Luke 15: Jesus Seeks “Sinners”

October 8, 2013

The book unChristian alerted Christendom that it had an image problem with millennials. Christians are perceived as insensitive, judgmental and hypocritical. Some responses to the book  were skeptical and defensive. Others not only agreed that Christianity had an image problem but they went further. Christianity has a reality problem, that is, contemporary discipleship is often […]


Mark 14:66-73: Trial #2 (Peter’s Trial)

July 18, 2012

Peter followed Jesus, albeit distantly and cautiously.  Nevertheless, unlike other disciples (including the “young man”) in Mark’s narrative, Peter did follow. The weight of his earlier adamant insistence that he would die with Jesus as well as his natural impetuousness emboldens him to warm himself at the same fire where the guards, who arrested Jesus […]


Haggai 1:12-15 — “I am with You!”

June 7, 2012

Haggai’s first oracle, on August 29, 520 B.C.E., was directed to the governor Zerubbabel and the high priest Joshua as the royal (house of David) and priestly (house of Aaron) representatives of the people. Zerubbabel and Joshua, along with the “whole remnant of the people,” responded to Haggai by beginning work on the temple on […]


Soteriology: Union with Christ (SBD 13)

June 16, 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.] The Father elects, redeems and saves in […]


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 […]


Patternism, Division and Grace

April 19, 2009

Patternism does not entail division as long as it does not subvert grace and it graciously treats another believer with mercy. Rather, it is the attitudes, agendas and acidity of the people involved that generate division. Patternism itself is not to blame and neither is “restorationism’s” search for a pattern. When people are treated with gracious humility, patternism can be […]


When Patternism Subverts Grace

April 17, 2009

If the life and ministry of Jesus is our pattern, then we all fall woefully short. Consequently, whether it is conforming our character to the image of Jesus or embodying the ministry of Jesus through the church, we all–individuals and congregations–need divine mercy since we all fall woefully short of the image of God in Jesus. […]


G. C. Brewer on Grace

February 25, 2009

In 1946 Roy Key of Juneau, Alaska, caused a small stir with his article “The Righteousness of God” in the January 24 issue of the Gospel Advocate. It promoted “some ideas,” one reader wrote, that he “not been accustomed to hearing.” As a result, G. C. Brewer took up his pen to commend the article […]


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 […]