Tertullian Refutes the “Fall of the Church” Heresy

  The “fall of the church” heresy is widely held among Protestants but not unique to Protestants.  The “fall of the church” was something that early Christians had to contend with as well.  Tertullian answered it in “The Prescription Against Heretics.” The “fall of the church” refers to the belief that after the Apostles died the early Christians strayed from the original Apostles’ teachings and practices.  This has been known as the…

Reformed Food Fight

  Something like a food fight recently erupted in one corner of the Reformed world.  Pastor Toby Sumpter wrote “Free Range, Gluten Free Yoga vs. Jesus” in which he criticized the concern among some Christians with “eating well” as part of an “idolatry problem.”  This posting generated quite a bit of reaction and not a little push back from some folks leading Pastor Doug Wilson to write “Food Libertarian.” In “Fear, Shame,…

Calvin and the “Fall of the Church”

  Did John Calvin believe in the “Fall of the Church”?  That is, did he believe that the early Church apostatized from Apostolic doctrine and worship, and that true Christianity was not restored until the Protestant Reformation?  The “Fall of the Church” is widely held among Protestants but some of our readers deny that Calvin held this view calling it a “canard.”   Part I. The BOBO Theory Fuller Seminary professor and…

Why People Convert to Orthodoxy

  On 30 December 2013, W. Bradford Littlejohn published “The Search for Authority and the Fear of Difference” in The Sword and the Ploughshare.   He began by noting how he learned second hand (??) about a longtime Reformed Christian who decided to convert to Eastern Orthodoxy because “he needed someone to submit to” (quotation marks in the original text). It struck me that among the many evangelicals and Reformed folks converting…

New York Times Article on Calvinist Revival

    TULIP in the New York Times?!?  Not the blooming kind but the total depravity and unconditional election kind!  In an interesting turn of events Reformed Christianity (aka Calvinism) has gotten the attention of a major newspaper.  On 3 January 2014, the New York Times (NYT) published “Evangelicals Find Themselves in the Midst of a Calvinist Revival” by Mark Oppenheimer. Although some folks may find it hard to believe, the NYT article opened with…

Geneva Bible for Orthodox Russia?

Part 4 of 4.  Parts 1,  2, and  3. In 1995, the New Geneva Study Bible was published by Thomas Nelson Publishers under the editorial leadership of R.C. Sproul and J.I. Packer. R.C. Sproul has ambitious goals for this new study bible including using it to evangelize Russia.   He writes: Beyond the borders of America, the New Geneva Study Bible may be used to expand the light of the Reformation to lands…

Geneva Bible Compared With Orthodox Study Bible

                    Third of a four part review of the Geneva Bible       Part 1       Part 2 Study bibles do more than help the reader understand the Bible, they also shape the reader’s theology according to a particular faith tradition.  This can be seen in the Geneva Bible and the Orthodox Study Bible.  I will show this by laying out…