Betsy Childs exposes (by means of parody) some of the ridiculous assumptions and assertions of biblical source critics in this piece, entitled A Source Critic Looks at Downton Abbey. SPOILER ALERT
“What great toil and effort it cost the church fathers to gather up a few crumbs, while we with half the labor – with almost no labor at all – can acquire the whole loaf. O how their efforts put our indolence to shame!”
– Martin Luther
Thabiti Anyabwile reminds us of the real people who are victims of false teachers like T.D. Jakes.
Popular “Emergent” author/Pastor Rob Bell has written a new book entitled Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived. If one watches the promotional video, it quickly becomes very apparent that one of two things are happening:
1. Bell is teaching a form of Universalism, a belief that rejects the Scriptural truth about Hell and teaches that all are “saved,” no matter what one believes.
2. Bell is deliberately toeing the line of ambiguity, purposefully using misleading questions and phrasing, so as to stir up controversy and draw attention to his new book.
I can’t find a third possibility. I hope it’s #2, but either way, it’s bad. Kevin DeYoung has written an excellent post about Bell’s promotional book trailer, public & private criticism, and the power of rhetorical questions. I highly recommend it to anyone who has ever heard of Rob Bell (and even those who haven’t). You can read DeYoung’s post here.
UPDATE 3.10.11: Tim Challies has written a review of Bell’s book.
In the course of an ongoing conversation with a good friend concerning so-called “Lordship Salvation,” my friend pointed me to a blog entry posted by Justin Taylor. The post quotes renowned Reformed Anglican J.I. Packer, in a discussion of the “two-tone” nature of Christian faith. My friend was interested to see my response. After finally having the chance to read the post, here are my thoughts:
The object of the Christian faith, Packer writes, is threefold:
first, God the Three-in-One, the Creator-become-Redeemer, who throughout history has been, and still is, transforming sinners into a new humanity in Christ;
second, Jesus Christ himself, God incarnate and Saviour, now absent from us in the flesh but personally and powerfully present with us through the Holy Spirit; and
third, the many invitations, promises, commands and assurances that the Father and the Son extend to all who will receive Jesus as their Saviour and Lord and become his disciples, living henceforth by his teaching in his fellowship under his authority.
Packer is confused about the nature of generic faith, which leads to confusion about Christian (or “saving”) faith. If we want to get technical, the “object” of any faith must be a proposition, or set of propositions. Only propositions have truth value (either true or false), and thus only propositions can be believed. Continue Reading