NEW-YORK – 1793
Samuel Miller (1769–1850). A native of Delaware, Miller was educated at home by his father, Reverend John Miller, and his brothers, followed by a year at the University of Pennsylvania and theological training with Reverend John Nisbet, principal of Dickinson College. He was ordained a Presbyterian minister in New York City in 1793 (the year of the sermon reprinted here) and eventually became pastor of the Wall Street congregation that later became First Presbyterian Church. He was appointed professor of church history and government at Princeton Theological Seminary, which he had helped to found in 1813. Under Miller, Archibald Alexander, and George Hodge, the seminary dominated Princeton for over fifty years.
DR. HEATH FORD
Communicant, Alamo First Baptist Church, Alamo, Georgia
Misguided philosophy leads to similarly inappropriate and ineffectual ministry and can have drastic implications for free ecclesiastic and civil polity. The current soteriological confrontation, epitomized in Hankins’s Statement and recently instigated by the majority (non-Calvinist) faction within the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), may signify a critical shift in the theological direction of the Convention. This rebuttal is a response to the divisive article published in SBC Today that, according to the Statement coordinator, Pastor Eric Hankins (First Baptist, Oxford, MS), was written to generate discussion about the future of Calvinism's “place” in Baptist theology.
By Dr. Eric Hankins, Pastor of First Baptist
Church in Oxford, Mississippi
The following is a suggested statement of what Southern Baptists believe about the doctrine of salvation. Compiled by a number of pastors, professors, and leaders in response to the growing debate over Calvinism in Southern Baptist life, it begins with a rationale for such a statement at this time, followed by ten articles of affirmation and denial. The goal was to create a statement that would accurately reflect the beliefs of the majority of Southern Baptists, who are not Calvinists. The concern of the developers of this statement was that the viewpoint of this majority was not well-‐represented by the term “non-‐ Calvinist” and that an instrument was needed by which that majority might articulate positively what they believe vis-‐à-‐vis Calvinism. There is no thought that this document reflects what all Southern Baptists believe or that it should be imposed upon all Southern Baptists. We believe that it does reflect what most Southern Baptists believe for good, biblical reasons. Its purpose is to engender a much needed Convention-‐wide discussion about the place of Calvinism in Southern Baptist life.
A Message to Wavering Christians
on the Absolute Supremacy of Jesus Christ
by Wayne Rogers
A. Reading a Book of the Bible: One of the first things to do when reading any book of the Bible is to try to get the big picture of that book and that book within the context of redemptive history. The best way to do this is to read or skim through the book 2-3 times at least and to note the natural divisions, the main themes, repeated words, and try to write out a brief outline. After that, since Jesus gave some to be pastors and teachers, you may compare your notes with a reliable resource. The Reformation Study Bible has good overviews and outlines. I have listed other resources at the conclusion of this study.
B. Reading Hebrews: Sinclair Ferguson, wrote, “Of all the New Testament letters, Hebrews seems to be one many Christians find strange and alien. Here we enter the world of Melchizedek and Aaron, angels and Moses, sacrifices and priests. It all seems so OT, so intricate, and even confusing,” Sinclair Ferguson, Tabletalk, Time to (Re)discover Hebrews, Jan. 2011. pg. 24.
By Michael Wagner
Published in the July/August 2012 issue of
Reformed Perspective magazine, p. 19-20.
Among people who claim to follow the Bible, only a small minority embrace what is commonly called Calvinism—the Biblical teaching that God is in control of all things, including who comes to believe in Him. But it has not always been this way. Indeed, back in the time of the Reformation, Calvinism was the dominant view among Christians in some nations.
Britain, for example, was a Calvinist country. In 1643 the nations of England, Scotland and Ireland swore a covenant with God (called the Solemn League and Covenant) to uphold the doctrine and practice of Reformed Christianity. Like in Old Testament times, however, it wasn’t long before people began to drift away from their commitment to the Lord.
By Michael Wagner
Published in the May 2012 issue of
Reformed Perspective magazine, p. 17-19.
Among President Barack Obama’s many achievements (sic) has been the reinvigoration of the American conservative movement. There are now a large number of Americans involved in groups loosely associated with the Tea Party movement which seeks to shrink the size of government and reduce taxes. One of the thinkers whose popularity has risen in tandem with this phenomenon is Ayn Rand (1905-1982).
Many Christians may be unfamiliar with Ayn Rand and wonder why anyone would want to know about her. But even though Rand died 30 years ago, her influence today is growing. Freedom-loving Americans are turning to her books as a reaction against the recent socialistic direction of the American government.
John Locke, Philosopher of American Liberty,
Nordskog 2012. (401 pages)
Review by Don Crowe, PhD.
The late historian Mrs. Swanson (1927-2011) has written this valuable biography of John Locke. She had previously written The Education of James Madison and contributed to the series by Verna Hall on the Christian History of the Constitution and the American Revolution. This new book covers the life and thought of John Locke (1632-1704), especially his contribution to the formation of the form of government adopted by the United States. His Second Treatise of Civil Government was particularly influential in the philosophy of many of the founding fathers. The book is well documented for a serious study of John Locke, with footnotes, bibliography, and a general index. One of the strengths of the book is that it discusses Locke from many original sources.
Idols For Destruction, Herbert Schlossberg
Crossway Books 1990. (344 pages)
Review by Evan J. Nee
Since the beginning of time, a battle has been steadily raging, having as its object the complete control and sovereignty over the mind of mankind. This conflict is over the most important question of man’s existence: who or what is god? Who holds the ultimate authority, and who establishes the standards that guide my conduct? The roots of this conflict are found in the Garden of Eden, where the first man and woman succumbed to the temptation to “be as God.” This temptation has plagued the human race ever since, and our sin nature has, since the time of the original sin, willingly turned the human heart into a “perpetual forge of idols.” In ancient times the drive to create idols manifested itself in the worshipping of stone and metal figures, or even in the divinization of certain men chosen to bear the ultimate authority in a culture, such as the Pharaoh of Egypt, and the kings of Assyria and Babylon. Today, however, one would be hard pressed to find such blatant and visible objects of worship, because modern idolatry is much more insidious. We have help in identifying modern idolatry, however, thanks to the book Idols For Destruction, by Herbert Schlossberg, which is a valiant and successful effort to unveil the modern forms of idolatry.
By Michael Wagner
Published in the October 2012 issue of
Reformed Perspective magazine, p. 8-9.
The largest abortion provider in the United States is an organization called Planned Parenthood. It receives money from the US federal government and various state governments. It strongly supports the presidency of Barack Obama and he, in turn, strongly supports Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood also has a presence in most other countries of the world, including Canada. Like the US, the Canadian federal government financially supports this organization. In both countries such government funding is strongly opposed by pro-lifers.