Being Reformed, and Staying Christian in Seminary

Today’s panel recently attended the 2014 Desiring God Pastors’ Conference titled, “The Pastor, the Vine, and the Branches: The Remarkable Reality of Union with Christ,” as representatives for Reformed Forum and Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, PA. The group speaks about the opportunity to spread the ministry of Reformed Forum beyond the bounds of Presbyterianism and the relationship of confessional Reformed theology to the broader, more loosely Reformed community. This episode also features an interview with David Mathis and Jonathan Parnell of Desiring God Ministries about their recent book, How to Stay Christian in Seminary.

David Mathis is executive editor at desiringGod.org and an elder at Bethlehem Baptist Church, Minneapolis, MN. He has edited several books and is co-author of How to Stay Christian in Seminary.

Jonathan Parnell is a writer and content strategist for Desiring God Minstries and co-author of How to Stay Christian in Seminary. The book was inspired by a series of blog posts at desiringGod.org.

B.B. Warfield’s The Religious Life of Theological Students

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The Apostolic Fathers

Kyle Padden and Paul Maxwell join Jonathan Brack and Charles Williams to discuss the importance and value of reading the Apostolic Fathers. Particular attention is given to the letters of Ignatius of Antioch, the way he dealt with the question of the nature of the church’s authority, and the impact of martyrdom as it relates to the apostolic teaching.

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Biblical Psychology and the New Perspective on Paul

Paul Maxwell joins Camden Bucey and Jonathan Brack to speak about his response to Krister Stendahl in the Spring 2013 edition of the Westminster Theological Journal. Stendahl, Swedish theologian and New Testament scholar, presented his paper “The Apostle Paul and the Introspective Conscience of the West” before the American Psychological Association in 1961. He argued that the Western understanding of Paul as concerned about clearing his conscience before God was mistaken. Proponents of the New Perspective on Paul trace their theological perspective to Stendahl’s ideas. In this episode, Maxwell defends the Protestant reading of Paul against Stendahl’s psychological concerns. In doing so, Maxwell compares Stendahl’s article with the biblical counseling movement and a Reformed approach to psychology.

Paul Maxwell is a Ph.D. student in Historical and Theological Studies at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, PA. He wrote, “Analyzing the Apostle Paul’s “Robust Conscience”: Identifying and Engaging the Psychological Concerns of Krister Stendahl’s Inceptive Article” in the Westminster Theological Journal, Vol. 75, No. 1 (Spring 2013).

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Early Heresies: Adoptionism

In the sixth episode of Faith of our Fathers, Jonathan Brack and Charles Williams discuss two of the earliest heresies in church history: Ebionism and Adoptionism. The Ebionites regarded Jesus as Messiah, but rejected his divinity while insisting on following Jewish laws. Adoptionism was an early heresy that Jesus was adopted as the Son of God at some point during his life—often his baptism, resurrection, or ascension.

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The Early Church and Judaism

In the third episode of Faith of our Fathers, Jonathan Brack and Charles Williams explore the growing tensions and eventual separation between Judaism and Christianity in the first century—explaining how Christianity came to be seen no longer as simply another sect of Judaism, and how this separation led Christians to fall into the crosshairs of the Roman Empire.

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