The subject of leaders in the church has been a point of study for many Christians for a number of years now and it has expressed itself in both biblically and through the opinions of various individuals. The bible speaks very explicitly of the qualifications and roles of the elders and deacons especially in the pastoral epistles. Monergism just released Nehemiah Coxe’s book titled Biblical Elders and Deacons which details the appointment of elders & deacons as well as the relationship that these leaders have with their congregation. This is a great little book and highly recommended for those who are interested in learning more about biblical leadership.
I’m really unsure how long this book is going to be available for free in the eBook format hence I thought it might be worthwhile to post it here. The book is titled A Biblical Refutation of Dispensationalism by A.W. Pink. It is available on Sony, Kindle, PDF or Nook for all those who have an eReader or who prefer reading in PDF format. The book is an examination of dispensational teaching and Pink strives to critique the teaching and demonstrate its negative impact on the church as a whole.
Over the years there have been many charges made by Christians against myself and others who hold to the doctrines of grace. One of the most troubling charges that I have experienced is the claim by dispensational 4-point arminians who claim that those who hold to Covenant Theology are anti-Semitic. This is a very serious accusation that underlines a misunderstanding of what Calvinists believe[i]. I am certainly not anti-Semitic in my view of the current state of Israel in that I believe that the government in place is a better government than prior to the Israel becoming a recognized state. We appreciate the Jewish people and their perseverance in history as a great people. We also value the attempts at peace put forward by the Israeli government but at the same time we do not render them faultless. We would not want to assume too much since the political framework surrounding the Israel/Palestine behind the current conflicts is complex and we do not have all the details. We feel that this conflict in Gaza may not be resolved till the return of Jesus Christ.
With all this said, the charge of antisemitism doesn’t stem from political views but from theological views. The charge finds its foundation from the idea that if one believes that the land promises to possess Palestine is no longer valid then we must be anti-Semitic. As we have already mentioned, the accusation is generally made by those who promote dispensational theology which states that God will deal with Israel as a nation once again to fulfill promises that He has yet to realize. It also teaches that the current secular nation of Israel has rights to the land of Israel because of an Old Testament covenant promise.
I generally would post something like this on my Twitter account however I felt like this is a pretty significant article especially for some who may be trying to understand some of the arguments in the paedobaptism vs. Credobaptism discussion.
This article is a response written by James White to Richard Pratt’s argument for Paedobaptism in which Pratt stresses the future fulfillment of the New Covenant in an already/not yet framework. This is a different argument than is generally emphasized by Paedobaptists. I thought Dr. White did a great job in demonstrating the impact of attempting to put too much emphasis on the future fullfilment of the New Covenant since, as my readers will see, it diminishes the arguments of the book of Hebrews.
Listening to the first 20 minutes of this discussion is well worth your time if you are thinking about, researching or just curious about Dispensationalism and what exactly is the outcome if you hold to it.
While I don’t have figures to back this up, in my experience there are quite a few churches in the Greater Moncton area that hold to a dispensational hermeneutic which in return leads into the dispensational premillennial pre-tribulational rapture eschatology. At least many would have a good understanding of this approach to scripture and probably some who hold to it but they are quite sure why. This website recognizes that there are some very godly men who hold to this position yet we do not endorse this hermeneutic or this interpretation of eschatology since we feel it is in error.
I found a link on the confessin’ Baptist website that had a few interesting resources that I thought I would share. There are various video, audio and online book recommendations that were posted there and hence I thought I would share.
There were several conferences going on this past weekend from a reformed Christian perspective with some being more well-known than others. This doesn’t mean that the Lesser known conferences were any less important and I thought I would share at least two very interesting ones that were held at this time..
The first was a conference called the Keach conference which was put on by the Reformed Baptist Fellowship of Virginia in the U.S. It had as its theme this year “of God’s Covenants” which was a talk on the London Baptist Confession of 1689 and chapter 7. The main speaker for this event was Dr. Richard Barcellos. For those who would be interested, the audio presentation for this conference is available here.
The second conference I would like to mention is the Desiring God conference which had as its theme The Romantic Rationalist: God, Life, and Imagination in the Work of C.S. Lewis. There were multiple speakers involved including John Piper, Doug Wilson, Kevin Vanhoozer and Randy Alcorn. The video for the conference can be viewed here.
Last night I had the opportunity to watch a live streaming discussion between Douglas Wilson and John Piper on the topic of Christian Culture. There were several controversial topics discussed which are usually ignored due to the fact that they can bring much tension to the table. Both men were exceptionally gracious and there were several things said that really convicted me. How often do we ignore cultural issues because we don’t think it’s any of our business? These men discussed exactly why we must never ignore these cultural issues. When the video is posted from this discussion I will link to it for others to watch.
Mount Zion Reformed Presbyterian Church will be holding a conference in early October on the subject of Covenant Theology. I thought I would post the information on the conference for those in the Greater Moncton area who might be interested in attending. The speaker this year is D. Patrick Ramsey. Here are the details:
Announcing Mt. Zion’s
Biblical Summit and Fall Festival Oct. 4-6 2013
“The Structure of Redemption: Covenant Theology and its Applications”
The bible tells the true story of God’s very good creation, the rebellion and fall of man, the redemption of a people through Jesus Christ, and finally a great renewal and glorification of the world together with his people. This is the big picture, but the plot structure of the bible is undergirded and moved along by God through covenants. You might say that covenants are the framework upon which the story of Scripture and our understanding of it depends. Understanding the covenants of the bible in themselves and in relation to how they move God’s plan of salvation along towards its fulfillment in Christ is therefore incredibly important. To the extent that we understand this framework rightly we are better able to understand what God has done in history for our Salvation as revealed in the Scriptures and its application to us as individuals, families, and churches. To the extent that we misread this covenant framework we open ourselves up to great misunderstandings of God’s revelation in Scripture and its application to our lives.
In order that we might all better understand, apply, and be built up by the Scriptures the Leadership and members of Mt. Zion Presbyterian Church would like to invite you to join us and Pastor D. Patrick Ramsey for the 2013 Biblical Summit being held in conjunction with our Fall Festival.
Speaker: Rev. D. Patrick Ramsey
D. Patrick Ramsey is an ordained minister in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. He is no stranger to the area having been born and raised here in the Maritimes in neighboring Halifax, Nova Scotia. His Master of Divinity degree was completed at Greenville Theological Seminary and a Master in Theology was done at Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia. Rev. Ramsey served as the pastor of an OPC Church in London, KY for over 12 years. He has recently been serving the Church throughout the Maritimes through pulpit supply as he works towards the completion of doctoral studies at the University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa. On top of all of this he is married to a wonderful wife and has 5 boys to keep him busy.
2013 Summit Sessions and Schedule:
7:30 PM Session 1: Covenant Theology’s Great Expression: The Westminster Standards
9:30 AM Session 2: Covenant Theology and The Old and New Testaments Part 1
11:00 AM Session 3: Covenant Theology and The Old and New Testaments Part 2
12:00 Noon Lunch
1:30 PM Session 4: Covenant Theology and Salvation Part 1
3:00 PM Session 5: Covenant Theology and Salvation Part 2
4:00 PM Q and A
4:45 PM Fall Festival
10:00 AM Session 6: Covenant Theology and Children Part 1
11:00 AM Lunch in Church Hall
6:00 PM Session 7: Covenant Theology and Children Part 2
Cost: Individually -$15 for adults (students and children free)
*You may Pre-Register by sending an Email with your family name and # of attendees to firstname.lastname@example.org
Mt. Zion Presbyterian Church is located at 155 Charles Lutes Rd. in Moncton, NB E1G 2R8
Church Phone: 506-853-0544