Another Sola?

During the Reformation, there were five “solae” (sola is Latin for “alone”) that attempted to sum up the doctrine of salvation. To the reformers, salvation is: by Grace alone through Faith alone in Christ alone as revealed in Scripture alone for the Glory of God alone This is right and good. But is it enough? Several years ago, a mentor posed the question to me: “I wonder how history would have changed had the reformers included another sola: for love alone.” There should be another. After all, “The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and … Continue reading Another Sola?

An Interview with the Apostle Paul on Faith, Works, Law, and Gospel

Thanks for joining me this morning as I interview the one and only, Apostle Paul. Paul, thanks for joining me today and helping me understand Galatians 3 a bit better. What a wonderful section, by the way! Well, anyway, let’s get started. Can you tell me the audience you have in mind? Those who have been bewitched and are deserting him who called them in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel. Wow, strong language. Why is this such an important issue to you? It was before their eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Interesting. Well, note-to-self: a … Continue reading An Interview with the Apostle Paul on Faith, Works, Law, and Gospel

The Grace of the Cross

Taken from Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions O MY SAVIOR, I thank Thee from the depths of my being for Thy wondrous grace and love in bearing my sin in Thine own body on the tree. May Thy cross be to me as the tree that sweetens my bitter Marahs, as the rod that blossoms with life and beauty, as the brazen serpent that calls forth the look of faith. By Thy cross crucify my every sin, use it to increase my intimacy with thyself, make it a ground of all my comfort, the liveliness of … Continue reading The Grace of the Cross

Tremble Because God Did That, Not You

Here’s a portion of my sermon, “Work Out Your Own Salvation” from Philippians 2:12-13. Paul doesn’t give us a three-step process for sanctification (there are very few, if any, of those in Scripture). Rather, he describes a heart disposition that characterizes “working out your own salvation.” At the end of verse 12, he says to “work out your salvation with fear and trembling,” meaning, “You do not have what it takes, so be very, very, very aware of that it is all grace.” If you wake up and have the desire to read the Bible, tremble, because God did that, … Continue reading Tremble Because God Did That, Not You

Stand On Your Head for Joy!

I get the privilege of preaching God’s word to our congregation every so often, about once per month. When I preach, I will do my best to post a snippet from my manuscript (it will not always be exactly what I say!) here on the blog with a link to the full audio. In my first two weeks at Grace Chapel, I preached twice. Here’s a portion of my first sermon, “A Father and Two Sons” from Luke 15:11-32. So Jesus leaves the story open-ended. What will the elder brother do? He ends it there to leave the Pharisees and us longing … Continue reading Stand On Your Head for Joy!

The Miracle of Striving

Often, the mystery of how we grow as Christians baffles us. There are some Christians who say, “God takes care of all the work. Those commands in the Bible simply show you that you can’t do them and need Jesus.” Others say, “No, you gotta clench your fists and get to work. God gets this rolling, but you need to seal the deal.” I think both of those approaches to sanctification are wrong. If we are going to be ruthlessly biblical however, we are going to see grace and effort working together. We are going to see that Paul is adamant that … Continue reading The Miracle of Striving