Month: January 2017

Resources, Basics, Christianity, Literature

Charles Hodge on Sanctification

Below is an excerpt from Charles Hodge‘s systematic theology textbook on sanctification or moral/spiritual growth. He says more on this process in the same chapter, but here he simply talks about the method of sanctification. Here’s my summary of his six points: The preaching of the gospel and the Holy Spirit lead the individual convert …

Ethics, Christianity, Self-Mastery, Philosophy

Do we need asceticism?

Asceticism is a maligned concept, but it’s cross culturally universal. At its essence, asceticism is exercising to optimize your life for some goal. Everybody is, in this sense, an ascetic practitioner. The problem is that we may not have chosen the goal toward which we are heading or we may be doing exercises improper to …

Christianity

A Reconsideration of God’s Impassibility

When I was in seminary, I abandoned the doctrine of divine impassibility. For readers who do not know, divine impassibility is the doctrine that God is not affected by creation. It sounds weird at first because in the Bible, God answers prayer, gets involved with Israel, and shows wrath against sin. The reason this doctrine was …

Spiritual Life

The Brain, the Body, and Christian Spirituality

Spiritual growth happens in the body. For many of us, the idea that the brain is the locus of the mind seems obvious. But less obvious is the notion that the body is the locus of the brain. But perhaps even less obvious is that the whole body, including the brain, is the mind. Scott …

Bible, Book-Review, Christianity, Philosophy

Book Review: The God of the Bible and the God of the Philosophers by Eleonore Stump

The Book Stump, Eleonore. The God of the Bible and the God of the Philosophers, 2016. Stump’s volume The God of the Bible and the God of the Philosophers deals with a question that has vexed many for centuries: is the God argued for by philosophical theologians the same being in the pages of Scripture. Atheists will …

Bible, Christianity

Are you good enough to be Jesus’ disciple?

When asked why he associated with tax collectors and sinners, Jesus answered: And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” The healthy do not need the doctor, the sick do. Go and learn about this, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I …

Bible, Book-Review, Christianity, Philosophy

Dallas Willard on the Beatitudes

Dallas Willard’s understanding of the Beatitudes: It will help us know what to do—and what not to do—with the Beatitudes if we can discover what Jesus himself was doing with them. That should be the key to understanding them, for after all they are his Beatitudes, not ours to make of them what we will. …