• Blessed Are Those Who Are Persecuted for Righteousness’ Sake Article by Michael Glodo

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2017

    The Beatitudes begin with Godward attitudes—spiritual poverty, mourning, meekness, and hunger—and progress to manward concerns—mercifulness, purity, and peacemaking—before concluding in Matthew 5:10 with the inevitable reality of persecution and insults (see also Matt. 10:22; John 15:20). But this unpleasant inevitability carries with it a promise of a share in the divine life, for this is what true “blessedness” is: communion with the “blessed” God (1 Tim. 1:11; 6:15; Titus 2:13). The suffering described here is not the thorns and thistles of the fall in general (Rom. 8:18–25); nor is it persecution due to hypocrisy, judgmentalism, or just general obnoxiousness. It … View Resource

  • What the Bible Says about Addictions Article by L. Michael Morales

    FROM TABLETALK | August 2016

    Lord, give me chastity and continence,” the young Augustine once famously prayed, “but not yet.” Indeed, he who would become the bishop of Hippo and one of the greatest theologians in the history of the church described his early life as being bound in chains by the deadly pleasures of the flesh. In his Confessions, Augustine recounts how the Holy Spirit powerfully applied God’s Word to his heart, converting him through a passage from Romans 13: Let us walk properly as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and sensuality, not in quarreling and … View Resource

  • Evidences of Assurance Article by Derek Thomas

    FROM TABLETALK | July 2016

    The Westminster Confession of Faith insists that Christians may be “certainly assured that they are in the state of grace” (18:1) and goes on to assert that this “infallible assurance of faith” is “founded upon” three considerations: “the divine truth of the promises of salvation” “the inward evidence of those graces unto which these promises are made” “the testimony of the Spirit of adoption witnessing with our spirits that we are children of God” (18:2). The possibility of “certain” and “infallible” assurance is set against the backdrop of medieval and post-Reformation Roman Catholic views that paralyzed the church with an … View Resource

  • An Unlikely Convert: An Interview with Rosaria Butterfield Article by Rosaria Butterfield

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2015

    Tabletalk: Your book is titled The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert. Could you explain some of your “secret thoughts,” and why you were an “unlikely convert”? Rosaria Butterfield: I considered myself an atheist, having rejected my Catholic childhood and what I perceived to be the superstitions and illogic of the historic Christian faith. I found Christians to be difficult, sour, fearful, and intellectually unengaged people. In addition, since the age of twenty-eight, I had lived in monogamous lesbian relationships and politically supported LGBT causes. I coauthored Syracuse University’s first successful domestic partnership policy while working there as … View Resource

  • Avoiding Burnout Article by Archie Parrish

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2014

    Every true believer has sufficient grace to finish well. If this is true, and I believe it is, why do so many believers burn out? What Is Burnout? The term burnout was coined by rocket scientists to describe shutting down a jet or rocket engine by exhausting or shutting off its fuel. Dr. Herbert J. Freudenberg, in his 1974 book Burnout: The High Cost of High Achievement, was the first psychologist to use this term. He defined burnout as “the extinction of motivation or incentive, especially where one’s devotion to a cause or relationship fails to produce the desired … View Resource

  • The First and Second Resurrection Article by Dennis Johnson

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2013

    In a second perspective on the “thousand years” following the binding of Satan, John saw thrones and the judges who occupied them, the souls of those who had been beheaded for staying true to Jesus (Rev. 20:4–6). These souls “came to life” and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. Their coming to life is “the first resurrection,” and it shows that “the second death”—the eternal torment that awaits God’s enemies (19:20; 20:10, 14–15)—has no power over them. Some premillennialists construe “the first resurrection” as believers’ bodily resurrection at Christ’s second coming (see 1 Thess. 4:13–17; 1 Cor. 15:20–23). Although … View Resource

  • Enjoying God, Coram Deo Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2013

    I am a confessional Presbyterian pastor. As such, I subscribe to the Westminster Standards, consisting of the Westminster Confession of Faith and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms. Over the years I have heard the Westminster Standards criticized for being too erudite; some have charged that the Westminster divines (theologians) were so concerned with doctrinal precision that they failed to display the beauty and loveliness of the faith in their documents. Although I appreciate their concerns, I always remind such critics that the Westminster catechisms begin with the language of glorifying and enjoying God, and that the Standards exist to explain … View Resource

  • The Holy of Holies Article by Daniel Hyde

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2013

    That I may dwell in their midst” (Ex. 25:8). Israel’s tabernacle was a piece of astonishing architecture. Its whole purpose was to incarnate the immense and infinite presence of God. Until it was built, God’s presence was manifested at different times, at different places, and in different ways. To Adam and Eve, He revealed Himself as they “heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden” (Gen. 3:8). To Abraham He revealed Himself as a smoking fire pot and flaming torch (15:17). To Jacob He revealed Himself as a man with whom Jacob could wrestle (32:22–32). To Moses … View Resource

  • A Pilgrim People Article by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | August 2013

    There is just something about being at home, isn’t there? I am reminded of this every time I travel. As I write this column, it has been only a few weeks since we returned from a Ligonier study cruise in the Caribbean. We had a wonderful time of study and fellowship with Ligonier’s friends and supporters, many of whom are likely reading this column right now. Despite my enjoyment of the trip, however, I was happy to return home. I feel the same way every time I travel. I love my homeland and am happy to come back to the … View Resource

  • Signs and Seals of Union Article by Joel Beeke

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2013

    Just as He called the world into being by the power of His Word (Ps. 33:6–9; Heb. 11:3), so God brings His church into being by the power of the gospel call (2 Thess. 2:13–14; 1 Peter 2:9–10). That calling summons us into union with Christ by faith, as one people under the triune God (Eph. 4:4–6). The church is defined by our calling into fellowship with Christ and with one another, as Paul reminds the Corinthians: “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints…. … View Resource

  • Union with God the Trinity Article by Sinclair Ferguson

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2013

    Have you ever imagined what it would be like to be within hours of death—not as an elderly person, but as someone condemned to die although innocent of every crime? What would you want to say to those who know and love you best? You would, surely, tell them how much you loved them. You might hope you could give them some comfort and reassurance—despite the nightmare you yourself were facing. You would want to open your heart and say the things that were most important to you. Such poise would surely be praiseworthy. Of course, it would be human … View Resource

  • Theology and Doxology Article by Gerrit Scott Dawson

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2013

    Angelic beings approach the throne of the triune God. They arrive in His immediate presence because they need no mediator. No sin prevents them from entering, and God gave these creatures the capacity to draw near without being incinerated by His glory. Is it safe to say these angels know better than we do? But what do these knowledgeable ones do in God’s presence? According to Revelation 4:10, they fall down, cast their crowns, and sing. In short, they worship God with their whole beings. I read a lot of theology books. That’s my job—and my passion. But every time … View Resource

  • What Kind of Unity? Article by William W. Goligher

    FROM TABLETALK | November 2011

    Thomas Manton, a seventeenth century minister, once wrote, “Divisions in the church breed atheism in the world.” Certainly the lack of unity in the church distracts minds, breaks hearts, squanders energy, and inhibits evangelism. Unity in the church is important to God. John 17 has been described as “a standing monument of Christ’s affection to the Church.” At least three times Jesus prays for the Church’s unity and witness: “that they all may be one” (v. 21); “that they may be one even as we are one” (v. 22); “that they may become perfectly one” (v. 23); so that all … View Resource

  • Grace Transforms Everything Article by Sean Michael Lucas

    FROM TABLETALK | October 2010

    In our town, a church just went through a rebranding effort as part of their relocation to a new building in a different section of town. Their logo and signage are beautiful and well conceived. One sees their stickers on cars everywhere. And their tagline is memorable: “Faith changes everything.” View Resource

  • The “Nonsense” of Justifying the Ungodly Article by John Piper

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2010

    There are at least three problems with N.T. Wright’s claim that imputing God’s righteousness to a defendant is a category mistake and “makes no sense.” First, Wright’s definition of the righteousness of God is too shallow. He fails to go to the heart of the matter and stays at the level of what divine righteousness does rather than what it is. View Resource