Note: This address was originally delivered at the banquet of the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood (CBMW) in Atlanta, GA, on Monday, November 16, 2015.
Good evening! I’m very grateful to all of you for your leadership and untiring work on behalf of the biblical teaching on gender roles.
Thank You for Wayne Grudem Award
I wanted to take a moment to thank you personally for awarding my wife and me the Wayne Grudem Award for Complementarian Scholarship. This is a very high honor and very encouraging to us as we try to be faithful to the legacy of those who, like Wayne, have shown such... Read More
The following Advent Reading Plan, reproduced from The First Days of Jesus: The Story of the Incarnation by Andreas J. Kӧstenberger and Alexander E. Stewart (foreword by Justin Taylor; Wheaton: Crossway, 2015) includes six readings from the Old Testament, six from Matthew, nine from Luke, and four from John.
The readings, keyed to The First Days of Jesus, move from some of the major Old Testaments texts expressing messianic expectations to the infancy narratives in Matthew and Luke to John’s prologue. Ideally, these Scripture passages should be read in conjunction with the respective... Read More
We desire to equip you with resources in order to encourage you as you advance God’s kingdom. You must submit an entry at the link below with your full name, email address and a brief comment on how you plan to use The First Days of Jesus in ministry or otherwise. Your mailing address must be in the United States. We will review all entries, then decide upon the winners. You may not enter more than once. You’ll be notified by the end of November if you’re one of the winners and have 24 hours to respond. Whether you win or not, we hope you’ll get a copy... Read More
Today’s college students face many challenges. I know. Two of my children are currently in college, and one of them graduated from college a year ago. Without aiming to be comprehensive, five of the major issues college students face, based on my unscientific survey of my children and some of their friends, are the following: (1) busyness and overcommitment; (2) sexual purity; (3) relationship anxiety; (4) lack of direction and uncertainty about the future; and (5) religious doubt and confusion.
Top 5 Issues College Students Face: Some Thoughts
While there are doubtless others who are more... Read More
Why pursue excellence? Biblically speaking, we should pursue excellence not because we’re motivated to boost our ego or to achieve success, but because our glorious, excellent God deserves no less, and because he’s created us for excellence and has called us to pursue excellence for His glory.
How Should We Respond to God’s Excellence?
What’s our proper response to God’s excellence? I believe Scripture tells us that we can do so in primarily three ways: (1) proclamation; (2) imitation; and a (3) committed, conscious, and deliberate pursuit of Christian... Read More
In Philippians 4:8, Paul writes, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, what is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” OK, then, let’s do just that – think about excellence.
Christians Not Always Known for Excellence
What comes to your mind when you hear the word “excellence”? Chances are, it’s not people in the church. It’s just a minor pet peeve of mine, but how many times have you seen typos or other spelling... Read More
I love writing. Sometimes people ask me for suggestions on how to find time to write and how to be productive.
Here are a few suggestions:
(1) Be disciplined: Grind it out. Germans call this Sitzfleisch (essentially, the ability to stay seated and not to get up until a given task is accomplished).
(2) Be flexible: Make a plan. Then get it done in whichever way possible. If you can’t get it done in the morning, don’t go to bed until you got it done whenever you can.
(3) Be committed: Keep your writing commitments. Accountability is key. Writing never just happens. It takes... Read More
In his first epistle, the apostle John writes, “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these... Read More
As we read at the beginning of the book of Acts, the early church was devoted to fellowship, koinōnia (sharing things in common; koinon = common): “And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. … And all who believed were together and had all things in common” (Acts 2:42). The emphasis on fellowship is interesting, because Acts is a book about mission. So we see that in the early church, community was the foundation for the church’s mission.
Community and the Gospel
Later in the book of Acts, we see... Read More
The book of Acts tells us about the first Christians that “they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers” (Acts 2:42). The early church was a praying church! (It also was serious about studying Scripture and about Christian fellowship.) Note that it doesn’t say “prayer” but “the prayers” (presumably set liturgical early Christian prayers like some of the ones Paul incorporates in his letters). Interesting!
We know the Lord’s Prayer (Matt 6:9–13), and we know the Great Commission (Matt... Read More
The Bible tells a beautiful, compelling story from creation and the fall to redemption and new creation. But as beautiful and compelling Scripture’s story is, a story doesn’t save you – Christ’s death on the cross does. The gospel is a message grounded in history. It’s not just a fable or a fantasy. It’s historically and factually true.
Having studied the four-part story of the Bible; we therefore now move on to the gospel, the primary resource for our mission. What’s our message?
Understanding our message is vitally important as we embark on mission with God. In order to bear... Read More
To learn to present your own views within the context of previous scholarship. Not engaging and interacting with others may indicate arrogance or laziness.
To avoid dead ends and to learn from the mistakes of others. Unless we learn from history, we’re doomed to repeat it.
To be disabused of the illusion of our own originality. We may think a given proposal is original with us when in fact others may have set it forth already.
To probe the way in which underlying presuppositions have translated into specific approaches and exegetical results in the past so we can predict outcomes.
To... Read More
When you think of Christmas, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Perhaps you think of the manger scene with shepherds and wise men, presents, a Christmas tree, decorations, shopping, relatives, Santa Claus, Christmas cards, snow, caroling, or the January credit card bill. Despite what some Christians may want to believe, Christmas, as celebrated by many Americans, is a cultural, not a religious holiday. If Jesus were to be completely removed from the equation, Americans could continue to celebrate Christmas with hardly an interruption. People would still decorate their houses and work... Read More
The biblical story reaches all the way from creation to new creation. In between, the fall corresponds to redemption in Christ. The Bible does not reveal a large amount of information about heaven and the new creation, but we do find a scintillating vision of the new heaven and the new earth in the final two chapters of Revelation. In what follows, we will seek to answer three questions: (1) How should we think of the new heavens and the new earth? (2) What will precede the establishment of the new heavens and the new earth? (3) What does the new creation mean with regard to our mission?
How... Read More
In order to appreciate the significance of Messiah’s coming—and thus to understand the true meaning of Christmas—we need to travel back in time, back to the first Christmas, before this event even carried that name. We can’t offer you a time machine, but we can point you to the earliest written witnesses to the first Christmas: the Gospels of Matthew and Luke.
These Gospel authors wrote their accounts on the basis of the eyewitness testimony of others; neither Matthew nor Luke was there on that fateful night in Bethlehem. Luke even explicitly alerts his readers to... Read More