N.T. Wright, in his newest book, The Day the Revolution Began, asserts that an either/or distinction between the theories of the atonement must be discarded. These theories in fact are all truthful. They must be taken together to get a holistic picture of what the atonement is. The idea, in a nutshell, is that the atonement of Christ is a multi-faceted event containing elements of Christus Victor, Moral Influence, and Penal Substitution, an event which is ultimately about God reclaiming authority over the world through the reinstatement of humans to their God-ordained vocation as image bearers and vice-regents of the earth. Below, I will explain the deficiencies of each theory to show that they are not sufficient in and of themselves to explain the atonement. Continue reading The Multi-Dimensional Revolution: Theories of the Atonement, pt. 2
These are in no particular order!
The Death of Death by John Owen. The PDF can be found here
Apart from the Bible, this is my favorite book of all time. John Owen, the greatest of all Puritans, had already defended Limited Atonement in his first work, A Display of Arminianism. Here is an absolutely thorough treatment of the subject that to this day has not been sufficiently answered by the opposing side. Continue reading Theology Must Reads: Top 10 Books on the Atonement
I promise you that the title isn’t meant to be clickbait. Anxiety is a very real thing that we feel as human beings, and the Scriptures are replete with comforts and corrections for us in our worries. Rather what I mean by “nobody struggles with anxiety” is that an individual’s battle against anxiety is never a war against anxiety particularly. They may feel anxiety and that anxiety may produce a great deal of pain in their hearts, but anxiety is always a product of some greater issue. Continue reading Nobody Struggles With Anxiety
The book 1 Timothy was written by Paul the apostle to a young evangelist who often served with him. He is absent at the time and wishes to instruct Timothy on how to run the church. Our passage for today, chapter 1 verses 12-17, is a digression. His mention of his commission to preach the gospel in verse 11 sparks a rant about how he was considered faithful despite his former sins. He picks up his thought again in verse 18 mentioning again the command back in verse 3. In this paragraph Paul give us insight into the gospel and his personal testimony. I want to draw particular attention to his past sin. Paul shatters the notion that people can be too bad to make it to heaven. If you are in that thought process concerning yourself, may Paul’s testimony show you just how merciful Jesus is. Continue reading Paul the Chief of Sinners Was Shown Mercy
The Galatian church had fallen prey to false teachers, and many of its members were being drawn away from the pure gospel of grace alone. Paul writes the letter to rebuke them and get them back on track. Here we can glean insight and many practical tips for how we can recognize and defeat false doctrine in our churches. Continue reading 10 Lessons From Galatians on False Doctrine and Its Teachers
The death of Jesus Christ stands as a central event in Christian theology along with the incarnation, resurrection, and ascension. Like the other three events, the death of Jesus is rich with meaning and significance. The New Testament, looking back at the crucified Christ, explains that the death of Jesus should be understood in terms of atonement (Heb. 2:17). Jesus, like the sacrificial animals offered by the Levitical priesthood in the Old Testament, is handed over to be killed on a Roman crucifix in order to make atonement for the sins of the people.
However, the nature of how this atonement works has been hotly debated throughout church history. Several different theories have been offered throughout the past two millennia to try to get at what is happening on the cross. Is Jesus’ death an ironic victory over the dark powers of this world, an inspirational illustration of the sacrificial love of God, or a legal transaction between God and Jesus in order to satisfy God’s requirement? This paper will present a middle way theory which navigates between the other atonement theories and discovers they are in fact parts to a multi-dimensional whole expressed in various metaphors in Scripture requiring a harmony of more than one atonement theory in order to be fully explained. Continue reading Ironic, Subjective, Just, or All Three: Theories of the Atonement, pt. 1
Today I want to address that which is both a highly neglected Christian responsibility and a highly underappreciated Christian privilege. The exhortation from Scripture goes as follows:
“Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated, since you yourselves also are in the body.” Hebrews 13:3
Todays topic is something we can all relate to: suffering. We have all suffered in one way or another–a physical illness, a death in the family, or even persecution for being a Christian. In the gospel of John, we find examples of each of these. I want to examine an account of each, and glean insight from the narrative as to why we go through hardships, and how God can still shine through our darkness. Continue reading God’s Glory Through Suffering: A Case Study in the Gospel of John
One year ago today the partnership between Daniel, Joshua and Steve started. We three theology guys were friends previously, having met at The Master’s College. We wanted to bless the body of Christ with sound biblical material, and to evangelize the lost with good gospel writing.
Here are some stats:
MOST POPULAR POSTS by views:
- 17 Ways You Can Glorify God: Summary of Thomas Watson’s Thoughts by Steve
- Defend the Faith! Even if Bill Nye the Science Guy is Smarter than You by Joshua
- Barth, Rome, and Liberals: Four Views on the Bible’s Origin, Pt. 1 by guest author Alan Kern
- Secular Christianity vs. Biblical Christianity by Daniel
- Exegetical Stuff in Romans 3:21-26 by Steve
MOST POPULAR POSTS by shares:
(Note: Our counters don’t tally Tweets!)
- Depressed? Take 6 Chapters of Ephesians and Call Me in the Morning by Joshua with 19 Facebook shares and our only Pinterest share!
- Life is Too Short for Sin by Daniel, a close second with 19 Facebook shares also.
- Defeating Depression with 42 Blessings of Salvation by Joshua with 15 shares.
- Men, Rape, and the Bible, part 2 by Daniel with 11 shares.
- 17 Ways You Can Glorify God: Summary of Thomas Watson’s Thoughts by Steve with 10 shares.
WHAT’S NEW FOR THE COMING YEAR?
- Lately I’ve been working on making our menu easier to navigate so that your experience with us is more convenient.
- Soon we will begin doing book giveaways! I just ordered 50 copies of Why Pro-Life? by Randy Alcorn. Stay tuned for a book review as well as how you can get a free copy complements of us.
We will also be doing raffles where you can enter to win books that I just so happen to have doubles of!
We can’t wait to bless you with more writing to come! Thank you so much for your support over this past year.
P.S. The 5 LEAST viewed posts were all written by me, so I will advertise for them here:
Video Games and Ice Cream in Heaven?
Does God Hate Sin and Not Sinners? Revisiting a Cliche
ALL of the Bible is Inspired
The Co-Extent Theory Examined and Critiqued
When Was Jesus Bearing Our Sins?
17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”18 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 19 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother.’ ”20 “Teacher,” he declared, “all these I have kept since I was a boy.”21 Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”22 At this the man’s face fell. He went away sad, because he had great wealth.
23 Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God!”24 The disciples were amazed at his words. But Jesus said again,“Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! 25 It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”26 The disciples were even more amazed, and said to each other, “Who then can be saved?”27 Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.”
28 Then Peter spoke up, “We have left everything to follow you!”29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields—along with persecutions—and in the age to come eternal life. 31 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.”
When we read the Bible we often do not read the entire context or only see what we would like to see. Jesus’ argument is subtle and involves ellipsis but He is not using an exaggeration but an argument from greater to lesser. First He makes an exclamation about how hard it is hard for a rich man to enter heaven. And next- and this is very important- He says in Mark 10:24 “How hard it is to enter the kingdom of God.” In this second instance He omits any mention of the rich and has proceeded to make a general statement about its difficulty to enter. It is true that in Mk 10:25 He resumes His diatribe against the rich, but this point is to reinforce the general statement of Mk 10:24. In other words, Jesus is arguing that if it is hard for a rich man to enter heaven- the ones whom everyone would have assumed would be first in line- then how much more for those who are not rich. Continue reading Do I Really Need to Sell Everything??