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The Mountain Retreat

Several Quick Arguments that the Covenant of Works is not Gracious - The tide of Reformed opinion is that the first covenant God made with Adam was somehow gracious. But what is at stake in speaking of grace in the covenant of works is that God is no longer just, Sin no longer requires punishment and God in brute and capricious force could create man for an impossible purpose.
by Rev. Bill Baldwin

The Accountability of Man - He that was given two talents had his eyes on what Jesus had given him, and to whom he was going to give account to one day. He was pleased at what he was given, and excited in what he accomplished and used everything the Lord gave him. If he had only put one of the talents to work, I do not believe the Lord would have said 'well done thou good and faithful' servant.
by Thomas R. Thompson

The Heavenly Sanctuary - Reformed Christian Bible Study on The Heavenly Sanctuary. In the Old Testament, tabernacle worship revolved around the Levitical priesthood. Now Christ is revealed as the priest through whom our tabernacle worship is mediated.
by Rev. Sherman Isbell

The Mountain - Hebrews 12:18-24 - Mount Sinai representing the old covenant, and Mount Zion representing the new. "For you have not come to the mountain that may be touched and that burned with fire, and to blackness and darkness and tempest, and the sound of a trumpet and the voice of words, so that those who heard it begged that the word should not be spoken to them anymore.
by Jim Nance

Why Doesn't God Do Something ...Now! - Why does God allow Suffering? Theodicy deals with the problem of evil to show that it is possible to affirm the omnipotence of god, the love of god, and the reality of evil without contradiction. The skeptic's argument generally is that given the reality of evil, we must sacrifice either the power (omnipotence) or the love (goodness) of god. A dilemma allegedly arises.
by Eric Frank

A History of the Church's Doctrine of Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage - According to the institution of marriage Covenant in Genesis 2:18-25, God’s act of witnessing a marriage makes one flesh of the two and thus by definition binds the two together for life. The very nature of marriage, therefore, forbids all remarriage after divorce. Liberty to marry again comes only by the death of one’s marriage companion.
by Prof. David J. Engelsma

Blessed Be The Lord - If we let the devil deceive us, placing a counterfeit where only Christ belongs, we will lose our joy. But by holding to Christ, we will remain anchored to the only true foundation, and rejoice in celebrating Christmas without being overwhelmed by its commercial obligations.
by Pastor William P. Terjesen

There Are Only Two Religions In The World - There are basically only two religions in the world. One says if you will do such and such, God will graciously bestow His blessing upon you. The second religion is the message of the Bible. It is the gospel of Free Grace. It does not look to God for the provision and then turn to man for the power.
by John G. Reisinger

Justification and the Faith of Christ - This is a closely reasoned argument on our faith in Christ versus the faith of Christ, and challenges what is generally accepted as the meaning of the faith of Christ. This argument strengthens the old Reformed position on 'the active obedience of Jesus Christ.'
by D. W. B. Robinson

What is Reformed Theology Anyway - Reformed theology often gets a bad rap. It is explained as a dusty, dead system of thinking that a bunch of really old people with doctrinal chips on their shoulders thought up to impose their religion upon us free-spirited thinkers.
by Dave Hatcher

Why Should I be Reformed - The Reformed Church doesn't claim to be perfect. We have our faults, just as all other churches do. Nor do we believe that we are the only church. The Lord has his people scattered all over the world in many visible manifestations of his kingdom. But we do believe that our teachings are more Biblical than the teachings of any other church.
by Rev. Frank Walker

The Feminization of the American Clergy - Or, Girlie-Men in the Pulpit. Now I can already hear the PC crowd screaming for my head for saying this, but hey guys, someone, somewhere has to take a stand on this controversial issue and let the chips fall where they may; men and women are different. There, I said it.
by Rev. Brian M. Abshire

How to Cope with the Attack on America - The events of September 11, 2001 have become etched in our minds and memories. The images are still vivid, the details stark. But have you stopped to think of the significance of what happened on that day?
by Rev. D. Lipsy

The Olive Tree and the Grape Vine - What does the Olive Tree Symbolize? Both the olive tree and the grape vine are used symbolically to speak of the Old Testament covenant people of God, Israel. In the New Testament, the olive tree and the grape vine continue to have symbolic significance, notably in John 15:1–7 for the vine, and Romans 11:16–24 for the olive tree.
by Pastor Jyh J. Lim

Reflecions on a Curious Book: The Decline of African American Theology, by Thabiti Anyabwile - As I read Thabiti’s book there was something that I was feeling that I couldn’t immediately put words to, and then it hit me. Thabiti, a black man himself, writes of the black church and culture as if he was a visitor to a land he’d never been to before. Granted his work is historical by nature, but it comes across as if it’s written by an outsider.
by Pastor Bryan Crawford Loritts

Ezekiel's Temple - Is the temple in Ezekiel’s vision in chapters 40-48 a physical building or a Spiritual reality, a visionary representation of something else. Some say the physical detail given to the Temple seems to indicate that it is intended to be a physical construction. But is that the case?
by Timothy J. Etherington

Bad Christian Music - Contemporary worship songs, taken as a whole, are really bad, both musically, and poetically. There any objective standards we are required to use to measure the quality and propriety of music for the worship service?
by Dave Hatcher

If Ye Love Me, Keep My Commandments - The false teachers of Paul's day are teaching that you can have saving fellowship with God and still live immorally. That is, once you become a Christian, you are without sin and in fact no longer commit sin. And John is responding to each of these false teachings.
by Dr. J. Ligon Duncan III

An Evil Spirit From God Came Upon Saul - How can an evil spirit from God come upon Saul if God cannot do evil? The answer is, God removing His hand of restraint of an evil spirit that it vex Saul, is not God doing evil. Because God is Sovereign and under no obligation to restrain evil. And if any child of God is alarmed at God’s unlimited rule and Sovereignty, ask how much less power they would wish for him to posses.
by Elder Gilbert Beebe

The Troubling Marks of Disdain - An Investigation of the Doctrine of Carnal Christianity - Immorality, indifference, divisions, factions, heresies, and a mere semblance of love sordidly mark evangelicalism in our day. We find ourselves in a day of peril, in which it has become incumbent upon the bride of Christ to turn her attention to this debilitating infirmity.
by Pastor Kevin D. Hartley

Sufficient For All - It is with some interest that we look at some of the probable reasons why such language as 'Sufficient for All' has become rather common in discussions of this matter. Primarily, the use of this terminology seems to be an attempt to soften the impact of the doctrine of limited atonement on the natural mind, for it is indeed no simple matter of understanding.
by Jim Ellis

Body Piercing - A Return to Paganism - In some of the most unexpected places we are confronted by a revival of the old tribal practices of body scarification, body piercing and body mutilation. Nose rings, eyebrow rings, belly rings, tongue studs, multiple earrings, nipple rings, tattoos and other disfigurements are more than an identifiable sub-culture - it is all part of an aggressive fashion statement which is challenging the Christian Church.
by Christian Action

Go Tell Your Disciples and Peter - From the Messenger of God comes the good news of assurance to Peter and the Disciples. He tells the women, but go your way, tell his disciples and Peter. The Lord specifically distinguishes Peter who denied Him so that Peter would not conclude he himself was denied.
by Gerrit Vos

Some Thoughts On Matthew 16:18 - Roman Catholicism teaches that because the Aramaic/Syriac underlying the existing Greek text of Matthew 18:18-18 uses the word KE'PHA' both as the name given Simon Peter and as the word for the Rock upon which Christ promised to build His Church, that Peter (Aramaic, Ke'pha') is the rock and the foundation of the Church. If Rome is wrong on this point, then Peter as the Rock upon whom the Church is built fails.
by Pastor David Th. Stark

Are You Cultivating a Culture of Grace or a Culture of Law? - Are we asking the law to do something that only grace can accomplish? Behind this question is the truth that the law cannot accomplish what it demands. That is not its purpose. But so often, this is exactly how we approach the law. This approach to the Christian walk is a legalistic approach and it just simply won't work.
by Pastor David O. Donovan

The Gospel Bed of Rest - As Solomon himself is a figure, his bed must also be considered in a figurative sense, and is used to signify something interesting to the church of God. Beds are commonly regarded as places of rest and comfort for the weary. But, there were some peculiar excellencies in the bed which is Solomon's, which, especially to his love, his undefiled, could be found nowhere else.
by Elder Gilbert Beebe

Troubled Heart - Let not your heart be troubled! What does the Bible say about a troubled mind? One characteristic of human experience is that of a troubled heart. Is your heart troubled--a heart that is disturbed? Maybe you were betrayed by a colleague or a friend. Maybe recently you had a fight with a loved one. Maybe your health is deteriorating and the prognosis is bleak.
by Dr. Brian Allison

Why I believe in Predestination - I believe in predestination because that is what the Bible teaches(Eph 1:4; Eph 1:5; Eph 1:11). I don't have to like it, but I do have to accept it. God is sovereign. He will do what He will do. We cannot see people's hearts and it is not for us to speculate about who belongs in saved or unsaved. 'The secret things belong to God.' In His grace, mercy and sovereignty God can only do what is right.
by Rev. Brian M. Abshire

Elihu: A Mediator in God's Stead - Towards the end of the book of Job, Elihu makes his appearance. His name means “He is my God.” Elihu is a controversial figure, because he is not mentioned at the end of the book of Job with the three friends for whom Job prayed. It is argued on the one hand that he was a young upstart, an outsider deserving of no consideration: and on the other, as being a type of Jesus, who as a fair mediator came in for no reproach. It seems that it must be one extreme or the other.
by Edmund Green

Sanctification, Counseling, and the Gospel - Reformed Christian paper on Sanctification, Counseling, and the Gospel. We are justified by grace through faith in Christ, and this is true in sanctification also. Driving people to Christ "by the law" and teaching them to cling to Christ "by faith" must occupy most of the Christian's time.
by Bill Baldwin

The Way of Balaam - Balaam is one of the most notorious apostates in the Scriptures. In fact, he is listed more often therein than the Apostate Judas, the denier of Christ! Balaam is listed in eight different books of the Bible, from Numbers to the Revelation. The Lord not only uses him to warn the church of the danger of insincerity, but also gives illustrates his extended purpose with Balaam.
by Gene Breed

Understanding the Lordship Controversy - Christian inability to distinguish faith as an act, from faith as a work, makes them increase, rather than dispel, the confusion about the terms of the Gospel. In Scripture, repentance and faith go inseparably together; repentance means turning from sin, faith means turning to Jesus. Dispensationalists do not always observe this connection.
by J. I. Packer

Speaking In Tongues: Is it a gift for Today - The influence of experience-based religion has been especially prominent in regard to the 'Crisis Experience' effected at many Charismatic or Pentecostal gatherings today through the inducement of speaking in 'tongues'. Indeed, it has almost become the benchmark for genuine Christian experience in these circles. But what does the Bible reveal?
by Alan Morrison

Is God's Grace Free - This is the question that separates a grace religion from a works religion. I wish I had free will, for if I had free-will, I would be free from my bent on sinning. Christians will be plagued with sin until they die. For those that think they have a 'free-will', let them prove it by the evidence of never sinning again.
by Thomas R. Thompson

Reclaiming the Doxological Designs of the Reformation   or     This article is designed to provoke within the reader an examination of the motives of his soul, as one of the offspring of the Reformation, who, amid the theological controversies, arguments, and propositions in our day, both in academia and without it, are careless in their endeavors (meaning absent a concern for the holy nature of God); it is written to provoke our blushing and bemoaning, to bewail the rotten disposition of our souls, through an examination of the motives of those engaged in theological advance, debate, and publication.
by Dr. Kevin Heartly

The Importance of Disciplining Children Early The battle for a child's heart is fought early. We've observed many times that parents who fail to gain firm control over their young children lose what tenuous grip they have as the children get older and smarter. Children, once accustomed to getting their own way, learn how to manipulate and bully their own parents, particularly their mother. A fundamental part of our approach to discipline was to be sure we were just as quick to show affection as to apply discipline. Our children responded positively to this approach.
by Mark Benedict

There Remains Therefore a Sabbath Rest for the People of God   The Scripture tells us that God appointed the Jewish Sabbath in commemoration of the deliverance of the children of Israel from their task-masters, the Egyptians, and of their rest from their hard bondage and slavery under them; Deu. 5:14, 15. For surely the Scriptures have taught us that the type should give way to the antitype, and that the shadow should give way to the substance, our Rest in Christ.
by Arrie

Reformed Theology vs. Hyper-Calvinism   Detractors define Reformed theology not according to what it actually teaches, but according to where they think its logic naturally leads. Even more tragically, some hyper-Calvinists have followed the same course and Reformed Theology ends up being defined by extreme positions that it does not hold as scriptural. The charges leveled against Reformed theology, of which hyper-Calvinism is actually guilty, received a definitive response at the international Synod of Dort.
by Michael S. Horton

Faithful Parenting   Proverbs 19 expresses interesting and much needed counsel for parents: "Chasten thy son while there is hope, and let not thy soul spare for his crying." First, the period of youth is a time of hope. The whole of life looms ahead of youth. If proper direction is received, the prospect is for a productive life and a glorious eternity. However, if serious mistakes are made in the period of one's youth, there may never be a full recovery.
by Pastor Gary W. Hendrix

Faithful Reflections on Race and Racism   If race is a fabrication of the sinful imagination, there seems to be one fundamental and necessary response: Deal with the idea as the lie it is. Stop acting as though race is real. Stop treating and judging people according to what is false. When it comes to race and racism, Reformed churches must reflect on their history soberly and work toward a better future seriously. May the Lord grant us much humility, charity, and wisdom.
by David VanDrunen

Correction Or Corruption   With the ever increasing numbers of new translations of the Bible coming off the press each year it keeps the casual by-stander wondering whether to search for spiritual knowledge from this new version or to wait for the next. Each group of new translators making the same claims of better translations.
by Bill Mosley



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