In 2015, Reformation Bible College hosted a conference. Below, you will view a Q&A session with Drs. Nathan Busenitz, Steven Lawson, John MacArthur, Stephen Nichols, and R.C. Sproul.
$5 Friday: Scripture, Grace, & the Lord’s Prayer – A good way to begin the weekend and end the year—$5 books.
Borrowed Conviction – Jeremy Walker writes, “Do not be one of those who, in these respects, are “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2Tim 3.7). Learn and embrace the fundamentals of Christian faith and living before God, among the saints, and under authority, and you will find–under God–that this is the place and this is the sphere to know and enjoy developing spiritual health and advancing biblical holiness and increasing Christian happiness.”
Don Carson on the Permanence of Hell – This was a sermon preached at the 2011 TGC. It’s worthy of your time.
The Great American Word Mapper [HT: Challies] – If you like words and enjoy knowing where they’re most often used, you’ll like this website. Just type “grits” and press the button. Instantly, you’ll see how it works.
It’s Not about Reading to Read – “Please do not read through the Bible to read, read the Bible to know and love our Savior better.”
3 Warnings from a Pastor Leaving the Ministry – This is a good warning for all pastors to consider as 2017 approaches.
Death: The Last Enemy, and Our Deliverer – Randy Alcorn writes, “The moment we die the meager flame of this life will appear, to those we leave behind, to be snuffed out. But at that same moment on the other side it will rage to sudden and eternal intensity—an intensity that will never dim, only grow.”
Theology Word of the Week: Repentance
Repentance. The OT often speaks of repentance to describe Israel’s turning back to their God (e.g. 2 Ch. 7:14), in response to a promise of restored fortunes for the nation. In the NT, however, the preaching of repentance is greatly heightened and given specific content for the individual. This feature starts with the preaching of John the Baptist (Mt. 3:5–12; Lk. 3:7–14). The Gk. words used throughout the NT are mainly forms related to the verb metanoein, ‘to change one’s mind’. This small phrase, however, describes a radical change in the individual’s disposition, for the change of mind concerns his judgment upon himself and his sin together with an evaluation of God’s demands upon him. The transformation implied, therefore, is not a matter merely of mental judgment, but of new religious and moral attitudes (a turning to God, 1 Thes. 1:9) and of new behaviour (Acts 26:20), as John’s preaching spelt out.
Since repentance is God-directed and affirms newly received principles, it is inseparable from faith by which alone comes the knowledge of God. It is a serious misrepresentation of Scripture to separate repentance and faith as if the former were in any sense a condition of receiving the latter. This is clear from the fact that apostolic preaching sometimes summoned people to repent (Acts 2:38; 17:30; 26:20) but on other occasions to believe (Acts 13:38–41; 16:31). Equally, forgiveness of sins follows upon either repentance or faith (Acts 2:38; 3:19; 10:43). Repentance and faith, therefore, are simply two aspects of the same movement, though it is true that, in the case of faith, the NT emphasizes consciousness of Christ (Acts 20:21). Hence repentance, like faith, is regarded as a gift of God (Acts 5:31; 11:15–18; 2 Tim. 2:25).
The importance of repentance is seen from the early preaching of the apostles and from its place as a first principle of the Christian message (Heb. 6:1). Although there is in conversion a decisive change of mind, the renewing of the mind towards God is a continuous process (Rom. 12:2; Eph. 4:23) just as faith is to be increased. Turning, and renewal of faith in the Christian’s life, are the active side of the process called sanctification, of which regeneration and preservation are the passive aspects.
Due to the increased emphasis on penitence (sorrow for sin) associated with repentance, the idea of confession and penance came to overshadow the sense of ‘changing one’s mind’, and it was Luther who rediscovered the NT Gk. word, metanoein. With this he replaced the prevailing Latin Vulgate rendering of ‘do penance’, and allied repentance closely to faith.
It cannot be stressed too much that repentance is a moral act involving the turning of the whole person in spirit, mind and will to consent, and subjection, to the will of God. It is in a very real sense a moral miracle, a gift of grace. Terms often confused with repentance, such as penitence, remorse or penance, do not do justice to the impact of grace which we call repentance.
- Sinclair B. Ferguson and J.I. Packer, New Dictionary of Theology (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 2000), 580–581.