Church History

Church History

Why Is Preaching A Big Deal?

Henry Bullinger (1504-1575) is not a common household name. Many readers of this blog have never heard of him. But Bullinger is a name Christians should be familiar with. He played a key role when the church was in desperate need of reformation in the sixteenth century. We could write many blogs on how God used Bullinger to reform the church in a more biblical direction. But I want to focus on one way God used him. Bullinger was one…

Government Leaders Serve God

One of the throw-away lines that often gets missed in a discussion about civil government appears in Romans 13:6: “rulers are servants of God.” This line, and the truth behind it, ought to seem radical if you know a little bit of the history of Christianity. In the history of Christianity, various positions with respect to the government have been proposed. Some have embraced a position that Christians are forbidden to serve in civil government office. Others have embraced a position that…

Churches are Re-Opening…What Church Should I Join?

One thing the coronavirus pandemic has taught us is the importance of the local church. While you can “live stream” almost any church in the nation from the comfort of your living room, this is no substitute for being a member of a specific local church. Choosing a local church is an important decision. Thankfully, you are not the first person in history to have to make the decision. Throughout history, Christians have faced the decision of what church to…

What Does Chalcedon Have To Do With Christmas?

Chalcedon is a city in Turkey that was the sight of the ecumenical Council of Chalcedon in 451. The Council of Chalcedon produced the Chalcedonian Definition which explains the incarnation of Christ. The Chalcedonian Definition says that Jesus Christ was one person in two natures—fully human and fully divine. This means that . . . At the moment of incarnation, Christ was fully man and fully God, being fully God from eternity. In the incarnation, Christ not only assumed flesh,…

The Great Ejection: Praying for the Persecuted Church

In the United States of America, we have freedom of religion and worship. We often take these freedoms for granted and complain about government intervention in religious matters. Nevertheless, we have a measure of freedom. Compared to our brothers and sisters in persecuted countries, we have much to be thankful for. We also have much to be thankful for compared to our brothers and sisters in the persecuted past. On August 24, 1662, 357 years ago today, more than 2,000…

Four Hundred Years of Grace

Exactly four hundred years ago today, the Synod of Dordt ended. What was the Synod of Dordt and why does it matter for my life today? I’m glad you asked! The Synod of Dordt was an international church gathering of pastors, professors, and politicians that met in the Dutch city of Dordrecht from November 13, 1618 – May 29, 1619. The Synod convened primarily to deal with teaching that threatened the gospel of grace. And that’s why the Synod mattered—and…

A Diet of Worms

On October 31, 2017 we celebrated the 500-year anniversary of Martin Luther’s nailing his 95 Theses to the Castle church door. If October 31 marks the beginning of the Protestant Reformation, another famous date made it official. That date was April 18, 1521 at the Diet of Worms. The Diet (=assembly or gathering) was called by Emperor Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire to convene in the German city of Worms (pronounced “Vorms”). The reason this Diet was called…

Why the Five Solas of the Reformation Still Matter

Today we celebrate Reformation Day.  This year marks the 500th anniversary. One reason we celebrate the Reformation is because the Reformation heralded “five solas:” sola scriptura (Scripture alone), sola gratia (grace alone), sola fide (faith alone), solus Christus (Christ alone), soli Deo Gloria (glory to God alone). These Latin words sound cool, but why are they so important? Essentially, we celebrate the five solas of the Reformation because each sola sums up one of the main doctrines involved in the…