From the foreword to Baptism is Not Enough: …we do not take the time to define what a covenant actually is. We are usually not this sloppy with other key biblical terms—words like justification, or atonement, or imputation, or sanctification. We define these terms, taking the sweep of all biblical history into account, and then we remember how we have defined them. There are problems that can arise with this as well, but overall, it is good and helps keep things clear. We are not nearly this … [Read more...] about Covenant Cartoons Episode 2: What’s a Covenant?!
A few months ago I discovered that replays of Casey Kasem’s American Top-40 were playing on a local radio station starting at six each Saturday morning. In May I found myself settling into a ritual of listening to part of the show each week. I did this while sipping hot coffee during a half-hour commute to a class I attend. Whether or not it has been the most edifying activity, I have come to enjoy quiet roads, serene sunrises, and coffee fogging up my driver’s side window as Casey counts down … [Read more...] about Everybody Wants to Rule the World
Do you believe the Biblical concept of covenant undergirds every aspect of our lives? What if I told you that a proper understanding of covenant is imperative for living a life of obedience in accordance with the Scriptures. Does such an understanding affect the manner in which we should educate our children? Yes. Does it define our stance on topics such as gay marriage? Absolutely. What about our involvement in local politics? Check. These are just a few of the countless questions answered by … [Read more...] about Covenant Theology, now explained with Cartoons!
Objective covenant? What is that? It is one you can see. It is visible. It is observable. It is one where you can say, “that guy is in it and that guy is not”. We live in time and space. We live out our lives in history. We don’t transcend time. One day we will but for now we live here. Covenant membership is marked out by baptism. “But we can’t see God’s New Covenant people” you say. So what defines the church on earth? If not covenant membership, then what? I have an answer. Club Church. There … [Read more...] about Club Church…the Alternative to an Objective Covenant
Occasionally, life ushers in unanticipated insights from unexpected sources. This is exactly what happened recently at my office with my youngest son. When I am not travelling, he sometimes joins me in daily business life so he can glean unique lessons and I can augment my productivity in unique ways. I talk about this in detail in this blog post. On this particular day, I was running behind on a few remaining tasks and asked that he sit quietly while I focused. He was relatively compliant until … [Read more...] about Babysitters and Taxes
Get out your calendar! We have made it to the final component of the recipe for a highly focused family. If we stick with the symphony analogy from yesterday, this last step is the rehearsal schedule. The orchestra will have their complete scores in mind, their notes and experience from prior sessions in front of them, and that day’s section practiced and prepared for. The rehearsal will reveal the progress that has been made and set the … [Read more...] about Focus In the Family (Step 4)
We have crossed the halfway point in our practical recipe for remarkable focus in the family. You know where you want to go (the Future Picture has been painted), and you have decided where to apply the greatest amount of energy right now (the Game-changer Goals). The symphony has been conceived. The opening sonata is the priority. The third step is the factor that will enable the priority to be accomplished. This is the writing of the notes. You can rest assured that if … [Read more...] about Focus In the Family (Step 3)
This is Part 2, in a multi-part series. Read Part 1 here. What do you want your family life to look like? Yesterday’s article introduced a four-step, practical recipe for gaining a laser-like focus, and honed in on the importance of memorializing a future picture for your family. As a reminder, the four steps are as follows: 1) Future Picture 2) Game-changer Goal 3) Drivers 4) Focus Talks Painting the detailed future picture will provide the irreplaceable vision for … [Read more...] about Focus In the Family (Step 2)
“The word priority came into the English language in the 1400s. It was singular. It meant the very first or prior thing. It stayed singular for the next five hundred years. Only in the 1900s did we pluralize the term and start talking about priorities. Illogically, we reasoned that by changing the word we could bend reality. Somehow we would now be able to have multiple “first things”.[i] We live in a world where the attempt to make noticeable progress in countless areas of our lives holds us … [Read more...] about Focus In the Family (Step 1)
Last week I read one of the most astounding articles that I think every reformed Christian should read. Why? Because I believe that as the theology espoused by a group within the reformed community becomes more consistent with its base presuppositions, it also becomes more dangerous. The article was in the widely known First Things magazine, the flagship program for the Institute on Religion and Public Life. That such an article would appear within this publication is no surprise. That … [Read more...] about Prepping for Exile – A response to Carl Trueman