This is now the second letter that I am writing to you, beloved. In both of themI am stirring up your sincere mind by way of reminder, that you should remember the predictions of the holy prophets and the commandment of the Lord and Savior through your apostles, knowing this first of all, that scoffers will come in the last days with scoffing, following their own sinful desires. They will say, “Where is the promise of his coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things are continuing as they were from the beginning of creation.”For they deliberately overlook this fact, that the heavens existed long ago, and the earth was formed out of water and through water by the word of God, and that by means of these the world that then existed was deluged with water andperished. But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.
But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.
Since all these things are thus to be dissolved, what sort of people ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be set on fire and dissolved, and the heavenly bodies will melt as they burn! But according to his promise we are waiting for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.
Therefore, beloved, since you are waiting for these, be diligent to be found by him without spot or blemish, and at peace. And count the patience of our Lord as salvation, just as our beloved brother Paul also wrote to you according to the wisdom given him, as he does in all his letters when he speaks in them of these matters. There are some things in them that are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do the other Scriptures. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, take care that you are not carried away with the error of lawless people and lose your own stability. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. ESV
Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, we do not lose heart. But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God’s word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. ESV
My beautiful wife is running circles around me this year when it comes to reading. Shannon has already completed and recommends The Hammer of God by Bo Giertz, The Envy of Eve: Finding Contentment in a Covetous World by Melissa Kruger, and Parenting by God’s Promises: How to Raise Children in the Covenant of Grace by Joel Beeke.
Currently on her nightstand is Loving the Way Jesus Loves by Philip Graham Ryken.
Most people are familiar with the “love chapter” of the Bible, 1 Corinthians 13, yet expositor Phil Ryken has something new to say. Drawing on the earthly life and ministry of Jesus to illustrate Paul’s several statements about what love is and isn’t, Ryken brings a Christological approach to this commonly quoted passage. These aspects of love are then illuminated chronologically through the story of Christ’s advent, teaching, miracle working, sufferings, crucifixion, death, resurrection, and ascension. This approach highlights the crucial truth that we are able to love only because Christ first loved us in this particularly profound, very real, and transformative manner.
Complete with a study guide for each of the 12 chapters, Loving the Way Jesus Loves is attractive to Bible study groups as well as to individual readers. Given its unique emphasis, biblical soundness, integration of art through photography, and popular-level writing style, Ryken’s book has both wide and strong appeal. His intensely practical treatment of 1 Corinthians 13 is informed by the classic expositions of John Chrysostom, Jonathan Edwards, and C. S. Lewis, yet it explores an angle that no other commentator has. Ultimately, Loving the Way Jesus Loves bears witness to the life – altering truth that love is a person who has first loved us.
An intriguing book, quite unlike any other The Marrow of Modern Divinity defies pigeonholing. It was written in the 1600s by an author of whom we know little, yet it proved to be a critically important and controversial theological text.
Penned as dialogue between a minister (Evangelista), a young Christian (Neophytus), a legalist (Nomista) who believes Christianity is a set of rules to be obeyed and Antinomista who thinks it’s okay to sin because God will forgive him anyway, it makes for a wonderfully insightful book that remains tremendously relevant for our world today.
This newly laid out and eagerly awaited edition includes explanatory notes by the famous puritan Thomas Boston, an Introduction by Philip Ryken and an historical Introduction by William Vandoodewaard.
The aim of this book is no less than to provide an account of the unfolding of the mind of God in history, through the successive agents of his special revelation. Vos handles this under three main divisions: the Mosaic epoch of revelation, the prophetic epoch of revelation, and the New Testament.
Such an historical approach is not meant to supplant the work of the systematic theologian; nevertheless, the Christian gospel is inextricably bound up with history, and the biblical theologian thus seeks to highlight the uniqueness of each biblical document in that succession. The rich variety of Scripture is discovered anew as the progressive development of biblical themes is explicated.
To read these pages – the fruit of Vos’s 39 years of teaching biblical theology at Princeton – is to appreciate the late John Murray’s suggestion that Geerhardus Vos was the most incisive exegete in the English-speaking world of the twentieth century.
1. Q. What is your only comfort in life and death?
A. That I am not my own, but belong with body and soul, both in life and in death, to my faithful Saviour Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with His precious blood, and has set me free from all the power of the devil. He also preserves me in such a way that without the will of my heavenly Father not a hair can fall from my head; indeed, all things must work together for my salvation. Therefore, by His Holy Spirit He also assures me of eternal life and makes me heartily willing and ready from now on to live for Him. The Heidelberg Catechism 1563