Daniel Darling – 5 Ways Adult Children Can Honor Their Parents

How should an adult grown (presumably married, but not necessarily) child relate to his or her parents? There is a tension in Scripture between obeying the Scripture which says to “leave and cleave” in forming your own adult identity and family (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:5) and obeying the Scripture which says to “honor your father and mother” (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:2).

Every family has it’s own rhythm. Every family has its own share of circumstances, from abusive to permissive to annoying, etc. So how one adult child handles his or her parents isn’t necessarily a blueprint for another. Still, the Scriptures seem to indicate an intentional approach to the way we love our parents as adults.

This is a journey I’ve traveled in the last few years. I seem to have endured the typical cycle: being cared for and nurtured by my parents as a child, distancing and forming my own identity as a teen (though still wanting their money and food), thinking my generation will solve all the mistakes my parents made, and finally where I am today: appreciating my parents and figuring out how I can love them better. I’m guessing you’ve traveled a similar road.

As I’ve pondered this important relationships, I’ve come up with five general guidelines for the way adult children should handle their parents. Like most of my lists, this is not exhaustive and I know that after reading this some outraged and enterprising blogger will create a response. So be it. Here’s the list:

1) Always respect your parents, even when it is difficult. By honoring, I think the Bible is saying more than simple respect. But it’s not saying less. I’m amazed at how I hear otherwise good, godly people treat their parents. I’ve been in nursing homes where kids are literally yelling and berating their parents. I realize that sometimes parents are not the easiest people to love, but this is why love is something we do and is not something we feel. Your parents, regardless of their flaws, brought you into the world. They nurtured and cared for you and loved you the best way they can. Give them some respect, treat them with kindness and deference, and realize that one day you’ll be the one with the walker and the really bad elastic pants. You don’t want your kids yelling at you that way, do you?

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Steve Moyise – The Old Testament in Paul

The Old Testament in Paul

Paul’s letters contain about 100 explicit quotations, concentrated in Romans (60), Corinthians (27) and Galatians (10). There are also five quotations in Ephesians and two in the Pastoral epistles but as many scholars think these were written in Paul’s name, they will be treated separately. It is of some interest that there are no explicit quotations in Philippians and Thessalonians, though they are not devoid of allusions (e.g. Phil 2.11). The most frequently quoted books are Isaiah, Psalms, Genesis and Deuteronomy. In the analysis below, I have attempted to group the quotations under the following headings:

God’s plan to include Gentiles
The faith of Abraham
Israel’s blindness
The mystery of election
The character of God
Jesus Christ
The Christian life
New and old

This gives a good sense of the themes treated by Paul but it is also important to read through Romans, Galatians and Corinthians to see how they the quotations sequentially, as the argument unfolds. Because we are dealing with a large number of quotations, we will not have space in this chapter for a separate section on allusions. We will, however, comment on a number of allusions as they effect the argument of particular books (e.g. the references to Adam). Continue reading “Steve Moyise – The Old Testament in Paul”

Michael Boling – Talking With Your Kids About Sex and Relationships

quotescover-JPG-51 This past weekend, I read three books dealing with the same subject matter – the need for parents to talk with their children about God’s design for sex and godly relationships. What all three books had in common was the urgent nature of their message, one that can no longer be ignored. We live in a sex saturated society. Only the most naïve of parents (the head in the sand types) are unaware of that stark reality. The statistics are rather depressing. For example, the average age when a child is first exposed to pornography is right around the age of eleven. That is not the late night Showtime pornography mind you. Conversely, that is hard-core pornography. Gone are the days when a kid had to go over to their friend’s house in order to find the place where their dad hid the girlie magazines. We live in a time when pornography is accessible from any and every electronic device imaginable. Porn can be obtained often from a simple Google search.

I have written lately on the need for parents to be engaged in their children’s lives. I have also shared some suggestions on what getting involved looks like in practice. I want to add to my previous comments in this post.

Engagement with children cannot be sporadic or just a singular event. The level of engagement required, especially when it comes to sex, has to be consistent and frequent. As Jonathan McKee notes in his excellent book More Than Just the Talk, communication with your children on matters related to sex has to be a constant dialogue. Having a one way conversation or monologue just won’t cut it. Furthermore, sitting your child down for that dreaded “sex talk” thinking you have now set your child up for success in all matters related to sexuality is a false pipedream.

One thing is quite clear. Children crave information. If they are not getting godly advice and counsel on God’s design for sex and godly relationships from you as parents, they will get on the nearest electronic device and Google their questions. I will submit what they will find on their Google search will not qualify as sound, biblical, godly advice on sex and relationships. If they do not have access to electronic devices, they will simply go to their friends for answers, a group of people as equally clueless and misguided as the information found on a Google search. Google is useful, but not when it comes to how your children obtain their concepts of sex and relationships as I am sure Focus on the Family will not be the first selection that comes up on the screen.

Now having a conversation with your child about sex is certainly no piece of cake. After all, kids know everything straight out of the womb, right? Well at least they think they do. The rolling of their eyes when you try and initiate a conversation with them about sex and God’s plan in this area of their life indicates their “know it all” attitude. Trust me. I know what this is like as I have a 13 year old daughter who is convinced she has heard it all and knows everything about these issues because she attended a puberty class in sixth grade. Unfortunately, many parents get frustrated with their child’s response, react in a not so godly manner to their child’s “know it all” attitude, and then throw up their hands in disgust, likely never returning at any point in the future to this all important topic. Then they are amazed when they find out their child is viewing pornography or has been having sex with someone from the church youth group…yes the church youth group. If you are shocked by that statement, you might be part of the naïve crowd of parents out there.

Engaging your child about God’s design for sex and sexuality will not result in your child being a perfect little angel. Thinking in that manner is also naïve. However, statistics show that kids of parents who regularly engage their children on these topics from a biblical perspective are far less likely to fall into sexual immorality. Why? Because they understand God’s plan for them and appreciate that His way is far better than the world’s way. They are better able to grasp that waiting until marriage to have sex is the best way. Teaching your child that staying pure is not just about them, but also about staying pure for their future husband and wife puts a whole new spin on things. Such a perspective roots out the selfish attitude that is at the core of sexual promiscuity.

Let’s face it parents. The modern dating model is flawed and we are doing a terrible job of training up our children regarding matters of sexuality. The battle lines have been drawn and the world is attacking our children with a never ending barrage of smut wrapped up with a pretty little bow. The time is now for you to get off the sidelines and to become engaged in the lives of your children. If you don’t, then trust me that a parade of others will gladly take your place, holding your child’s hand in an effort to lead them down a path that is far from what God desires for them. Thinking that one “sex talk” will cut it is incorrect. Thinking your child can control themselves out on a date in the back seat of a car with little Johnny from youth group is incorrect. Thinking that television show, movie, or music is not having a negative influence on your child is incorrect.

Your children need you and they need you now to be godly parents. They need you to be the guiding force in their life, especially when it comes to sex. They need you to invest in their lives with the truth of Scripture. They need you to set the example in the home of what being a godly man and woman looks like. These are things that cannot be put off any longer. The time to have dialogue with your child about sex is now. The time to re-think your approach to the modern dating model is now. The allure of the world is strong, but by the grace of God and a concerted effort to train up your child in the ways of God, that allure can be revealed for what it is, namely depravity and a road full of heartaches.

If parents continue to walk around with blinders on thinking their children would never engage in premarital sex, then the status quo will continue. A lack of engagement by parents is far too often the status quo and that approach is failing miserably. I encourage parents to begin having those difficult conversations with their children. If you are clueless as to how to begin, rest assured you are in good company. I am learning how to do this myself. Thankfully there are some excellent books available that can assist you in your efforts. I highly recommend all of the following books:

More than Just the Talk by Jonathan McKee

Sex Matters by Jonathan McKee

Teaching True Love to a Sex at 13 Generation by Eric and Leslie Ludy

When God Writes Your Love Story by Eric and Leslie Ludy

I Kissed Dating Goodbye by Joshua Harris

The information contained in these books will greatly assist you in talking to your kids about sex and godly relationships. Some of the suggestions presented in these books could result in a paradigm shift in your thinking, a needed one I will submit especially in the area of the modern dating model and its many pitfalls. Additionally, some of the statistics provided in these books will likely shock you. They certainly shocked me as I was under the false impression that sexual issues had not crept into the church as much as they really have in recent years.

I know this all comes across as a bit “preachy”. Some may be thinking “How dare he tell me how to raise my children. There is no way my little Susie is viewing porn, watching sexually explicit material on television, or listening to music that promotes sexual promiscuity. She is a church going, youth group attending young lady.” In some cases that may be true; however, if you are thinking that, I urge you to at least find out what your child is doing with their spare time. The statistics demonstrate that your child likely is doing the very things you think they are not doing and if they are not actively doing any of those things, they are being exposed to such garbage more often than we probably are aware. Just look at the magazines in the check-out lane in your local grocery store. The headlines are appalling and your children are noticing those headlines and are pondering what they mean. Since most parents are not actively engaged with their children regarding sex, kids are finding answers somewhere and where they are finding answers to their questions is probably not in the pages of Scripture.

Here is the bottom line: Our children need parents who care and who are willing to take the time and effort to teach and instruct them in godly principles. Parents need to take every opportunity to reveal the false teaching of the world when it comes to sex. Trust me. There are plenty of opportunities each and every day to compare and contrast the world’s failed policies with God’s perfect policies. Take advantage of those times with your children. Develop a dialogue with your children as they are yearning for it whether they will have the courage to admit it or not. I urge you to take time to pray for and with your children and by all means take time to read God’s Word yourself and with your children. Conversations outside the framework of God’s Word will fall short of the intended goal, that of instructing them in God’s ways.

We have to be passionate about raising our children and I trust this discussion and call to action as well as the resources provided will serve you well in your efforts.

Dr. Albert Mohler – The Inerrancy of Scripture: The Fifty Years’ War . . . and Counting

We are entering a new phase in the battle over the Bible’s truthfulness and authority. We should at least be thankful for undisguised arguments coming from the opponents of biblical inerrancy, even as we are ready, once again, to make clear where their arguments lead.

Back in 1990, theologian J. I. Packer recounted what he called a “Thirty Years’ War” over the inerrancy of the Bible. He traced his involvement in this war in its American context back to a conference held in Wenham, Massachusetts in 1966, when he confronted some professors from evangelical institutions who “now declined to affirm the full truth of Scripture.” That was nearly fifty years ago, and the war over the truthfulness of the Bible is still not over — not by a long shot.

From time to time, the dust has settled in one arena, only for the battle to erupt in another. In the 1970s, the most visible battles were fought over Fuller Theological Seminary and within the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod. By the 1980s, the most heated controversies centered in the Southern Baptist Convention and its seminaries. Throughout this period, the evangelical movement sought to regain its footing on the doctrine. In 1978, a large number of leading evangelicals met and adopted a definitive statement that became known as “The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy.”

Many thought the battles were over, or at least subsiding. Sadly, the debate over the inerrancy of the Bible continues. As a matter of fact, there seems to be a renewed effort to forge an evangelical identity apart from the claim that the Bible is totally truthful and without error.

RELATED POSTS by Dr. Albert Mohler
The Erosion of Inerrancy in Evangelicalism (Audio)
John F. Kennedy in Houston, Fifty Years Later
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones on the Authority of Scripture — We Must Choose Between Two Positions
Theology Lectures on the Sufficiency of Scripture
The Bible Cut Down to Size — Scripture and the Modern Attention Span

Recently, Professor Peter Enns, formerly of Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, has argued that the biblical authors clearly erred. He has argued that Paul, for example, was clearly wrong in assuming the historicity of Adam. In Inspiration and Incarnation: Evangelicals and the Problem of the Old Testament, published in 2005, he presented an argument for an “incarnational” model of biblical inspiration and authority. But in this rendering, incarnation — affirming the human dimension of Scripture — means accepting some necessary degree of error. Continue reading “Dr. Albert Mohler – The Inerrancy of Scripture: The Fifty Years’ War . . . and Counting”

Dr. Albert Mohler – The Giglio Imbroglio: The Public Inauguration of a New Moral McCarthyism

A new chapter in America’s moral revolution came today as Atlanta pastor Louie Giglio withdrew from giving the benediction at President Obama’s second inaugural ceremony. In a statement released to the White House and the Presidential Inaugural Committee, Giglio said that he withdrew because of the furor that emerged yesterday after a liberal watchdog group revealed that almost twenty years ago he had preached a sermon in which he had stated that homosexuality is a sin and that the “only way out of a homosexual lifestyle … is through the healing power of Jesus.”

In other words, a Christian pastor has been effectively disinvited from delivering an inaugural prayer because he believes and teaches Christian truth.

The fact that Giglio was actually disinvited was made clear in a statement from Addie Whisenant of the Presidential Inaugural Committee:

“We were not aware of Pastor Giglio’s past comments at the time of his selection, and they don’t reflect our desire to celebrate the strength and diversity of our country at this inaugural. Pastor Giglio was asked to deliver the benediction in large part because of his leadership in combating human trafficking around the world. As we now work to select someone to deliver the benediction, we will ensure their beliefs reflect this administration’s vision of inclusion and acceptance for all Americans.”

That statement is, in effect, an embarrassed apology for having invited Louie Giglio in the first place. Whisenant’s statement apologizes for the Presidential Inaugural Committee’s failure to make certain that their selection had never, at any time, for any reason, believed that homosexuality is less than a perfectly acceptable lifestyle. The committee then promised to repent and learn from their failure, committing to select a replacement who would “reflect this administration’s vision of inclusion and acceptance.”

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Dr. Albert Mohler – Creation vs. Evolution: The New Shape of the Debate

This is the new shape of the debate over evolution. We now face the undeniable truth that the most basic and fundamental questions of biblical authority and gospel integrity are at stake. Are you ready for this debate?

The debate over Darwinism rages on, with almost every week bringing a new salvo in the Great Controversy. The reason for this is simple and straightforward — naturalistic evolution is the great intellectual rival to Christianity in the Western world. It is the creation myth of the secular elites and their intellectual weapon of choice in public debate.

In some sense, this has been true ever since Darwin. When Charles Darwin developed and published his theory of natural selection, the most obvious question to appear to informed minds was this: Can the theory of evolution be reconciled with the Christian faith?

The emergence of evolution as a theory of origins and the existence of life forms presented a clear challenge to the account of creation offered within the Bible, especially in the opening chapters of Genesis. At face value, these accounts seem irreconcilable.

RELATED POSTS by Dr. Albert Mohler
No Buzzing Little Fly — Why the Creation-Evolution Debate is So Important
Christianity and Evolution — Seeing the Problem
NPR Forum on “Evolution and Religious Faith”
The Futility of Theistic Evolution (Audio)
We Are Not Alone — Orthodox Judaism and Evolution


There were a good many intrepid and honest souls in the nineteenth century who understood the reality that, if evolution is true, the Bible must be radically reinterpreted. Others went further and, like the New Atheists in our time, seized upon evolution as an intellectual weapon to be used against Christianity. Continue reading “Dr. Albert Mohler – Creation vs. Evolution: The New Shape of the Debate”

Book Review – Becoming Worldly Saints

Becoming-Worldly-Saints Be in the world but not of the world. That is a statement anyone who has attended church for any amount of time has likely heard or read at least once. But what does it exactly mean and more importantly, how does the proper examination and understanding of such a statement impact our lives, both in service to God and in day to day life. Are we to shun all worldly pursuits for a more monastic lifestyle or is there a biblical balance God has in mind? These are the subjects Michael Wittmer explores in his helpful book Becoming Worldly Saints: Can You Serve Jesus and Still Enjoy Your Life?.

The title of this book is certainly catchy. Becoming a worldly saint is an approach I would venture to say many would think rather untenable. After all, we are commanded to think on things above, to store up our treasure in heaven, and to be holy as God is holy right? Is not this earth a cesspool of iniquity, a place we are merely sojourning through as aliens and strangers? Not so fast suggests Wittmer and rightly so.

In order to explore what it means to live on this planet while at the same time seeking things above, Wittmer divides his thoughts into three sections. These three sections follow the overarching theme of Scripture, namely that of creation, fall, and redemption. He aptly notes most have fallen for the trap of either spiritualism or naturalism, commenting “Naturalism affirms our present existence, but robs it of any ultimate meaning. Spiritualism leaves room for the existence of God and a heavenly purpose, but it shortchanges who we are and why we’re here.”

It is that piece of why we are here that garners the most attention from Wittmer and where the strength of this book resides. There is an element of Greek philosophy that has crept into our theology over the years, namely that this earth is evil and thus humanity needs to escape the terror that is planet earth. Such an approach to life on earth is not contained in Scripture and Wittmer does a great job of outlining the errors contained in such a concept. We were created by God and placed by God on this planet to have dominion, to be fruitful and multiply, and to do those things to the glory of God. Sin marred the picture; however that ushers in not an escape from planet earth to the heavenlies (a Greek mindset), but rather the promise of redemption and a new heavens and new earth (biblical mindset).

As we live life in this era of sin and death, looking forward to that time when God once again will dwell with His people on that new heavens and new earth, we are to have a balance between the things of God and enjoying God’s creation to His glory. Wittmer outlines what this looks like, namely the need to love God, love others, subdue the earth, rest on the seventh day, and to do what God has called you to do with the gifts He has given to all of us.

I appreciated that Wittmer address the issue of Sabbath rest as this command of God seems to have been stricken from the 10 commandments in the minds of far too many believers. Wittmer aptly notes “Sabbath is a gift because it is a day of enjoyment.” Since the Sabbath is a creation ordinance, then it precedes anything “Jewish” or “Christian” for that matter and thus is given by God as a means to rest in Him and to remember He is creator and sustainer of all things. It was good to see Wittmer even address the topic of the Sabbath, a subject far too many seem to ignore these days and he rightly notes that our freedom in Christ is not an excuse to neglect a day God set aside long ago for His creation.

So are we to enjoy life? Absolutely. The key as Wittmer saliently speaks to is we must do all for the glory of God. We can tend to our backyard garden, we can enjoy our hobbies, and we can enjoy “worldly” pursuits provided of course they do not become idols that lead us away from God who made us to enjoy such things. When we enjoy God’s creation, we can keep in mind that one day all things will be made new and God will dwell with His people.

This is a book I highly recommend as it strikes a needed balance between calls to be mindful of spiritual things and calls to enjoy life. Both can be pursued by the believer as long as God is the continual focus. Wittmer does an excellent job of walking the reader through what that looks like in practice and his approach stirs one to action in this life while looking forward to an eternity spent with God in a redeemed creation.

This book is available for purchase from Zondervan Academic by clicking here.

I received this book for free from Zondervan Academic for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Dr. Kenneth Gentry, Jr. – Reformed Theology and Six Day Creation

Reformed Theology and Six Day Creation

Dr. Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

As Reformed Christians we have a special stake in the creation/evolution debate. With our high view of Scripture we are pre-committed to the integrity of the word of God in all areas of life. Unfortunately, much of Reformed theology writes off six-day creation as naive fundamentalism or gross bibliolatry. Though most Reformed scholars would decry evolutionism, they often capitulate to the evolutionary elite, being pressured to re-interpret Genesis in order to maintain academic credibility. This is a tragic surrender of orthodoxy to the reigning cultural mythology of our day: chance-oriented, naturalistic evolutionism.

In this article I will provide a summary of the evidence from Scripture and the Westminster Confession which demands a literal, six-day creation position for Reformed Christians who operate under the Westminster Standards. I will also incorporate some subsidiary themes illustrating the necessity of the standard historical-grammatical approach to Genesis. Let us begin with our confessional position.

The Language of the Confession

Some Reformed Christians deny that God created the heavens and the earth in six literal days. This denial brings them into clear contradiction with the Westminster Standards, which teach that the Lord God created the heavens and the earth “in the space of six days” (WCF 4:1; LC #15, SC #9).

It is important to note that here the Confession is not merely picking up the language of Scripture and quoting it, thereby leaving the language open to interpretation. The six-day statement is not a catch phrase. The Assembly very clearly speaks of a literal, six-day creation, when it states in WCF 4:1: “It pleased God the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, for the manifestation of the glory of His eternal power, wisdom, and goodness, in the beginning, to create, or make of nothing, the world, and all things therein whether visible or invisible, in the space of six days; and all very good.” The phrase “in the space of” demonstrates their concern with the temporal time-frame of the creative process. Continue reading “Dr. Kenneth Gentry, Jr. – Reformed Theology and Six Day Creation”

Carl Trueman – Tragic Worship

The problem with much Christian worship in the contemporary world, Catholic and Protestant alike, is not that it is too entertaining but that it is not entertaining enough. Worship characterized by upbeat rock music, stand-up comedy, beautiful people taking center stage, and a certain amount of Hallmark Channel sentimentality neglects one classic form of entertainment, the one that tells us, to quote the Book of Common Prayer, that “in the midst of life we are in death.”

It neglects tragedy. Tragedy as a form of art and of entertainment highlighted death, and death is central to true Christian worship. The most basic liturgical elements of the faith, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, speak of death, of burial, of a covenant made in blood, of a body broken. Even the cry “Jesus is Lord!” assumes an understanding of lordship very different than Caesar’s. Christ’s lordship is established by his sacrifice upon the cross, Caesar’s by power.

Perhaps some might recoil at characterizing tragedy as entertainment, but tragedy has been a vital part of the artistic endeavors of the West since Homer told of Achilles, smarting from the death of his beloved Patroclus, reluctantly returning to the battlefields of Troy. Human beings have always been drawn to tales of the tragic, as to those of the comic, when they have sought to be lifted out of the predictable routines of their daily lives—in other words, to be entertained.

From Aeschylus to Tennessee Williams, tragedians have thus enriched the theater. Shakespeare’s greatest plays are his tragedies. Who would rank Charles Dickens over Thomas Hardy and Joseph Conrad? Tragedy has absorbed the attention of remarkable thinkers from Aristotle to Hegel to Terry Eagleton.

Christian worship should immerse people in the reality of the tragedy of the human fall and of all subsequent human life. It should provide us with a language that allows us to praise the God of resurrection while lamenting the suffering and agony that is our lot in a world alienated from its creator, and it should thereby sharpen our longing for the only answer to the one great challenge we must all face sooner or later. Only those who accept that they are going to die can begin to look with any hope to the resurrection.

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Dr. Douglas Kelly – Creation: Foundational Doctrine of Scripture


The inspired Word of God begins with the doctrine of creation; that is the foundation of the whole book of redemption. A straight-forward reading of the Holy Bible clearly teaches that God created all things in the space of six days, and ‘all very good’.

The prologue to John’s Gospel teaches that our Lord Jesus Christ was the very agent of creation (cf. John 1:3). Revelation 4:11 shows the saints and angels in heaven praising Christ for his work of creation: ‘Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. Revelation 5:9 goes on to praise this same glorious Christ for having redeemed with His own blood the fallen creation.

It does strike me as strange that the praises of heaven are so full of the honors Christ deserves as agent of creation, while much of the modern evangelical church seems hesitant to make any serious reference to his divine creation. If heaven so glorifies Christ for the wonders of creation, why do so many Christian scholars today seem embarrassed by it? Continue reading “Dr. Douglas Kelly – Creation: Foundational Doctrine of Scripture”