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Archive for the ‘Tongues’ Category

Sovereignty of God Arthur Pink

Arthur W. Pink. The Sovereignty of God.  Pensacola, FL: Chapel Library, April 1st, 2013. 270 pp.

I was blessed reading through this book which served as a theological devotional while I was working on my church’s series through the Sovereignty of God.  Pink shares many Bible verses to make his case that God is sovereign and in control of all things over several chapters such as “The Sovereignty of God in Creation,” “The Sovereignty of God in Administration,” etc.  In the forward of the book Pink acknowledges that the most controversial part of the book for many would be the chapter on the sovereignty of God n reprobation but I think Pink’s position is biblical however unpopular it may be.  I was really amazed at how well Pink dealt with the subject of God’s sovereignty and the human will.  There were things Pink said that I thought were newer insights of contemporary Calvinists who are more philosophically attuned that Pink said in less philosophical in jargon.  I was impressed and I supposed I learned from this that there is nothing new under the sun.

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Chance_comps.indd

Earlier this year Crossway published a 368 page book by Dr. Vern Poythress titled Chance and the Sovereignty of God: A God-Centered Approach to Probabiliy and Random Events.  I appreciate how Dr. Poythress has made many of his books  available to the public for free as a PDF.  This new book is now among them!

You can download the PDF by clicking HERE.

The description of the book on the publisher Crossway’s website is as follows:

What if all events—big and small, good and bad—are governed by more than just blind chance? What if they are governed by God?

In this theologically informed and philosophically nuanced introduction to the study of probability and chance, Vern Poythress argues that all events—including the seemingly random or accidental—fall under God’s watchful gaze as part of his eternal plan. Comprehensive in its scope, this book lays the theistic foundation for our scientific assumptions about the world while addressing personal questions about the meaning and significance of everyday events.

Here’s the table of content:

Table of Contents

Introduction: Experiences with Unpredictable Events
Part 1: The Sovereignty of God
1.  The Bible as a Source for Knowledge
2.  God’s Sovereignty
3.  Unpredictable Events
4.  Disasters and Suffering
5.  Human Choice
6.  Small Random Events
7.  Reflecting on Creation and Providence
8.  God’s Sovereignty and Modern Physics
9.  What Is Chance?
Part 2: God as the Foundation for Chance
10. Regularities and Unpredictabilities
11. Trinitarian Foundations for Chance
12. Responding to Chance
13. Chance in Evolutionary Naturalism
14. Chance and Idolatry
Part 3: Probability
15. What is Probability?
16. Predictions and Outcomes
17. Theistic Foundations for Probability
18. Views of Probability
19. Subjectivity and Probability
20. Entanglement of Probabilities
21. Probabilistic Independence
22. Independence and Human Nature
23. Is God Probable?
Part 4: Probability and Mathematics
24. Pictures of Probability
25. Mathematical Postulates for Probability
26. Theistic Foundations for Some Properties of Probability
27. Limitations in Human Thinking about Events and Probabilities
28. Conclusion
Appendices
Appendix A: Why Gambling Systems Fail
Appendix B: The Real Problem with Gambling
Appendix C: A Puzzle in Probability
Appendix D: Interacting with Secular Philosophical Views of Probability
Appendix E: Permutations and Combinations
Appendix F: The Birthday Problem
Appendix G: Diseases and Other Causes
Appendix H: Proofs for Probability
Appendix I: Statistics
Appendix J: The Law of Large Numbers versus Gamblers

Enjoy!

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The Master's Seminary
John MacArthur’s Strange Fire Conference has definitely generated a lot of debate and discussion concerning the Charismatic movement.

It turns out that The Master’s Seminary, where John MacArthur presides over, has also done their annual Faculty Lecture Series also on the topic of “Strange Fire.”

Here are the videos!

 

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Joseph Prince false teacher

We continue with our closer look at Joseph Prince’s arguments for his position that every Christians should speak in tongues.  For those who may not know, Joseph Prince is a Pentecostal preacher from Singapore, who’s popularity is felt not only in Asia but even here in the United States.

The video we have been examining is this particular clip from Joseph Prince’s channel:

Eight seconds into the video he tries to argue that it is biblical for Christians to ask other Christians whether they speak in tongues, implying that believers should speak in tongues:

One time the Apostle Paul passed by a group of people and he asked them, ‘Have you received the Holy Ghost?’  And the Bible says they were disciples, they were believers in Christ.  ‘Have you received the Holy Spirit?’ he asked them.  Now, today that is not the question we ask people after we see that they are saved.  We don’t asked them, ‘Have you received the Holy Spirit?’ because it is insulting to many “denominations” to suggest that, to ask the question ‘Have you received the Holy Spirit?’ is insulting.  Yet I think it is in Acts 16, or 19…and in Acts 19 when you look at it the Bible says that Paul passed by a certain region and then he found disciples.  The word there is disciples.  These are believers in Christ.  Christians.  And he asked them the question, ‘Have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed?’  So they said, “We never heard of anything called the Holy Spirit.’  ‘So unto what baptism were you baptized?’ “John’s baptism.’  Well Jesus said what?  You will be baptized by the Holy Spirit.  And the Bible says that he prayed for them, laid hands on them and they received the Holy Spirit and the Bible says what was the evidence for those of you on the page?  They spoke with tongues and prophesied, right?  So we don’t want to compromise just because some denominations are of the persuasion that tongues has ceased alright, we don’t want to compromise because our standard is the Bible.  Can I get a good Amen?”

(0:08-1:35)

Joseph Prince is appealing to Acts 19.  Let’s take a closer look:

1.) Prince makes much out of the point that its to “disciples” (verse 1) that Paul asked his question “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?”  (verse 2).  Specifically though, these disciples were those of John the Baptist since they didn’t know about the Holy Spirit (verse 2) and only knew about John’s baptism (verse 3).  This observation should make us cautious in assuming these are regular New Testament Church era Christians.

2.) In light of the fact that they were John’s disciples who only knew up to the baptism of repentance and never even heard about the Holy Spirit, one must be sensitive to progressive revelation and how redemptive history unfolds.  This particular episode is unique in that as the church began and started from Acts 2 onward, there were a number of believers who were disciples before hearing about the Holy Spirit such as John’s Disciples.  Yet by God’s providence the Lord brought those like the Apostle Paul to fill them in about the Spirit.  We expect that as the book of Acts progress, with the church growing more and more, that the number of such disciples of John who didn’t know about the Spirit would decrease.  When we fast forward to today, there are not John’s disciples who haven’t heard of the Holy Spirit.

Thus, if one is sensitive to the context, Acts 19 is not a text to justify asking other Christians whether they have the Holy Spirit and implying that they should speak in tongues.

Don’t forget also how earlier in part two we established the biblical truth that baptism of the Holy Spirit is not the same thing as speaking in tongues, since one can be baptized by the Holy Spirit without speaking in tongues.

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We continue with yesterday’s evaluation of a sermon by Joseph Prince that argues “Speaking in tongues make you supernatural.  So that is the prayer language that every believer should have.” (8:05-8:13).Joseph Prince preacher

We are responding to this video:

And for today, we will concentrate on the following excerpt:

They [Note: “non-Charismatics”–Slimjim] will say that we are also baptized in the Holy Spirit.  It’s one thing to have drunk some water, it’s another thing that when you jump into the swimming pool.  One is the water is in you the other is that you are in the water.  How many understand?  Once you received Jesus Christ the Holy Spirit is resident in you.  But once you are baptized in the Holy Spirit the Holy Spirit is president over you.  And you want Him to control your life…For all those who are wondering what’s the benefit of this language?  Well, let me just reason, come let’s reason together, would God on the most important day, on the day of Pentecost, of all the gifts, alright, of all the things God could have done, God gave them the baptism of the Holy Spirit, speaking in tongues, would you for one moment that God would give them something that would not benefit them, glorify Christ, magnify God?  So whatever the reasoning that people have for not speaking in tongues alright, it is not coming to the level of God’s Word and God’s personal opinion about it.   

(1:35-4:36)

Note in the quote above that baptism of the Holy Spirit is seen as the same thing as speaking in tongues.  Or at least that speaking in tongues is a necessary sign of being baptized in the Holy Spirit.  Joseph Prince even says that those who disagree with his articulated view is contrary to God’s Word.

But the Word of God teaches that the Baptism of the Spirit is distinct from speaking in tongues.  1 Corinthians 12:13 teaches that all believers are baptized by the Spirit into one body:

For [j]by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

Then a few verses later 1 Corinthians 12:29-30 states:

All are not apostles, are they? All are not prophets, are they? All are not teachers, are they? All are not workers of [t]miracles, are they? 30 All do not have gifts of healings, do they? All do not speak with tongues, do they? All do not interpret, do they?31 But earnestly desire the greater gifts.

Note verse 30, which ask rhetorically whether all speak in tongues, with the answer being assumed as no ( unless one disagree, in which case then he or she must believe all are prophets and teachers, etc, stated in verse 29, but that would conflict with 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, and 12:14-26 that teaches that the members of the body of Christ have different gifts).

So we see here all are Spirit-baptized in the Body of Christ but that does not mean all will speak in tongues.  One see Paul making that distinction.  Moreover, Paul teaches that all true believers are baptized by the Spirit, while not all speak in tongues.

However, Joseph Prince in our video tries to take the force out of the argument from 1 Corinthians 12:29-30 by making a distinction between the gift of tongues and  speaking in tongues which all believer should have.   But we have already shown in part one that this false distinction does not hold up.  1 Corinthians 12 does have bearing against Prince’s position.  Verse 30 itself says “speak with tongues.

Concerning his argument from Acts 2, no Christians would deny that on Pentecosts it was beneficial to the believers and that it glorified God.  The question however is whether speaking in tongues is something all believers must have today, so his argument from Acts 2 does not reaches it’s goal posts, since one can logically affirm the benefit and glory to God of the speaking in tongues in Pentecosts without embracing the view that all believers today should speak in tongues.

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