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Objection answered-the Word began to be when the creating God spoke

October 15, 2014 1 comment

calvin.jpg_7MA21605611-0015Objection, that the Logos began to be when the creating God spoke.
Answer confirmed by Scripture and argument.

8. Here an outcry is made by certain men, who, while they dare not openly deny his divinity, secretly rob him of his eternity. For they contend that the Word only began to be when God opened his sacred mouth in the creation of the world. Thus, with excessive temerity, they imagine some change in the essence of God. For as the names of God, which have respect to external work, began to be ascribed to him from the existence of the work, (as when he is called the Creator of heaven and earth,) so piety does not recognize or admit any name which might indicate that a change had taken place in God himself. For if any thing adventitious took place, the saying of James would cease to be true, that “every good gift, and every perfect gift, is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning,” (James 1:17.) Nothing, therefore, is more intolerable than to fancy a beginning to that Word which was always God, and afterwards was the Creator of the world. But they think they argue acutely, in maintaining that Moses, when he says that God then spoke for the first time, must be held to intimate that till then no Word existed in him. This is the merest trifling. It does not surely follow, that because a thing begins to be manifested at a certain time, it never existed previously. I draw a very different conclusion. Since at the very moment when God said, “Let there be light,” the energy of the Word-was immediately exerted, it must have existed long before. If any inquire how long, he will find it was without beginning. No certain period of time is defined, when he himself says, “Now O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was,” (John 17:5.) Nor is this omitted by John: for before he descends to the creation of the world, he says, that “in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God.” We, therefore, again conclude, that the Word was eternally begotten by God, and dwelt with him from everlasting. In this way, his true essence, his eternity, and divinity, are established.

John Calvin-Institutes of the Christian Religion-Book I-Chapter 13-Henry Beveridge Translation

Question 65-Puritan Catechism

Spurgeon 1Q. Is any man able perfectly to keep the commandments of God?

A. No mere man, since the fall, is able in his life perfectly to keep the commandments of God, (Ecclesiastes 7:20) but does daily break them in thought, (Genesis 8:21) word, (James 3:8) and deed. (James 3:2)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon-A Puritan Catechism

Sam Waldron Believes in “Absolute Parity”? A Misleading Misnomer

December 18, 2013 Leave a comment

Though I do not know Tom Chantry, Dave Dykstra has treated me with great kindness in the past. I have read with interest the perspectives of Dave Dykstra and Tom Chantry on the history of the Reformed Baptist movement in the United States on Chantry’s blog. I think that Dykstra and Chantry have tried to be fair to the Reformed Baptist Church of Grand Rapids (RBCGR) of which I was a pastor for 24 years. Still, at times I have cringed at statements that I thought needed qualifying or were one-sided. I may yet decide to give my qualifications and perspectives about some of these matters. Here, however, I am forced for the sake of accuracy, clarity, truth, and simple self-preservation to take issue especially with one statement made by them in their 12th blog post:

“In the 1980s, Grand Rapids Pastor Sam Waldron in his 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith: a Modern Exposition (amazon) would express the absolute parity view held in both Montville and in Grand Rapids.”

Let me state my concern very clearly. I do not now and have never held the view of “absolute parity” of the elders. Let me make clear what I mean and why I say this. The phrase, absolute parity, makes it appear that I hold a view of parity that is not qualified or nuanced. I do not. There are people out there who hold views of parity that are in my view unqualified. I believe there are those of the “Brethren” persuasion who might hold something that could be called absolute parity. But I do not. The notion, for instance, that no elders should be supported or that all elders should be supported equally would seem to follow from an absolute parity view, but it is something that I have never held. In the very book cited by Chantry-Dykstra I made clear that parity does not require all elders to be supported equally. Here are a couple of quotations from my exposition of chapter 26 of the 1689 Baptist Confession.

 

Read the entire article here.

Question 48-Puritan Catechism

December 5, 2013 1 comment

SpurgeonQ. What is required in the third commandment?

A. The third commandment requires the holy and reverent use of God’s names, (Psalm 29:2) titles, attributes, (Revelation 15:3,4) ordinances, (Ecclesiastes 5:1) Word, (Psalm 138:2) and works. (Job 36:24; Deuteronomy 28:58,59)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon-A Puritan Catechism

Man’s mind constantly laspes into forgetfulness of God, therefore the scriptures were given to assist in remembrance of God and his commands

October 16, 2013 2 comments

calvin.jpg_7MA21605611-0015This view confirmed,

1. By the depravity of our nature making it necessary in every one who would know God to have recourse to the word;

2. From those passages of the Psalms in which God is introduced as reigning.

3. For if we reflect how prone the human mind is to lapse into forgetfulness of God, how readily inclined to every kind of error, how bent every now and then on devising new and fictitious religions, it will be easy to understand how necessary it was to make such a depository of doctrine as would secure it from either perishing by the neglect, vanishing away amid the errors, or being corrupted by the presumptuous audacity of men. It being thus manifest that God, foreseeing the inefficiency of his image imprinted on the fair form of the universe, has given the assistance of his Word to all whom he has ever been pleased to instruct effectually, we, too, must pursue this straight path, if we aspire in earnest to a genuine contemplation of God; — we must go, I say, to the Word, where the character of God, drawn from his works is described accurately and to the life; these works being estimated, not by our depraved judgment, but by the standard of eternal truth. If, as I lately said, we turn aside from it, how great soever the speed with which we move, we shall never reach the goal, because we are off the course. We should consider that the brightness of the Divine countenance, which even an apostle declares to be inaccessible, (1 Timothy 6:16,) is a kind of labyrinth, — a labyrinth to us inextricable, if the Word do not serve us as a thread to guide our path; and that it is better to limp in the way, than run with the greatest swiftness out of it. Hence the Psalmist, after repeatedly declaring (Psalm 93, 96, 97, 99, etc.) that superstition should be banished from the world in order that pure religion may flourish, introduces God as reigning; meaning by the term, not the power which he possesses and which he exerts in the government of universal nature, but the doctrine by which he maintains his due supremacy: because error never can be eradicated from the heart of man until the true knowledge of God has been implanted in it.

John Calvin-Institutes of the Christian Religion-Book I-Chapter 6-Henry Beveridge Translation

Question 23-Puritan Catechism

Spurgeon 1

Q. How does Christ execute the office of a prophet?

A. Christ executes the office of a prophet, in revealing to us, (John 1:18) by his Word, (John 20:31) and Spirit, (John 14:26) the will of God for our salvation.

Charles Haddon Spurgeon-A Puritan Catechism

 

Should Chris Broussard be suspended from ESPN

It seems that intolerance has become a normal response from the homosexual and or atheist community concerning the freedom of speech exercised by Christians in calling sin, sin. When a Christian, no matter what field of work they are in, state that certain things are sinful, then those who claim that Christians are intolerant bigots, actually show their true colors.

Atheists and homosexuals do not want the same rights as Christians or married couples, but instead would rather have special rights. They want to be able to silence everyone who disagrees with them, while at the same time speaking whatsoever they desire. In this they show that they are the true intolerant, bigots.

Chris Broussard, an employee of ESPN, can’t come out and freely state what he believes about homosexuality, but an athlete, movie star, musician, etc…. can freely state that they are homosexual without anyone making a big fuss about it, including those within the Christian community. In other words, Christians are not the ones who try to silence and violate the free speech of atheists or homosexuals, but instead the shoe is on the other foot.

Before I introduce this article from CP Entertainment, I want to plainly declare that an atheist is a fool for denying that God exist, even to the extent that he claims to be rational, while not using reason Psalms 53:1. On the other side we have homosexuals claiming to be born with desires for members of the same sex, but Leviticus 18:22 is plain that this type relationship is an abomination before God. So both Atheists and Homosexuals are committing sin against their Creator.

Here is a portion of the article concerning Chris Broussard:

 

Chris Broussard should be suspended from ESPN, according to over 20,000 Americans who signed a petition helmed by a religious organization.

Broussard, the 44-year-old ESPN analyst, recently sparked a debate when he spoke out against the NBA’s first active player to admit that he was a homosexual, Jason Collins. While Collins, 34, spoke about being gay and Christian in Sports Illustrated magazine recently and in follow-up interviews, Broussard appeared on ESPN’s “Outside The Lines” to say the NBA player claiming to be Christian was glorifying a lifestyle that contradicted biblical teachings.

Faithful America, a online religious community that promotes left-wing agendas, does not agree with Broussard’s stance. The community is calling for ESPN to suspend Broussard and created a petition called “Tell ESPN: Don’t Use The Bible to Gay Bash Athletes” which over 22,000 people signed on faithfulamerica.org.

 

For the rest of the article click here.

Custom cannot be our guide

February 13, 2013 2 comments

calvin.jpg_7MA21605611-00155. Then, again, it is to no purpose they call us to the bar of custom. To make every thing yield to custom would be to do the greatest injustice. were the judgments of mankind correct, custom would be regulated by the good. But it is often far otherwise in point of fact; for, whatever the many are seen to do, forthwith obtains the force of custom. But human affairs have scarcely ever been so happily constituted as that the better course pleased the greater number. Hence the private vices of the multitude have generally resulted in public error, or rather that common consent in vice which these worthy men would have to be law. Any one with eyes may perceive that it is not one flood of evils which has deluded us; that many fatal plagues have invaded the globe; that all things rush headlong; so that either the affairs of men must be altogether despaired of, or we must not only resist, but boldly attack prevailing evils. The cure is prevented by no other cause than the length of time during which we have been accustomed to the disease. But be it so that public error must have a place in human society, still, in the kingdom of God, we must look and listen only to his eternal truth, against which no series of years, no custom, no conspiracy, can plead prescription. Thus Isaiah formerly taught the people of God, “Say ye not, A confederacy, to all to whom this people shall says A confederacy;” i. e. do not unite with the people in an impious consent; “neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid. Sanctify the Lord of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread,” (Isaiah 8:12.) Now, therefore, let them, if they will, object to us both past ages and present examples; if we sanctify the Lord of hosts we shall not be greatly afraid. Though many ages should have consented to like ungodliness, He is strong who taketh vengeance to the third and fourth generation; or the whole world should league together in the same iniquity, He taught experimentally what the end is of those who sin with the multitude, when He destroyed the whole human race with a flood, saving Noah with his little family who, by putting his faith in Him alone, “condemned the world,” (Hebrews 11:7.) In short, depraved custom is just a kind of general pestilence in which men perish not the less that they fall in a crowd. It were well, moreover, to ponder the observation of Cyprian, that those who sin in ignorance, though they cannot be entirely exculpated, seem, however, to be, in some sense, excusable; whereas those who obstinately reject the truth, when presented to them by the kindness of God, have no defense to offer.

John Calvin-Prefatory Address to Francis King of the French-Institutes of the Christian Religion

Confession statement 2

November 28, 2012 Leave a comment

Published in 1646

The Text used: There has been some updating of Old English words but otherwise no changes have been made to the original texts.

CONFESSION OF FAITH of seven congregations or churches of Christ in London. which are commonly, but unjustly, called Anabaptists; published for the vindication of the truth and information of the ignorant; likewise for the taking off those aspersions which are frequently, both in pulpit and print, unjustly cast upon them. Printed in London, Anno 1646.

II. IN this divine and infinite Being there is the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; each having the whole divine Essence, yet the Essence undivided; all infinite without any beginning, therefore but one God; who is not to be divided in nature, and being, but distinguished by several peculiar relative properties.

1 Cor.1:3; John 1:1, 15:26; Exod.3:14; 1 Cor.8:6.

The First London Baptist Confession of 1644/1646

Speaking out when God’s Word is Attacked

March 28, 2012 2 comments

A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God’s truth is attacked and yet would remain silent….

John Calvin (1509-1564)