The Christian’s Highest Good

 In William Ames’ commentary on the Heidelberg Catechism, he opens by quoting Psalm 4:6-8, which includes these words: “I will lay down and sleep in peace: because Thou alone, O Jehovah, wilt act so that I will dwell securely.”  He says the Psalmist writes these words so that he may show that his highest good… Continue reading The Christian’s Highest Good

Justice Toward Our Neighbors

When William Ames (d. 1633) explained the second part of the 10 commandments, he constantly talked about “justice.”  That is, the law of God tells Christians to “perform our duty to our neighbor” (p. 300).  Justice is a Christian virtue which directs us to help our neighbor rather than hurt him.  The term “justice” in… Continue reading Justice Toward Our Neighbors


In The Marrow of Theology, William Ames (d. 1633) has an outstanding biblical treatment of Christian hope.  Here are a few excerpts.  (Note: the promises Ames speaks of are the promises of the covenant of grace.) “Hope is a virtue which leads us to expect things which God has promised us (Rom. 8:25).” “Hope looks… Continue reading Hope

Proper Christian Hatred

One of the most frequent ethical exhortations in the Bible is for God’s people to love – him, fellow Christians, and others (even praying for our enemies).  But there is an object of hatred that is proper in the Christian life.  We can and should hate Satan and his kingdom of darkness.  Satan is a… Continue reading Proper Christian Hatred

Theology Is…

What is true, Christian, biblical theology?  What good is it?  Is it practical?  William Ames (d. 1633) has some great answers to these questions.  Here’s an edited version of Ames’ helpful discussion. “Theology is the doctrine or teaching [doctrina] of living to God (Jn. 6:68, Acts 5:20, Rom. 6:11).  It is called doctrine, not to… Continue reading Theology Is…