Archive for the ‘Bible’ Category


Live Blog from Shepherd’s Conference.

(Note: I did not have my power cord for Shepherd’s Conference and had to rely on my a less reliable electronic device, hence the poor formatting and rough note-taking in my previous posts)

2 Timothy 3:14-17

Setting: Paul reminding Timothy his calling

Establish the Need: The people in this conference probably believe in inerrancy so why this message?  It is to encourage you

History of Reformed Theological Seminary is founded on funds originally for the cause of having a professor that believes in inerrancy.

3 points:

1.) What the bible is
2.) What the bible is for
3.) What the bible does

1.) What the bible is
“All scripture is God breathed”
What is “inspired”? It does not tells the means but the result
The bible is inspired because it inspired me; that’s not what Paul is talking about (subjective theory of inspiration)
Inspiration is about the words
We believed the bible is inspired and thus it’s inerrant and not the other way around
You must move from what scripture says about itself before learning of its phenomena

2.) What the bible is for
Profitable; how?

  • Teaching
  • Reproof
  • Correction
  • Training in Righteousness

3.) What the bible does

Lead us to the way of life
The bible is in the business of justification and sanctification
We know that we can’t obey what we won’t believe but do you know we won’t believe what we won’t believe

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Notes from Shepherd’s Conference

Introduction: Spurgeon’s Defending Lion quote

Setting: Paul writes to young Timothy

1.) His Charge (v.1-2)

Note it is a solemn charge
It is a charge before God and we must live in light of the reality of God now

We must be conscious of God and this begins with the preacher before the congregation

We are to preach
Nots speaking with authority is culturally neutral in that every culture understand someone speaking with authority

Are you convinced that expository preaching will always do it’s work?
Even when it’s difficult, even when it’s dwindling

Do it with patience

2.) His Challenges (v.3-4)

Instead of abiding to their creator, some have become themselves creators of their own god

People don’t put up with sound doctrine

Not New but even back in Isaiah 30 we see
These people accumulate teachers

3.) His character (v.5)
5 imperatives:
Always be sober minded (note that much of worship today undermine the preaching of the gospel)
Preach Gospel
Fulfill your ministry (fulfill can be understood in the Greek as paying a debt)

Let the Lion out

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Shepherds Conference

Why an inerrancy summit?

1.) The scripture is under attacked and we are under obligation to defend it

The greatest threat is not from the outside but the inside

I submit there is no greater offense than to attack the Scripture

Jude tells us to earnestly contend for the Faith (v.3)

We see a long history attack of Scripture (Roman Catholicism, enlightenment, historical criticism, rationalism, cults, Pentecostals, experimentalism, third wave, New apostolic reformation, Christian psychology, church growth, etc)

Scripture reserve the harshest statements against this who lie about God’s Word; think of 1 kings 18 with Elijah and the false prophet

2.) Scripture is authoritative and we are called to declare it

2 Timothy 3:16_17

Jesus in John 10:35 says his weird cannot be broken which also shows he is GOD

John 3:33 says God is true

Bible is true because God cannot lie

New testament quote the old testament with divine authority

3.) Scripture is accurate and we are to demonstrate it

Law of thermodynamics, description of whether cycle, countless stars, Earth suspension on nothing confirmed in the bible

Think of prophecies such as Isaiah 53

4.) The Scripture is active and we are called to deploy it

It is the means which people are saved

It is the word that sanctifies (John 17:17)

There is only one book that will change your nature and your eternal destiny

The word is with power

You cannot be an expositor if you have a weak view of Scripture

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truth and life conference

The Master’s College every year has a wonderful conference called “Truth and Life Conference.”  This year’s topic was on the subject of “Practicing the Biblical “One Anothers.””  It was held on January 14th-16th, 2015.

Below are the audios from the conference.  Enjoy!

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james white south africa debate

Did the Earliest Followers of Jesus Believe in His Deity?  Christian apologist James White debates Muslim apologist Shabir Ally concerning this question at University of Pretoria, South Africa.  The debate took place on October 8, 2013 but has just been loaded up online two days ago.


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From the Maccabees to the Mishnah

Shaye J.D. Cohen.  From the Maccabees to the Mishnah (Third Edition).
Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2014. 328 pp.

This book covers the history of the Second Temple period that began with the rise of the Maccabees around 160 BC to the destruction of the Temple in 70 and a bit beyond.  As the author noted in the beginning of the book this was a time of a diverse group of sects, groups and social/cultural dynamic within Judaism and interaction with those on the outside such as Hellenistic and Roman culture.  The author himself is not a Christian but a Jew though this book is published by the publishing arm of a mainline Protestant denomination (specifically the PCUSA); his perspective at times goes against what evangelical Christians would believe but it also goes against the very denomination of the publishers such as the authors preface protesting the PCUSA’s stance against Israel.  Yet this book has managed to be in print for decades and it is on its third edition.  In reading this book there were some great takeaways while there were also some parts of the book that raised some concerns.


  • The book convincingly made the argument that the Jews tend to pursue the political stance of accommodation with Gentile rulers rather than rebellion with only four exceptional instances.
  • The author had a good discussion about the term Hellenistic Judaism because it is not as if there is a Judaism that was non-Hellenistic versus that which was Hellenistic during the Post-Persian period; rather the Hellenism of the Judaism of those period was one of degrees; Cohen sees the term better used as a chronological indicator of the religion after Alexander the Great.
  • Cohen shares with the reader that conversion to Judaism entail three elements: monotheism, circumcision and integration into the Jewish community.  He also note the distinction that a “Judaized” Gentile might not necessarily adopt all of the theology of Judaism since practice is more determinative than theology for most Jews during this era.
  • The discussion on the synagogue is excellent.  Second Temple Judaism supplemented the temple with the synagogue and the priest with scribes who were learned teachers.
  • The discussion about sects was also very insightful.  Cohen define sect as a small group which separate itself from the majority and sees itself as the sole group that understand God’s will.  Sectarian grounds in Judaism often clash on three points: the law, temple and interpretation of God’s Word.  He also caution that sectarianism is not the same thing as mere diversity.
  • This books gives a good introduction to the Talmud and other Jewish religious writing such as commentaries and paraphrase.
  • The end of the book had a helpful “Further reading” section in which the author introduces to the reader scholarly editions of primary sources and also important secondary sources.  These are helpful pointers for further study!


  • There is an interesting secular/sacred, faith/fact divide that the author assumes that colors his perspective.  For instance on location 261 the author does not think history can answer the question of whether or not Christianity is the fulfillment of the Old Testament.  Why not? If Christianity is a religion with historical claims and the Old Testament also makes future historical claims the authors claim is problematic.
  • In location 3509 Cohen claims divine origin isn’t necessary for biblical status which to me is hard to prove.
  • The author takes a liberal dating of the bible that reflect the perspective of the historical critical perspective.  For instance in location 1804 Cohen assumes Ecclesiastes was a product of the Hellenistic period rather than Solomonic in origins.  Cohen also assume the existence of more than one Isaiah.  Moments like these in the book took away from the books strength.
  • The chapter on the Canon is the most disagreeable chaper of the book for me.  I suppose if there is any value in it, it is a concise summary of a liberal perspective on the Canon.


I do recommend this book but also caution it be read with Christian discernment and maturity.

NOTE: This book was provided to me free by Westminster John Knox Press and Net Galley without any obligation for a positive review. All opinions offered above are mine unless otherwise stated or implied.

Purchase: Amazon

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Apologist Francis Schaeffer has been insightful in many ways concerning our contemporary time even though he has been dead for a few decades.

Here below is a message by Francis Schaeffer titled “The Watershed of the Evangelical World.”  I think the message is classic Schaeffer with many of his motifs mentioned in the presentation such as the importance of Scripture, the dichotomies of unbelief, values and worldviews.

I also found a PDF outline online that one can look to go along with the message.


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