Tag Archives | WordPress

Did the Incarnation Improve God?

Earlier this week, the Gospel Coalition blog featured a post on the Incarnation and God’s immutability, which caught my attention. An individual asked,

How do we hold together the idea that God doesn’t change with what happened at the incarnation and resurrection—where Jesus was united to a human nature and took on an earthly body and ultimately a resurrection body? It’s hard to understand that God[’s] taking on a human nature and all that he experienced in the flesh is not [a] fundamental change for him.

James Anderson, Assistant Professor of Theology and Philosophy at RTS in Charlotte, blogger, and Van Tillian, responded with a several considerations that help to lessen, though not remove, the tension.

  1. “[T]he biblical statements about God[’s] not changing needn’t be taken in a way that rules out change in any sense.”
  2. One possibility is that, as William Lane Craig argues, “God is timeless apart from a creation but temporal with a creation.”
  3. “An alternative solution is to deny that God can experience intrinsic change while recognizing that God appears to change from the temporal standpoint of his creatures.”
  4. “[W]e can make a distinction between divine causes and divine effects. God’s actions take effect in time (and space) but God acts from timeless eternity.”
  5. “God the Son is timeless and unchangeable with respect to his divine nature but temporal and changeable with respect to his human nature.”
  6. “Perhaps the best solution here is to say that talk of ‘becoming’ human is really a loose way of speaking, one conditioned by our temporal perspective, and isn’t to be taken in the most literal sense.”

Works of Michael Barrett Coming to Logos

Michael Barrett CollectionI’m very excited at the prospect of having the works of one of the most influential Bible teachers in my life, Dr. Michael P. V. Barrett, available digitally for Logos Bible Software in the four-volume Michael Barrett Collection. I’m also happy that many who don’t know anything about him might soon have the chance to be enriched by his excellent teaching.

The collection includes his four books published by Ambassador International:

It doesn’t include his Love Divine and Unfailing: The Gospel according to Hosea, which was published by P&R.

I’ve mentioned Barrett’s works before. His chapter “Union with Christ: The Security of the Gospel” in Complete in Him (93–118) is one of the top picks in my list of resources on union with Christ. Sadly, it was out of print recently. But thanks in part to Chris Anderson’s efforts, it’s back in print for the time being. The others are in limited supply.

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How to Use Greek and Hebrew in Blog Posts

Greek ManuscriptIf you use Greek and Hebrew in your blog posts, here’s a tip that will help you make it look good and give you the ability to make changes across your entire site in just a few seconds. There are two main things you need to do.

Step 1: Add Styles to Your Style Sheet

The first thing you need to do is find your style sheet. Your style sheet is the global control for how your site looks—text, colors, images, and more. If you’re familiar with creating styles in a word processing program like Microsoft Word, then you already understand the concept. You create and define a style, apply it to various units of text, and then when you edit that style in your style sheet, all of the text tagged with the style is instantly updated.

Find Your Style Sheet

If you use the self-hosted version of WordPress, you can find your style sheet in the admin panel by going to Appearance > Editor. Your style sheet is most likely named style.css. Click on it to load it, and then scroll to the bottom to add your new styles.1 You can access your style sheet via FTP2 by going to /public_html/wp-content/themes/{your-theme-name}/style.css. I typically use Dreamweaver to open and edit my style sheet. Other blogging platforms should be pretty similar.

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  1. Some themes provide you with a secondary style sheet for adding your custom styles so you don’t lose them when you upgrade your theme. In these cases, you might be looking for a custom.css file instead.
  2. FileZilla is a good free FTP client for Windows.

My Alma Mater Makes National News

Nope, not Bob Jones this time, for which making national news is fairly commonplace.

Heritage Christian School in Findlay, OH, a ministry of Calvary Baptist Church and the small school where I attended from kindergarten through 12th grade, has been getting a lot of unwarranted bad press over the last few days for suspending a senior who knowingly and willingly disobeyed schools rules—ones he and his parents had agreed to abide by—by attending the local public high school’s prom with his “girlfriend” (in a video interview, the girl said that they’d been dating for all of “a week and a day”).

The story was picked up by a number of news sources:

One of the videos is on YouTube and is embedded below.

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Kingdom People Christmas Giveaway—11 Free Books!

Trevin Wax of Kingdom People is giving away his 11 favorite books of 2008—worth $260—to the providentially blessed individual whose name he randomly selects.

The giveaway is planned for Christmas day, so you have a week and a half to get your name in.

Here are the 11 books that he is giving away:

  1. The Reason for God by Tim Keller
  2. Culture Making by Andy Crouch
  3. Surprised by Hope by N. T. Wright
  4. Why We’re Not Emergent by Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck
  5. How People Change by Timothy Lane and Paul David Tripp
  6. The Big Picture Story Bible by David Helm and Gail Schoonmaker
  7. Jesus Made in America by Stephen Nichols
  8. Resident Aliens by Stanley Hauerwas and Will Willimon
  9. Worship Matters by Bob Kauflin
  10. The Sermon on the Mount through the Centuries, edited by Jeffrey Greenman, Timothy Larsen, and Stephen Spencer
  11. ESV Study Bible, edited by Lane T. Dennis, Wayne Grudem, J. I. Packer, C. John Collins, Thomas R. Schreiner, and Justin Taylor

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Basics of Verbal Aspect in Biblical Greek by Constantine R. Campbell

About two months ago, I happened to catch a Zondervan blog post that mentioned that they were giving away 20 review copies of Constantine Campbell’s Basics of Verbal Aspect in Biblical Greek. I enjoy studying Greek, needed to learn more about the verbal aspect theory, and like free books, so I sent off my email and managed to snag a copy.

I got a friendly email yesterday reminding me that I still needed to write my review and mentioning the week-long series of blog posts on verbal aspect from the book’s author next week at the Zondervan Koinonia blog. It appears that I’m not alone as I’ve seen several other reviews coming out today.

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My Question for Dr. Yandell

My good friend Andy Naselli is sitting on the front row watching and live blogging the debate. He asked me if I wanted to ask a question, so I sent this:

If the Son is necessarily the Son and the Father is necessarily not the Son, then the Son is essentially the Son and the Father is essentially not the Son. Thus the Son is essentially different from the Father. Must you not deny homoousion on the basis of your own premises?

This parallels the central argument that Drs. Yandell and McCall were making—and shows its weakness:

If the Son is necessarily subordinate to the Father, then the Son is essentially subordinate to the Father. Thus, the Son is essentially different from the Father, which entails a denial of homoousion.

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Do You Back Up Your Blog?

In a recent “Reclaiming the Mind Ministries Special News Update,” Michael noted that his blog was hacked and most of his data was lost.

You may have noticed that the Parchment and Pen blog got hacked. Ouch! Our entire backup was corrupted and we are seeking other means of restoring the database. All those posts . . . gone! Well, not all. We have thus far restored it up to September of last year. That means a full years worth of writing is lost as of today. Hopefully we will get a few more months worth recovered soon. Be advised, we are working on the blog.

Do you back up your blog? If you don’t, you might want to consider starting.

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Blomberg: Progressive Dispensationalist or Historic Premillennialist?

Chad Knudson pointed out a new book from Baker Academic, A Case for Historic Premillennialism: An Alternative to “Left Behind” Eschatology. It’s edited by Craig Blomberg and Sung Wook Chung.1

Here’s the first paragraph of the book description:

Twentieth- and twenty-first-century American evangelicalism, particularly at the popular level, has been virtually saturated with the eschatology of dispensational premillennialism. The distinctive teachings of that system, in particular its affirmation of the pretribulation rapture of the church, have become so pervasive that many evangelicals would be hard pressed to identify an alternative approach. Popular novels that disseminate dispensationalism to a wider readership have only furthered that trend.

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  1. The chapters are by Craig L. Blomberg, Oscar A. Campos, Sung Wook Chung, Helene Dallaire, Donald Fairbairn, Richard S. Hess, Don J. Payne, and Timothy P. Weber.

RefTagger from Logos

RefTaggerThis week Logos launched a very nice tool for making the Bible references on your website much more useful to your readers by converting them to hyperlinks to the version of your choice at BibleGateway and giving you the option of adding a small Libronix icon linked to the version of your choice in the Libronix Digital Library System (or the user’s default version). Continue Reading →