Please join me for a discussion of theology! Each month we gather together to consider readings in theology. The sources are varied. The intention to is to launch us into a substantive discussion for the evening. Folks from any age or stage of life are welcome. Our venue will either be the library or the fellowship hall, depending on attendance. We gather at 7:00PM and wrap up by 8:30PM. I started this group to accomplish the following goals:
- Grow in Our Love for God--Reflecting on how all of God's truth relates to Jesus and our relationship with him should be spiritually encouraging. We are all theologians to one degree or another, in that we all have thoughts about God. A basic assumption of this group is that genuine theological reflection will lead to a closer walk with Christ, a greater love for all believers, and deeper fellowship with members and friends in the church.
- Grow in Fellowship with One Another--We will enrich our fellowship by talking about the things of God and Christ with one another. The more we are comfortable talking about God together, the deeper our fellowship will be. I look forward to integenerational fellowship in this regard as well.
- Be Equipped--There is much turmoil and strife in the world today. Such times are not new to the Church of Jesus Christ, but they may be new to you. The study of Theology can strengthen faith in perilous times and supply joy and hope in the midst of suffering.
- Respect for Breadth and Boundaries--It is not uncommon for someone to become interested in a particular area of theology (or in a particular theologian or pastor) to the exclusion of others. This narrow focus can lead to spiritual imbalance at best, or to a prickly or divisive spirituality at worst. I aim to place our discussions in a larger Biblical, Historical, Theological and Cultural context so that we can have a charitable and informed perspective. On the other hand, we are there to grow in our knowledge of the one true God who has revealed himself to us in Scripture. God has made himself known and there is a faith delivered once for all to the saints that we will contend for together.
A running schedule is below. Please contact Deb Welch or Alex Houston with any questions. They have graciously agreed to administer this group.
See you soon!
February 2, 2016
Biblical theology through the life of Dr. Richard Gaffin--Dr. Gaffin was a professor of Biblical and Systematic Theology at Westminster Theological Seminary for many years. This commemorative essay by Dr. Peter Lillback (a former Associate Pastor at EP!) overviews Dr. Gaffin's career. In the course of this overview, Lillback outlines the salient features of Gaffin's theology, quoting at length from many of his works. We have a handy point of access into the theologial writings of a theologian who has been formative in training pastors and professors for decades. Lillback is a historian by training and the footnotes are full of interesting references and quotations.
Redemptive Historical Hermeneutics--This is a review essay on Chapter of the same title that Gaffin wrote for a Five Views volume on hermeneutics. Jared Oliphant's review focuses on Gaffin's presentation of Redemptive Historial Hermeneutics.
March 1, 2016
Antinomianism and Legalism are both dangerous distortions of the Christian faith. We will consider how the Marrow Controversy informs our understanding of the church's present struggle with these distortions.
- Pastoral Lessons from the Marrow Controvery: Historical Details
- Pastoral Lessons from the Marrow Controversy: The Dangers of Legalism
- Pastoral Lessons from the Marrow Controversy: The Danger of Antinomianism
April 12, 2016
(Continued from March 1st. Newcomers are welcome!) Antinomianism and Legalism are both dangerous distortions of the Christian faith. We will consider how the Marrow Controversy informs our understanding of the church's present struggle with these distortions.
The Whole Christ by Sinclair Ferguson
May 10, 2016
The history of the PCA.
For A Continuing Church: The Roots of the Presbyterian Church in America by Dr. Sean Lucas