19:07

Book Briefs

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Some long plane flights over the past couple months, which means a longer list of books. I’ll stick with the popular level books for today and save the academic books for later.

Andy Crouch, The Tech-Wise Family: Everyday Steps for Putting Technology in Its Proper Place (Baker Books, 2017). I...

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I first purchased The Valley of Vision from my church’s book table while I was in seminary. I’ll never forget laying in my bed and praying these beautiful prayers as my own. It was a deeply spiritual experience, in the best sense of that phrase. Since that night in my dorm room at...

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Monday, 11 March 2019 18:12

We Are Supposed to Feel Bad About Stuff

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Our world is seriously confused about shame.

Strike that, the church is seriously confused about shame. We’ve made Jesus into a Rogerian therapist, the Bible into a book of self-actualizing pablum, and the gospel into a perpetual reminder that, hey, you’re awesome! The only shame left is...

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Tuesday, 05 March 2019 19:25

A Meditation on Strength and Weakness

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The two churches in Revelation that have no positive qualities mentioned are the two churches that look the most outwardly impressive–Sardis and Laodicea. And the two churches with no negative qualities are the two that appear the most harassed and helpless–Smyrna and Philadelphia. The...

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Monday, 25 February 2019 15:33

Briefly Noted: Friendship in the Hebrew Bible

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Just as I post from time to time in my ongoingTheological Primer series, I’d like to start a new continuing series calledBriefly Noted (with a nod to theNew Yorker). Instead of focusing on systematic theology, this series will deal with books, particularly new books (or relatively new)....

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Thursday, 14 February 2019 15:53

Theological Primer: Pactum Salutis

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From time to time I make new entries into this continuing series called “Theological Primer.” The idea is to present big theological concepts in around 500 words. Today we will look at thepactum salutis.

In simple terms, the covenant of redemption—or in Latin, the pactum...

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Wednesday, 30 January 2019 14:26

Two Cheers for the Spirituality of the Church

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I believe in the spirituality of the church. I believe it is a doctrine with a rich Reformed pedigree and a doctrine that can be immensely helpful in today’s cultural and ecclesiastical climate.

I also believe the spirituality of the church can, and has been, inappropriately applied. The...

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Sunday, 20 January 2019 22:47

10 Reasons Racism Is Sin

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Most people know that racism is wrong. It’s one of the few things almost everyone agrees on. And yet, I wonder if we (I?) have spent much time considering why it’s wrong.

We can easily make our “I hate racism” opinions known, but perhaps we are just looking for moral high...

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Wednesday, 16 January 2019 14:12

16 Truths About Digital Time and Real Friends

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In his new book, Them: Why We Hate Each Other and How to Heal, Ben Sasse has a terrific chapter on setting tech limits. “At our house,” he writes, “after a healthy wrestling match about the dangerous ways social media tries to pull us away from the communities we care about the...

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Monday, 07 January 2019 18:35

Systematic Theology Review

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Over the years I’ve been asked from time to time what systematic theology I recommend. That short answer is: it depends. It depends on who is asking the question (college student? seminary student? lay leader? pastor?), and it depends on what the person wants out of a systematic theology (an...

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Sunday, 30 December 2018 17:17

Top Ten Blog Posts of 2018

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I like lists, and year-end lists in particular are always fun. So here’s a list of my top ten most viewed blog posts from the past year. Actually, several of the top posts in the past year were written in previous years. I’ll pull those out and include them at the end.

1.Enneagram: The...

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Sunday, 23 December 2018 13:55

Merry Christmas, Pastor, and Don’t Lose Heart

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Merry Christmas, pastor.

I know you are getting ready for a busy day. If you’re like me, you’re just coming off a full Sunday and still need to finish your Christmas Eve sermon before the sun goes down and the candles get lit. I’m sure you’ve had a full week, a full month,...

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Tuesday, 18 December 2018 13:04

Theological Primer: Hypostatic Union

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From time to time I make new entries into this continuing series called “Theological Primer.” The idea is to present big theological concepts in around 500 words. Today we look at the hypostatic union.

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In simplest terms, the hypostatic union is a reference to Jesus Christ as both...

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Thursday, 13 December 2018 15:22

Top Ten Books of 2018

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First, my usual disclaimer and explanation.

This list is not meant to assess the thousands of Christian books published each year, let alone every interesting book published in 2018. There are plenty of worthy titles that I am not able to read (and lots I never hear of). This is simply a list of the...

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“One of the acceptable idolatries among evangelical Christians is the idolatry of the family.”

That’s what I tweeted last week. To be honest, I didn’t think much about it. I’ve said similar things in sermons for the past decade, and I’ve tweeted similar things...

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Monday, 12 November 2018 15:14

Eleven Ways Christians Can Love One Another

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I lead our new member’s class at church. It’s a 12-week class, with about half the class spent on the Westminster Confession of Faith, while the other half deals with the ins and outs of Christ Covenant and the basics of Christian discipleship. I always take one week to talk about...

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Monday, 05 November 2018 13:13

A Tale of Two Numbers

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There two numbers in the life of the church are too often miles apart. Although there are legitimate reasons why one number would be generally greater than the other. There is almost no good reason why there should be a vast gulf between the two figures.

The two numbers I have in mind are the...

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One of the first and most recurring things my kids have learned–at Sunday school, in Christian school, and around the dinner table–has been the Ten Commandments. In fact, my middle three children love to sing (incessantly!) the Ten Commandments song they learned for last year’s...

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Monday, 15 October 2018 15:27

Three Myths about the Enlightenment

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There are certain intellectual tropes—so lazy, so predictable, and so overblown—that they serve the useful purpose of indicating that the author likely doesn’t really know what he’s talking about. I’m thinking of those who wax eloquent about Greek ways of thinking...

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Monday, 08 October 2018 14:40

Five Reasons to Obey the Ten Commandments

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The Ten Commandments are not to be ignored. It’s important that we study and understand them. But, of course, it’s more important that we obey them. God isn’t impressed by an intellectually careful analysis that puts the Decalogue at the center of Christian discipleship. He...

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Tuesday, 02 October 2018 14:40

The Church at Election Time

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I have always been interested in politics. I studied religion and political science in college. I continue to read consistently in economics, sociology, politics, and current events. As a pastor, I hope the members of my church are well-informed and engaged in the political process. As Christians,...

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Monday, 24 September 2018 14:34

Theological Primer: The Nature of Church Power

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From time to time I make new entries into this continuing series called “Theological Primer.” The idea is to present big theological concepts in around 500 words. Today we will look at the nature of church power.

God has ordained two great agencies of divine authority on the earth: the...

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Monday, 10 September 2018 14:01

Is Social Justice a Gospel Issue? Featured

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There is a simple, straightforward answer to the question posed in the title of this post: it depends.

Is social justice a gospel issue? That depends on what we mean by “social justice” and what we mean by “gospel issue.”

What Is Social Justice?

I’ve written before that...

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