The Cultural Ties That Bind, the Sacramental Ones That Don’t

Wes White reports that Perimeter PCA in Atlanta has just hired Chip Sweney as “Next Gen and Community Transformation Pastor.” Concerning his vision for Perimeter to work for cultural transformation alongside non-PCA churches, Sweney writes: “Jesus desires that all who believe in Him be one, just as the Father, Son, and Spirit are one. A primary reason for unity is that the body may be a witness to the world and the world may believe in...

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Sola Fide and “Kingdom Work”

For the past few weeks I have been teaching through David VanDrunen’s book Living in God’s Two Kingdoms during the adult Sunday school class at Exile Presbyterian Church, and I wanted to post a couple statements he made in order to see what you all think. In the introduction he writes: “Those who hold to a traditional Protestant view of justification consistently should not find a redemptive transformationist position attractive. As...

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Creation Re-Gained Or Re-Creation Gained?

I have just begun reading David VanDrunen’s new book Living in God’s Two Kingdoms: A Biblical Vision for Christianity and Culture, which promises to be a much-needed popular-level treatment and defense of the doctrine of the two kingdoms. In his Introduction, VanDrunen sets forth some common alternatives to the two-kingdoms model, focusing especially on the transformationist approaches of contemporary neo-Calvinists as well as proponents of...

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Evangeliberals and the Uselessness of Christianity

It struck me while preparing my Easter sermon just how useless Christianity really is. Without the resurrection, I mean. I wonder how many of us have reckoned with the concessions that Paul makes in I Cor. 15:12-19. According to many evangelicals and liberals today (or, evangeliberals for short), the personal and cultural benefits of Christianity are so wonderful that they’re enough to make our religion worthwhile, even if some of the...

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The Big Apple Versus The Growers of Big Apples

Always the provocateur, Darryl Hart has written an interesting piece for Front Porch Republic titled “If Cooking Slowly and Growing Organically are In, Why Is Rural Ministry Out?” In it, Hart highlights the irony that amid all our praise of Slow Food and organic food production, our attitude toward ministry is one area in which we are still unabashed city folk. Signs are not encour-aging … that the growing concern among...

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From Bones to Bach, Savagery to Shakespeare

I have always been a bit bemused when I hear proponents of the idea that Christianity has an inevitable transformative effect on a culture say things like, “Look at a society after the Christian religion has penetrated it, and you’ll see how much progress it always makes.” The question that arises in my mind is, “Progress towards what?” Well, towards American values, of course…. You see, the notion of...

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