Archive - October, 2006

The Imputation of Christ’s Righteousness

One day before J. Gresham Machen died, he sent a note to his friend John Murray saying: “I am so thankful for the active obedience of Christ; no hope without it.” Yet it seems this doctrine of the imputation of Christ’s active obedience (the idea that Christ’s death, in addition to paying for all the sins of His people, also granted them the record of his perfect, lifelong obedience to God the Father) is continually under attack these days from within evangelical theological circles.
I am glad to announce–on Reformation Day, no less–that Dr. Brian Vickers has just published the fruit of his Ph.D. dissertation with Crossway. The book is titled Jesus’ Blood and Righteousness: Paul’s Theology of Imputation. Endorsers include Dr. Bruce Ware, Dr. Ligon Duncan, Dr. Robert Petersen (Covenant Theological Seminary), Dr. Michael Haykin (Toronto Baptist Seminary), and Dr. Tom Schreiner.
Excerpts can be read here.
Here are the Table of Contents:
Partial List of Abbreviations 11
Preface 13
Introduction 15
1. Tracing Trajectories: The History of Imputation 23
2. The Reckoning of Righteousness: Abraham, Faith, and Imputation 71
3. The Foundation of Righteousness: Romans 5:19 113
4. The Provision of Righteousness: 2 Corinthians 5:21 159
5. The Imputation of Christ’s Righteousness: A Pauline Synthesis 191
6. Conclusion: “No Hope without It”? 233
Bibliography 239
Person Index 251
The entire book can also now be browsed or purchased.
[HT: Nick Nowalk for enthusiastic support of this book!]

Curtis Allen at Bethlehem Baptist Church

You might know that my friend Curtis Allen–known as “Voice”–was in Bethlehem Baptist Church this past weekend. Here’s a great video clip of Curtis rapping “Unstoppable” during one of the weekend worship services.

Review of With One Voice

Justin Taylor posts a guest review of my book With One Voice, written by his friend and colleague, author Lydia Brownback.

More on Halloween

Motte Brown writes an articulate response to Tim Challies’ thoughts on Halloween. I do think Motte is on to something when he notes that the “social etiquette” of our day ought not to limit Christians:
“Just because Challies is constricted from being neighborly every other day of the year because of “social etiquette” doesn’t mean everyone is. Besides, if we all based our decisions on the etiquette of our day then we would never participate in what some would consider to be the pinnacle of rudeness — sharing the Gospel.”
In fact, my wife was just telling me last night that she planned to bring cookies to our neighbors and to invite the other stay-at-home moms to a morning tea the following week.
(HT: Tim Challies)

Vineyard church embraces female pastors

Jeff Robinson of CBMW reports.
The two-paragraph statement [from the Vineyard leadership] reads:
“In response to the message of the kingdom, the leadership of the Vineyard movement will encourage, train, and empower women at all levels of leadership both local and trans-local. The movement as a whole welcomes the participation of women in leadership in all areas of ministry.
“We also recognize and understand that some Vineyard pastors have a different understanding of the scriptures. Each local church retains the right to make its own decisions regarding ordination and appointment of senior pastors.”
Here is the letter released by Vineyard’s leadership.

A Primer on Indwelling Sin & Total Depravity

Here’s a message from John Piper that we all need to hear.
Warning: Do not play this video until you are ready to bust a gut laughing.
(HT: Mike Busch)

Islam – Religion of Peace?

I posted on John Piper’s response to the Pope’s speech in Germany. That generated a few good comments. (Note that I just posted a question to William Taylor Sr.)

Last weekend we had the pleasure of hosting a Muslim convert at our church. I won’t say his name in case it is not appropriate. Anyway, his thinking was that, yes, if the Qur’an is properly interpreted, it does invoke violence. Matt notes that Kim Riddlebarger points to this article as evidence that Islam is not a religion of peace. Matt Wireman offers this insightful reflection:

“After traveling to the Middle East, I can say that all Muslims are not terrorists. It is foolish to think so. That would be like assuming everyone who goes to church in the United States is a Christ-follower. [But] Just because people who call themselves Christians aren’t living consistently with Christ’s teaching, does this mean we make value judgments on the religion? No. We point to the teachings [of Islam?] and show the person that he is inconsistent [with both Islam and the truth?] and he should get his knee bowed to Jesus’ lordship. How long will it take until the imams do the same with their inconsistent parishioners?”

[bracketed comments mine; I’m not certain they reflect Matt’s thinking.]

Update: My comments do not reflect Matt’s thinking. Please see Matt’s comment. Thanks for the correction Matt!
So while the religion may teach one thing, its adherents may not practice their faith in its undiluted form. Yet that does not prove Islam teaches peace. Rather, it opens a path to evangelism: a comparison of the “fundamentals” of Christianity and Islam. Along those lines, some report that Muslim conversions to Christ are highest in regions where Sharai Law is held (i.e., where, arguably, the Qur’an is taken most seriously).

A new path to theological liberalism?

Albert Mohler reviews Wayne Grudem’s latest book, Evangelical Feminism: A New Path to Liberalism?
I previously offered a few observations.

The Merits of Celebrating Halloween

An interesting discussion at Challies.com on the merits of utilizing Halloween as an opportunity to love one’s neighbors and increase interaction with them.

Interview with Ligon Duncan

It was an honor to be interviewed by Pastor Ligon Duncan yesterday. The interview, which I previously mentioned, was a week late as I had a nasty cold last week. Unfortunately, Dr. Derek Thomas was unable to join us as he was in San Diego preparing to preach at another church.
By way of reminder, in case you are interested, my interview with Ligon Duncan will be aired on a radio program called First Things. Here’s some information on the program:
First Things. 9:00 am – 9:30 am Sunday. First Things is the weekly radio program carried live on Jackson radio station WJNT News/Talk 1180 AM. Format consists of interviews, devotional messages and panel discussion of contemporary social and theological subjects. You will need Real Audio to listen, which may be downloaded from the WJNT web site.
An audio archive of a number of these interviews with folks like Gene Veith, Mark Noll, and Sinclair Ferguson is retained here, by the leadership of First Presbyterian Church of Jackson, Mississippi, at which Ligon Duncan serves as Senior Minister.

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