May 2008


Here is a video tour of the rare book room at RPTS. We spent a number of hours reading in the room tonight. It was a great blessing for all of us to look into our heritage.

We have arrived at RPTS. We will be going out into the city tonight. Dr. Scipione is staying here tonight as well.
RHB blogger, Michael Dewalt, is quite happy to be here. He is hoping to convert to Presbyterian soon… maybe after the Banner Conference.
Here is the favorite RP icon- the Blue Banner. This one is in Dr. O’Neil’s office.
Derek Naves laughs at Shawn Anderson, who is having battery trouble. Jeff checks the email.
The glorious seminary. We are going to have a good night.

Today I am leaving, with 4 other Puritan Seminary students for the Banner of Truth Conference in Grantham, PA. We will be spending the night, tonight, at RPTS in Pittsburgh and then going the remaining 3 hours in the morning.

I hope to blog the trip, but no promises.

Natural vision can be obstructed by various causes: the disappearance of the sun, the thickening of clouds, the interference of opaque objects, disease of the eyes, or staring at the sun. Spiritual darkness likewise has various causes (IV: 260).

With some people, you may establish a relationship in five minutes, whereas with others it may take months. But the principle remains the same. The right to talk intimately to a person about the Lord Jesus Christ has to be earned, and you earn it by convincing him that you are his friend and really care about him. And therefore the indiscriminate buttonholing, the intrusive barging into the privacy of other people’s souls, the thick-skinned insistence on expounding the things of God to reluctant strangers who are longing to get away–these modes of behavior, in which strong personalities have sometimes indulged in the name of personal evangelism, should be written off as a travesty of personal evangelism. Impersonal evangelism would be a better name for them! In fact, rudeness of this sort dishonors God; moreover, it creates resentment, and prejudices people against the Christ whose professed followers act so objectionably. The truth is that real personal evangelism is very costly, just because it demands of us a really personal relationship with the other man. We have to give ourselves in honest friendship to people, if ever our relationship with them is to reach the point at which we are justified in choosing to talk to them about Christ, and can speak to them about their own spiritual needs without being either discourteous or offensive. If you wish to do personal evangelism, then–and I hope you do; you ought to–pray for the gift of friendship (J.I. Packer)

I have added some new links that have been sitting in a file for some time. Please check them out and see what is new. Also, if you know of a blog that you think that the readers would like- leave a comment and I will check it out.

Who is to preach the Gospel? Is it the one who gets paid to preach the Gospel? Is it the one that is ordained and holds an office that some call Minister of the Word and others call Teaching Elder?

Can un-ordained men preach? How about women? How about 5 year olds or teenagers?

The answer, of course, is no and yes.

Does that sound like a postmodern answer to you? Well, it is quite ancient:

Acts 8:4-5 Now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached to them the Christ.

Verse 4 says that those who were scattered were preaching the word. Our English translation for preach is from the Greek word which means ‘spreading the good news’ or ‘gossiping the Gospel’. This is the duty of all whose hearts have been changed by the Lord Jesus Christ. A converted heart overflows with the love of God and there is a desire to ‘preach’ Christ to all who are around. This means that the un-ordained layman, the old church lady, the little kids, the teens…. all who have been redeemed have this obligation to preach, or gossip the good news of Jesus Christ and his death for sinners.

Verse 5 is a different story. This verse uses a different word for preach. The word is the same word as ‘herald’. In verse 5 we see Philip preaching the Gospel in a commissioned, ordained, set apart for public ministry way. This is heralding of the good news that Jesus Christ died for sinners! All who are ordained to the task of Minister of the Gospel, or Teaching Elder, has this responsibility. Preach Christ crucified!

Remember though. None of us are off the hook. We are all verse 4 preachers or verse 5 preachers! Now preach Christ to those who are lost.

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