Legalism: A Complex & Deadly Spiritual Disease

(This is a re-post from August, 2017)Legalism is not a rare thing in Christian circles.  It's not confined to a certain denomination, age, gender, race, or class.  Legalism is not rare because it's the default mode of the sinful human heart.  Thomas Boston said it is "engrained in man's corrupt nature." From one angle, then,… Continue reading Legalism: A Complex & Deadly Spiritual Disease

Cynicism, Legalism, and Then Antinomianism (Byers)

Christians are not immune to cynicism. There are plenty of Christians who are plenty cynical - myself included. And so this book ended up on my shelves way back in 2011: Faith without Illusions: Following Jesus as a Cynic-Saint by Andrew Byers. In fact, this book is still on my shelves because I still need… Continue reading Cynicism, Legalism, and Then Antinomianism (Byers)

…Pessimistic About The Possibility Of Moral Progress (Packer)

In the first chapter of his book, Keep in Step with the Spirit, J. I. Packer explained five different emphases people have put on the work of the Holy Spirit in the Christian life. All five ways have foundations in Scripture, but often they become one-sided because they fail to incorporate or discuss other aspects… Continue reading …Pessimistic About The Possibility Of Moral Progress (Packer)

What the Gospel Is, Offers, and Requires (Stott)

In Galatians 3 Paul emphasizes the fact that God's benefits of salvation come by faith, not works. It's an extended argument that Paul had to repeat more than once in his missionary travels. Some Jewish people followed him around and harassed him and tried to refute his teaching of salvation by faith alone in Christ… Continue reading What the Gospel Is, Offers, and Requires (Stott)

Becoming a Christian Cheaply (Kierkegaard)

I don't always agree with the Danish philosopher Soren Kierkegaard (d. 1855), but he always gets me thinking. For example, I recently read his essay For Self Examination, which has a section on Martin Luther, faith, and works. Although he doesn't use the terms, Kierkegaard was talking about legalism and antinomianism. Here's part of that… Continue reading Becoming a Christian Cheaply (Kierkegaard)