• I find J.I. Packer to be helpful and brief on the Trinity: TRINITY - GOD IS ONE AND THREE “This is what the LORD says—Israel’s King and Redeemer, the LORD Almighty: I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God” (ISAIAH 44:6). The Old Testament constantly insists that there is only one God, the self-revealed Creator, who must be worshiped and loved exclusively (Deut. 6:4–5; Isa. 44:6–45:25). The New Testament agrees (Mark 12:29–30; 1 Cor. 8:4; Eph. 4:6; 1 Tim. 2:5) but speaks of three personal agents, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, working together in the manner of a team to bring about salvation (Rom. 8; Eph. 1:3–14; 2 Thess. 2:13–14; 1 Pet. 1:2). The historic formulation of the Trinity (derived from the Latin word trinitas, meaning “threeness”) seeks to circumscribe and safeguard this mystery (not explain it; that is beyond us), and it confronts us with perhaps the most difficult thought that the human mind has ever been asked to handle. It is not easy; but it is true. The doctrine springs from the facts that the New Testament historians report, and from the revelatory teaching that, humanly speaking, grew out of these facts. Jesus, who prayed to his Father and taught his disciples to do the same, convinced them that he was personally divine, and belief in his divinity and in the rightness of offering him worship and prayer is basic to New Testament faith (John 20:28–31; cf. 1:18; Acts 7:59; Rom. 9:5; 10:9–13; 2 Cor. 12:7–9; Phil. 2:5–6; Col. 1:15–17; 2:9; Heb. 1:1–12; 1 Pet. 3:15). Jesus promised to send another Paraclete (he himself having been the first one), and Paraclete signifies a many-sided personal ministry as counselor, advocate, helper, comforter, ally, supporter (John 14:16–17, 26; 15:26–27; 16:7–15). This other Paraclete, who came at Pentecost to fulfill this promised ministry, was the Holy Spirit, recognized from the start as a third divine person: to lie to him, said Peter not long after Pentecost, is to lie to God (Acts 5:3–4). So Christ prescribed baptism “in the name (singular: one God, one name) of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit”—the three persons who are the one God to whom Christians commit themselves (Matt. 28:19). So we meet the three persons in the account of Jesus’ own baptism: the Father acknowledged the Son, and the Spirit showed his presence in the Son’s life and ministry (Mark 1:9–11). So we read the trinitarian blessing of 2 Corinthians 13:14, and the prayer for grace and peace from the Father, the Spirit, and Jesus Christ in Revelation 1:4–5 (would John have put the Spirit between the Father and the Son if he had not regarded the Spirit as divine in the same sense as they are?). These are some of the more striking examples of the trinitarian outlook and emphasis of the New Testament. Though the technical language of historic trinitarianism is not found there, trinitarian faith and thinking are present throughout its pages, and in that sense the Trinity must be acknowledged as a biblical doctrine: an eternal truth about God which, though never explicit in the Old Testament, is plain and clear in the New. The basic assertion of this doctrine is that the unity of the one God is complex. The three personal “subsistences” (as they are called) are coequal and coeternal centers of self-awareness, each being “I” in relation to two who are “you” and each partaking of the full divine essence (the “stuff” of deity, if we may dare to call it that) along with the other two. They are not three roles played by one person (that is modalism), nor are they three gods in a cluster (that is tritheism); the one God (“he”) is also, and equally, “they,” and “they” are always together and always cooperating, with the Father initiating, the Son complying, and the Spirit executing the will of both, which is his will also. This is the truth about God that was revealed through the words and works of Jesus, and that undergirds the reality of salvation as the New Testament sets it forth. The practical importance of the doctrine of the Trinity is that it requires us to pay equal attention, and give equal honor, to all three persons in the unity of their gracious ministry to us. That ministry is the subject matter of the gospel, which, as Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus shows, cannot be stated without bringing in their distinct roles in God’s plan of grace (John 3:1–15; note especially vv. 3, 5–8, 13–15, and John’s expository comments, which NIV renders as part of the conversation itself, vv. 16–21). All non-Trinitarian formulations of the Christian message are by biblical standards inadequate and indeed fundamentally false, and will naturally tend to pull Christian lives out of shape. Packer, J. I. (1993). Concise theology: a guide to historic Christian beliefs (pp. 40–42). Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House.
    1. One in Unity (3 persons) One in nature, (God)
  • How often does Logos add new volumes to the Westminster Theological Journal?
    1. Who knows... it seems like they really are not trying to sell them because if they did, it would seem to me that they would stay on top of updates. But of course, most of us know, upselling to large bundles is what Logos always prefers so sometimes you can't buy stuff unless you pull out the big bucks. :-(
  • What resource have you found to be the most helpful when studying the image of God in man? Does this topic ever come up in your evangelism?
    1. The Art of creation. although it is profound but helpful in studying the image of God.
  • Yet it seems to me, considering not only the parable, but the words of our Lord directly afterwards, that the steward ‘made friends’ with money (see vv. 9–12) by paying the difference himself. It seem
    Brothers, do you have any study on this Luke 16:1-9 parable on the shrewed manager? Here is commentary I found interesting but not sure if it reflects really what the Lord Jesus wanted to say. Shalom!
    1. I have always understood this as a praise of his shrewd behavior but not of the cheating and worldliness - rather, we, as believers, should do the same with our spiritual gifts and our brothers and sisters in Christ (building the body). I believe John Macarthur’s commentary makes this point, if I am recalling correctly.
    2. I agree that this is "perhaps one of the strangest parables ever spoken by the Lord Jesus." "afterwards, that the steward ‘made friends’ with money (see vv. 9–12) by paying the difference himself." I don't think there is any evidence that the steward paid the difference himself. Afterall, we were already told that the steward was "was accused unto him that he had wasted his goods" (verse 1) He was a crook. The master, even though he was defrauded yet again, still thought the steward was pretty sharp in that he was wise (worldly wisdom) enough to feather his nest so that he would be cared for by the grateful debtors. "for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light." (verse 8) Jesus states that unbelievers are wiser in their corrupted dealings among men than believers. I was going to say unbelievers are 'often' wiser, etc. But Jesus seems to say that it is generally, or even always the case. "And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the *mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail," (verse 9a) *or "by means of unrighteous wealth" [ESV] Jesus teaches that we should be wise and use our worldly (God-given) talents and treasure to glorify God and win souls for Christ as long as we live on this earth. Thus we are putting our treasure in heaven, "that, when ye fail," that is when you die. "they may receive you into everlasting habitations." (verse 9b) That you may be welcomed into heaven with a treasure (rewards) awaiting you. Matthew 6:19, 20 "Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, etc." "But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, etc." 2 John 1:8; 1 Corinthians 3:8; etc. Luke 16:10-13 - These verses make it clear that the interpretation above is the correct one. Ed Walsh
  • Who can separate us from the love of Christ? Can affliction or anguish or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: Because of You we are being put to death all da
    Compare this passage with John Bunyan's passage on "The Pilgrim Progress" published by Desiring God. It starts with Wordly-Wise advsing Christian: "Hear me, I am older than thou; thou art like to meet with, on the way which thou goest, wearisomeness, painfulness, hunger, perils, nakedness, sword, lions, dragons, darkness, and, in a word, death, and what not! These things are certainly true, having been confirmed by many testimonies. And why should a man so carelessly cast away himself, by giving heed to a stranger? CHRISTIAN. Why, Sir, this burden upon my back is more terrible to me than are all these things which you have mentioned; nay, methinks I care not what I meet with in the way, if so be I can also meet with deliverance from my burden." It seems thepat Christian is more concerned about life than death. That's ver interesting, isn't it, guys? Sorry for the typoos...
    1. Matthew 7;13-14 the gate and narrow (in the LEB it render constricted, which seems fitting as it gives credance to the struggles and pressures we gace as we walk with our Lord) the standard Christ set for us, is one of persecution and strive, as any who desires to seek after holiness, and live righteously, will be persecuted.
  • For Martin Luther and John Bunyan the discovery of the imputed righteousness of Christ was the greatest life-changing experience they ever had.
    Following Prayson, here is something cool to add on your thought about righteousness. Shalom
    1. This book is on my to-read list. Perhaps I should move it up....
    2. Amen
  • Has anyone had success creating a custom reading plan for reading the Westminster Confession? I am working off the Edinburgh Edition (maybe that's my problem, should I find a different edition in the Logos catalog?) and it looks like it is indexed by page, so I can create a plan to read pages 14–162, but that's messy. The first reading contains the table of contents and the readings are frequently broken up right in the middle of paragraphs. Is there a better way to craft the custom reading plan to make reading easier?
    1. Dr. Sproul will be having surgery this morning.
      1. May the Lord bless and guide all in the O.R. and deliver our brother back to us.