• Church Growth and the Sovereignty of God Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2007

    It seems that every time I meet a pastor from another church, he asks me the common, unsolicited, ecclesiastical question of the twenty-first-century: “How big is your church?” Most pastors are usually a bit confounded when I respond: “I don’t know.” It’s only when I am pressed for an answer that I provide him with the number of families in our congregation. But if I am in a good mood I may simply explain that our church consists of people of every color and language and is as big as the world-wide church of Christ. It is … View Resource

  • A Conspiracy of Goodness Article by William Edgar

    FROM TABLETALK | September 2010

    There is a small village in the center of France with a unique history. In the midst of World War II, the country was partly occupied and partly “free,” meaning the French government, headquartered at Vichy, led by Maréchal Pétain, cooperated with the Germans, who in turn granted a certain measure of liberty to its citizens. Everyone understood, however, that no true freedom existed in either of these zones. The Nazis bore down hard and had no intentions of allowing any sort of independence from the claims of the Third Reich. In this context, and particularly in France, Jews and … View Resource

  • The Creator God Article by Nevin Mawhinney

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2006

    And God said, ‘Behold, I have given you every plant…every tree…every beast…every bird…to everything that creeps on the earth…every green plant for food.’ And it was so. And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good” (Gen. 1:29–31). God’s goodness stems from His character and extends to His creation. In His goodness, God didn’t just create the universe and let it go (as the deists would argue); rather, He preserves, nourishes, and cares for His creation. In the same way, He did not leave man to his own devices. He made man in … View Resource

  • Doctrine Applied Article by Robert Rothwell

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2005

    On a dark Friday afternoon two thousand years ago, an itinerant preacher and miracle worker hung on a Roman cross just outside the ancient city of Jerusalem. A small crowd gathered to observe the agonizing death of this man who, with His claim to be the very Lord of the universe, had aroused the ire of the temple authorities. Many in this crowd believed that they were doing a service to God and country by executing this popular teacher. Others remained bewildered that the one they called Messiah was suffering a death reserved only for the worst of criminals. Neither … View Resource

  • Family Covenant Article by John Duncan

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2007 | Genesis 22

    What if you had an angel involved in the arrangement of your marriage or your children’s marriage, wouldn’t that be amazing? If you’re a believer, you actually do; the “Angel of the Lord” Himself. In Genesis 24, Abraham, in his advanced age, commissions his servant to find a suitable wife for Isaac, his son. Abraham’s desire is undergirded by God’s design. An angel accompanies Abraham’s servant as he seeks out and, ultimately, finds Rebekah. This kind of superintendence is not reserved for prophets; it is how God perpetuates His promises and His people. God … View Resource

  • Fear and the Sovereignty of God Article by Kim Riddlebarger

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2013

    God is in control.” These words can be a wonderful comfort to people struggling with common phobias, natural fears, or even deep-seated terrors. The reminder that God is in control often brings great relief. But there are times when the words “God is in control” might make matters worse. A terrified Christian may have already wrestled with the fact that God is sovereign, and come to the misguided conclusion that God is punishing him, or worse, that God has abandoned him. At the root of such fear and anxiety is not likely the issue of whether God is in control … View Resource

  • The Fervent Prayer of a Righteous Man … Article by Douglas Kelly

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2003

    Our glorious, sovereign God created and controls the universe in a way that uses the prayers of His saints to accomplish His eternal purposes. Thus, He sovereignly uses their prayers to release His preordained blessings, and by this means to manifest His glory in, through, and over all things. The Bible clearly teaches both that God is fully sovereign over every aspect of reality, visible and invisible, and that He carries out His predestined plan in a significant measure through the intercessions of the church. While limited human minds have never been able fully to comprehend exactly how these two … View Resource

  • For My Good? Article by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2010

    In 1993, my wife and I were involved in an historic train wreck. The crash of the Sunset Limited into an inlet from Mobile Bay killed more passengers than any Amtrak accident in history. We survived that eerie accident but not without ongoing trauma. View Resource

  • The Frozen Chosen Article by Keith Mathison

    FROM TABLETALK | August 2010

    Reformed Christians are often accused of being cold and callous, virtual Stoics or fatalists. We’ve all heard the epithet “the frozen chosen” applied to Reformed believers. We usually protest that such a nickname does not truly describe us, and of course, we all know many brothers and sisters to whom such a name would never stick. But the fact that this nickname, this description of us, is so common should give us pause. Do we sometimes speak and act in ways that give rise to such an idea? Sadly, I believe we do. View Resource

  • God Remembers Article by Greg Barolet

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2007 | Genesis 30

    God is sovereign, man is not, and sin distorts our understanding of this truth. God always keeps His promises to His people despite our shortcomings, as we see in Genesis 30. God blessed Jacob even though he was a cad. Laban was even blessed by God because He associated with Jacob in the business dealings (more like wheeling and dealing, actually). This is a very busy chapter, filled with lots of negotiations, re-negotiations; promises and breaking of promises, colored sheep, spotted sheep, goats and lambs — not to mention Jacob rushing ahead of God’s timing by having children with many … View Resource

  • God’s Other Kingdom Article by Gene Edward Veith

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2007

    We often talk about how God is “sovereign” over all things. The term has to do with God’s providential control over His creation — that is to say, everything that exists — and, in different contexts, with His action in bringing people to salvation. But to say God is sovereign implies that He is a sovereign. In other words, God is a king.  Christian discussions of the kingdom of God usually focus on His spiritual kingdom, how, through the work of Christ, He reigns in the hearts of believers, in the visible church, and in eternity. This column is … View Resource

  • God’s Providence: A Two-Edged Sword (Part 3) Article by John Gerstner

    Positive Providence When considering the definition of negative providence, we used Ed Wynn’s comic parody of the poet. Now, considering positive providence, we consider the poet himself: There is a destiny which shapes our ends, Rough hew them though we may. The “rough hew” needs explanation. If the poet means “sin as we please,” if he suggests that a positive providence comes about irrespective of our behavior, if things are going to work out well although we always behave badly—then he errs in the opposite direction. Just as there is no destiny that shapes our ends rough, hew them … View Resource

  • Loving Our Enemies Article by Patrick Sookhdeo

    FROM TABLETALK | September 2011

    A Pakistani Christian woman is sentenced to death for defiling the name of Muhammad. A suicide bomber outside a church in Egypt kills twenty-one people and wounds many more. An attack on a church in northern Nigeria by a thirty-strong Muslim mob armed with guns, knives, and petrol bombs leaves five people dead. These incidents all happened in the last few months and are sadly typical of the plight of Christians across the Muslim world today. Many of our brothers and sisters live in constant danger of physical assault, imprisonment, and even murder and execution simply because of their faith … View Resource

  • Mere Coincidence? Article by Keith Mathison

    FROM TABLETALK | July 2010

    I’ve been interested in so-called coincidences since I was a child. In fact, my first research paper of any substance during high school was on the subject of coincidences. I recently ran across this old paper, which I wrote before I was a Christian. After giving examples of some of the more remarkable coincidences to be found in the annals of history and looking at some of the different theories that have been suggested as explanations for these phenomena, I concluded that perhaps coincidences were somebody’s way of trying to tell us something. I also added at the time that … View Resource

  • A Pastor’s Reflection Article by Charles Drew

    FROM TABLETALK | September 2011

    What do you do when the world falls apart? When the planes struck, I was in my office overlooking Columbia University on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, eight miles north of Ground Zero. I listened helplessly to news reports and to the sound of sirens as rescue workers raced beneath my window on the way to the scene. It wasn’t long before a deadly odor began to fill the air. Over the next thirty-six hours, New York felt increasingly like a city under siege. Transportation shut down (I had to walk across Manhattan that evening to see a friend … View Resource