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

My own relationship with the Westminster Standards is one of a long sweeping love affair. I grew up in the Nazarene church and was exposed to very little theology that I remember. After coming to the Reformed faith and hearing about the Westminster Standards I knew I wanted to be part of a...

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Wednesday, 06 July 2016 05:28

Why No #JusticeForGators? Featured

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It would be difficult to argue that June was a good month for Orlando, Florida. From the horrible and nearly unimaginable evil committed by an ISIS-loyal terrorist, to the two-year-old child who was taken by the alligator in the lagoon at the Magic Kingdom, it was a month with a lot of bad news and very few bright spots. It is the sort of month
Friday, 10 June 2016 17:42

Trinity Controversy Omnibus

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Earlier today I found myself trying to explain to a friend what has been happening in the Reformed world in terms of the latest discussions regarding the Trinity and the Eternal Functional Subordination of the second person of the Trinity. The trickiest part about explaining it to him was keeping all the different posts straight. In order to help
Monday, 15 February 2016 13:47

We'll Figure This Out Eventually

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I appreciate much of what Matthew Tuininga has to write and have read his work on the doctrine of the Two Kingdoms for years. His most recent post for Reformation 21, called "Rightly Defining the Spirituality of the Church," is commendable for what he identifies as what is often an abuse of the two kingdoms doctrine by those who are actually not
 
I have been eager to read Richard Barcellos’ book The Lord’s Supper as a Means of Grace: More Than a Memory for a number of years. It’s a pity it took me this long to get around to it, because I found it a great benefit to my own understanding of the Lord’s Supper and even a blessing to my soul. It is true that there are
Thursday, 07 January 2016 12:15

Book Review: Serving with Calvin by Terry Johnson

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Terry Johnson’s book Serving with Calvin is a follow-up to his previous book Worshipping With Calvin. In that book, Johnson made the case that a bare soteriological Calvinism would be an insufficient foundation for the new Calvinists to build upon. Rather, he argued, Biblical and Reformed worship was not only at the core of Calvin’s
 
I don’t know about the rest of you, but it’s honestly been a tough summer. For me, it started with the news of high profile pastors (some in my own denomination, even) who had committed adultery. Then it seems like over the summer more and more news has emerged about various pastors and Christian leaders needing to leave the ministry
Saturday, 28 March 2015 14:24

17 Ways To Glorify God

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Most good Presbyterians know the first question from the Westminster Shorter Catechism, "What is the Chief End of Man?" The answer, of course, is that man's chief end is to "glorify God and enjoy him forever." If you read John Piper you've already gone over this hundreds of times before.Thomas...

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Friday, 20 March 2015 01:04

Gyges' Ring is Real

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imageHave you heard of Gyges' Ring? Plato spoke about it in his book The Republic. Here is how Plato relates the discovery of this ring:
According to the tradition, Gyges was a shepherd in the service of the king of Lydia; there was a great storm, and an earthquake made an opening in the earth at the...

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Sunday, 01 March 2015 19:00

You Are Quite Wrong

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I used to celebrate that the emergent church has gone the way of the buffalo. With Rob Bell jumping the shark and Brian Mclaren's "marriage" of his son to another man it had outed itself as at best a reincarnation of old-school 20th century liberalism and at worst another vehicle for moving large...

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Thursday, 26 February 2015 21:50

The Myth of the Gullible Ancients

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One belief that is ubiquitous among those who write off Christianity is the suspicion that the persons who lived in biblical times were highly gullible. When I was an atheist teenager I looked down on the Biblical authors because I thought they didn’t understand the physical world and thought...

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Sunday, 15 February 2015 21:15

Why Would Jesus Curse an Out-Of-Season Fig Tree?

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What follows is an e-mail I sent in answer to a question from someone at a church I preached at this past week. I'm posting it for the benefit of anyone else who may have similar questions.Thanks for asking me the question you did today about Mark 11:13, and especially your question about why Jesus...

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Sunday, 08 February 2015 23:34

The Not-So-Modern Yearning for Male Friendship

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“Jonathan lies slain on your high places.I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan;very pleasant have you been to me;your love to me was extraordinary,surpassing the love of women.How the mighty have fallen,and the weapons of war perished!” (2 Sam. 1:26-27).
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It isn’t unusual in...

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How tempting it is to speak on subjects that we really don't understand! Especially when we know just enough about the subject to sound like we know what we're talking about. Consider the ease with which scientists slip back and forth between playing with science and playing with metaphysics....

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Friday, 09 January 2015 19:00

Some Podcast Recommendations

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As a seminarian, one of the most important things I currently do is itinerant preaching. Nearly every Sunday morning I walk out to my old Toyota, kick the tires, adjust the mirror, and drive four hours round-trip to some distant part of Mississippi to minister in churches on the preaching circuit....

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Wednesday, 07 January 2015 03:41

The Geek's Guide to Being One-Sided

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In the latest episode of The Geek's Guide to the Galaxy (a podcast that I normally enjoy because I'm a geek) two "experts" in the Bible (Robert Price and Richard Carrier) joined David Barr Kirtley to discuss the new Ridley Scott film Exodus: Gods and Kings. I was interested in what these "experts"...

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Thursday, 01 January 2015 00:37

The Light Will Die

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I love sci-fi. And for all its plot holes and logical problems, one of my favorite experiences this last year was seeing the film Interstellar. You watch the movie and you initially think you have it pegged: “This is a sci-fi adventure about a man fighting to save the human race. This is just...

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