TRAVEL – Wheaton and Billy Graham – Proclaimer of the Resurrection

During a brief trip to the USA this past week, I had a layover in the Chicago area. I had an amazing few hours. I ate lunch with two great friends who I had never met in the flesh before. It struck me that the impression I had of them when finally meeting face-to-face was almost identical to the one I already had through our electronic communications. I thank God for the people I have been privileged to meet through this blog.What I want to focus on in this post is what happened next. I hadn't … [Read more...]

John Owen on How Conscious Communion With Christ Keeps Us From Sin

In this extract from the forthcoming Owen book, John Owen reveals just how distant he is from many modern-day Christians. How often do we talk about a conscious relationship with the living Christ? How much do we truly enjoy his presence? How much are we aware of how precious he is? Is our failure to truly pursue a conscious experience of Jesus part of the reason why we often struggle to fight against sin? Who would eat the moldy crumbs of pleasure that the world would offer us when we have … [Read more...]

John Owen on the Vital Place of Knowing God

Yesterday we shared a great definition of the Gospel taken from the Forward to the forthcoming Crossway book, Communion with the Triune God.Today we will share more words from the introductory portions of that book which will explain this further and show the emphasis Owen placed on an experience of God: “I pray God with all my heart that I may be weary of everything else but converse and communion with him.” (John Owen, letter to Sir John Hartop, cited on page 14.) The editors explain this fur … [Read more...]

MLJ Monday – The Effects of Good Doctrine

Some Christians do not appreciate the value of doctrine. They do not understand why we need to learn so much about God. I fear that the reason for this is that we do not always explain the effects that doctrine can have on our lives. The Doctor was not so foolish. Indeed, he is one of the masters of spiritual diagnostics, and of applying spiritual medicine to us. This example from his work on the book of Ephesians stood out to me. He is speaking about the message of Ephesians 1 and 2, and … [Read more...]

Will I Make It Until the End? The Perseverance of the Saints

As regular readers will already know, this week I am swiftly working through the glorious doctrines of grace—the so-called "TULIP." Today we reach the end of our short series with the doctrine of the persevernace of the saints, which teaches that God will insure that genuine believers in Christ remain faithful to the end. I give the last words to Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones: ". . . the eternal God knows us and is interested in us and has a plan for us. If that is not enough for you, then I despair! T … [Read more...]

The Atonement and the Resurrection – It's All About Jesus

Sometimes we get so caught up in our doctrine of the cross that we forget the ULTIMATE PURPOSE FOR WHICH CHRIST DIED AND WAS RISEN. It was, in fact, not first and foremost for us, rather it was for Him. It was—like everything God does—for the sake of His own name and His own glory. He died and rose again so that one day everyone would acknowledge His supremacy and His right to rule over the entire universe. The following Scriptures will help us to lift our gaze from the mundane … [Read more...]

Are You Still A Sinner?

One of my commentators didn't like my last post when I said that God really does change us when we become a Christian. I am not going to get into the philosophical arguments he does. As O don't think the Bible All I can say is that when God declares someone to be righteous, in some mysterious way he makes us righteous.I remember well what Terry Virgo who is one of my theological heroes once said in a comment I read in one of his books. He began a sentance as follows - "When I was a … [Read more...]

Is the Cross a Legal Fiction? No, Because the Resurrection Changes Us

Many people criticize Penal Subsitutionary Atonement on the basis that it makes justification into a legal fiction. I suppose such a criticism might be valid if a simplistic explanation of PSA was all that happened because of the cross. We have already seen that is not the case. But, more than that we must not think that nothing actually happens to us at conversion. No, we are united with Christ and a real change happens to us — we are born again. This rebirth is explictly linked to the r … [Read more...]

Jonathan Edwards on the Resurrection

Today, I thought I would share with you the following quote on the resurrection from Jonathan Edwards. So Christ, our second surety (in whose justification all whose surety he is, are virtually justified), was not justified till he had done the work the Father had appointed him, and kept the Father's commandments through all trials, and then in his resurrection he was justified. When he had been put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit, 1 Peter 3:18, then he that was manifest in … [Read more...]

Resurrection Sunday – The Commission of the Risen Christ

When the risen Jesus appeared to His disciples, He had a job for them to do. When someone who has conquered death asks you to do something, you better sit up and take notice. If Jesus was meek and mild during His life, He was strong and victorious in His resurrection. In the following passage, Jesus gave a rallying call that has sounded through the ages. People sometimes ask why some modern Christians are eager to be "missional" — it is quite simply because the one Man who has conquered death a … [Read more...]


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