A Journal for Church Officers
The Doctrine of Divine Simplicity: A Pastor’s Appreciation
by D. Scott Meadows
Adam, the Fall, and Original Sin: A Review Article
by Sherif Gendy
This Strange and Sacred Scripture: A Review Article
by Sherif Gendy
Called to Be Saints by Gordon T. Smith
by David A. Booth
From Here to Maturity by Thomas E. Bergler
by Gregory E. Reynolds
Sonnets Suggested by St. Augustine
by George MacDonald (1824–1905)
From the Editor. Systematic and Dogmatic theology are not, as many assume, synonymous. “Systematic” is a more popular term, perhaps because “dogmatic” is used as a pejorative word in the modern world, wedded as it is to relativism. Systematic theology focuses on the organizing of biblical materials topically. Dogmatic theology does the same, but the accent is on what the church asserts to be the absolute truth, especially as it faces the thought-forms or zeitgeist of the culture. Pastor Scott Meadows demonstrates the value of dogmatic theology for the pastor and his flock in “The Doctrine of Divine Simplicity: A Pastor’s Appreciation.”
Sherif Gendy continues to offer some of the fruit of his Old Testament doctoral studies as he reviews Adam, the Fall, and Original Sin: Theological, Biblical, and Scientific Perspectives, edited by Hans Madueme and Michael Reeves, and Matthew Schlimm’s This Strange and Sacred Scripture: Wrestling with the Old Testament and Its Oddities. Robert Dick Wilson, a first generation Westminster Theological Seminary professor, believed that Reformed pastors and theologians should not be afraid to engage a wide range of scholarship that is not necessarily Reformed. Gendy follows in that tradition with appreciative and incisive critical analysis.
Finally, two reviews on the subject of Christian maturity. David Booth gives a mixed review of Gordon Smith’s Called to Be Saints: An Invitation to Christian Maturity. I review a book by Thomas Bergler that follows up on his unique study of the twentieth-century development of youth groups. In the former volume Bergler identifies a significant problem in youth ministry. This volume, From Here to Maturity, offers a thoughtful solution.
For poetry this month George MacDonald offers a pair of poems, “Sonnets Suggested by St. Augustine,” that turn theology into doxology, the place to which theology ought always to lead.
Blessings in the Lamb,
Gregory Edward Reynolds
FROM THE ARCHIVES “BIBLICAL THEOLOGY, COVENANT THEOLOGY”
Ordained Servant exists to help encourage, inform, and equip church officers for faithful, effective, and God-glorifying ministry in the visible church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Its primary audience is ministers, elders, and deacons of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, as well as interested officers from other Presbyterian and Reformed churches. Through high-quality editorials, articles, and book reviews we endeavor to stimulate clear thinking and the consistent practice of historic, confessional Presbyterianism.
Contact the Editor: Gregory Edward Reynolds
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