Anchors for the Soul: Trusting God in the Storms of Life

September 1, 2012

Last weekend I was honored to spend some time with the University Park Church of Christ in Maryland. I was encouraged by their desire to serve the Lord and the integrated nature of their family. Dorn & Carolyn Muscar are serving the church there in a wonderful way.  They are a dedicated couple in the […]


Election: Before We Called God Answered (SBD 6)

May 14, 2009

[Note: I am attempting to keep these SBD installments under 2000 words each, but that is--of course--quite inadequate for the topics covered. Consequently, these contributions are more programmatic than they are explanatory or defenses of the positions stated. You may access the whole series at my Serial page.] God elects us in Christ through faith […]


Calvinists, Arminians and Assurance

April 24, 2009

In my previous post I summarized the conclusions of Keith Stanglin in his recent book Arminius on the Assurance of Salvation: The Context, Roots, and Shape of the Leiden Debate, 1603-1609. In this post, I want to offer an extended theological comment on the nature of assurance for Calvinists and Arminians. I will indulge this […]


Arminius–Review of a Recent Book

April 23, 2009

Given some recent comments, I thought I would share my review of a recent book that will soon appear in Restoration Quarterly. The author, Keith Stanglin, is a friend and former student (indeed, he was my Graduate Assistant for several years) at Harding University Graduate School of Religion. He now teaches at Harding University in […]


Grace, Assurance and Fellowship: New Items Posted

February 24, 2009

My quest continues as I post older materials to my website, some published, some previously unpublished. 1.  On October 8-9, 1993, I led a Men’s Leadership Retreat at Camp Idlewild, Virginia on the topic “Where’s the Grace?”  (It is not my fault, Bob Clark invited me!) I have uploaded the lesson handouts and my rough […]


Assurance, Stone-Campbell History, and Calvinism

May 10, 2008

As an addendum to my series on Calvinism and Arminianism I want to connect this discussion to the conversions of Barton W. Stone and Alexander Campbell.  Both first approached God through the lens of Calvinist theology and preaching.  Neither could find assurance through that preaching because they were not certain of God’s love for them. […]


Eternal Security or “Once Saved, Always Saved”

May 8, 2008

There is considerable confusion in terminology when talking about current views of assurance on the theological scene.  In this post I want to clarify at least one significant difference. Calvinists and Arminians agree on a signifcant point:  all the elect will persevere in faith.  Those who do not persevere in faith are not elect.  They […]


The “P” in TULIP

May 6, 2008

All who persevere in faith are elect. Both Calvinists and Arminians can agree with the above statement. For the Calvinist, those who do not persevere in faith, though they at one time seemingly had faith, never possessed authentic faith in the first place (e.g., Calvin’s own example is Simon Magus in Acts 8). For the Arminian, those […]


Election–Common Ground Between Arminians and Calvinists

May 5, 2008

The often acrimonious debates between contemporary Arminians and Calvinists are not new.  The history of this discussion dates back 1600 years and has been continuous within Christian circles.  It can be tracked, in part, with the following discussions: Augustine vs. Pelagius (early 5th century) Gottschalk vs. Rabanus (late 9th century) Bradwardine vs. Ockham (mid 14th […]


God’s Sensible Pledge: Alexander Campbell on Baptism

April 9, 2008

Now available on my Academic Materials page is the lead article of the then new academic periodical the Stone Campbell Journal entitled “God’s Sensible Pledge: The Witness of the Spirit in the Early Baptismal Theology of Alexander Campbell”. The article suggests that Campbell regarded baptism as God’s sensible (empirical) pledge of assurance. It is an […]