Redemptive-Historical Survey: 14 | Pentecost & the Church (LDBC Recap 5/8/16)

Explanation

logo-lake-drive-baptist-churchOn Sunday, January 24th, 2016, I began a Core Seminar on Redemptive History & Biblical Theology at my church, Lake Drive Baptist Church. During the course of this series I’ll be sending out emails recapping lessons and directing recipients to resources for further study.

Rather than just share these recaps with my church family, I’ve decided to share them here on the blog for anyone else who might be interested. I will be posting them occasionally over the next couple of months on a weekly basis or so.

See previous posts:

Recap/review

In this week’s recap we will cover three sections: (a) Pentecost and the church; (b) the return of Christ and the consummation of the new-creational kingdom; and (c) some final conclusions to our study.

We begin by reviewing the role of Pentecost and the church in redemptive history.

Overview of Biblical material

Acts; the NT epistles

  • God’s new people, the Church, is begun.
  • The Gospel spreads throughout the world.
  • The Church wrestles over emerging theological issues (e.g., the inclusion of Gentiles and the question of circumcision).
  • The apostles instruct these young emerging churches (cf. epistles).

Role within redemptive history

Summary: God’s people is transformed into a community of Jews and Gentiles who experience the beginning realities of this new-creational kingdom by faith. God increases his new-creational kingdom through this people—the Church—as they proclaim the Gospel and live out its entailment or implications.

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Redemptive-Historical Survey: 4 | Abrahamic Covenant & the Patriarchs (LDBC Recap 3/6/16 Pt. 1)

Explanation

logo-lake-drive-baptist-churchOn Sunday, January 24th, 2016, I began a Core Seminar on Redemptive History & Biblical Theology at my church, Lake Drive Baptist Church. During the course of this series I’ll be sending out emails recapping lessons and directing recipients to resources for further study.

Rather than just share these recaps with my church family, I’ve decided to share them here on the blog for anyone else who might be interested. I will be posting them occasionally over the next couple of months on a weekly basis or so.

See previous posts:

Recap/review

This week we finished up our discussion on the Abrahamic Covenant and moved through the role of the Exodus in redemptive history. Since we completed coverage of two stages in redemptive history this week, we’ll have two parts to our recap. In this post (part one) we’ll review the Abrahamic Covenant.

Overview of Biblical material

Genesis 11:27-50:26

  • God calls out a man named Abram (eventually renamed Abraham) and makes a covenant[1]  with him and his descendants.[2] God is with Abraham and blesses him throughout his life.
  • Abraham and his wife Sarah miraculous have a child, Isaac, according to God’s specific covenant promise of numerous descendants.
  • As promised (Gen 17:7, 19, 21), God’s promise to Abraham is passed to his son Isaac (Gen 17:21; 26:1-6, 19-26) and then Isaac’s son Jacob (eventually renamed “Israel”—father of the nation of Israel [Gen 27:18-29; 28:10-16; 35:6-15]). God is with Isaac and Jacob and blesses them throughout their lives.
  • Through a great series of events, involving the selling of Jacob’s son, Joseph, into slavery and a great famine, Jacob (Israel) finds himself and his family in the land of Egypt. Again, God is with them and blesses them.

Role within redemptive history

We summarized the role of the Abrahamic Covenant (and, by extension, God’s dealing with select descendants of Abraham–the patriarchs–on account of this covenant being passed down to them) the following way: God initiates his new-creational kingdom plan in the form of covenant-bound promises to Abraham.

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Calvin on the Relationship between Works and Justification by Faith

Calvin - Justification & WorksI first read the following a few months ago. It stood out to me as an excellent articulation of the relationship between works and justification by faith alone.

This passage exists within The Institutes of the Christian Religion’s third book entitled “The mode of obtaining the grace of Christ. The benefits it confers, and the effects resulting from it” (especially note the “benefits” and “effects” “resulting from” grace received). In this section Calvin seeks to refute the idea that the reformers “destroy good works, and give encouragement to sin” by their doctrine of justification by faith alone. On the contrary, Calvin desires to prove that “justification by faith establishes the necessity of good works” (emphasis mine).

Our last sentence may refute the impudent calumny of certain ungodly men, who charge us, first, with destroying good works and leading men away from the study of them, when we say, that men are not justified, and do not merit salvation by works; and, secondly, with making the means of justification too easy, when we say that it consists in the free remission of sins, and thus alluring men to sin to which they are already too much inclined. These calumnies, I say, are sufficiently refuted by that one sentence; however, I will briefly reply to both. The allegation is that justification by faith destroys good works. … They pretend to lament that when faith is so highly extolled, works are deprived of their proper place. But what if they are rather ennobled and established? We dream not of a faith which is devoid of good works, nor of a justification which can exist without them: the only difference is, that while we acknowledge that faith and works are necessarily connected, we, however, place justification in faith, not in works. Continue reading

The Institutes of the Christian Religion (Abridged Version) by John Calvin

The following is a summary of and reflection upon an abridged version of Calvin’s Institutes produced by Tony Lane and Hilary Osborne (see it here on Amazon). I should note that I did not read the final book, Book IV: Outward Means by which God Helps Us, in its entirety; and therefore, it was directly not taken into consideration in the writing of this review.

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Summary

Calvin’s understanding of how men know God, know themselves, and the relationship between these two types of knowledge is seemingly foundational to the entirety of his theology (1:1:1). For Calvin, knowledge of self is intrinsically linked to knowledge of God while knowledge of God results in proper assessment of self (1:1:1). Genuine knowledge of self necessarily assumes knowledge of God. One cannot fully grasp the existence of the creature apart from his fundamental relationship to his Creator and Sustainer (1:1:1). Comprehension of man’s falleness assumes an ideal, one that is rooted in God’s creative-design; transgression implies the reality of Judge (1:1:1). On the other hand, without knowledge of God, no one ever truly knows himself (1:1:2). Lacking insight into the purpose for which He was created, ignorance of his original nature and its divine intent flourish. Unaware of God’s standard of righteousness, man consequently assesses his moral condition inaccurately (2:1:1).

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