Category Archives: Theology

Jesus can Sympathize

Maintaining the balance between one's understanding of the humanity and deity of Christ is more than just a math equation (100% man + 100% God=Jesus).  It involves understanding the preexistance of the Second Person of the Trinity, the process by which He "took on" humanity and so many other issues.

But one issues that often causes people consternation are the statement in Hebrews 2:18 and 4:15
"For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted."
"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we re, yet without sin."

Many rationalize that for Jesus to fully understand our temptation he had to be able to sin.  But perhaps that misses the point.  A real conflict does not require the ability to lose.

From Dane Ortlund

If Christ never sinned, can he really sympathize fully with me in all my temptations?

Nineteenth-century NT scholar B. F Westcott, commenting on Heb. 2:18, writes:

Sympathy with the sinner in his trial does not depend on the experience of sin but on the experience of the strength of the temptation to sin which only the sinless can know in its full intensity. He who falls yields before the last strain.

–Brooke Foss Westcott, The Epistle to the Hebrews (1892), 59

Divine Sovereignty–The Fuel of Death-Defying Missions

Reaching the unreached–because God is sovereign!

This is one of the best theological and motivating sermons on the priority of responding to the sovereignty of God in reaching the lost I've ever heard.  Awesome truth, truly convicting!

Watch it
Listen to it
Read the abridgment
but by all mean let us respond to it.

Listen to it (or download it)

Read the abridgement (it's much better to list to it, but you may appreciate reading some of the quotes and seeing the structure)

Watch it

[youtube 48CZ5F9bnJM]

Visual Theology

Too often doctrine and theology are taught in a boring way rather than as a means of encountering God.
And too often, theology is taught in such a way that the details obscure the key points.
So I am grateful for people who can take the deep things of God and make them understandable.

While I might (if I had the artistic capability) change some of the elements, there graphics to visualize theology should be helpful to many.

Thanks to Tim Challies (to purchase posters of these click the on the Visual Theology graphic)

Visual Theology

 

  1. Visual Theology – The Order of Salvation
  2. Visual Theology – The Attributes of God
  3. Visual Theology – The Books of the Bible
  4. Visual Theology – Think On These Things
  5. Visual Theology – Awaiting the Messiah
  6. Visual Theology – The Trinity
  7. Visual Theology – To the Glory of God

The Trinity

Order of Salvation

The Glory of God

Attributes of God

Books of the Bible

Awaiting the Messiah

Think on These Things

 

A better glimpse of God

This fall for our men’s mid-week study we will be “looking at God.”  The series is entitled, Seeing God through the eyes of His people: A narrative study of the character and attributes of God”

Rather than listing God’s attributes and finding all that places in Scripture they are address or quoting from those who have study God’s attributes.  We will look at a series of narrative passages (and a few Psalms) to see how God revealed Himself and how people responded (right or wrong).  The goal is to have a fresh, personal understanding of God.

I am convince that if our theology of God is correct then much of the rest of our belief system will fall in line. If our starting point is not accurate we easily veer off.

While the study I’m preparing is not the study of someone’s book, there are a number of very helpful book.

(My approach and recommendation is: We study scripture in order to grow and teach and read book as supplements.)

On my, “I need to read” list:
D.A. Carson, For the Love of God (Vol 1 and 2) and The Difficult Doctrine of the Love of God.

A few resources as supplements to your own study of God.

Knowledge of the Holy, A. W. Tozer
(read it online here)

The Holiness of God, R.C. Sproul (1st published in 1984 or 1985, revised and expanded in 1998) You can watch the entire teaching series free online, click the image.  (I re-listened to this book back in May on a drive to Chicago–excellent)

The Doctrine of the Knowledge of God, John Frame (definitely not lite reading, but helpful in my own development)

What Americans Believe about Universalism and Pluralism

While survey can’t tell the whole story, this is a survey summary worth.

The Barna Group did a survey to identify what Americans in general and what those who claim to be Christian’s believe about universalism and pluralism.

Particularly interesting is some of the issue identified related to different generations.

You can read the whole (fairly short) summary from the Barna Group.