Archive for ‘Hermeneutics’

October 5, 2016

Christianity in Crisis: 21st Century

christianity-in-crisis-21st-century-coverStatus: Checked Out

Book Description:

Nearly two decades ago Hank Hanegraaff’s award-winning Christianity in Crisis alerted the world to the dangers of a cultic movement within Christianity that threatened to undermine the very foundation of biblical faith. But in the 21st century, there are new dangers—new teachers who threaten to do more damage than the last.

These are not obscure teachers that Hanegraaff unmasks. We know their names. We have seen their faces, sat in their churches, and heard them shamelessly preach and promote the false pretexts of a give-to-get gospel. They are virtual rock stars who command the attention of presidential candidates and media moguls. Through make-believe miracles, urban legends, counterfeit Christs, and twisted theological reasoning, they peddle an occult brand of metaphysics that continues to shipwreck the faith of millions around the globe:

“God cannot do anything in this earthly realm unless we give Him permission.”

“Keep saying it—‘I have equality with God’—talk yourself into it.”

“Being poor is a sin.”

“The Jews were not rejecting Jesus as Messiah; it was Jesus who was refusing to be the Messiah to the Jews!”

“You create your own world the same way God creates His. He speaks, and things happen; you speak, and they happen.”

Christianity in Crisis: 21st Century exposes darkness to light, pointing us back to a Christianity centered in Christ.

From the Preface:

“Having lost the ability to think biblically, postmodern Christians are being transformed from cultural change agents and initiators into cultural conformists and imitators. Pop culture beckons, and postmodern Christians have taken the bait. As a result, the biblical model of faith has given way to an increasingly bizarre array of fads and formulas.”

hank-hanegraaffAbout the Author:

Hank Hanegraaff is host of The Bible Answer Man, heard daily throughout the United States and Canada. He is president of the Christian Research Institute and author of many bestselling books, including The Prayer of Jesus and The Apocalypse Code

Pages: 432
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: March 3, 2009
ISBN: 0849900069

Library patrons who have read this book are invited to share their comments, reviews, questions or criticisms for discussion in the comments below this post.

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October 19, 2015

The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics

Bible and Homosexual Practice CoverStatus: Checked Out

Book Description

Gagnon offers the most thorough analysis to date of the biblical texts relating to homosexuality. He demonstrates why attempts to classify the Bible’s rejection of same-sex intercourse as irrelevant for our contemporary context fail to do justice to the biblical texts and to current scientific data. Gagnon’s book powerfully challenges attempts to identify love and inclusivity with affirmation of homosexual practice.

. . . the most sophisticated and convincing examination of the biblical data for our time. –Jürgen Becker, Professor of New Testament, Christian-Albrechts University

Dr. Robert A. J. Gagnon, Associate Professor of New Testament, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

Dr. Robert A. J. Gagnon, Associate Professor of New Testament, Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

About the Author

Robert A. J. Gagnon is Associate Professor of New Testament at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary. He co-edits Horizons in Biblical Theology, and has published in the Journal of Biblical Literature, Novum Testamentum, and Catholic Biblical Quarterly.

Book Details

522 Pages
Publisher: Abingdon Press
Publication Date: September 2002
ISBN 10: 0687022797
ISBN 13: 9780687022793

Source: WTS Books

Library patrons who have read this book are invited to share their comments, reviews, questions or criticisms for discussion in the comments below this post.

August 5, 2015

Walking with Jesus through His Word: Discovering Christ in All the Scriptures

Walking With Jesus Through His Word CoverStatus: Available

Book Description

What connects the whole Bible into one purposeful story? Dennis Johnson takes readers of the Bible on a journey of discovery through the Old and New Testaments, pointing out a network of trails in the text. These are recurring themes that link different parts of the Bible to Jesus the Christ, the fulfiller of God’s promises and redeemer of God’s people. Dennis emphasizes how each biblical passage must be read in its close and canonical contexts, revealing the Bible’s identity as a book about a relationship—the covenant between God and his people. This helps us to see Christ and his mission as a pattern that emerges naturally throughout the tapestry of Scripture. God embedded in Israel’s history events, individuals, institutions, and offices that foreshadowed Christ, his saving work, and his church. Those landmarks point the way to Jesus, who reveals the Father, reconciles us by his sacrifice, and rules us by his Word and Spirit.

Source: WSCAL Bookstore

Dr. Dennis E. Johnson, Professor of Practical Theology, Westminster Seminary California

Dr. Dennis E. Johnson, Professor of Practical Theology, Westminster Seminary California

About the Author

Dr. Johnson has taught at Westminster Seminary California since 1982. He previously pastored Orthodox Presbyterian churches in Fair Lawn, New Jersey, and East Los Angeles, California. After teaching New Testament for 16 years, he now teaches primarily preaching and ministry courses, in which he applies his background in biblical studies to the issues of ministry, the church, and the culture.

Dr. Johnson is Associate Pastor of New Life Presbyterian Church, a Presbyterian Church in America congregation in Escondido. He has served as moderator of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church General Assembly and Presbytery of Southern California, moderator of South Coast Presbytery in the Presbyterian Church in America, member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church Committee on Christian Education, and trustee of Covenant College. Dr. Johnson preached and taught in various countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.

Source: WSCAL Faculty

Library patrons who have read this book are invited to share their comments, reviews, questions or criticisms for discussion in the comments below this post.

May 17, 2015

Gaffin Clarifies Pentecost for Glen Clary

WMLS BannerOn Friday and Saturday, May 29-30, 2015, a number of us from Mid-Cities Presbyterian Church are attending the 2015 B.B. Warfield Memorial Lecture Series: Pentecost and the Work of the Spirit Today with Dr. Richard Gaffin, at St. Edward’s Chapel in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. The promotional material for the conference introduces the topic as follows:

What happened on Pentecost? What are the implications of what took place on Pentecost for the church today? What expectations ought Christians to have for the work of the Holy Spirit in their own lives and the lives of others? Christians today continue to be divided, sometimes deeply, over the answers to these questions. During the 2015 B.B. Warfield Memorial Lecture Series we will examine the Bible for the sound and reliable answers it alone provides.

Perspectives on Pentecost CoverLooking forward to our trip to attend this conference, the May Spotlight selection is Dr. Gaffin’s book Perspectives on Pentecost: New Testament Teaching on the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. One of our two copies is still available for members to check out in the church library. Solid Reformed answers to this controversial theological question are available for those who may be dealing with the issue in their personal lives.

An example of the effectiveness of this book in clarifying the truths related to the Day of Pentecost, the gift of the Holy Spirit and the cessation of the revelatory spiritual gifts comes from the testimony of Rev. Glen Clary, pastor of Providence OPC in Pflugerville, Texas. Pastor Clary writes:

I read Perspectives on Pentecost many years ago when I was pastoring a Pentecostal church. The book completely revolutionized my theology.

I had not realized how much of my beliefs about the Holy Spirit had been derived from my own personal experience rather than from scripture. Of course, I had always appealed to scripture to support my beliefs, but I was interpreting scripture through the lens of my own experience.

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Rev. Glen Clary, Pastor of Providence Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Pflugerville, Texas.

As a Christian with a high view of scripture, I knew that my beliefs needed to be based on scripture, and I endeavored to do that. However, my doctrine of the Holy Spirit was so shaped by my experience that I was misinterpreting scripture.

Gaffin’s book gave me a whole new paradigm for interpreting the Bible. Understanding the gift of the Spirit on the day of Pentecost as an event that belongs to the historia salutis (the history of redemption) rather than the ordo salutis (“the order of salvation,” or the Holy Spirit’s applying to a person the benefits of redemption wrought by Christ’s life, death and resurrection) completely transformed my interpretation of Acts 2.

Further, Gaffin’s teaching that tongues and prophecy are modes of revelation presented a serious challenge to me because I already held that special revelation had ceased, yet I didn’t want to give up speaking in tongues.

Perspectives on Pentecost enabled me to grasp the true teaching of scripture on the person and work of the Holy Spirit. It forced me to reexamine my beliefs and practices in light of the Word of God, the only infallible rule for faith and life (subscribe to Glen Clary’s sermon podcast at SermonAudio.com)..

How has Perspectives on Pentecost affected your understanding of the work of the Holy Spirit in your life, and in the exercise of your spiritual gifts? Share your story in the comments below. We would love to interact with MCOPC Library patrons on the teaching of the Word of God on the subjects of the Spirit and the gifts, and if you have the opportunity to go, you are certainly welcome to join us in Oklahoma City to listen to the author himself lecture on similar themes. If you are able to attend, write to info@mcopc.org for more information.