The Covenant: Part One – What it is not

     I have had a good deal of correspondence lately over the nature of the Covenant between Christ and His Father. Some years ago, I gave two lectures at the New Focus Conference on the issue. As I have not the time to write any additional material, I am posting the two lectures on my web-site. If anyone wishes to take up the matter with me further, he or she is most welcome. George The Covenant: What it is not      In commencing, I would like us to notice three things. 1. I do not say ‘Testament’ but the Covenant. 2. I do not say a Covenant between men or even a Covenant between God and men and certainly not a covenant between Gods. I say the Covenant. 3. I do not say the Covenant of Grace, nor the Covenant of… Full Article

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Hooker and the Counter Reformation: Part Three

Modern Anglicanism and Dissent no criteria for judging the immediate Post-Reformation period      In the following essays, I will continue to look at the radical views of the proto-Presbyterians in general and Cartwright’s and Travers’ view of church discipline in particular, especially regarding the episcopacy, and compare them with those of Jewel and Hooker and other English Reformers who were true to the official Confessions of the Church of England at that time. Sadly, most of those critics who use Cartwright and certain contemporaries nowadays to bring the Church of England in Reformed times into disrepute cite what he allegedly said during his day and compare that with the sad state of the Church of England today. This is an… Full Article

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Richard Hooker and the Counter-Reformation: Part Two

A revolution in language and dress demanded      It was during Hooker’s days that a major innovation occurred in English Protestant theology regarding the ministry of the church. It was initially a mere linguistic thrust encouraged by new, democratic ideas. As such, it was relatively harmless but the movement quickly took over republican and oligarchic ideals which eventually meant the end of the English Church, the English way of life and the English form of government. Most of these would-be ‘reformers’ felt they were bringing more effective organizational methods from the Continent into Britain and even adopted Continental dress to stress their reforming fervor. Actually, their views were so insular that the Continent… Full Article

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The Evangelical Revival or the Great Awakening

Bible Reading: Romans 10:13-14.      In the eighteenth century, an Evangelical Awakening swept through the western world ushered in through the medium of restored preaching. Never since the Reformation had earnest men taken to the highways and by-ways and preached to the multitudes with such power. Hundreds of thousands who had never cared for religion, found themselves drawn to it through the spoken Word.     Stop: you might say. The Church is not a preaching factory. Preaching is of use in its right place but church worship, the communion of the saints and pastoral care are essentialities of church fellowship. We understand this and this conference and our Society do not neglect to teach about the inner fellowship shared by the… Full Article

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Hooker and the Counter-Reformation Part One

The Real Teaching of Richard Hooker      Dr Roger Beckwith opened his essay entitled ‘The Real Teaching of Richard Hooker’ by saying:      Hooker was a second-generation Reformer. He did not have the task of distinguishing Anglican theology from that of Roman Catholics or Anabaptists. This had been done by the first-generation Reformers Cranmer and his colleagues, and their conclusions had been embodied in the Anglican formularies, especially the Thirty-nine Articles, from the teaching of which Hooker never strayed. Hooker’s task was the more sensitive one of defending Anglican theology against other Protestants, who wanted to alter it. His great book ‘The Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity’ is this defence. He uses some new… Full Article

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John Knox: Rescuing History from Mythology

Chapter One: The myth that Knox ushered in the Scottish Reformation False claims regarding Knox as the Pioneer of Scotland’s Reformation      John Knox, alias John Sinclair, is generally seen as the main pillar of the Scottish Reformation and his works are often regarded amongst evangelicals as the purest source of its history. Thus, James Edward McGoldrick, starts his Preface to his Luther’s Scottish Connections, with the words:      ‘There is no doubt whatever that the Protestant Reformation in Scotland received its principle direction from the indomitable John Knox, a rigorous and courageous adherent to the Reformed version of evangelical teaching as espoused in Geneva by John Calvin and his disciples.’     … Full Article

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The Troubles at Frankfurt or John Knox versus the Rest

Knox and Lever invited to pastor the Frankfurt church      Acting under the words of our Lord concerning shaking off the dust and moving on where the gospel falls on barren ground, many English, Scottish and Irish Christians fled their countries when the tares of Mary’s bloody reign and French influence in Scotland choked true religion. Most of these exiles journeyed to Holland, Germany or Switzerland though others moved to far away Scandinavia, Austria and even Spain and Italy. Anywhere, it seemed, was safer than in Britain. The foreign churches which had been licensed by Edward also fled the country often to meet their English brethren again on the same church premises abroad. The main centres of these exiles on the Continent… Full Article

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Ditzel’s Rebuttal Part Five

Dear Readers, This is the fifth answer to Ditzel’s fifth rebuttal but I now find that with a new publication on his site of his rebuttals, he has attached his sixth essay to the fifth which contains his criticisms of my dealing with John Murray. I have thus dealt with both essays together and there is thus no sixth coming up. God bless, George Ditzel’s culinary criticism      Under the heading ‘Making Hash’, Ditzel starts by agreeing with Calvin, Gill and myself that faith is not the cause of our justification but the instrument by which we receive justification. He then asks the question, ‘How do we receive justification?’, though we have already been told correctly that it is by faith. Indeed, Gill uses the very… Full Article

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Part Four of Ditzel’s Rebuttal

Ditzel cuts God’s immanence out of the doctrine of justification from eternity      If one views the few works on the subject of the immanent work of God in Christ from eternity that Ditzel lists, one, if Ditzel really studied it, must have caused his eyes to be opened. This was “Justification as an Eternal and Immanent Act of God” by John Gill.’ Now, Ditzel admits that God acts in eternity but denies, contrary to Gill, that God acts from eternity in time. Gill of course, argues in the work Ditzel claims to have read that in justification God acts from eternity in time, indeed, He is immanent everywhere. Sometimes Ditzel is very near to appreciating this truth but then he always recoils from it claiming that as Gill is wrong,… Full Article

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Ditzel’s Rebuttals: Part Three

Accusing Gill of ‘blunders’      Peter Ditzel’s third essay of ‘rebuttals’ on his website takes a most astonishing turn. Not content with aiming his Don Quixote lance at George Melvyn Ella, whom he takes to be a veritable wind mill (pun intentional) he now rides on to combat that great edifice John Gill under the titles John Gill’s Blunder #1 and John Gill’s Blunder #2. Needless to say, it is no difficult task to point out that the blunders are all Ditzel’s. Talk of a midge attacking an elephant! Ditzel mainly strives to outwit Gill on the grounds of logic rather than Scriptural exegesis. Ditzel thus claims, ‘Much of John Gill’s argument for eternal justification (he means justification from eternity, I take it)… Full Article

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