Monthly Archives: January 2012

Mark 1:34 and Silencing Demons

In verse 34, Jesus silences the demons because he knew them. He knew that nothing worthy would come out from their mouths. He knew this well because earlier he endured the rhetoric of satan himself. All that came out of Satan’s … Continue reading

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Fourth Sunday of Epiphany: Mark 1:21-28; Exorcism and Discipleship, part II

Here is my audio of my sermon on Mark 1:21-28. People of God, the action-centered gospel of St. Mark continues to bring out the unsavory manifestations of demons. The gospel of Mark introduces us to the forces of evil incarnated … Continue reading

Posted in Audio, Sermons/Epiphany | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Voddie Baucham, T.D. Jakes, and the Elephant in the Room

Voddie clarifies the entire ER2 controversy, and adds a few insights to the discussion. His conclusion: I’m not angry with James MacDonald.  He’s my brother, and I love him.  We disagree.  We both understand that.  Ironically, that’s what The Elephant … Continue reading

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Saturday Psalter: Genevan Psalm 1

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Communion Meditation: Shutting the Mouths of Evil-Doers

We have been removed from a dark realm and transferred into a kingdom of light. Jesus is the One who accomplishes this transfer. He does this by silencing the Evil One, and by stating explicitly that you are his. And … Continue reading

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Making Righteous

“Augustine often states that justification includes the idea of ‘making righteous,’ not simply ‘declaring/reckoning’ as righteous.” How closely does Augustine anticipate Martin Luther? McGrath emphasizes an important distinction: Augustine has an all-embracing transformative understanding of justification, which includes both the event … Continue reading

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Marcionism and the Justification Debate

Marcion argued that the works of believers will not be weighed by God in the final judgement. Origen objects, and argues that faith and good works are ‘two complementary conditions of salvation that must not be separated.’ And what is … Continue reading

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Justification: Five Views

In wondering why there isn’t a Lutheran view represented in the Five Views book, the editor observes: Our response is that Horton’s traditional Reformed view is functionally identical in all the significant theological aspects to the traditional Lutheran view.

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Exhortation: God as Chief Listener

Dale Topp in his book Music in the Christian Community argues that God is the chief listener in worship music. Our music is to God. God delights and responds to our music. In I Samuel 16, when Saul was terrorized … Continue reading

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Pipe Smoking and Sherlock Holmes

However, no matter which Sherlock Holmes we are discussing, whether he be portrayed by Robert Downey, Jr., Jeremy Brett, Basil Rathbone, Benedict Cumberbatch, or even if he is simply a character on a page, we can be sure that he … Continue reading

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Postmillennialism is like…

…the ransacking of the Witch’s fortress in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe: The whole castle stood empty with every door and window open and the light and the sweet spring air flooding in to all the dark and … Continue reading

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Peter Enns Meets Peter Leithart

Here is Leithart’s first response to Enn’s egregious conclusions: I suspect it’s not the similarities of the texts that lead Pete to his conclusions, but the scientific evidence. {here is his second response}

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The Extinction of Protestant Music

Ian Hodge provides an insightful survey of the Protestant musical landscape, and he finds a culprit:  The Pietists significantly influenced theology which, in turn, led to a change in music, both inside and outside the church. Jaroslav Pelikan, in his … Continue reading

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Augustine on the binding of the devil

He (the devil) is tied up like a dog on a chain, and can only bite someone who, deathly sure of himself, goes near him. Wouldn’t you think a man a fool who let hiimself be bitten by a chained … Continue reading

Posted in Augustine, Quotes | 2 Comments

Wilderness comes to Synagogue

The modern situation of the church can be summarized by the theme: “The Wilderness comes to the Synagogue.” This what we see in the inception of the kingdom ministry of Jesus (Mk.1). Jesus overcomes the devil in the desert. The … Continue reading

Posted in Mark, Theological Thoughts | 2 Comments

Chuck Colson Interviews President Jimmy Carter on Faith in the Public Square

Chuck Colson interacts with former President Jimmy Carter on a number of issues. The interesting point in the discussion is to hear Carter taking credit for the growth of Christianity in China. Carter observes that “Christianity is growing quite rapidly … Continue reading

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The Confession of Demons

As I work through Mark 1, I have noticed that the naming of Jesus by demons has a specific purpose. William Lane alludes to this in his commentary. There is a contrast in how the sick address Jesus and how … Continue reading

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N.T. Wright: Baptism and Exodus in Romans

Posted in N.T. Wright, Word/Sacrament | 1 Comment

Third Sunday of Epiphany: Mark 1:14-20

People of God, we come back to the gospel of Mark this morning. Mark is notorious for his rapid-paced descriptions. He summarizes large portions of the life of Jesus with a series of quick punches. He knocks out Jesus’ enemies … Continue reading

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Exhortation: Sanctity of Life Sunday

This morning we have baby bottles available for you to take home. For many American Churches this is Sanctity of Life Sunday. One tangible way of fighting for the un- born is to help financially those who are gifted in … Continue reading

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Communion Meditation: Following After Christ

Our Lord Jesus is the model of discipleship. As a people we can only serve as models to others as we are following the example of Jesus Christ. Even in our sins we can model our perfect Savior, by trusting … Continue reading

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To Die

Our God is not a slave master seeking to work us to death, but rather to die in our working as we humble ourselves and learn to forsake our sins, and follow after Jesus.

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Paedocommunion vs. Rome

As a minister in the CREC, I advocate the practice of paedocommunion. Paedocommunion means that baptized children of at least one Christian parent is able to participate in the holy feast of the Church, the Lord’s Supper. Many Protestants have … Continue reading

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On Gnosticism, An Introduction

If you have studied the early church, and if you are a student of history this term is used quite often. At the same time, while it is used, and while it rings a heretical tone, yet, I am not … Continue reading

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Third Sunday of Epiphany: Mark 1:14-20

William Lane argues that it is a significant fact that “Jesus does not enter upon his own distinctive ministry until after John has been arrested.” Jesus waits until John is out of the scene. When the great prophet is unfairly … Continue reading

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Saturday Psalter: Psalm 138

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The Tim Tebow Time

Americans love a show.  It is no surprise then Tim Tebow has stolen that show. The 24 year old Denver Broncos quarterback has been the source of intense scrutiny. Tebow’s startling success in this season, most notably Broncos’ playoff victory over … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Gospel, Sports | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Epiphany Sermon: Isaiah 60: The Re-Gathering of God’s People

People of God, another one of the traditional seasons of the year “that amplifies our awareness of the person of Jesus is the…celebration of the ancient feast of the Epiphany. We remember these foreign kings, themselves alerted by strange manifestations … Continue reading

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Final Day of the Conference

Though most folks had already left, I recorded a verse of Rise Again, Ye Lionhearted. The singing is still spectacular.

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The Conference Begins

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