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In our last post, we showed that all Christians implicitly or explicitly accept the idea of election: that God controls (directly or permissively) the destinies of His creatures. A philosophical defence goes only so far, however. We wish now to review nine biblical truths regarding the doctrine of election. 1. God does not wish anyone […]
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The devotional study below was a challenge given at my own church this past week. May you find it encouraging for your own soul, and have a Merry Christmas! Introduction The point of Matthew 1:18–25 is to tell how “the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way,” that is, in the way described […]
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Week 51: Paul on Trial Weekly memory verse: Revelation 20:12 – “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had […]
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Jeff Straub During these past two weeks I have been writing about the deaths of Charles Wesco and John Chau, men who perished in violent ways doing mission work. In the first essay, I praised their dedication to follow Christ into dangerous situations. Last week I addressed the issue of peril in gospel advance. We […]
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The idea that God chooses or “elects” people is taught in many Scriptures (Rom 8:29-30; Eph 1:4; 2 Thes 2:13; 1 Pet 1:2). People struggle with this concept. Doesn’t that make the whole thing unfair? Isn’t it unjust to choose people for salvation? Surely salvation is then all a stacked-deck, with people nothing more than […]
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In this brief essay, I’m making several assumptions. The first is that baptism is rightly administered only to professing believers. I don’t intend to engage here with arguments for paedobaptism. The second is that baptism is a strongly ecclesiastical ordinance. Baptism is not a mere personal devotional experience; it is a public profession of faith, […]
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Last week, I made the point from Paul’s discussion in 2 Corinthians 12 that all members of the church, because of their diversity, make up the unity of the body of Christ. And Paul specifically defends that notion beginning inverse 17 by considering, what would the results be if every member of the body had exactly the […]
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I do not think that equality is one of those things (like wisdom or happiness) which are good simply in themselves and for their own sakes. I think it is in the same class as medicine, which is good because we are ill, or clothes which are good because we are no longer innocent. I […]
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Does Acts 6:1–7 tell us anything about deacons, technically speaking? After all, the word deacon is not used, some of the seven men appointed to ministry also preached (Stephen and Philip), and the seven’s appointment was for a singular task, not serving the church’s tangible needs as a whole. While such a description may push […]
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Week 50: Life by the Spirit and Word Weekly memory verse: Titus 2:11–13 – “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the […]
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