Pastoral Theology

Born around the year 1509 in a small village on the southern coast of Finland, Agricola (originally Mikael Olavinpoika - “son of Olavi”) was able to receive a humanist education in Viipuri (or Vyborg, now in Russia), under Johannes Erasmi. It was there that he adopted the Latin name Agricola,...
The name Ebenezer Erskine is rarely remembered outside of Scotland. And yet, it was a well-known name in his day. Founder of the Secession Church and a strong voice in the Marrow Controversy, he was involved in many of the tosses and turns of the Scottish Kirk of his time and left a mark in those...
In recent years, it seems increasingly rare to hear believers say, “I grew up in a happy home and we had everything we needed.” I almost never hear anyone say “I am making progress as a disciple,” although healthy believers should keep growing (below). The unfettered gratitude we hear in Psalm 16:6...
Today, Clement Read Vaughan (1827-1911) is remembered only occasionally for his comparison of faith to a bridge – an illustration used by many pastors. Not much is known about his life – mostly what Thomas Cary Johnson (1859-1936) recorded in his biography of the more famed Robert Lewis Dabney (...
17th-century Reformed theologian Petrus Van Mastricht wrote a comprehensive treatment of theoretical-practical theology. This extensive collection is gradually being made available in English by Todd Rester, lead translator of this massive work. The second volume, Faith in the Triune God, was...
Ben Ciavolella
A God who is God is a God who is good.
He surely saw him from the boat. The Lord watched the erratic and unstable demoniac who was as unruly as the storm he had recently silenced. The man’s appearance alone made him an imposing figure against the otherwise peaceful shores of the Garasenes. One can’t help but wonder if the disciples...
How many times have you heard a missions conference speaker exhort everyone to fulfill the Great Commission by going overseas? I’ve heard that numerous times because I grew up in a Christian tradition that put a heavy emphasis on evangelism and “soul winning.” In fact, it was touted that the Summum...
I was once asked what I considered the best theology text. I took a breath and as I did the person reiterated, “ The best.” Their emphasis on the definite article reminded me that they wanted one and only one. It brought me up short as does the question before me. What one book has made a singular...