Iron and Clay

feetofclay

Every Christian tradition needs to ask itself to what degree iron and clay are mixed in its building blocks and to be self-critical about the Gospel sustainability of its foundation.

 

From the article, “The Clay of Paganism with the Iron of Christianity”: Cornelius Van Til’s Critique of Roman Catholicism

(hattip: Maria from A Pilgrim’s Progress

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Bethel Sozo: Redefining “Salvation”?

The Bethel Sozo website appears to redefine “salvation” not as an accomplishment of Christ at a moment in time but as a process of perpetual deliverance (with the help of their tools, of course):

The SOZO ministry is a unique inner healing and deliverance ministry in which the main aim is to get to the root of those things hindering your personal connection with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit…. SOZO is the Greek word translated “saved, healed, delivered.” Sozo contains the whole package of being made whole or well.

At the very least, this confuses salvation (the purchase of God) with ongoing sanctification of the believer (which comes as we mature in the Lord and respond in obedience to His word). The Sozo tools, according to Bethel, become part and parcel of a believer’s journey to complete the salvation (sozo) process. This subtle shift in terminology raises a critical question: In what then, does Bethel church encourage believers and non-believers to put their faith and hope: Jesus Christ, or the Sozo experience?

The Berean Call: Climbing Up Another Way…

“There is no unity unless we are agreed about Him!”

“I cannot kneel down together with, and look up with people, one of whom is looking at Confucius and another at Mohammed and another at the Buddha, and another at some philosopher. I cannot! There is only One to look at; it is this blessed Son of God… What is the value of talking about having things in common and claiming that we are all one, if there is any question about Him, as to whether He is Son of God or only man? If there is any doubt about it there is no unity, there is no fellowship. We must confess together that there is only one Saviour, one only Lord Jesus Christ, God and Man, two natures in one person, born of the Virgin Mary, crucified under Pontius Pilate, risen again. There must be no question about Him! There is no unity unless we are agreed about Him! The same Saviour, the same Person!” -Martyn Lloyd-Jones (Ephesians – God’s Way Of Reconciliation)

The Claim That John Calvin Was a Murderer Addressed

Was John Calvin a Murderer?

Q – Was John Calvin a Murder?

Jim – This is a question that shows up in my email from time to time. It’s a claim that is leveled by those who seek to besmirch Reformed Theology. Usually, the claim that Calvin was a murderer is an attempt to make all Calvinistic doctrine wrong through “guilt by association.”

However, historically speaking, the so-called “Doctrines of Grace” – which go by the nickname of Calvinism – did not originate with Calvin. They are the result of a Synod held in Dort, Holland in 1618/19, after Calvin was long dead. Those of us who hold to Reformed Theology do so not because we are attempting to replicate the theology or ecclesiology of John Calvin, but because we are convinced that the Biblical arguments and conclusions stemming from that Synod are valid and our own exegesis confirms the five points.

If it could be proven that John Calvin was indeed a murderous wretch, it would have no effect on the theology that sprung from the pen of the Reformers. In other words, the “guilt by association” tactic has no teeth. That being said, let’s clear up the history and let the proverbial chips fall where they will.

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Was Calvin an Ecumenist?

Intro to article: John Calvin has a justified reputation as an aggressive, divisive theologian, but in his own terms he was an ecumenist, doing more than anyone else to forge Reformed Protestantism into a single body (against Rome)…

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An Overlooked Bible Verse by Christians at Holiday Time

This Bible verse is sometimes interpreted as meaning meats sacrificed to idols (Gill did this, for one) but that cannot be since we have liberty to eat these meats with thanksgiving unless it offends a fellow Christian. No, the word is to abstain-to utterly avoid it.

Acts 15:20 but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols

and verse 29 that you abstain from things offered to idols

How many Christians confess to knowing the pagan background of the things of Christ Mass and Easter? And then they go on to disobey God’s Word. Even today, these things are used in the idol worship of Wicca.

When Should You Correct Another Christian?

~Aaron Menikoff

We live in an age hostile to correction. “No” has become a four-letter word in the modern vernacular. Our non-Christian friends don’t want to be told their unbelief warrants God’s judgment. That’s to be expected. But often our Christian friends don’t want to be corrected, either. And that’s sad, because a rebuke can be good for the soul. “The wise of heart,” says Solomon, “will receive correction” (Prov 10:8).

So how do you know when to correct a brother or sister in Christ? “To make an apt answer is a joy to a man, and a word in season, how good it is!” (Prov. 15:23). How do we know when to give that word? Thankfully, Scripture provides a trustworthy answer. It tells us when to correct and when to overlook.

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