• Jesus’ Mission to the Lost: Luke 15 Article by Thomas Schreiner

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2012

    When reading Luke 15, it is easy to forget the context , especial ly when reading the parable of the prodigal son. The chapter opens with the Pharisees and scribes criticizing Jesus for eating with tax collectors and sinners (vv. 1–2). Jesus’ table fellowship with sinners signifies the gospel of grace. All those who turn from their sin and put their faith in God will enjoy the messianic feast forever. Jesus tells His opponents three parables to defend His table fellowship with sinners: the parable of the lost sheep (vv. 3–7); the parable of the lost coin (vv. 8–10); and what … View Resource

  • The Loving Father Article by Allan Murray

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2012

    God is love” (1 John 4:8). He is also Father, Son, and Holy Spirit—three persons, yet one God. We must never lose sight of the oneness of God, yet we relate to each of the persons in a different way. We relate to the Son as the One who became the man Jesus Christ and purchased salvation for us, to the Holy Spirit as the One who is ever present with us and applies to us the benefits of the work of Christ, and to the Father as the One who loved the world of sinners to the extent … View Resource

  • Nursemaid to the World: The Church Amid Adversity and Sickness Article by George Grant

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2011

    Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great Victorian pastor, not only was a masterful pulpiteer, a brilliant administrator, a gifted writer, and a selfless evangelist, he was a determined champion of the deprived and the rejected. He spent more than half of his incredibly busy schedule on one or another of the sixty organizations or institutions he founded for their care and comfort. Once, a skeptic accosted Spurgeon on the street outside a market in London, scornfully challenging both the practicality and the genuineness of the preacher’s faith. Spurgeon gracefully answered the man by pointing out the failure of contemporary “free thinkers” … View Resource

  • Mercy Triumphs Through Judgment Article by Nicholas Batzig

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2011

    Say therefore to the people of Israel, ‘I am the LORD , and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from slavery to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great acts of judgment’” (Ex. 6:6). Jonathan Edwards, in his six-part sermon series “The Wisdom of God Displayed in the Way of Salvation,” made the following astonishing statement: The justice of God that required man’s damnation, and seemed inconsistent with his salvation, now as much requires the salvation of those that believe in Christ … View Resource

  • Mercy Ministry Article by Elliot Grudem

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2010

    Christ has given His church deacons to lead the church in its ministries of mercy. Deacons serve those in the church by ministering to people in their times of need. Though deacons lead in this area, ministries of mercy are also the responsibility of every Christian. View Resource

  • It Can’t Get No Worse? Article by Keith Mathison

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2010

    In 1967, the Beatles released their album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. One of the classic songs on that album is titled “Getting Better.” Many people are familiar with the catchy, upbeat chorus: “I’ve got to admit it’s getting better, a little better all the time.” It’s been used many times in television and radio advertisements. Those who have listened to the entire song know that there are also some dark undertones in parts of the song. John Lennon added the verse: “I used to be cruel to my woman. I beat her and kept her apart from the … View Resource

  • Judgment and Mercy Article by John de Witt

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2009

    When I began to consider what I should say in these pages, I found myself pulled in two directions. My first impulse was to lament the spiritual decay that people of my generation have observed at close range and to urge the next generation to carry on the struggle against it with unremitting faithfulness and courage. Upon reflection, however, it seemed right to me that we should also thank God for the amazing works of grace that are being accomplished at the present time, even under a clouded sky and in adverse circumstances. Perhaps I can manage the feat of … View Resource

  • Mercy for the Impetuous Article by Chris Larson

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2008 | Matthew 26

    Peter didn’t just blow it, he blew it badly. “Though they all fall away…I will never fall away” (Matt. 26:33). Peter’s resolution we admire for its confidence and bravery. But it is a statement relying on one’s own strength and it is doomed for shipwreck. A few hours go by and we find him alone and weeping (v. 75).  We can relate, can’t we? We’ve made promise after promise to the Lord, resolution after resolution, only to come to the end of ourselves. The sinking feeling churns in our stomach, our earlier words of bold resolve pour like … View Resource

  • Lessons from the Fall Article by Tom Ascol

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2008

    The Gospels depict the arrest and trial of Jesus in a way that shows us not only the insensibility of His accusers, but also His own steadfast faithfulness to the will of God through suffering and humiliation. Our Lord’s example shows us how to continue entrusting ourselves to Him who judges justly (1 Peter 2:23; 4:19). Jesus, however, was not the only one who was on trial on this momentous occasion. The gospel writers highlight the events surrounding His abuse and trumped up charges, but they also record another trial that took place that night. This second trial was … View Resource

  • The Reluctant Prophet Article by Steve Kreloff

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2008

    Anyone who has ever attended a Sunday school class knows that Jonah was the man who was eaten alive by a fish and then vomited out three days later. But that’s about the extent of most people’s understanding of this Old Testament prophet and the book that bears his name. And that’s too bad, because Jonah is a Bible character worth knowing, and the book he wrote is not only rich in theological content, but is extremely relevant. Jonah was a Hebrew prophet who lived about 750 b.c. However, unlike other Hebrew prophets, Jonah was called to minister to … View Resource

  • Pure Religion Article by Mark Dever

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2005

    The resurrection day of Jesus — the first Easter — was no merely private experience of Jesus. In space and time, the body of Jesus of Nazareth who was crucified, dead, and buried, was raised to life again. Amazing! And what else is amazing is that this resurrected Jesus didn’t just immediately ascend to Heaven, but He first spent many days creating witnesses to His resurrection, as He appeared to His disciples and taught them. After all, He had been raised for them. Christianity is a for them religion. It’s also certainly a for Him religion. At its heart, everything … View Resource

  • For God So Loved the World Article by R. Scott Clark

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2004

    To many, the topics of common grace and atonement would seem to be mutually exclusive, as if we should either hold to common grace or to definite atonement, but not to both. There are, however, good biblical and theological reasons for holding both the Reformed doctrines of common grace and definite atonement. By common grace I do not mean that God has endowed all humans with a universal gift whereby, if they will, they may do what is necessary to obtain salvation. Rather, using the formula adopted by the Christian Reformed Churches in 1924, “common grace” means three things: First … View Resource

  • Death Conquered Article by John Hill

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2004

    In his letter to the Romans, Paul teaches us that all have sinned, then he reveals the wages of sin — death! Death for sin — isn’t that a little harsh? We don’t like to think about such things. Maybe there is something we can do to appease God? Can sinners atone for their own sins, or do we need someone else to atone for our sins in order for us to be reconciled to God? Can we save ourselves from death or do we need someone to save us? In answering these questions, Dr. W. G. T. Shedd provides … View Resource

  • Mercy Established Article by Chris Donato

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2004

    From Hebrews 7:26–28 we see the importance given to the fact that Jesus identifies with those for whom He died by undergoing temptation. We are also made aware of the necessity that this High Priest be sinless, or else He would not have been qualified to enter into the heavenly sanctuary on our behalf. The author of this epistle clearly assumes that this once-for-all sacrifice is enacted on behalf of individuals: “… since he did this [offer a sacrifice for the sins of the people] once for all when he offered up himself” (Heb. 7:27b). What wondrous love … View Resource

  • Forever Mercy Article by Dave Seng

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2004

    The human condition cries out for mercy. Indeed, humanity is inherently aware of its fallen, sinful condition. Scripture tells us that unbelievers actively repress the truth about their own fallen states. Humanity possesses an awareness of its need for grace, redemption, forgiveness and God’s divine mercy. Yet it is important that we see ourselves in light of God’s Law and Gospel. All of the truly great works of art and literature speak to mankind’s sense of fallenness and its need of redemption. The human predicament is shot through with spiritual impulses that point to our longing and absolute need for … View Resource