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"Amillennialism 101" -- Audio and On-Line Resources


Living in Light of Two Ages



Westminster Seminary California's Annual Conference, "Christ Our Wisdom"

If you are unable to attend WSC's annual conference this coming Friday and Saturday, just a head's up that you can watch the conference via live-streaming.

Here's the link: Christ Our Wisdom


This Week at Christ Reformed Church (January 12-18)

Sunday Morning (January 18):  We continue our sermon series on 2 Peter and Jude.  This coming Lord's Day we will take up Peter's discussion of the prophetic word in 2 Peter 1:12-21.  Our Lord's Day worship service begins at 10:30 a.m.

Sunday Afternoon:  I am continuing my series on the Canons of Dort, and this Lord's Day we are working our way through the Fifth Head of Doctrine (articles 4-5).  We will discuss the dangers of falling into serious sin.  Our  catechism service begins @ 1:15 p.m.

Wednesday Night Bible Study (January 14, 2015)We return to our series on Romans--picking up with Romans 12.

The Academy:  The Academy will resume on January 30, 2015, when we return to our study of Michael Horton's The Christian Faith.  We will pick up where we left up previously--chapter eight, p. 278, and Michael's discussion of the Holy Trinity.

For more information and directions, check out the Christ Reformed website:  Christ Reformed Church


"Make Your Calling and Election Sure" -- 2 Peter 1:3-11

Here's the audio from this morning's sermon, the second in a series of sermons on 2 Peter:  Click Here


This Week's White Horse Inn

Greater Than Angels

This week on the White Horse Inn we are continuing our study through the Book of Hebrews, looking at the superiority of Christ’s sacrifice. We are joined once more by Dennis Johnson and Zach Keele. Dennis Johnson is Professor of Practical Theology at Westminster Seminary California, as well as a minister at New Life Presbyterian Church in Escondido, CA. He is the author of several books including Him We Proclaim: Preaching Christ from All of Scripture, Triumph of the Lamb: A Commentary on Revelation, and The Message of Acts in the History of Redemption. Zach Keele is a frequent contributor to Modern Reformation and the pastor of Escondido Orthodox Presbyterian Church. He is the co-author of Sacred Bond: Covenant Theology Explored.

Join us this week as we discuss the nature of Christ’s priestly sacrifice. Why do we need a human mediator? How is Jesus’ priestly work superior to the old covenant? On what basis should we reject old covenant worship as obsolete? What hope can we draw from this Epistle? Let’s listen in as we delve into the Book of Hebrews on the White Horse Inn.

Click Here


"Je Suis Charlie"! Not so Fast

David Brooks' editorial I Am Not Charlie Hebdo in the New York Times is spot on, and I encourage you to read it in its entirety.

A couple of salient quotes from Brooks:

Public reaction to the attack in Paris has revealed that there are a lot of people who are quick to lionize those who offend the views of Islamist terrorists in France but who are a lot less tolerant toward those who offend their own views at home.

Just look at all the people who have overreacted to campus micro-aggressions. The University of Illinois fired a professor who taught the Roman Catholic view on homosexuality. The University of Kansas suspended a professor for writing a harsh tweet against the N.R.A. Vanderbilt University derecognized a Christian group that insisted that it be led by Christians. 

The first thing to say, I suppose, is that whatever you might have put on your Facebook page yesterday, it is inaccurate for most of us to claim, Je Suis Charlie Hebdo, or I Am Charlie Hebdo. Most of us don’t actually engage in the sort of deliberately offensive humor that that newspaper specializes in.

In most societies, there’s the adults’ table and there’s the kids’ table. The people who read Le Monde or the establishment organs are at the adults’ table. The jesters, the holy fools and people like Ann Coulter and Bill Maher are at the kids’ table. They’re not granted complete respectability, but they are heard because in their unguided missile manner, they sometimes say necessary things that no one else is saying.

Healthy societies, in other words, don’t suppress speech, but they do grant different standing to different sorts of people. Wise and considerate scholars are heard with high respect. Satirists are heard with bemused semirespect. Racists and anti-Semites are heard through a filter of opprobrium and disrespect. People who want to be heard attentively have to earn it through their conduct.

Brooks concludes,

The massacre at Charlie Hebdo should be an occasion to end speech codes. And it should remind us to be legally tolerant toward offensive voices, even as we are socially discriminating.


Friday Feature -- My Favorite TV Show as a Kid

As a kid, I loved the TV series Combat.  Vic Morrow's brooding character Sgt. Saunders . . .  Rick Jason's cool and collected Lt. Hanley. . .   And then there was Kirby and his BAR.


The Five Most Disturbing Things About a Benny Hinn Rally

I recently came across an interesting eyewitness account from someone who attended a Benny Hinn rally in New York.

The author showed great restraint in limiting herself to only five "disturbing things" about a Benny Hinn rally.  She implied that there were many more, and I would expect that to be the case.

Since I would never set foot in such a place, an account from someone who did recently is of interest to me, and perhaps to you as well.

The Five Most Disturbing Things


Ben Sasse's Senatorial Campaign

Here's a great essay on how Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse went from a 3% statewide name recognition, to eventually winning in every county in Nebraska--without using any negative campaign ads.

The Anatomy of a Campaign


"The Savior of the World" -- John 4:27-42

The Fourteenth in a Series of Sermons on the Gospel of John

Israel’s prophets foretold that in the messianic age, God would include countless Gentiles among those who would be the beneficiaries of the long expected deliverance from sin and the curse which the Messiah would accomplish.  But by the time of Jesus, Jewish piety centered around things like ritual cleanliness and purity, observance of feast and Holy days, and a rigid external obedience to the law of Moses as interpreted by legal experts whom we know as scribes and teachers of the law.  This kind of piety excluded any Gentile (unless they ceased being Gentiles and became Jews) and caused Jews to view Gentiles as “dogs” (unclean).  But when Jesus leaves Jerusalem and passes through Samaria, we begin to see how poorly the Jews understood their own Scriptures.  Israel’s prophets spoke of a great harvest which would include both Jew and Gentile.  And in John 4, it becomes clear that Jesus has come to bring about that anticipated harvest.

In vv. 1-42 of John 4, we read of Jesus’ encounter with an unnamed woman at Jacob’s well in the heart of Samaria.  Although the passage should be covered in one sermon, because of our limited time, I broke the passage up into two parts.  Last time, we took up the first 26 verses of the chapter which recount Jesus’ dialogue with this Samaritan woman.  In this sermon, I will briefly recount that conversation before we look at the consequences of that dialogue in vv. 27-42.  Just as Israel’s prophets had foretold, many Gentiles came to believe that Jesus is the long-expected Messiah and Savior of the world even at this early phase of Jesus’ messianic mission.  As we will see, when the gospel went out to the Samaritans, many (unlike the Jews) embraced it with great joy.

In the opening verses of chapter 4, John tells us that Jesus and his disciples were headed north back to Capernaum after leaving Jerusalem where Jesus had gone to celebrate the Passover.  During his time in Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple calling it his father’s house.  In righteous anger, Jesus cast out the merchants and money-changers who defiled the temple by selling their wares in the outer court of the Gentiles–that place where God intended the Gentile nations to come and worship the true and living God.  This point is important to recall, because God’s intention to save Gentiles during the messianic age (extending the promise of salvation far beyond the narrow confines of Israel) will figure prominently in our passage.

Jesus performed a number of unspecified miracles during his time in Jerusalem.  These miracles functioned to confirm that Jesus is Israel’s Messiah and the son of God, leading a prominent member of the Sanhedrin (Nicodemus) who witnessed them, to acknowledge that Jesus’ miracles were an indication that God was with him.  Yet, we have no clear indication that Nicodemus ever came to faith.  Already worried about the multitudes following John the Baptist, it was during this time that Jesus came under the scrutiny of the Jewish religious leadership.  Although John the Baptist’s wilderness ministry began to decrease in influence (just as prophesied), Jesus’ ministry was only now getting under way.  Since it was not yet time for Jesus’ messianic mission to come to its fruition with his death and resurrection, Jesus sought to return to Capernaum in the region of Galilee (which served as the home base for Jesus during this early phase of his messianic ministry). 

To read the rest of this sermon, Click Here


The Bible and the Reformed Confessions -- 2015 Reading Plans

People often ask me about Bible reading plans--especially at the New Year when folks endeavor (dare I say it, make a resolution) to be more faithful about Bible reading.

Here are a couple of suggestions:

Ligonier has a great list of plans:  Ligonier Bible Reading Plans has a good list as well:  ESV Bible Reading Plans  

If you read Koine Greek and want to keep your skills sharp, I recommend Lee Irons' plan to read through the Greek text in one year:  Annual Greek NT Reading Plan

If you want to read the Reformed Confessions on a daily basis (and even have a reading from them delivered to you in a daily email) you can go here:  Daily Confession

If you want to do the same with the Westminster Confession, try this:  Daily Westminster