Eight Reasons Why We Need the Puritans

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For many years before surrendering to vocational ministry, I was a conservative evangelical Christian whom God had called to work in the dog-eat-dog world of secular media. While working for a metropolitan daily newspaper in Georgia, one of my ultra-liberal colleagues was teasing me about being a conservative “boy” from a small town in the…



“Our great distinguishing characteristic.” H.H. Tucker and the Battle for Church Purity, Part 2

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  (See here for Part 1.) “Yet they stumble at the words:” Regeneration Remove the necessity of regeneration, Tucker argued, and you undermine the New Testament church; For Tucker, regeneration was the track upon which the train of theological orthodoxy traveled, pulling along all the graces of redemption–repentance, faith, justification, adoption, sanctification, glorification–in its path:…



“Our great distinguishing characteristic:” H. H. Tucker and the Battle for Church Purity, Part I

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In January of 1866, Baptist leaders in Virginia introduced a proposal that would integrate Southern Baptists and Disciples of Christ–Campbellites–into a single denomination. The development stunned many Baptists in the commonwealth, but editors of the Religious Herald newspaper supported the union of the two denominations with a level of enthusiasm that captured the attention of…

 

Contentment in Christ, Part 3

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(See also Part 1 and Part 2 of this series.) As fallen men, even redeemed fallen men, we will never be entirely content in this life. Our hearts are too prone to wander, far too apt to flirt with idolatry, for us to be completely content in Christ. As Calvin famously put it, the human…



Spurgeon’s Sorrows

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Zack Eswine. Spurgeon’s Sorrows: Realistic Hope for those who Suffer from Depression. Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus, 2014. 144 pp. $9.99. Only the grace of God can explain Charles Spurgeon. In 38 years as pastor of Metropolitan Tabernacle (known as New Park Street Chapel during his early years), Spurgeon’s output was superhuman. He often preached 10…



Contentment in Christ, Part 2

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As Tom Hicks outlined in a recent post here, so unusual is contentment in a fallen human being, that Puritan Jeremiah Burroughs called it “a rare jewel.” Nothing exhibits Christian maturity like contentment in Christ and nothing unmasks our immaturity like discontentment, which I examined in part I of this series. Yet, contentment is elusive….



Contentment in Christ, Part 1

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It might be the most elusive of all Christian virtues, except for perhaps humility—contentment. I am not naturally content. In my fallen nature I am naturally discontent. I am not content because I am always playing out in my mind what Paul Tripp calls the “if only” life: If only I had more money in…



God’s Word and Our Words

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We sat in stunned incredulity at the dinner table as the two words that our 10-year-old son had just uttered hung in the air like that stale fried food smell in a Southern luncheonette. Did my sweet little boy just answer his mother’s inquiry—“Would you like another piece of chicken?”—with the words, “Hell, yes”? My…



Of What Use is the Law? Three purposes

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Recently, after our family had completed its daily devotional time together, my oldest son asked me a very insightful question: How do the Ten Commandments apply to us today if they were given so long ago in the Old Testament? It is a basic theological question that many Christians have asked throughout the history of…