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


Living in Light of Two Ages



Audio from Ken Samples' Academy Lecture (10/24/14)

Here's the audio from Ken Samples' second lecture on Augustine, entitled " Augustine’s Most Influential Book."

Click Here


Banned by Google, Twitter News, and a New Book

For the last few months, The Riddleblog (along with anything I've posted here) does not show up in a google search.  The tech folks at Squarespace can't find any bad code or problems on this end.

Anyone ever encounter this before?  Am I banned?  It is probably from posting those Third Eagle videos . . .

Some of you have asked why I'm not on Twitter.  The answer is "I hate Twitter."  But, Christ Reformed Church has a Twitter feed, and my blog is now linked to it.  So, you can follow The Riddleblog by clicking on the @christ_ref link under the social media header on the right.

Not only do you get Riddleblog updates, but Andrew Compton's blog (Reformed Reader) is also linked to the C-Ref Twitter feed, as is Daily Confession.

Last, but not least . . .  Some big book news coming.  I'm sworn to secrecy for another week or two, but watch for a big announcement.  (No, my two kingdoms book is not yet finished).  But I'm pretty excited about it and have been working on it as I can.


Friday Feature -- "The Marriage of Figaro" in a Prison Yard

This is one of my favorite scenes from one of my favorite moves.


"The True Light" -- John 1:1-18

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

In John’s purpose statement (chapter 20:30-31) he tells us why he wrote his gospel.  “These [things] are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life ain his name.”  If Jesus’ preaching and miracles prove that he is the Christ and the Son of God, why is it that people (including his own people, the Jews) reject him?  John will tell us why people do not believe the gospel using the familiar metaphor of darkness and light.  The reason why people reject the creator and redeemer of the world is because our deeds are evil. We hate it when the light (the truth that is in Jesus Christ and as expressed in the law and gospel) exposes us for what we are–sinners in need of a Savior.

As we continue our series on the Gospel of John, we are making our way through the prologue (the first 18 verses) of this gospel.  As we saw last time, John’s prologue is densely-packed with important theological truths, all designed introduce us to the central figure of John’s Gospel–Jesus Christ, the eternal word of God (logos) made flesh.  Virtually every point made by John in this prologue will reappear later on in the body of the gospel.  So, if we are familiar with John’s prologue, we will better understand the events which unfold in John’s Gospel, which opens in verse 19 of chapter one when our Lord begins his public ministry.  By knowing who Jesus is as he is revealed prologue to John, we already know that Jesus is God in human flesh, that one through whom God reveals himself to his people.

In the opening words of John’s prologue we learn that Jesus is the word (logos), and that the word was God, yet distinct from God.  We also learn that the word created all things.  As John tells us: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God.  All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.”  From this important declaration come the Christian doctrines of the deity of Jesus Christ, the distinction between the Father and the Son (underlying the doctrine of the Trinity), and the fact that is was through Jesus that God created all things.  In fact, you cannot be a Christian without believing these things.  More to the point, you cannot truly understand John’s gospel without knowing these things before you read it.   

As we read in verses 4-5 regarding the logos (Jesus), “in him was life, and the life was the light of men.  The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”  Throughout John’s Gospel the terms “life” and “light” will be used in connection with our salvation from sin, but in the opening words to the prologue of John’s Gospel we see these terms used specifically in connection with creation.   Echoing the creation account in Genesis 1:1-2:3, John tells us that Jesus is the source of all things, including life, having the source of life in himself (cf. John 5:26).  In fact, it was through Jesus Christ that God created all things.  Furthermore, Jesus is the light, which, as we saw, may be a reference to the fact that each one of us are created in God’s image, or to the fact that Jesus is the one who illumines our minds so that we know and understand truth.  John may even be referring to both. 

To read the rest of this sermon:   Click Here


This Week at Christ Reformed Church (October 20-26) - Reformation Sunday and Our Nineteenth Anniversary!

Note:  The picture above is of our first service in Anaheim.  Previously, Christ Reformed Church held our services in Michael Horton's living room, and then in a Lutheran Church in Placentia.

Sunday Morning (October 26):  We celebrate our 19th anniversary and Reformation Sunday by considering Paul's discussion of righteousness in Philippians 3:1-11.  Our Lord's Day worship service begins at 10:30 a.m.

New Members Class (9:00 a.m.):  Our Fall new members class continues with a discussion of the privileges and responsibilities of church membership.  Inquirers welcome!

Sunday AfternoonKen Samples will discussing the Belgic Confession.  Our catechism service begins @ 1:15 p.m.

Wednesday Night Bible Study (October 8):  We continue our study of the Book of Romans with a rapid-fire "run through Romans."  We'll be convering Romans 3-5.  Bible Study begins at 7:30 p.m.

New Academy Series:  Prof. Ken Samples continues his six week series entitled, "If I Had Lunch with St. Augustine." Ken's second lecture is entitled, "Augustine’s Most Influential Book."

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



“Arm Yourselves With the Same Way of Thinking” -- 1 Peter 4:1-11

Here's the audio from this morning's sermon:  Click Here


This Week's White Horse Inn

Present Shock

According to media and technology writer Douglas Rushkoff, “Our society has reoriented itself to the present moment. Everything is live, real time, and always on. It’s not a mere speeding up; however, much in our lifestyles and technologies have accelerated the rate at which we attempt to do things. It’s more of a diminishment of anything that isn’t happening right now.” Michael Horton speaks with Rushkoff about his new book, Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now, and discusses how his thesis applies to the world of contemporary Christianity while it emphasizes having your best life now.

Click Here


Audio from Ken Samples' Academy Lecture

Here's the audio from Ken's lecture (10/17/2014), "Augustine’s Intellectual & Spiritual Pilgrimage."

Click Here


Friday Feature -- The "Coolest" Car Commerical Ever?

In light of the Bullitt car chase video a few weeks back, I thought this was apropos.   My wife is worried I'm gonna buy a blue turtleneck and a tweed sport coat.


"In the Beginning Was the Word" -- John 1:1-18

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

In order to be a Christian one must believe in the doctrine of the Trinity and in the Deity of Jesus Christ.  And it is not an accident that in the Creed we confess, “I believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth.”  All of these doctrines are addressed in the “Prologue” of John’s Gospel when John identifies Jesus as God, yet distinct from the Father, and that God created all things through Jesus Christ, who is the eternal Word (logos) made flesh.
As we continue our new series on the Gospel of John.  Last week–the first in our series–we dealt with background materials regarding John’s Gospel including authorship (John wrote it!) and dating (between 80-85 AD) before we addressed the Gospel’s purpose statement in John 20:30-31–“now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.”  

Based upon John’s purpose statement, it is evident that throughout this gospel John is answering the question “who is Jesus?” and making his case as to why his readers should believe in Jesus so as to receive life in his name.  Given the likely circumstances under which this gospel was written–the chaos in Palestine after the Fall of Jerusalem–it is reasonable to conclude that John’s purpose statement is an indication that his gospel was written to equip Christians to bear witness about Jesus Christ, especially to those Jews and God-fearing Gentiles who had questions about Jesus’ identity, and who may have been wondering about the purposes of God after the Roman army captured Jerusalem and destroyed the Jewish temple in 70 AD.  If people in John’s day were asking “who is Jesus,” so too are people in our own, and as we will see John’s answer to this question is just as profound in our day as it was in his.

We will begin to work our way through the first 18 verses of chapter 1, the so-called “Prologue” to John’s Gospel–a prologue is an introduction to what follows.  Some speak of this prologue like a foyer (entrance) to a building because the first eighteen verses do serve as the entrance to the body of the gospel itself.  Another writer speaks of the prologue as “an introduction to the history of Jesus Christ.”  This too is a helpful way to look at this because John’s prologue informs us about Jesus’ true identity, so that when John opens his account of Jesus’ preaching and miracles in verse 19 of chapter 1, we already know a great deal about who Jesus is–he is the Word made flesh. 

To read the rest of this sermon, Click Here

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