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3GT Episode 73: When Two Kingdoms Become One

Why would the 3GTers want to talk about the Democratic primary for the governor’s race in Texas? Because one candidate who is promoting a pro-choice position is an elder in a Reformed church, and other elders in his denomination are calling him to repent!

The guys use this situation to delve into the underlying theological currents that influence believers as they seek to live in the two kingdoms of state and church. Aaron, Barry, and Kyle seek to identify the factors that can cause one kingdom to engulf the other in the minds and lives of believers.

Join them for this wide-ranging “trialogue” on 3GT!

https://threeguystheologizing.files.wordpress.com/2018/02/3gt-episode-73.mp3

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You can also subscribe to 3GT on iTunes!

Episode Notes:

An Open Letter to Andrew White | Todd Pruitt

Andrew White, Todd Pruitt and John the Baptist | Richard Phillips

Trying to Get our Morals Back

In the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and a whole pile of other celebrity accusations, it has been sadly fascinating watching the west trying to claw its way back to some form of morality. At the Golden Globe awards earlier in January actors and actresses wore black as a way to say ‘Enough’ or ‘Me too’.

This would be the same Hollywood that releases 50 Shades of Grey and a host of other films, that endorses a hook-up and casual sex culture—and then acts self-righteously shocked and surprised that the culture that they created isn’t what they want to live in. Society tried to disconnect the sexual revolution from morality, and seems shocked when people behave in immoral ways. We want to be free to watch, but kid ourselves that watching won’t shape us.

Cue frantic back-peddling, or as some more cynically might call it, ‘virtue signalling’—that quick rush to show that you are just as virtuous as anyone else, whether or not your adoption of these virtues is a recent acquisition or even genuine at all. I do wonder how many of the artists parading around in black have paraded around in a lot less when it suited them.

The cat […]

Trusting God in the Face of Tragedy

Last Wednesday morning one of the wisest and most gracious Pastors in the Reformed Presbyterian Church of Ireland collapsed and died suddenly and unexpectedly. Rev Knox Hyndman had retired after a long and productive 42 year ministry, and during his retirement he had helped to plant a new congregation in East Belfast, preaching and pastoring a small group of saints for five years. He leaves behind his wife, three children and three grandchildren, and countless grieving friends who are devastated by the loss of this ‘prince in Israel’.

A young woman who used to belong to our congregation has been told she has only a short time left to live, humanly speaking, as cancer races to every part of her body. She and her husband have four children under the age of 6, the youngest just born a couple of months ago.

On Wednesday of this week Nikolas Cruz walked into his former high school in Parkland, Florida, and began shooting students and teachers indiscriminately. He left at least 17 dead in the sixth school shooting incident this year that has either wounded or killed students.

How do we respond to tragedies like these as Christians? Of course there are many things we […]

The Arena of Christ’s Kingdom

The Philadelphia Eagles knocked off the New England Patriots this month in what was “one of the greatest Super Bowls ever played.”

But nearly as stunning as the big game was the host stadium.

Shaped like a Viking ship (since it’s the home field of the Minnesota Vikings), U.S. Bank Stadium has 200,000-square-feet of windows that reveal the sky and the skyline, and seats for as many as 73,000 screaming fans—some of which sit just 40 feet from the sidelines.

This stadium not only made the game possible. It made it better.

The same is true for the arena of Christ’s kingdom. Our human society is the host stadium for the drama of redemptive history. Christ uses it to make that drama possible—and make it better.

Imagine if the Super Bowl were played in a broken-down stadium, on a dusty field pitted with dangerous craters, rocks and jagged pieces of metal fallen from the rafters. Would the players play nearly as well in such conditions? Would they play at all? And would anyone bother to watch?

Yet that’s a pretty good description of the arena in which Christ’s church operates. Christians live in constant danger of injuries that can and do seriously hinder them spiritually—if not […]

Browse Worthy: Abuse in the Church

The Apostle Peter said, “For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?” (1 Peter 4:17) As our culture awakens to the problem of sexual abuse, surely the church will be held to even greater account by her Lord. Signs of his judgment have already been seen, as recent years have shown one evangelical leader after another falling because of these sins. As you read the following articles, pray that the Lord would purify and revive His church.

 

My Larry Nassar Testimony Went Viral. But There’s More to the Gospel Than Forgiveness. | Morgan Lee Interview of Rachael Denhollander

After her powerful, Christ-honoring testimony in a courtroom (you can see it here) regarding the sexual abuse she endured as a gymnast by doctor Larry Nassar, who was accused and convicted of abusing scores of girls and women, Rachael Denhollander spoke to Christianity Today of the problem of abuse and its cover-up in the church. Clearly as a lawyer, advocate for the hurting, and lover of Christ and His church, Rachael is determined to see the church exercise justice as well as mercy […]

What Will Amazon Think?

Amazon.com, Inc. created one of the most recognizable and meaningful logos ever. The  curved arrow points from the “a” to the “z” under the word “amazon.” The smirk it creates reminds you that Amazon can make you happy by delivering everything from “a” to “z.” The cardboard box smiles at you when the delivery man hands you whatever you ordered, and you usually smile back with excitement.

Amazon deserves credit for a brilliantly simple mark. It works to make good on its promise. Indeed, I benefit regularly from its services.

We should receive the good things of this life with joy. As Christians, we should remember with every Amazon package that lands at our doorstep that Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega (the first and last letters in the Greek alphabet). He is the first and the last, the beginning and the end. He alone can make all things new. He alone can make us smile for eternity.

Our trouble begins when we look to any earthly provider for our ultimate happiness. That can become a temptation for us as Amazon consumers. And, the problem can be magnified as such suppliers grow. When we are beholden to someone to supply our happiness, we […]

Browse Worthy: A Miscellany of Interests

Usually more thematic than today, this edition of Browse Worthy has an assortment of resources. But you should find something that will interest you!

My Larry Nassar Testimony Went Viral. But There’s More to the Gospel Than Forgiveness | Rachel Denhollander

Her Christian testimony went viral as she says. But she has more to tell us than we might want to know: sadly, often the church is the worst place for someone to go who has suffered abuse.

Missionary to the Cannibals of the South Seas | Tim Challies

I love the story God wrote through the life of missionary John G. Paton, who came out of the congregation that William Symington pastored in Scotland. Here’s a good review of a new book about him.

Sensus Divinipodcastis | Austin Brown and Dennis Louis

Former 3GTer and contributor to this blog Austin Brown started up a new podcast with his pastor where “theology intersects with movies, books, and big idea.” You can give it a listen at the link above.

Headlines & Happenings (John Piper and Female Seminary Professors…)| Tim Challies

John Piper stirred up the hornet’s nests with respect to comments he made about how women should not teach at seminaries. Here’s a helpful compilation of responses.

Enneagram: The Road […]

3GT Episode 70: Super Duper Sunday

The so-called Super Bowl Sunday is coming soon. But these three guys don’t seem too excited about it. Why?

Are they just nerdy mama’s boys? Partially. Fuddy-duddy Sabbatarians? Probably. Legalistic killjoys? Careful!

Just tune in and listen to why you might want to tune in and listen in a whole different way this coming Sunday!

https://threeguystheologizing.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/3gt-episode-70.mp3

Download

You can also subscribe to 3GT on iTunes!

Gospel Thoughts on a Dark Anniversary

Below is a bulletin insert that I wrote for Lord’s Day, January 21, 2018, in remembrance of the 45th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision which legalized human abortion in all 50 of the United States. Monday, January 22nd is that anniversary: 

Thoughts on A Dark Anniversary

On Monday, January 22, 2018, Americans in the US will wake up and go to work and about the day as usual. Looming as the backdrop of that day sits an anniversary that some celebrate as a victory of women’s reproductive rights and others lament as one of the darkest stains on our national conscience.

On this day, in 1973, 45 years ago, under the so-called right of privacy, the Supreme Court declared abortion legal in all 50 States. As the national median age is 37; more than half of Americans, including myself, have always lived with this so-called right to privacy—human abortion.

The psalmist reminds us that there is no privacy before God when it comes to human life; for he is the one who forms and weaves. Psalm 139:15-16 says:

“My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret,  intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw […]