Articles

The Devil and Arthur Miller

During the 1990s Arthur Miller’s play The Crucible was widely read in British, Continental European and American Schools, introducing Miller’s own particular Hollywood-style morals at the cost of Christian truths. Here is an article originally published in the Spring of 1991 in Spectrum, a magazine for Christian teachers. A colleague by the name of Dr. David Barratt responded and I was asked to briefly reply in the following issue of Spectrum. The Crucible and the Classroom: An Examination of Arthur Miller’s Technique of Dealing with the Devil   The Crucible and the Curriculum      Arthur Miller is widely proclaimed as a moral writer whose aim is to bring out the good in man rather than the bad. This is perhaps why… Full Article

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The Synod of Dort

The Synod of Dort (1618-9): Milestone of the Reformation The background      The Dutch town of Dortrecht (Engl. Dort), may be unfamiliar to many an English-speaking Christian but it was the place where the churches of Holland, Britain, Germany and Switzerland held a great ecumenical conference which resulted in their unanimous agreement concerning the doctrines of grace reflected in the clear teaching of Scripture and the orthodox faith since New Testament times.      From the start, Britain played a major role in this conference due to several factors, the most well-known being the influence of James I on the Continent. James had studied the works of Vorstius, one of the Continent’s Arch-Arminians and was alarmed that… Full Article

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Antinomianism and the Righteousness of the Law

     Most readers are familiar with the Calvinist-Arminian controversy of the 18th century in which free-grace, championed by Whitefield, Toplady and Romaine was set against free-will, maintained by Fletcher, Sellon and Wesley. The controversy dealt with whether salvation was made possible by Christ, depending on man’s acceptance of it, or whether Christ secured His Church’s salvation by His atoning death. At the same time, a similar controversy was raging on a closely related topic.  “Is the Mosaic Law God’s eternal standard or has it become irrelevant to unbeliever and believer alike as a Covenant of Works and as a yardstick of sanctification?”      The leading contestants in the Calvinistic-Arminian controversy were mainly… Full Article

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Tobias Crisp (1600-1643): Exalter of Christ Alone

     Tobias Crisp served the Lord during a time of civil war and ecclesiastical unrest. There were threats of a papal take-over in the Established Church and Amyraldianism, Arminianism, Grotianism and Socinianism were flooding into the country to water down the faith inherited from the Reformers and defended by the Puritans. Crisp found these new religions false as they did not exalt Christ. Entering the ministry as an unconverted man      This ‘holy and judicious’ person, as Augustus Toplady describes Crisp, was born into a family of London sheriffs and aldermen and was educated at Eton, Cambridge and Oxford, finishing his studies by gaining a D.D.. He married Mary Wilson, an Alderman’s daughter, and the couple were… Full Article

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Why I am not a Follower of Andrew Fuller

     Great changes are occurring in the contemporary theological scene and there seems to be a mass exodus from the old paths of our fathers in the faith to the new-fangled paths of what is now known as ‘Evangelical Calvinism’. The inspired teachings of the New Testament, the Reformation and the preaching of such 18th century stalwarts as John Gill, James Hervey and Augustus Toplady are being given up for the teachings of a comparatively nobody who is being re-created as a star, given VIP treatment and promoted as the new Luther, the trumpet blast, the sounder of the alarm, the one who fanned the smoking wick of the evangelical Awakening into a blaze and the prophet of the new evangelism. This person is none other than Andrew Fuller… Full Article

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The Evangelical Liberalism of Andrew Fuller

     Andrew Fuller (1754-1815), a Particular Baptist who departed radically from the faith of his father’s is becoming quite a name amongst churches and para-church movements that once taught the doctrines of grace. Though at best a Calminian and at worst an absolute heretic, Fuller is being proclaimed by the evangelical Reformed Establishment as the Luther of the Baptists  and as the man that fanned the smoking wick of the Evangelical Awakening into a blaze.  He is seen as the reformer who rescued Calvinists from the dunghill of their fathers in the faith  and is now presented as the greatest theologian of the 19th century, a genius whose work was epoch-making.  No praise seems to be too high or too exaggerated for this sturdy… Full Article

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An Unworthy Gospel (Fullerism)

     The 18th century is often called the Century of Reason. This is because Newtonian scientists and philosophers such as Locke taught that the workings of the known world and the ways of the unknown God could all be demonstrated by logical deduction. Men of letters such as Beattie and Blair in Scotland and Lessing in Germany taught that following the paths of logic was akin to following in the footsteps of God. Lessing even went so far as to say that Christ had the right use of reason in mind when He promised that the Holy Spirit would come. In his Education of the Human Race, Lessing pointed out that by the aid of reason, man would go on to perfection and finally reach a state of being Christ-like. Many Christians accepted this… Full Article

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Living Peacefully Together in Christ

One of William Cowper’s earliest letters from Olney shows how the various denominations in the town could live peacefully together sharing a great oneness in Christ. Cowper, writing to Mrs Madan, says: We have had a Holiday Week at Olney. The Association of Baptist Ministers met here on Wednesday. We had three Sermons from them that day, and One on Thursday, besides Mr. Newton’s (Anglican minister) in the Evening. One of the Preachers was Mr. Booth, (Abraham Booth (1734-1806) was to become the pastor of a Calvinistic Baptist Church at Little Prescot Street, Goodman’s Fields  some seven months later.) who has lately published an excellent Work called the Reign of Grace. He was bred a Weaver, and has been forced to work with his Hands… Full Article

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Cowper Bicentenary

Essay Based on My Work Paradise and Poetry: An In-Depth Study of William Cowper’s Poetic Mind.      Although William Cowper has always been regarded as a fitting subject for comment and research ever since his death 200 years ago, work done on the poet has been mainly biographical. Even this biographical work has tended to be very limited as its main subject has most often been the nervous breakdowns which occurred at roughly ten-year intervals during the adult life of the poet.      Biographers have tended to view Cowper’s work as been primarily done under the influence of these times of acute depression and even insanity. The general picture left with any student who seeks to understand Cowper through the eyes of these… Full Article

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Joseph Bellamy and True Religion Delineated

     Writing a hundred years ago, Benjamin Warfield looked on the New Divinity teaching of Jonathan Edwards Jun., Samuel Hopkins and Joseph Bellamy as a lost cause. He felt it had forsaken all traces of Calvinism for Pelagianism, becoming the staple fare of Arminians. He looked upon it as an evangelistic, revivalist movement quite void of a Christian gospel with its rejection of the satisfaction of Christ and the doctrine of imputation and perversion of Edwards Sen.’s philosophical distinction between man’s natural and moral inability.  He thought it could only result in creating havoc in the churches.      Today, there is a renewed fascination with this school, initially because of its historical association with Jonathan… Full Article

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