Faith as Allegiance

We believe in salvation by faith alone. But what does “faith” mean? Matthew Bates throws down the gauntlet and says the term, bibilcally defined, means “allegiance.” [Read more…]

John Barclay’s Grace in the Church

In a recent review in Books and Culture I examined what John Barclay calls a largely unexamined Christian theme — that’s right, grace is largely unexamined. Rather it is assumed we all know what it means.  This was my book of the year on the Jesus Creed, so before I get going I want to [Read More…]

Forgiving a Nazi Perpetrator: The Story of Eva Kor

Source: So today after the trial session concluded, I [Eva Kor, concentration camp survivor] went up to Oskar Groening [Nazi Auschwitz guard]. He wanted to stand up but I said, “Please don’t, we do not want a repetition of last time.” I just shook his hand and said, “I appreciate the fact that you are [Read More…]

Grace: Two Misunderstandings Reframed

Grace can be a word that tells the whole story of the gospel and the Christian faith; it can also be used to distort the whole story. Some people use the term “grace” to put the hammer down on people — something I call “grace grinding” — while others turn most everything into grace. [This [Read More…]

You Vote

Which of these statements by Bonhoeffer about costly vs. cheap grace is your favorite? Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Discipleship (DBWE 4). #1: Cheap grace means grace as doctrine, as principle, as system. It means forgiveness of sins as a general truth; it means God’s love as merely a Christian idea of God. Those who affirm it have [Read More…]

Grace, and the God of that Grace

A rock-solid agreement on which Christians of all stripes — and I mean all stripes — should agree is that God is gracious and that the whole of our redemption comes from God’s grace. So, humans don’t save themselves, they don’t become loving or holy by themselves, and they don’t stand up from the grave by [Read More…]

Gospel or Religion? (RJS)

If the problem is Sin — and Sin is failure to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength — what is the solution? The last four chapters of Tim Keller’s€™ The Reason for God deal with Christian doctrine. This is€“ [Read More…]

No “Ands” in Grace

Sarah Bessey’s beautiful post (more at the link) on the sufficiency of Jesus: What are some more “ands”? You need Jesus….. and circumcision. You need Jesus …. and baptism. You need Jesus … and the right voting record. You need Jesus … and natural family planning…. Let go of your “should” and your “ought to” [Read More…]

Post-Tithing: David Croteau

From David Croteau, and his address can be found at the bottom of this post. Pastors and leaders of local churches have focused on tithing, in part because it is measurable and a good lever, but one must wonder why the NT never brings up the tithe. Is it because the NT knows that tithing [Read More…]

Third Way Gospel: Tim Keller’s Proposal

Tim Keller proposes a Third Way gospel. And he thinks our era, because it is largely unchurched and Christianity is not our culture, needs a focus on gospel renewal or revival. Revival is needed not just because of our time but also because it focuses on the heart, that is, on personal response to God [Read More…]