Monthly Archives: July 2014


Stupid Shepherds and Scattered Sheep

In 627 B.C., a young priest in the southern kingdom of Israel heard God’s call to be a prophet. Born in Anatoth, three miles northeast of Jerusalem, Jeremiah’s ministry spanned 40 turbulent years.  He witnessed firsthand the death of his nation.  His king, Josiah, had come to the throne 15 years earlier at the tender   …Continue Reading


Review of Jonathan Gibson’s Chapter on Pauline Soteriology and Limited Atonement in From Heaven He Came and Sought Her

In chapter 13, Jonathan Gibson attempts to demonstrate definite atonement in Paul’s soteriology. His basic thesis is that definite atonement emerges from the Pauline letters when one  approaches the issue in a biblico-systematic fashion. “Definite atonement is a theological conclusion reached on the other side of comprehensive synthesis” (332). Strikingly, Gibson announces: “When exegesis serves   …Continue Reading


1 John 3:11-18 — Notes on Sunday’s Sermon

John speaks of four different levels of relationships in which you can choose to live: murder (vv.11–12), hatred (vv. 13–15), indifference (vv. 16–17), and Christian love in action (v. 18). I. Love and Hate are Mutually Exclusive in Your Christian Life – (vv. 11–15). Children of God are to behave like children of God. It   …Continue Reading


Reflections on the Oxford Study Tour

For two and a half weeks I was in England and Scotland with 71 students and faculty from SEBTS and SWBTS on our annual Oxford Study Tour. The tour consists of courses taught by faculty combined with trips to some of the important historical sites in Baptist history and church history. I taught “History and   …Continue Reading


Does Paul Teach Limited Atonement? Review of Gibson’s Chapter 12 in From Heaven He Came and Sought Her

Jonathan Gibson’s chapter 12 is one of the heftiest in the book, weighing in at 40 plus pages. This is to be expected since there is so much material in the Pauline letters that impinge on the question at hand. Following a two page introduction, he divides his chapter into five sections: 1) Particularistic texts   …Continue Reading


Happy Birthday J. I. Packer!

“How J. I. Packer’s Knowing God Influenced my Life” Today is J. I. Packer’s 88th birthday.  I followed God’s call to preach in 1973 at the age of 16. During the months of seeking the will of God about the matter, one of the books I purchased and read was hot off the press: a   …Continue Reading


Is the Atonement Limited in the Synoptics and John? Review of Harmon’s Chapter in From Heaven He Came and Sought Her – Part 12

Matthew Harmon authors the chapter on definite atonement in the Synoptic Gospels and Johannine literature. Harmon intends to argue three things: 1) Jesus died to display God’s glory; 2) Jesus died to accomplish the salvation of His people; 3) Jesus died for the sins of the world (where “world” does not mean “all without exception”   …Continue Reading


Outlining & Preaching 1 John 2:15-17, Part 2

“Outlining & Preaching 1 John 2:15-17 – Part 2”[1] Part 1 examined the structural outline of the passage, carefully looking at the sentence and clausal structure. Now we examine the semantic (meaning) relationships between the clauses and sentences themselves in order to understand the overall structure of the passage. From this, we will be able   …Continue Reading


How to Outline and Preach 1 John 2:15-17 – Part 1

Expository preaching, especially of the letters of the New Testament, should, at a minimum, deal with a paragraph. Why? Linguists now point out that meaning is found beyond the sentence level. When the preacher restricts his focus to the sentence level and to clauses and phrases in verses, there is much that is missed in   …Continue Reading


Isaiah 53 and Limited Atonement – Review of Motyer’s chapter in From Heaven He Came and Sought Her – Part 11

In Chapter 10, J. Alec Motyer treats us to a solid exegesis of Isaiah 53. I always try to read Motyer on any text of Scripture which he writes. He is an excellent exegete. Here Motyer avoids the clutter of quotations from other commentators, and stays directly with his exegesis of the text. It’s smooth   …Continue Reading