To be a consistent Calvinist, a person must believe that the Bible teaches God limits His redemptive love toward His creation and that limited love is more reflective of God being the sum of perfect love than God extending His salvational love to all of His creation.
Of course, the perennial problem with the Calvinist’s perspective is the explicit claims of Scripture to the contrary. The encounter between Jesus and Nicodemus provides an example of God’s universal salvational love and sets the context for probably the most well-known and beloved verse in the Scripture, which explicitly declares God’s universal redemptive love for all of His creation (John 3:16).
I intend to set the context by briefly summarizing vss. 1-13. Then I will note some observations drawn from vss. 14-15. The illustration of vss. 14-15 serves a twofold purpose; first, it provides illumination for properly understanding some of the dialogue between Jesus and Nicodemus in vss. 1-13; second, it serves as Jesus’s chosen introductory and illuminative illustration for vss. 16-21. Continue reading →
It appears that most are aware of the dangerously low level of biblical competency of the average Christian. The following summarizes the seriousness of such by a series of comparisons. Continue reading →
“Even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction” (Romans 3:22).
Romans chapter three is crystal clear in declaring the universal sinfulness of man. Although the Jews have advantages compared to the Greeks, such as having the oracles of God (vs. 1-2), they do not have preferential treatment with regard to salvation. Vs. 9 makes this very clear, “Jews and Greeks are all under sin.” “All” clearly means that every Jew and every Greek (every person) is under sin. Consequently, both the groups and “all” the individuals that make up the groups are included rather than some in each group comprising the “all.” There are no exceptions. Continue reading →
In the Los Angeles Times article “Self-Help’s Big Lie” Steve Salerno explains, “Self-esteem-based education presupposed that a healthy ego would help students achieve greatness, even if the mechanisms necessary to instill self-esteem undercut scholarship. Over time, it became clear that what such policies promote is not academic greatness but a bizarre disconnect between perceived self-worth and provable skill.” Continue reading →
This is a response to my article published on sbctoday.com, 6/4/14 entitled, A Day Is a Day Is a Day of Course: Unless That Day Challenges Evolution! Part I. I also posted this article on this blog, December 22, 2014. I am sorry about the disconnect. This should have been published sooner. I have a couple more of the responses to this series that I will publish in the next two post.
The blogger wrote:
“My seminary Old Testament prof used to say, ‘The Bible was never meant to be a book of science. For instance, most writers of the Biblical revelation believed the world was flat, and that the sun revolved around the earth. Instead, the Bible is the record of God’s revelation to mankind. There is more truth in the Bible in that reality than we can ever digest, understand, believe, and live.’ We invite all manner of problems when we try to turn it into a book of science.”’ Continue reading →
This is my latest book. The following is from the flap on the hardcover followed from an excerpt from the forward.
To the traditionalist, the present contemporary church model appears irreverently trendy and unacceptably shallow, more influenced by culture than influencing culture. To the ecclesiastically avant-garde—often known as the church growth movement, emergent, or simply contemporary—traditional methods and ideas seem to be out of touch, purposeless, and anachronistic.
In The Equipping Church, author and pastor Ronnie W. Rogers demonstrates that the New Testament church model—neither pragmatic fluff nor sterile traditionalism—is an equipping, engaging, and evangelistic church, which is primarily based upon Matthew 28:18-20 and Ephesians 4:11-16. Rogers believes the contemporary vs. traditional debate should be replaced by asking whether or not a church is substantively equipping believers to honor God with their lives and to advance the kingdom by engaging and evangelizing their world as prescribed by the New Testament.
Rogers sets forth the elements necessary to transition a church from stifling, dead traditionalism or the shallowness often associated with the contemporary model to an equipping church and speaks to those who desire to build New Testament churches that honor God first.
“On rare occasions I read a book that I simply can’t put down until the last page. This is such a book…From his fertile mind, gifted pen, and more than thirty years of pastoral experience, comes a work that everyone in Christian ministry must read. Rogers cuts through the murk of all the discussions and debates about traditional and contemporary ministry approaches.”
David L. Allen, Ph.D.
Dean of the School of Theology
Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
Copies are available from the author, contact firstname.lastname@example.org, as well as online at Amazon (click the book) and Crossbooks.com, a division of Lifeway.
This is the second part of this series of articles, which looks at the strengths of interpreting the word “day” in Genesis chapter 1 as a normal lunar day. The fourth and final article answers objections to this normal reading of the text. All four parts are numbered consecutively. Continue reading →
Genesis has been a battleground for some time, and today is no different. This is particularly true of Genesis 1-3, which is the account of the creation and the fall. When I first began studying the Scripture, I recognized the importance of the first eleven chapters of Genesis, but in retrospect I did not fully appreciate the magnitude of their significance. As I studied other areas of the Scripture and began learning the breadth and depth of God’s revelation, I saw that without the truthfulness and perspicuity of the first eleven chapters of Genesis, every major theme of Scripture lay in jeopardy.
Probably the most hotly debated issue is whether or not the days of Genesis 1 are lunar days or indefinite periods of time or even actual days that are representative of longer periods of time. In other words, did God create the world in six days (closely approximating our days) or is the simple language of Genesis concealing a deeper esoteric meaning only fully revealed to scientists quite apart from the Scripture? Even some evangelical scientists like Hugh Ross, who describes himself as a “progressive creationist,” still accept certain cosmological theories as fact and seek to interpret Genesis through that prism”. Continue reading →
A biblical attitude is crucial to the whole process of church discipline. If the attitude of those implementing discipline is not right, then what God designed to be a beautiful act of selfless love is transformed into an ugly act of power, even if all the other instructions are followed to the letter. The offspring of that evil may shortly surface as a disuniting and judgmental spirit in the fellowship, or it may lay dormant until the next attempt to lead the church in discipline and then surface with a vengeance. Continue reading →