Hell, election, and arrogance

Despite Robert Burns’ own considerable moral indiscretions, he certainly had no trouble decrying religious phonies such as he saw in William Fisher, elder in Mauchline Kirk in 1785. In “Holy Willie’s Prayer”, Burns paints a vivid picture of a womanizing hypocrite whose excuses and even theological justifications strike me as authentic and potentially accurate. But forget those […]

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011

Mondays with MacDonald (on penal substitution’s pagan affinities)

They say first, God must punish the sinner, for justice requires it; then they say he does not punish the sinner, but punishes a perfectly righteous man instead, attributes his righteousness to the sinner, and so continues just. Was there ever such a confusion, such an inversion of right and wrong! Justice could not treat […]

Monday, January 31st, 2011

The strange case of Dr. Universalist and Mr. Reformed

Synchronicity in the blogosphere can be almost spooky. I was sitting in the library working on my dissertation a few days ago when an interesting thought occurred to me out of the blue. I floated it among some of my friends something like this: If the universalist is right, everyone will be reconciled to God in […]

Monday, December 13th, 2010

The Human Faces of God: why criticize inerrancy?

Review: The Human Faces of God: What Scripture Reveals When It Gets God Wrong (and Why Inerrancy Tries to Hide It) Author: Thom Stark Wipf and Stock, 2010 Chapter 3: “Inerrancy Stunts Your Growth” Now, this is one chapter I thoroughly enjoyed. Stark spends the greater part exposing and surgically excising the internal logic used to defend […]

Tuesday, November 23rd, 2010

Justice and the demands of the law

Here’s a little thought experiment. Let’s say you heard tell of a ruler of a foreign country who decreed that all citizens of his country who broke even one of that country’s laws deserved to be, and henceforth would be, locked up and tortured for the rest of their lives. Additionally, he took the most […]

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Mondays with MacDonald (on ineffectual repentance)

Strange righteousness would be the decree, that because a man has done wrong—let us say has done wrong so often and so much that he is wrong—he shall for ever remain wrong! Do not tell me the condemnation is only negative—a leaving of the man to the consequences of his own will, or at most […]

Monday, October 25th, 2010

Shortest commentary on the Westminster Shorter Catechism?

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” So begins the Westminster Shorter Catechism. Here’s George MacDonald: “For my part, I wish the spiritual engineers who constructed it had, after laying the grandest foundation-stone that truth could afford them, glorified God by going no further.”

Monday, August 16th, 2010