Category: Featured

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Confessionalism Promotes Academic Integrity

Doesn’t being “confessional” mean that certain kinds of questions are, by definition, verboten? Wouldn’t that in turn mean that academics in those institutions have to sacrifice the “science” of biblical and theological study upon the altar of confessional consistency? Not at all. I believe the opposite is the case.

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Is being biblical and confessional an academic liability?

We are confessional, which means we stand in the great tradition and ask “what’s next.” And we are Biblical, which means that when we ask that question we turn to the Word of Christ, working through the Spirit, and find it both fit and suitable for the building up of the church, for the race that we are called to run.

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Don’t Lose the Languages

This entry is part 6 of 6 in the series Real Questions

The only way to keep your Greek and Hebrew is to read Greek and Hebrew. I think you probably already knew that was the answer. You just didn’t want to admit it. But the languages are just like everything else: if you don’t use it, you’ll loose it. So what we really need is not a trick or a gimmick, but a reading plan. In the rest of this post, I will offer two.

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Only John Witnessed the Ascension Twice

As far as I can tell, there’s only one apostle that had the privilege of seeing the ascension twice, at two different times in his life, and from two different points of view: John,...

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Does Christmas Really Matter?

The first Christmas changed everything forever.1 And let’s be clear about what that means. Christmas is not an idea, not an emotion or an attitude or an ethos or symbol. Christmas isn’t a metaphor;...

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The Beginning of Things tells you Stuff: Determining Genre

This entry is part 3 of 3 in the series Ordinary Bible Reading

Pay careful attention to the opening section of any discourse. The first five minutes of a movie, the first chapter or so of a novel, the opening introduction of a sermon, the first paragraph of a newspaper article—all of these “first moments” are specifically designed to orient you to the thing that you are reading or hearing or watching. Remember, authors generally want to be understood, and because they want to be understood they want to set you up to read well.

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Another way to Read the Lord’s Prayer

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series The King's Petition

So our path begins with the observation that the Lord’s prayer is not just the kind of prayer that our Lord taught, but rather the kind of prayer our Lord prayed.

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The Problem with Reading the Bible Verse-by-Verse

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the series Ordinary Bible Reading

Over the years we have trained ourselves to read the Bible in an unnatural way, so we’re going to have to break some bad habits. We are trained to read the Bible verse-by-verse, but in keeping with the “ordinary reading principle” we need to change our habits. We should ordinarily be reading the Bible paragraph-by-paragraph or, even better, book-by-book.

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The Bible isn’t Just Extraordinary, It’s Also Ordinary

This entry is part 1 of 3 in the series Ordinary Bible Reading

In other words, while the Bible is always extra-ordinary, it is such through the use of the ordinary ways that human beings speak to one another. It is supernatural revelation that God has given in natural language. The Bible is special and unique, but it is not special and unique in this way, that is, in the manner by which it communicates truth to human beings. That’s why the Westminster Standards go on to describe the meaning of the Bible as accessible “through a due use of ordinary means” (WCF 1.7).

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Let the Text Question You: Exegesis is Application

This entry is part 5 of 5 in the series Exegesis without the Languages

As we question our souls we are really just turning Scripture inward. In the end, it’s God that asks the questions. We are involved in the process, investigation ourselves on his behalf, as it were, but in the end we can only know ourselves in so far as God begins the inquiry.