Snippets from the interweb (26th April 2020)

The Yeah-But defence

‘I have seen it occasionally in myself (in rare moments of self-awareness, possibly in relation to my wife being right about something). And of course, I notice it all the time in other people—because other people are mostly wrong, and for some reason use these kinds of dodges to avoid coming around to my way of thinking.’

If God is sovereign, why pray?

RC Sproul answers this one.

On words, meaning, inspiration and translation: a brief response to Bill Mounce

Dane Ortlund defends the formal equivalent approach to translation in response to Bill Mounce’s argument for functional equivalence. You can read Mounce’s case here.

Are we meeting online?

Apparently people are still batting this one around. Here’s Robert Strivens giving an answer. ‘If we do not believe that a physical gathering is a necessary and vital part of meeting, we risk becoming gnostics on this point. We risk saying that the physical aspect of gathering – of being in the same room as others – is only incidental to corporate worship. A biblical understanding of humanity saves us from that error.’

How do engage with your virtual visitors

Most of us are streaming or putting recorded videos of our services online during the lock down. Adrian Reynolds offers some top advice for how we engage with the visitors who will join our services online.

A confessional Presbyterian in The Gospel Coalition

This was a good article by Ligon Duncan. Its application stretches well beyond the specific issue at hand and essentially outlines why it is good to be involved in inter-denominational (yet still doctrinally bound) groups. The article could easily have been asked by a Grace Baptist belonging to FIEC or an Anglican belonging to one of the Gospel Partnerships. This is essentially the case for gospel unity in organisations that are broader than our own church’s confessional statement.

From the archive: Who has authority in the church?

‘The elders are to lead well but they do so with reference to scripture. They lead as those recognised by the church as good examples to follow whose teaching accords with scripture. The church may deselect elders when it is judged they have disqualified themselves from office (usually a significant proportion of the church must adjudge it the same way). Authority is relationally determined. The church recognises certain men to be qualified and gives them the authority to lead on the grounds that their teaching and behaviour accords with scripture.’