Sin

Medieval Christian Brides The biblical rule of not marrying unbelievers wasn’t always binding in the first centuries of Christianity, especially when it came to the nobility. Priority was given to political concerns and family alliances. And, at a time when rulers determined the religion of their...
I know what it’s like to suffer at the hands of anxiety and I also know the debilitating effects of what has been called OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). The two are often partners in crime. If one is near the other is not far off. For me, anxiety and OCD settled in just before my senior year...
I have fond memories of growing up in my neighborhood. I was raised in a little country town with one stop light. My friends and I played cops and robbers and the only girl in the neighborhood was as tough as any of us! We would run through the woods with our toy guns yelling, “Bang, bang!” and the...
Recently, while picking up my daughter from school I asked my customary question: “So, how was your day?” Normally, the response is brief, but this day was one of those exceptions. “History class was interesting. We had a discussion on predestination.” As it turned out, since they were studying the...
A colorful coat given to a boy. An evening walk on a palace roof. A red cord hung from a prostitute’s window. These brief scenes from over three thousand years ago should have no bearing on our lives today. Yet these moments were used to bring about the most important event in human history: the...
Yesterday, I found myself in the enviable position of explaining the difference between reformed theology and “not” reformed theology. I was asked by my small audience for an example of the difference, and the first example that came to mind was God’s sovereignty in salvation. As I spoke about this...
Learning about the battle between popes and civil authorities in medieval Europe feels a bit like an episode of Oprah’s show: “You get excommunicated; you get excommunicated; everyone gets excommunicated.” Of course it famously culminated in Henry VIII finally not going along with the program and...
There are times within a disciplinary process that some in the church must be temporarily postponed from their normal opportunity to take part in the formal fellowship or service of the saints. The status of those so suspended is not revoked (as with excommunication from membership or deposition...
Jonathan and James go guestless, discussing one-on-one the answer to Westminster Shorter Catechism Question 38 concerning the benefits believers will enjoy from Christ at the resurrection. Though we are already thoroughly blessed by our relationship with Christ, there are three distinct benefits...
Author Jim Belcher illustrates his chapter, “The Struggle Within,” [1] with a compelling psychoanalysis of Robert Lewis Stevenson’s classic novel, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. [2] Dr. Henry Jekyll, a reputable scientist wanting to enjoy being exclusively good without the lure of...

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