We who preach the gospel must not think of ourselves as public relations agents sent to establish good will between Christ and the world. We must not imagine ourselves commissioned to make Christ acceptable to big business, the press, the world of sports or modern education. We are not diplomats but prophets, and our message is not a compromise but an ultimatum. A.W. Tozer
Therefore let God-inspired Scripture decide between us; and on whichever side be found doctrines in harmony with the word of God, in favor of that side will be cast the vote of truth. --Basil of Caesarea
Once you learn to discern, there's no going back. You will begin to spot the lie everywhere it appears.

I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service. 1 Timothy 1:12

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Some Links to Good Stuff

I always like to remind people that apologetics is not just “offensive” (i.e., exposing the bad stuff), but it is also defensive (defending the faith).  The defensive aspect needs to include the knowledge necessary to defend your faith against all types of attacks on all parts of doctrine and practice.  For this reason, I like to provide links to articles I come across which I think will be good tools for increasing knowledge of the faith.  

Let’s start today’s collection by pointing out what is needed for spiritual maturity; after all, if you aren’t spiritually mature you will be ineffective at defending your faith and virtually useless for exposing false teachings.  The Cripplegate posted an article in this regard:  “5 Signs of Spiritual Maturity.”

Many cults, including those such as the Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christadelphians, and others who deny the deity of Christ, tend to claim that the Bible does not teach Jesus is God.  Instead, they claim, this was a late development of man.  The Cripplegate gives some really good examples from Scripture and early church writings which speak of the deity of Christ.  (I also wrote an article using logic to prove the doctrine of the Trinity, which includes the deity of Christ, just by using the Bible.)

This last article from the Cripplegate explains why the story of David and Goliath has been misunderstood.

Why Did Christianity Grow?  Kevin DeYoung gives and excellent answer to that question.

J.Warner Wallace tells us why EVERY Christian needs to be an apologist for the faith, so that EVERY Christian can be a sheepdog protecting the flock from wolves.

An interesting article by Mark Tooley is “Liberal Religion and Easter Victory.”  Quite appropriate for the season.

Are there Biblical grounds for divorce?  There is a lot of debate and disagreement among Christians as to whether there is a biblical reason, as well as whether one who is divorced can remarry.  I personally believer there are two biblical reasons: sexual immorality and abandonment.  I also think that biblical remarriage is possible for Biblical divorces.  While I will not entertain discussions on this topic (because it gets divisive), I think this article by Rick Phillips should give everyone some food for thought.

Now that we’ve come to the topic of marriage, the last two articles are in regards to what marriage is.

Kevin DeYoung explains why for Christians, a wedding is a sacred ceremony unlike any other, which is why it is so important that Christians do not participate in any way in a same-sex fake wedding.

Tim Challies reports on a new commentary on the Song of Solomon.  I read Challies’ citation from the opening chapter to the book and that led me to place an order for it!


Unknown said...

Thank you (again) Glenn for your ministry. I just joined a (secular) book club, and at my 1st meeting we had a discussion on same-sex marriage, bakers & florists, etc. I could determine that at least 5 of the 10 women were "Christian" and are appalled that we may be allowed to deny ("discriminate") services to G/L/TG. I need to do some heavy reading on this subject! thanks so much for all your truthful articles based on Scripture. I want to be a light in this dark world.

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Thank you, Mary, for you encouragement. It gets tough sometimes -- I get a lot of antagonism from those who don't like their pet idols exposed.

Anonymous said...

Hi Glenn,

Great collection of edifying articles. Didn't read them all, but enjoyed the ones I did read. Cripplegate's Signs of Spiritual Maturity was well timed for me, glad you posted it. I really appreciated your logic proof of the Trinity, it was excellent. We've used much the same approach with Jehovahs Witnesses. We've never seen one repent and believe the truth as a result of our witnessing, but it does stop them in their tracks and they leave very quickly. We pray for them.

DeYoung's article on weddings, very good. Finally, Rick Phillips' article on divorce was well said. I actually have been investigating the concept of prolonged, unrepentant spousal abuse as a form of abandonment, and was surprised to see another believer say that he would cautiously consider that as a possibility. (I respect your blog and your readers, and have no intent on being divisive. I am in agreement with your view on the subject.)


Glenn E. Chatfield said...


Might I suggest the book, "Divorce and Remarriage in the Church," by David Instone-Brewer?

Also, from studies I've done over the years I learned that even the Jews considered abuse to be abandonment of the marital vows, and therefore justification for separation of the marriage.

Spiros Zodhiates has a couple excellent volumes for study on the subject of marriage and divorce in the Bible: "What About Divorce?" and "May I Divorce & Remarry?"

Anonymous said...

Hi Glenn,

Thanks for the information. Praise the Lord, I'm in a blessed and beautiful marriage, with a godly husband who loves me as Christ loves the church.

Lately though, I've been thinking of those who are abused (marital, child, spiritual, etc), and have wondered about how the church is or isn't handling these situations properly. I understand that repentance and reconciliation should be the heart of every Christian in the case of these challenges. However, there are abusers who are utterly unrepentant, and victims should be sheltered and brought to throne of grace for healing. One thing I detest - false "reconciliations", where the guilty part cries crocodile tears, and the victim is then told (forced?) to "forgive", when there is no genuine repentance or justice.

Now if I could only remember why Spiros Zohiates name is familiar to me... (in a positive way)


Glenn E. Chatfield said...

I've been blessed with a wonderful wife for almost 39 years.

We have personally witnessed very poor handling by the Church in several abuse instances. One of the most common ways is the teaching that the woman is to just submit no matter what, and that her submission to the abuse will bring the husband to see Christ. BALDERDASH!!

Spiros is a Greek scholar, and I think his most popular book is the Key Word Study Bible, which I also have. The other book I have by Spiros is, "Was Christ God?" which is a commentary on John 1:1-17.

Anonymous said...

Hi Glenn,

AH! Thank you! That's why I knew Zohiates' name. We have the same study Bible in our living room.

Regarding abuse, your sample story is *exactly* the kind of situation I've been pondering lately. I agree with you, the "counsel" you've heard is wrong wrong wrong on every count. What that "counsel" does is make the man a more aggressive abuser, and further victimizes the woman.

I've also been pondering some of the high profile child abuse cover ups (like SGM)... and other abuse related situations in the church like Driscoll (spiritual abuse in his case)... which the latter pains me because there are still pastors who either don't understand (or worse, don't care about) the magnitude of Driscoll's wickedness, and they still give him the benefit of the doubt.

I think the church has failed on many counts in the area of ministering to the abused and hurting. Like the Pharisees who berated Jesus for healing on a Sabbath, I think many today have completely wrong priorities. They superficially bind the wounds of God's people, and say peace peace when there is no peace.

PS: I love Jill's blog too, PTL for your 39 years of marriage!


Anonymous said...

Great post Glen!

What I find so incredibly hurtful is the fact that many within the churches, both men and women, can become divisive busy bodies in seeking to destroy the marriages of others within our churches, for various reasons. Some, whom are divorced with unresolved feelings of bitterness and hatred from their own personal experiences, seek to destroy marriages who are healthy and thriving; in our churches. Others, seek to destroy marriages because one of the spouses does not agree, nor believes,with the "drunk in a spirit, birthing, hearing voices from god, etc. (New Apostolic Reformation theology-I call it the old lie from satan syndrome). Or the fact that divorced family members just plain hate the spouse their sibling is married to, and yes, I have seen this take place within "the church."

How disgraceful the religious of our day are in deliberately seeking to destroy marriages and
relationships within the Body of Christ. And we will all stand before the King one day to give an answer. What then, will Jesus say to us?

Glenn E. Chatfield said...

Anonymous 4/16 at 9:52,

What is also sad about the marriage/divorce issue, is that people treat divorce as the unforgivable sin, and consider one married after divorce in an eternal state of adultery. So very, very stupid!

Anonymous said...

Yes Glen, you make another astute observation which I appreciate.

Divorce and remarriage are not the unpardonable sin as I read the truths of Jesus confronting the scribes and Pharisees of His day in bringing that sinful woman caught in the act of adultery before God in the flesh.

It is a wonder as to what exactly Jesus wrote in the dirt, twice, on that day in which the religious walked away. And the woman was not stoned on that very day, but freely forgiven and told by Jesus to go and sin no more.

As a former fornicator, having repented and continuing to believe on our LORD Jesus for my salvation, I personally, have a difficult time with the self righteous amongst us, for while they never let us forget our sins, their own lives/households by their very nature are filled to overflowing with sexual sinfulness in some shape or form; at which they go to great lengths to keep hidden.

Jesus does indeed call out the hypocrisy of our day as well.