The Glorious Body of Christ I: You Are the Body of Christ - 1 Cor. 12:27

The ancient fathers of the Church said this: “Outside the Church, there is no salvation.” This conviction was repeated by men such as Luther and Calvin at the time of the Reformation, and the Westminster Confession of Faith (our church’s doctrinal standard) echoes this as well (25.2). Many of these men make the comparison between the Church and the Ark of Noah to make the point clear: if you are not on the ark, you die. If you are not in the Church, you die.The reason for this strong statement is found in the teaching of 1 Cor. 12:27, that…

Posted on Tuesday, January 14, 2020 by CJ Bowen

Christmas Carol Theology: Joy to the World

In the early part of the eighteenth century, Isaac Watts published a book of imitation psalms, intending to make the presence of Christ explicit in the psalms of David. His version of Psalm 98, written to celebrate the second coming of Christ, became instead one of the most famous Christmas carols in the English-speaking world. The later verses of Watts’ “psalm” became known as “Joy to the World”. Looking carefully at the lyrics, we discover many rich applications of Psalm 98 to the work of Christ, begun at His first advent, and continuing to His second.Verse one open with the…

Posted on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 by CJ Bowen

Ephesians XXIII: Praying and Proclaiming - Ephesians 6:18-24

Paul began this epistle with grace and peace, and explained over the next six chapters how it’s possible for sinners to receive grace and peace from a holy God, and how we should live as members of God’s household in response. Now he brings the letter to an end with grace and peace once more. This is the message of Ephesians: you are united with Christ by faith to receive grace and peace from God.In 6:17, Paul reminds us that while we have peace with God and with one another in Christ, we don’t yet have peace in this world.…

Posted on Tuesday, November 26, 2019 by CJ Bowen