+++ 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

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

+++ 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

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

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

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

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

  Post by Nathan Rinne In an article published in National Review, “The Enduring Appeal of Creepy Christianity,” David French uses the news surrounding Judge Roy Moore to make some critical points about American Christianity. The sub-title of his article — which definitely caught my attention — provocatively reads “the desire for certainty in an uncertain world yields terrible results.” French states that Christians have two temptations rooted in the fear of men. One is the path that liberal Christians… Read more

The American Association of Lutheran Churches recently hosted a conference in celebration of the 500th Anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation. The talks were on the following topics: Justification, the Church, the Ministry, Baptism, Sanctification, and Glorification. Each of these is now available on Youtube. You can checkout the playlist of all lectures here. Read more

It is too often assumed that Christians are opposed to homosexuality and trans issues simply due to personal biases and prejudices. Read more

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