•February 26, 2014 • Leave a Comment
Please join us at the Clifton Park Community Church on Saturday, March 29, for the annual meeting of the Northeast Evangelical Theological Society. This year’s featured speaker is Dr. Al Mohler. In addition, there’ll be breakout sessions where position papers will be presented by theologians, pastors, and seminary students. If you register before March 1, you’ll get a discount off the price of admission. You can get more information and register here.
Did I mention the coffee is free? All day.
There will also be lots of books for sale from our friends at Westminster Discount Books, as well as representatives from Zondervan, Baker, and other Christian publishers.
All of the contributors to this blog will be there, and our own Brian Spivey will be presenting a paper. Hope you can make it!
•February 22, 2014 • Leave a Comment
David’s song would probably not be played on a contemporary Christian radio station, or played in our churches, but maybe it should.
In Psalm 16, he prayed, “Preserve me, O God.” The Hebrew word for “preserve” means “to keep or guard.” We can see this word in action when we look at how guards surround a king, and when a shepherd guards his sheep. David took refuge in the only person who can perfectly shepherd and protect him.
In verse 2, there is a second singular ending on the end of the Hebrew verb, “Say.” It is a strange thing because it is in the feminine form. I believe the KJV and the NKJV captures the gist of the why it might be there when they translated verse 2, “O my soul, thou hast said unto the Lord.” David confessed to himself and the Lord, “You are my Lord.” At the end of verse 2, David declares that his goodness “Extendeth not to thee…”David recognized his radical corruption. This recognition is crucial for a true understanding of our condition before God. We won’t feel a need to run to Jesus without this knowledge.
We stand undone and condemned before a holy God. Without the foreign righteousness of Christ we are men most miserable – we are without hope. The realization of knowing ones sins was huge for pillars in church history. Bernard of Clairvaux, a 12th century mystic said, “The knowledge of God and knowledge of self belong together and that in their mutual dependence they are necessary for salvation.” Question # 1 of The Heidelberg Catechism provides a biblical summary of our only comfort in life and in death. But question #2 asks, “What must you know to live and die in the joy of this comfort? The answer – “Three things: First, how great my sin and misery are…” This was the first on the list. This was the song. The apostles knew how great their sin and misery were; the believer in the 12th Century knew this; the elders and church leaders in Germany in the 16th Century knew this; and David declared this in Psalm 16. When you look squarely “into the eyes” of a Holy God, can you see “How Great, How Great is our sin! Sing with me how great is our sin. Then all will see how Great, how Great is our GOD”
Can you sing the song of King David and our forefathers? Well then, there is hope for you… You can now RUN to Jesus for safety.
Brian Spivey — D.O.C.
•February 21, 2014 • 17 Comments
Tom Chantry has done a couple of posts at his blog, chantrynotes, in which he goes after theologian and seminary professor, John Frame. Tom was a student of Dr. Frame’s back in the early 90′s at Westminster West (WSC). His failure to adequately understand and re-state Dr. Frame’s theological formulations is unfortunately going to poison the well for some. However, I hope that no one will be deterred from reading Frame directly themselves.
See Tom’s posts here and here. His opening comments are over the top and his assertions of dishonesty with regard to John Frame are ungracious and placing him in the worst possible light.
You can read where Frame corrects Tom about his position here , and read a good post by Reformed Baptist pastor Fred Zaspel here. And hey, since we’re linkin’, here’s a few more with analysis:
I was boning up for a blog series on Ephesians (that’s a semi-explanation for my blog neglect of late), but this has brought up some interesting topics I would like to delve into a bit, namely confessionalism, theological disagreement, and sola Scriptura.
Let’s see where we go from here :-)
•January 26, 2014 • 2 Comments
On his blog, Blogging Theologically, Aaron Armstrong gives a light-hearted but true list of seven signs you’re reading a book by a prosperity preacher. Here’s an opening paragraph and the list (in brief).
Every so often we all stumble into prosperity theology, usually unwittingly. While occasionally you’ll get a nugget of helpful truth (in the same way that you’ll find some helpful things in your average self-help book), there’s a lot of goofiness which can make for a fun night of “Joel Osteen or Fortune Cookie.” So, how do you know if you’re reading a book written by a prosperity preacher? Here are seven signs:
1. A bright shiny smile that looks like it belongs on a poster for a dentist office.
2. The title makes it clear someone is really important—and that someone is you.
3. It’s advice that could easily be confused with the message from a fortune cookie.
4. There’s a proverb on the cover.
5. Someone’s caps-lock got stuck.
6. It may or may not be trying to cast wicked spells.
7. Seven is always the magic number.
I suggest you click through and read the whole thing HERE.
~ p d b
Postscript — Aaron Armstrong himself has a great smile, but he does not put it on the cover of his books. :) I have read his books, and they don’t meet the other criteria listed above. In fact, his writings are biblical, and very helpful — I recommend them, especially his book CONTENDING: DEFENDING TH FAITH IN A FALLEN WORLD!
•January 16, 2014 • Leave a Comment
Sorry for the late announcement, but if you’re going to be in Saratoga this Friday, January 17 make plans to attend a presentation by Nathan Betts from Ravi Zacharias Ministries International. For more details visit Capital District Youth for Christ’s web site here.
The topic will be Truth, More than Just an Idea.
…..and it’s free
Hope you can make it.
•January 15, 2014 • 1 Comment
I know, I sound confused. How can one reflect upon that which hasn’t happened yet? Is looking back upon 2013 any guide to 2014? The new year is a good time for healthy reflection, for sitting down and taking time to think about what is now behind us. I’m not talking about that kind of navel-gazing which is likely to be a detriment to assurance, but the intentional and wise consideration of God’s providence and our responses to what He has brought us through.
God always exhorts His people to remember His great acts in history. To look back and consider what He has done for us and then look to the future without trepidation. Remember the Red Sea (Ex. 14)? Yahweh wants us to look back at that great deliverance and not to fear what may seem like an insurmountable difficulty. Even greater, let’s remember the cross. Look back at that great deliverance regularly and your troubles will be put into their proper perspective. God has, in the past, done things in time and space, with each one of us in mind (and upon His heart). If He has acted in history for us before, will He not do so again?
All right, so the events of your life are not so grand. Those acts of redemption and deliverance were not for you only, they were for God’s people and by His grace you happen to be one of them. Has God not delivered you from some difficulty before? Has He not provided a job, supplied a need, so arranged the events of your life to keep you safe? Don’t you have anything from 2013 that you can look back on and bless God for? Yes, brother or sister, you do! Therefore, “reflect” upon the upcoming year with confidence in God. Look ahead and fear not!