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My Response to John Piper on Justification in CT Article PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Tuesday, 30 June 2009 12:44

Christianity Today has run a chart comparing the views of John Piper with those of NT Wright on the subject of Justification.  I have copied the words of Piper from the chart (below in italics) with my personal response in bold print.

God created a good world that was subjected to futility because of the sinful, treasonous choice of the first human beings. Because of this offense against the glory of God, humans are alienated from their Creator and deserve his just condemnation for their sins. YES and NO (for what it omits)

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 March 2010 16:00
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A Classic Defense of Substitutionary Atonement PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Tuesday, 12 May 2009 12:02

Dr James Packer, evangelical, Reformed Anglican wrote a classic explanation and thorough defense of the Biblical Doctine of Penal Subsititution (the cross as substitutionary atonement sufficient for the sins of the world) in 1973.

http://www.the-highway.com/cross_Packer.html

Recently, he revisited that Doctrine and wrote this new essay. HERE It begins with Dr Packer saying,

"Throughout my 63 years as an evangelical believer, the penal substitutionary understanding of the cross of Christ has been a flashpoint of controversy and division among Protestants. It was so before my time, in the bitter parting of ways between conservative and liberal evangelicals... .  It remains so, as liberalism keeps reinventing itself and luring evangelicals away from their heritage. Since one’s belief about the atonement is bound up with one’s belief about the character of God, the terms of the gospel and the Christian’s inner life, the intensity of the debate is understandable. If one view is right, others are more or less wrong, and the definition of Christianity itself comes to be at stake.

 

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Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 March 2010 15:59
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Attributes of God, Part 1 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Saturday, 04 October 2008 11:15
Who is the God the Psalmist talks about?  Whom does he seek, for whom does He thirst?  You may assume you know or that every Christian will answer the question in the same way.  Of course, we all know who God is!  This is actually difficult to answer.  

God created our world and us.  He is complete without us.  He is totally other than us.   So how can we describe Him?  This is normally done by describing, or trying to describe, attributes about Him (and sometimes it is done by describing things which people believe God is not).  The most common attribute, the one that is probably the most popular today is simply Love.  If God is anything, many say, God is love.  The very essence of God is Love.  Love is what God is [literally] all about.  This statement is emphatically not Biblical!  (I am not forgetting 1 John 4:8. I am defining “Biblical” as faithful to what the entire Bible says about God altogether, therefore, this particular statement is not “Biblical”.)

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Attributes of God, Part 2 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Saturday, 04 October 2008 10:55
Part 1 of this Essay about the attributes of God, comes out of a larger study and concern I have about Open Theism, as well as the changes I see in Theology among advocates of the Emergent and Missional church movements, which in turn are rooted in, or greatly influenced by, Post Modernism.  I like the challenge and admit I have had to rethink some basic convictions I have held.  This is good.  The study itself leads to questions about God and Evil, the Trinity and  Christology.  Today’s Essay (post) is a work in progress, as I think out loud about these things.  The prior study is the jump off point and I build on it.  This, of course is not final or definitive.  We are, after all, dealing with mysteries with seeming paradoxes or contradictions and things that don’t make sense logically.

God is a spirit (non-corporeal) Being, a self-conscious, self-determining, free and self sufficient, immutable Person.   He is essentially unlimited or infinite in relation to time and space.  In relation to the created natural world, He is altogether Other, separate, holy or transcendent.   We are made in His Image.  Exactly how do we image such a Person?
 
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Last Updated on Saturday, 04 October 2008 11:18
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Calvinism's Doctrines of Grace and Salvation PDF Print E-mail
Written by Calvin Fox   
Monday, 29 September 2008 20:59

(This Essay is a greatly revised  and edited version of the one on this subject I published two years ago on my Blog.)

 

Introduction: Defining Calvinism

 

I have studied Reformed Theology and Calvinism for years.  I know it is not a perfect system of thought, or at least my understanding of it is not perfect and is far from exhaustive; but, I am persuaded that it is the best and most comprehensive System of Biblical Truth, that it honors God more than any other.  The Reformed Faith and Neocalvinism provide the perspectives which shape my Christian Life and writing.  This Essay is my personal interpretation of the Doctrines of Grace (but it is in harmony with the Reformed Scholars whom I reference at the end of this work). Many people who are serious about these doctrines seem to love to argue about every fine point.  I do not want to do that here.  Rather, my treatment is purposely introductory, simple and practical, hoping to attract readers new to the subject (but solid enough to challenge those who swim in these waters regularly and appreciate Calvinism)

 

First, it is important that you understand what I mean by Calvinism and the Reformed Faith.  There are a few major and many minor differences among those who claim to be Reformed or Calvinist.  I began years ago, like many, mistakenly thinking that Calvinism was the same thing as the Five Doctrines of Grace (the so-called 5 Points or T.U.L.I.P.- to be discussed in the series that follows below) I thought they were interchangeable terms. They are not. Calvinism is also Covenant Theology [see my article on Covenant Theology on this website], which is very different than Dispensationalism, yet many 5 Point “Calvinists” are also Dispensationalists.  Calvinism is also a World View.  This will make some think of Puritanism.  I think of Dutch or Neo-calvinism.  Briefly put, Calvinism includes the Five Doctrines of Grace, Covenant Theology and the World-view known as Neocalvinism.  To me, all of this together is Calvinism or the Reformed Faith.

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