Browse Worthy: Trinitarianism and Complementarianism (Part 3)

As has been noted by this first list of articles then another post, a fascinating and important debate has been taking place about the doctrine of the Trinity in seeking to find support for complementarianism. The need for the church to be clear regarding the Godhead as revealed as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit cannot be overemphasized (as this post also reminded us).

Some further posts are shared below that help crystallize the issues. There is a world of difference between saying that the eternally generated Son submitted to the Father before the incarnation (resulting in God having more than one will) and saying that in their eternal counsel the Son as man would submit to the Father (the belief that Christ has both a divine and human will). I hope and pray that the truth of who God is and how He has chosen to reveal himself will triumph over desires to support in an unwarranted manner a lesser teaching of Scripture or, worse yet, to protect reputations. For there is no dishonor in being corrected and accepting it.

Sitting at Douglas Kelly’s Feet: Subordination and the Current Debate | Daniel F. Wells (June 26, 2016)
Heresy and Humility — Lessons from a Current Controversy | Al […]

From the RPCNA Synod

Most of the readers of this blog know that the writers are (mostly) pastors in the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America, which is currently wrapping up their annual meeting of synod at Indiana Wesleyan in Marion, Indiana. Without giving a full update, I thought I might mention a few encouraging blessings God has given this week. 

Gorge Thy Ears

A few audio picks:

The men over at Reformed Forum weigh in on the current Trinitarian debate.
A podcast affiliated with RadioLab has recently launched a new and superb  podcast covering key cases in the Supreme Court. It is called More Perfect. I heartily recommend it.
If you haven’t listened to History on Fire’s first two episodes (The Slave Wars), you’re truly missing out. Some of the content presented there provides insight (in part) into why, say, the apostle Paul didn’t preach against slavery.
Do you enjoy a good debate? I do. So in case you haven’t yet seen it, head over to Intelligence Squared Debates for a host of interesting discussions on a wide range of current topics.

The Mask Will Not Work


In a book on World War I that we have, there is a haunting picture that you can see above. The photo shows a line of a few American soldiers in France coming out of their foxholes in an attempt to advance toward enemy lines. Though the picture only represents a second in time on a great battlefield, the black and white of the picture highlights the story of its grim reality. Behind the men you can see that the battlefield is smoky, as artillery shells have hit and exploded behind them.  Most of the handful of men in the picture are crouched down and running ahead, gun in hand.  But it is the lead soldier in the picture that grabs your attention.

His helmet is off and his head thrust back. His right arm is up and his left hand is clutching his throat.  You can tell he is about to go down.  As the historian explains the picture, you realize it is not a bullet that got him. Notice all the other men around him are wearing gas masks.  Yet his did not work, and the poisonous gas of the enemy is having its effect as he gasps for life, […]

Jesus’ Tears – No. 3

The hour is late. Christ has left Jerusalem with his disciples. They leave the warmth of the house and make their way out into the cold night, down into the Kidron valley and start to ascend the Mount of Olives. At its foot lies a small grove of olive trees with a press for crushing the olives. Gethsemane was a peaceful place where Jesus had spent time in prayer.

Jesus takes Peter, James and John with him into the garden. He begins to pray and soon his face is marked once more with tears. Why is he weeping? In these tears Jesus displays for us the agony he went through to win our salvation.

And these perhaps are the most precious tears, because in these tears we see what we have been spared from. We see the depths of Jesus’ love for us, and we see the awful price he paid that we might be forgiven. What do these tears tells us?

These tears speak of the intense sorrow Jesus felt

This sorrow is unusually real and deep. He was overwhelmed to the point of death, surrounded by grief and drowning in pain. Mark in his account says Jesus was “greatly distressed.” This word […]

In Praise of Church Meetings

“Let all things be done decently and in order” (1Corinthians 14:40, NKJ).

As our denomination prepares for the annual meetings of Synod next week, the difficult task of reading and digesting a mountain of reports and of organizing my schedule to accommodate being gone for the better part of a week is upon me.  While I do enjoy visiting with friends whom I’ve not seen for many months, I must confess that church meetings are not something I look forward to with much anticipation.  Sitting in one room for hours, parliamentary procedure, eating institutional food, sleeping in a dorm room, listening to seemingly endless debates and reports – none of it really appeals.  After about a day and a half, I am ready to give up and go home.  But this year I am heading to our annual meetings with an altered perspective and renewed appreciation for the blessings of ordered and faithful church government.

An up-front discussion; the best seats in worship

Fans pay big money for courtside seats at an NBA Finals game. But when it comes to God’s courts of worship, the prized seats seem to be on the back row. It’s not just true of Back-Row Baptists. It’s also true of Posterior Presbyterians, Latter-Seat Lutherans, and the Rearward Reformed. The trend seems to contradict the profound eagerness the psalmist articulated as he entered the gates of God’s courts with thanksgiving (Psalm 100:4), the joy untold he found when beckoned by fellow saints to go to the Lord’s house (Psalm 122:1), and sorrow of heart he experienced when he could not lead the throng in procession into God’s house as he had previously done (Psalm 42:4).

Certainly, some people have legitimate reasons to sit near the back. These include:

Parents and caretakers with very young children
Elderly saints and physically afflicted individuals
Visitors, especially those who are nervous about being in a church in the first place
On-call servants such as ushers, nursery workers, and security personnel

For the rest, you should consider sitting nearer the front. It is a form of ministry, or service, in the truest sense. You will serve God with more vigor, and you will serve people with deeper love.

What happens as […]

3GT Episode: To Desire or Not to Desire

The gents discuss Christ and culture, technology and the question: Does God desire the salvation of all men? (And please forgive the quality of Austin’s microphone.  His regular microphone broke, and so he had to use a junky one at the last minute, which picked up a lot of “Pfft” sounds.  Enter sad face here.)


Beginning: Interaction with Carl Trueman’s view of Christ and culture
27 minute mark: Rewind on technology
34 minute mark (and some change): Discussion on 1 Timothy 2:4

Don’t Be a Bozo!

Do you know who the first Bozo was?  When you hear that question, you may think I’m talking about the clown and who first played him. We’ll get back to the clown. However, my meaning is about where the name most likely originated.

Probably the name Bozo comes from a historical character who lived nearly a thousand years ago. A man named Boso (spelled with an s) was an abbot in a French abbey.  Boso and the church father Anselm corresponded a great deal about theological matters in the eleventh century, so much so that Anselm used Boso as a foil in his famous work Cur Deus Homo (Why God Became Man).  In this book, Anselm has Boso asking questions, and in response Anselm explains thoroughly to him why the Son of God had to become man in order to redeem us. As one person stated in a New York Times editorial, “Boso is the dummy, often obtuse, allowing Anselm to chide him, defeat his views and continue in a teacher-to-student relation.” Anselm proves clearly, at Boso’s expense, that no other means for accomplishing salvation would have sufficed.

This same article continues, “No doubt many a slow-witted monk was called ‘Boso’ by his fellows as Anselm’s influence on Christian […]