Category Archives: Because Someone Has to Provide Oversight

Redefining Declension So Numbers Ascend


When you are having trouble with lack of resolve and dwindling numbers among the communicants (and clergy), you find a different paradigm that allows you to turn defeat into victory. For instance, David Robertson reported on efforts within the Church of Scotland to advance Christianity and extend membership: Rev John Chalmers, Moderator of the Church… Read More→

Also posted in Christianity and the West, Reformed Protestantism, Roman Catholicism | Tagged , , , , | 1 Response

New Calvinism is Warmed-Over New Evangelicalism with a Hint of Hipster


John Turner’s post about Henrietta Mears reminded me of a thought I have had for some time — namely, that the New Calvinism and Gospel Coalition are simply trying to do what Carl Henry and Harold John Ockenga were trying to do in the world of Protestantism outside the mainline churches. Mears was arguably the… Read More→

Also posted in Adventures in Church History, Evangelicalism, Piety with Excitement | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 35 Responses

All that Flesh, and No Where to Put It


Mark Jones departs from the Puritan opposition to Advent and Christmas by posting about the incarnation. But once again his excitement to make a point may get the better of him: This shows us just how much God loves “flesh” (i.e., human nature). God is forever identified with humanity because of the incarnation. Thus, heaven… Read More→

Also posted in Being Human | Tagged , , , , | 50 Responses

If You Can Make It In SE Grand Rapids . . .

O, The Oprah Magazine, Hosts A Special Advance Screening Of "Lee Daniels' The Butler" At The Hearst Tower - Arrivals

you can make it on Oprah. After the initial battle over Love Wins died down, Bell seemed to disappear from the public eye. He left his Mars Hill Bible Church in Grand Rapids and headed out to California to work on TV projects. The Rob Bell Show will premiere Dec. 21 on the Oprah Winfrey… Read More→

Also posted in Evangelicalism | Tagged , , , | 12 Responses

How Did the Reformation Ever Happen . . .

enron smart guys

without The Bible: Faith and Work Edition? The constant and everyday relevance of the Bible is why David Kim, Executive Director of the Center for Faith & Work at Redeemer Presbyterian Church, and I—along with the editors of Christianity Today and Zondervan—are working on a new Bible. We want something with staying power. The Bible:… Read More→

Also posted in New World Presbyterianism | Tagged , , , , | 222 Responses


Mickey Rooney

Tim Challies identifies five ugly qualities of the anti-elder (do they have beautiful features?): The anti-elder is a dictator. Paul says, “He must not be arrogant.” The anti-elder is marked by arrogance and aggression, and therefore he makes decisions that are to his own advantage rather than to the advantage of the people in his… Read More→

Also posted in Being Human, Jure Divino Presbyterianism | Tagged , , | 23 Responses

Hard or Soft?

soft crispy steak tacos-1

Yesterday I participated in an ETS panel on The New Calvinism. (Here is one of the presentations. Here is evident of another ETS sighting.) One thing that I kept asking myself and then asked everyone in open discussion was why so few New Calvinists ask hard questions about the movement. People talk a lot about… Read More→

Also posted in Adventures in Church History, Evangelicalism, Reformed Protestantism, Shameless Selves Promotion | Tagged , , , , | 60 Responses

That Funny Thing You (military) Do


Is it wrong to be ambivalent about the U.S. military, or at least about the ways that Americans manipulate empathy for soldiers to produce a faux patriotism? A couple of recent incidents rekindled this question (which given its length may need a lot of kindling). During halftime at the Crisler Center at the University of… Read More→

Also posted in Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Reformed Protestantism | Tagged , , , , | 38 Responses

Piece o’ Cake?

Martha with pieces

Not only can Christians put sin to death, they can also take charge of email (and more and more and more). Tim Challies explains how. Here’s point 7 out of 9 on the sin front: #7. BATTLE Battle hard against the first awakenings of that sin. Never, ever allow yourself to play with sin. Never… Read More→

Also posted in Application of Redemption, Being Human, Evangelicalism, sanctification | Tagged , , | 79 Responses

Is This What A McDonald’s “Chef” Says To Himself?


That’s the analogy that Kevin DeYoung and Ryan Kelly’s brief for the Gospel Coalition brought to mind. They begin by asking: Should Christians who share many of the most important theological commitments partner across denominational lines for mutual support and collaborative ministry? Are there historical precedents for the kind of gospel networks we see flourishing… Read More→

Also posted in Evangelicalism, High Church Presbyterianism | Tagged , , , , , , , | 48 Responses