30 September 2010

Discerning Babel

Just astonishing.

After years of defending the Bush administration, its wars, its renditions and tortures, suddenly we have Evangelical leaders critiquing the War in Afghanistan?

28 September 2010

Answering Questions #2- Mystery and Eastern v. Western Thought

Here's an exchange I had with a cyber-friend. Though brief, I thought we touched on some interesting topics and wanted to share the conversation with everyone else.

The Power of War

No surprise, but the United States is once again employing Death Squads to do its work. This time instead of Central America and Vietnam, it's Afghanistan. The consequences of this are terrible and if history is any precedent, the civilian costs are equally severe.

27 September 2010

Answering Questions #1- Dominionism

Periodically, I receive questions via email and sometimes they are of a nature beneficial to the general audience. So I'm starting an ongoing series called...Answering Questions. I will keep them all anonymous.

Answering Questions #1

What do I mean by Dominionism?

Advancing the Kingdom- (Part 6) Winning by Losing

Part six of my four part series.....

We have a joke around our house. When I call home during the day and ask if we received any phone calls or mail, if the answer is no, I always respond, "Good, we don't need any excitement." And there's a sense I truly mean that. There's a peace and solace in just living a plain ordinary life, coming home to a wife happy to see me, kids that aren't out of control. We live in a pretty quiet place with not much to do as many would reckon it. Nevertheless we are pleased with our woods, hills, and river, and the wonder of the four seasons. We are attempting to raise a godly family and honour God by doing so. I am reminded of a paragraph from Schaff concerning the youth of Christ. I think of this not from the perspective of Christ, but from the viewpoint of Joseph and Mary, a couple of regular people trying to serve the Lord, and with a most extraordinary task before them. Certainly they were honouring God, and I think of the life they provided for our Lord when he was young. Speaking of this, Schaff comments:

24 September 2010

The Salt of the Earth

I often disagree with him, but here's a worthwhile article from PC Roberts.

A sober and I'm sad to say, accurate assessment.

It's called, The Collapse of Western Morality

Perhaps the best line can be found in the concluding paragraph:

Americans will be the first people sent straight to Hell while thinking that they are the salt of the earth. The Americans have even devised a title for themselves to rival that of the Israelis’ self-designation as “God’s Chosen People.” The Americans call themselves “the indispensable people.”

23 September 2010

Advancing the Kingdom- (Part 5) Building the Kingdom by Ordinary Means

Christian Life and the Kingdom

Part 5 of my 4 part series (?) on Advancing the Kingdom.

Thus far I've been critical of what I deem to be serious errors in defining the Kingdom and thus building of it. Now, I wish to turn to some of the positive aspects of Kingdom building....

20 September 2010

ATK Part 4 Supplement- The Issue of Imminency

As a follow up to some of the comments I made in the last post….

I would also point out the problems Dispensationalism and Postmillennialism both have with the doctrine of the Imminency of the Second Coming. This is the teaching that Christ could have come at any moment in the past, including the present moment. Some may find it surprising that some systems deny this teaching.

Advancing the Kingdom- (Part 4) The Parsing of American Evangelicalism: Dispensationalism, Dominionism, Americanism, and Chiliasm

I ended the last piece with this question.

So why do I find it particularly strange this radio preacher was teaching about the Cultural Mandate, a doctrine which urges the Christian to try and conquer every facet of the Earth?

18 September 2010

Advancing the Kingdom- (Part 3) The Sacralist Hybrid

 Now, these have been general outlines of the two extremes. There's actually another camp which represents probably a much larger number of professing Christians.

The only name I can come up with is Pietistic Transformationalism, a hybrid of the two. A Sacralist hybrid.

This seems to be where most American Evangelicals find themselves, though the present manifestation can be pinpointed to the late 1970's. These movements are always grounded in a specific historical context. In a later post I hope discuss an earlier historic parallel which generated a similar response from Sacralist Protestantism. Our present form has been shaped by the American context in general, but more specifically it represents a reactionary response to the cultural revolution originating in the 1960's.

13 September 2010

The Kingdom War

A war worth fighting.

Within Reformed circles there's an intense debate between the Two Kingdom Theology position which I advocate here, (though in a more extreme fashion than many Reformed), and the Monistic One Kingdom position argued by Dominionists, Theonomists, and Postmillennialists, and all other expressions of Transformationalist theology.

11 September 2010

Several items of interest concerning 11 September and beyond...

I had planned to have a post ready for today, but I've been a bit overwhelmed lately and didn't get it done. Yes, it's related to Islam, but it's not directly related to 9/11. God willing I'll wrap that up in the next couple of days.

In the meantime here are a few links I'll share. As one might expect, there happened to be several of interest that popped up today. As always I'll add that I don't agree 100% with everything written, but for that matter I don't think I've ever read anything that I can say I endorse absolutely and completely other than God's Word.

08 September 2010

Advancing the Kingdom of Christ (Part 2 of 4) The Error of Transformationalism

Transformationalism seemingly stands at the opposite end of the Christ and Culture debate, and in some sense it is, but it's built on the same foundation as Pietism.

While rejecting Pietistic subjectivism and looking at the inward experience, this camp instead looks outward and gauges the Christian life in reference to one's impact on culture. They seek to build and conquer culture and tend to despise any hint of what they call retreatism.

06 September 2010

Advancing the Kingdom of Christ (Part 1/4)- The Error of Pietism

What is Pietism? This term is a bit complicated and can mean a lot of different things. Of course those who self-identify as Pietists will not agree with my definitions or comments.

One, it can refer to a historical movement within Lutheranism which focused on inward piety and the Christian life.


Two, it can refer in a larger sense to a tendency toward inward focus on the subjective Christian experience. Rather than view the Christian life as primarily a focus on the Person and Work of Christ in all that we do, pietism tends to turn inward. It focuses on the Christian walk and inner feelings regarding that walk, and measures one's success and level of pleasing God based on personal conduct.

04 September 2010

The Decline of Christianity in the West?

At the end of the last piece I asked if Christianity was in decline...

This is an excellent by article by a professor at Grove City College, named T. David Gordon.

A large portion in the center of this piece focuses on American Presbyterianism. Some readers might be interested in it, but others will most likely glaze over. So I am inserting a break with a note, then you can skip ahead to the last portion. But I wanted to post the whole article out of fairness to the author.---

They are a minority, but there are some in the Reformed world who oppose Constantinianism. Dr. Gordon is one who does so bravely but with humility. He is not liked by the Theonomists, I've seen that in person.

The link is here. As with many links, there are some things that are excellent, and other articles I would not endorse.

02 September 2010

1 September 1939

Reflections on how we as Christians should think about the events leading to and subsequent to The Second World War.

I meant to publish this on 1 September, but I was having computer trouble. My apologies.
The majority of my comments pertaining to the war are directed to an American audience, though the lessons I hope are applicable to Christians in any setting.

Yesterday was the 71st anniversary of the Nazi invasion of Poland, the official start of World War II. Every day I look at the obituaries and find a veteran or two from that era dying off. Soon they will be all but gone. For many in that generation the changes they saw in the scope of their lives is nothing less than astonishing. Many grew up barefoot kids playing on a farm, listening to the radio, many with outhouses instead of bathrooms, some without electricity. As that generation leaves us, we find a world with space exploration, the internet, medical technology they would have never even dreamed of, and so much more.