A Discussion on Church Polity

After asking listeners what they wanted to hear about this week, several people asked about the structure of the church in Lutheranism. I decided to focus on this as I spoke about church polity in Lutheranism and the New Testament. I also spent a significant portion of the program discussing the office of bishop. Here is the program. Read more

Is it Wrong to Call your Pastor “Father?”

In this new video, I address the use of the title “father” for pastors and priests within the Christian tradition in relation to Jesus’ comments that one should not call any man “father.” Here is the video. Read more

New Videos on Eschatology

I have two new videos up on Youtube on eschatological questions. These are at a lay level, and answer questions in the way I do with my congregation. These, I hope, will be helpful resources for you in engaging with others on these issues. Subscribe to the channel if you haven’t already! Five Problems with the Rapture What is the Millennium in Scripture? Read more

Does the Devil’s Whore, Reason, Ruin Christmas? Luther’s Disputation on John 1:14, “The Word Was Made Flesh”

+++ Post by Nathan Rinne First, happy tenth day of Christmas! Second, the answer to the title of this post is “No!” — with explanation following… In 1539 a formal theological disputation was held in Wittenberg, Germany called “The Disputation Concerning the Passage: ‘The Word was Made Flesh’” (found in AE 38.239-76). This disputation is very interesting (it is difficult to)! In it, Martin Luther contends that the Scholastic theologians from Paris of his time (the “Parisians”) had in effect… Read more

What is Pietism?

I have been a little slow on blogging in the last couple weeks with Advent and then Christmas keeping things quite busy, so I apologize for the lack of posts and podcast. But, I have been active in uploading some Youtube videos, and this one deals with the question What is Pietism? This term is thrown around a lot as a synonym for legalism, but this is not accurate. In this video I briefly explain the historical roots and meaning… Read more

What Can C.S. Lewis’s Sublime Waterfall From His “Abolition of Man” Teach Us Today?

+++ Post by Nathan Rinne If I say the “waterfall is sublime” is that an “authoritative statement”? What makes it so? Maybe we should back up… What is authority? Maybe we can agree that it is inextricably tied up with concerns about responsibility, knowledge (know-that and know-how), trust, and truth. That said, is it ultimately something outside of us or inside of us? That is eventually where the question leads. I’m an academic librarian by vocation, and I get the… Read more

Perseverance and Apostasy Part 2

On this week’s program, I continued the previous discussion over the questions of perseverance and apostasy. I interact here with the common objections to the notion that true believers can fall from the faith. Here is the program. Read more

What Can We Learn About the New Man of the Christian from the Boy Jesus?

The boy Jesus in the Temple. Post by Nathan Rinne The following is one of my pastor’s fine sermons* — this one on Luke 2:52: “And Jesus Increased in Wisdom and Stature and in Favor with God and Man.” (originally posted here). I think it goes a long way in helping us to answer the question in the title. Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, when I was working as a kitchen installer in Germany, I was taught a saying… Read more

Is there a Protestant Consensus on Justification?

I have been asked the question many times in one form or another: “is there a Protestant consensus on justification?” By that, the individual usually intends to discover whether there is a difference between the Lutheran and Reformed traditions on the doctrine of justification proper. Certainly, it is generally recognized that Luther put this doctrine in a more central position than it has within other forms of Protestantism. Yet, regarding the particulars of that doctrine, many argue that there is… Read more

Response to Frame’s Criticism of Dolezal on Theistic Mutualism

Among contemporary Christian thinkers who have promoted a return to the Classical Theistic conceptions of deity, such as an adherence to divine simplicity, immutability, and other attributes is Reformed Baptist theologian James Dolezal. His doctoral dissertation, published as God Without Parts received quite a bit of attention as a philosophical and theological defense of the simplicity of God. His recent publication All that is in God has similarly resulted in a number of responses, defenses, and criticisms, which will surely… Read more

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