First a definition for those unfamiliar with the term. A “minced oath” is a bowdlerization of words or phrases otherwise deemed offensive or blasphemous. Common examples would be the substitution of darn for damn, heck for hell, gosh for God. Some argue that when we use these substitutes we nevertheless stand guilty of using the… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
An aspiring theology wonk can often find himself swimming in a bewildering ocean of acronyms. Since we no longer debate our theology over the course of hours, but often do so using only our thumbs, shorthand is valuable, but challenging. Just when you realized the role of iaoc to npp and fv (that is, the… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
WHAT IS IT TIME TO LEAVE?
The state of the church being somewhat in decline (at least here in America) it may occur to us that it’s wise to take our families where there is more salt and more light. May we? Should we? Must we? Join our conversation as we work through a few scenarios, acknowledging that wherever we go, there we are. And if we must go screaming “life, life, eternal life!,” or leave as friends, or stay, we need to do so while honoring those in authority over us and using wisdom to inform all these important decisions.
Common sense may be more common than sense. There are any number of shorthand aphorisms in the world and in the church that shape our thinking, but don’t stand up to scrutiny, at least right away. Below are five common expressions that might fit under the banner of common sense, that I just can’t make… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
I don’t know. The Bible doesn’t directly say. It does, of course, say that women are not to teach or rule in the church (I Timothy 2:12). For this reason the evangelical church has always held that women are not to be ordained as elders in the church for elder is an office of rule…. Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
It is a legitimate and important question- the appropriateness of celebrating the incarnation, the celebration of Christmas. I believe it fitting and appropriate, but am in turn always uncomfortable disagreeing with brothers to my right. I understand their concerns, and appreciate their passion for the regulative principle of worship. On the other hand, one can… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
No. Christians, of course disagree on this. And when we disagree we can usually expect someone to trot out the whole “meat offered to idols” and weaker brother texts discussion in I Corinthians and Romans respectively. Neither of these texts, however, were given to us to squelch discussion nor to leave us blind to moral… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
You have heard it said, and rightly so, that it’s rather important to define our terms. Here is a case in point. There are at least three ways we use the phrase “celebrate Christmas.” The first is as the celebration Mass of the birth of Christ, that is, as Rome has celebrated it for centuries…. Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
The vast majority of Protestants since the time of the Reformation take the view that we should accept Roman Catholic baptism. Several reasons are proffered. First, the donatist controversy. During the days of the Diocletian persecution there were those professing Christians who essentially repudiated the faith. The Donatists argued that the sacraments performed by those… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Yes. Jesus reminded us in His Sermon on the Mount that the Ten Commandments are rather wider in scope than we might be tempted to believe. If we avoid first degree murder, we haven’t escaped the charge of failing to keep the seventh commandment. One could argue that the ninth commandment merely forbids perjury, the… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
I attended my first screening last night. My friends the Howards and Murphys, who run the ship over at Homeschooling Today, invited my wife and me, as well as the lovely and talented Wayne and Tami Beebe, to run over to Charlotte to see Expelled. The movie will be released in mid-April. Hosted by the… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Jesus, the Scriptures tells us, served “the fruit of the vine” (Matthew 26:29, Mark 14:25) and ‘the cup” (Luke 22:20). We could break down the common usage of these expressions in this time, flipping pages in our word study books until we are blue in the face. Others have done so. The evidence is overwhelmingly… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
This question may well take the cake when it comes to a potent intersection of relative Biblical silence, and intense personal importance. We don’t know where Moses is buried, but most of us are mostly unconcerned. We do care a great deal about our eternal destiny, but then the Bible is pretty clear on that…. Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Yes, and no. How we answer depends a great deal on what we mean by “right.” The key difference in this issue, as with most issues is this. A right can be that which sound ethics requires that no one take away from me. Our forefathers, for instance, argued that we have an inalienable right… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
While in the end I think it important for both Christian students and teachers to leave the government school system, the case for getting the children out is by far the stronger, clearer case. The two are related, but not at all the same. It is my conviction that education is everywhere and always inherently… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
In 1994 a group of scholars released a document called Evangelicals and Catholics Together. That particular document dealt rather extensively with the issue of abortion in our land, and the need for Christians to stand united against this vile and perverse evil. No Christian should have any trouble agreeing that abortion is evil, and that… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Yes, and no. There is nothing in the Bible that even hints that there is anything displeasing to God when a person whose ancestors came from Africa marries someone whose ancestors once lived in Asia. There is no prohibition against a man reared in Europe marrying a Native American. God does not object when a… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
“A believing friend recently he told me how a man who had written hymns and chorus songs that she loved had “come out” as a homosexual. I said that he probably was never a true believer as “coming out” is generally done when the lifestyle is acted upon and embraced. She said that it is… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
“As we try to teach our children how to live exactly as the Bible teaches, we find another issue that is hard to teach our daughters. Not because we think that we do not understand clearly, but because we commonly see conflicting examples in our Christian circles, including our church leadership (even pastor). The issue… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
“I was recently involved in a conversation with a Roman Catholic friend discussing the issue of gay Christians. She expressed her opinion that it was not for us to say whether they are Christians or not. My opinion has always been you cannot be a practicing homosexual and a Christian at the same time. Unfortunately,… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
The devil is not content to encourage us to fall off one side of the horse. He takes great pleasure in seeing us fall off both sides. We live, for instance, in what is a most permissive culture. This is true of both the world and the church. All things, we seem to believe, are… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
It is a holdover of our modernist past that we tend to see the work of translation as a science more than an art. We think we punch a word in from language a, and out pops the exact same word, except in language b. Note only do different languages not relate in that way,… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
It is a sure sign that sin messes things up that we keep watching the same boxing match over and over again, between truth and unity. Both sides, of course, insist that they have a deep and abiding love for the other. They shake hands in the center of the ring, go back to their… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
The Conference circuit is a rather odd duck. It includes events sponsored by para-church organizations, and events sponsored by churches. It includes speakers who work for para-church organizations, and speakers who serve as pastors. And speakers who are both. The talks that are given typically have some connection to the Bible, but typically are not… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
“The Bible never condemns polygamy or having concubines. Is there a moral law against them?” Yes there is a moral law against them because the Bible actually does condemn them. Jesus Himself said, “From the beginning it was not so…” He commands that marriage be between one man and one woman. He notes also that… Read more »Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Yes, of course. Happily, in every jurisdiction I am aware of, it is not even legally possible to marry outside ones race. Though there are some arguing that such should be legal, even the “gay” “marriage” movement, by and large, disdains the notion. The Bible is abundantly clear that marriage is only for those of the human race, and to extend the institution beyond that is wrong.Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.
Our fathers in the faith were commanded to profess the Lordship of Caesar. They refused, resting their hope in the Lordship of Christ, denying that there could ultimately be two kings. They did not, however, take up arms to overthrow Rome. Indeed they went peacefully to their deaths, spilling their own blood as the seed of the church.Posted by Dr. R.C. Sproul, Jr.