Church History

Reformation as Rediscovery of the Gospel

Countless historians have gone to great lengths to explain the Reformation through social, political, and economic causes.[1] No doubt each of these played a role during the Reformation, and at times a significant role.[2] Yet most fundamentally, the Reformation was a...

Knowing Your Roots: The Place of Church History in the Christian Life

In recent weeks I’ve been asked a couple of questions that go along the lines of something like this “Why do you study Church History so much?” or even better “Why do you always lead off your sermons with some historical illustration, how is that applicable to me...

Bold Reformers Refuse to Compromise the Truth

My grandfather, the late Rev. V.W. Steele, used to say, “Never compromise the truth.” “Don’t ever sell you soul for a mess of pottage,” Grandpa would surmise, with fire in his eyes. He understood the deadly influence of compromise, which plagued the church in his...
Is the Reformation Still Relevant Today?

Is the Reformation Still Relevant Today?

Is Reformation theology still relevant today? Absolutely! It reminds us that we have a big God and that salvation is found in Him alone. We are saved by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, for God’s glory alone. And we know this because Scripture alone...

Three Essentials of Discipleship According to Herman Bavinck

Three Essentials of Discipleship According to Herman Bavinck

You probably haven’t read much, if anything, by Herman Bavinck. I hadn’t either, but after hearing what impact he had on some ministers that I deeply respected, I decided to take the plunge and purchase his seminal masterpiece, Reformed Dogmatics, a four-volume,...

John Calvin – One Who Rightly Handled the Word of God

John Calvin – One Who Rightly Handled the Word of God

2 Timothy 2:15 reads, “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth." This is a biblical text that is applicable to all students of the Scripture. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 teaches that,...

Who was a “Puritan”?

I'm often asked questions about the Puritans and Puritanism. While the definitions are a bit elusive, I wanted to give you an article I wrote a few years ago for Churchman, helping navigate the waters of various definitions that have been offered.  Here you go:...

John Owen on the Proper End and Design of Evangelical Truth

John Owen on the Proper End and Design of Evangelical Truth

The gospel-centered movement may be new, but gospel-centeredness itself isn’t a novelty. Love for the gospel lies at the center of the rich heritage of evangelicalism, reaching back hundreds of years. I’m (very) slowly plodding through The Works of John Owen, the most...

Why Read the Puritans?

Why Read the Puritans?

The Puritans were the 16th century English Protestants and their successors in 16th-17th century New England, whose concern for church reform and spiritual renewal earned them the originally derogatory epithet, “puritan.” Unfortunately, when most people hear the word...