Category Archives: Systematic Theology

Gheens Lectures by Simon Gathercole

The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary has now posted online lectures by Simon Gathercole (NT lecturer at the University of Cambridge), delivered there in November 2004:

The first three talks in these Gheens Lectures served as the foundation for Gathercole’s book, The Preexistent Son: Recovering the Christologies of Matthew, Mark, and Luke.

[HT: JT]

Pauline Christology: An Exegetical-Theological Study

This is Fee’s most recent work on the Apostle Paul and his theology. I do not own it, but from the reviews I’m posting below, I really do look forward to it and I would definitely recommend it to others already.

Here is the information on the book:

Pauline Christology Cover

Description: An exhaustive study of Pauline Christology by noted Pauline scholar, Gordon Fee. The author provides a detailed analysis of the letters of Paul (including those whose authorship is questioned) individually, exploring the Christology of each one, and then attempts a synthesis of the exegetical work into a biblical Christology of Paul. The author’s synthesis covers the following themes: Christ’s roles as divine Savior and as preexistent and incarnate Savior; Jesus as the Second Adam, the Jewish Messiah, and Son of God; and as the Messiah and exalted Lord. Fee also explores the relationship between Christ and the Spirit and considers the Person and role of the Spirit in Paul’s thought. Appendices cover the theme of Christ and Personified Wisdom, and Paul’s use of Kurios (Lord) in citations and echoes of the Septuagint.

Subjects: Bible, New Testament, Pauline Epistles, Literature, Methods, Theological Approaches, Biblical Theology, New Testament Theology


Review by Matthew Montonini

Review by Don Garlington

You can purchase the book here: Continue reading Pauline Christology: An Exegetical-Theological Study

NEW TESTAMENT THEOLOGY: Magnifying God in Christ

Baker Academic has posted the introduction and chapter 9 of Tom Schreiner’s forthcoming magnum opus, New Testament Theology: Magnifying God in Christ (due out in May 2008).

Here is what others are saying:

 Book Description
In this substantial volume, Thomas Schreiner takes up the study of New Testament theology, looking for the themes that emerge from a detailed reading of the whole rather than considering the individual writings separately. Two themes in particular emerge. The first concerns redemptive history and the kingdom of God. The New Testament writers adopt the Old Testament vision of God’s reign and affirm that it has come in Jesus Christ, although final fulfillment is yet to come. Second, the ultimate goal of the kingdom is God’s glory. Schreiner goes on to relate these themes to the life of the believer and the community of faith. Pastors and students will find this a comprehensive and illuminating survey of the unifying themes found throughout the New Testament.

From the Inside Flap
“Scholars frequently focus so tightly on the details of the New Testament documents that they miss the big picture. On the other hand, all too often attempts to summarize the message of the New Testament ignore the particular expressions and diverse emphases of its twenty-seven books. Without losing the trees for the wood, Schreiner’s New Testament Theology offers a superb exposition of the New Testament’s central message, the glory of God in Christ. Pastors and students will find it an invaluable resource for answering the question most readers are asking: what is the New Testament about?”–Brian S. Rosner, senior lecturer in New Testament and ethics, Moore Theological College

“Schreiner’s New Testament Theology has long been awaited by colleagues, friends, and students. The appendix, which provides a helpful survey of the discipline of New Testament theology, and the discussion of justification, which contains a summary of the modern debate and a defense of a forensic interpretation of the Pauline teaching, are alone worth the price of the book.”–Robert H. Stein, senior professor of New Testament interpretation, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

In New Testament Theology, Thomas Schreiner’s approach is based on solid exegesis of all the key texts, which leads him to a unified view of core New Testament teaching. He focuses particularly on two overarching themes. The first concerns the unity of redemptive history and the kingdom of God. The New Testament takes up Old Testament imagery and affirms that the kingdom has come (although it remains unfulfilled) in Jesus Christ. The second related theme concerns the goal of the kingdom–the glory of God through the work of Christ and the empowering presence of the Spirit. In the second half of the work, Schreiner takes up the question of what these themes mean for the life of the believer and the ministry of the community of faith.

Although this substantial and comprehensive volume will be of great interest to scholars, Schreiner’s first concern is to provide an accessible guide for students and pastors. He has succeeded admirably, and readers will find here a lucid exposition of the theology of the New Testament.

[HT: Between Two Worlds]

Thy Kingdom Come

Here is a helpful definition of the Kingdom of God from a Reformed perspective by S. M. Baugh. I hope that you will consider this definition in your study of the Bible.

Thy Kingdom Come: A Reformed Definition of the Kingdom of God

Here is a good excerpt from the PDF about what the Kingdom of God is NOT properly:

1. The Church militant in this age
2. The rule of God in the hearts of believers
3. An spiritual rule to be consummated in an earthly millennial reign
4. A geo-political or social program in this age or a program of Christianizing all spheres of life
5. However: the power and influence of the kingdom is currently felt in these areas. Continue reading Thy Kingdom Come

OPC Report on Justification – Greek Font Problem

For those of you who might want to read this report, I finally got a hold of the Greek NT Bold font, which the report’s PDF document uses. This font will allow you do read the report with the Greek text clearly displayed (once you install it in the “fonts” under your Windows “control panel”). Here is the font:


Also, for those of you who haven’t read the report or heard of it…

OPC Report on Justification

The Apostle Paul in a Sentence

This is a masterful quote describing the Apostle Paul! Amen!

Paul preached, and then explained in various pastoral, community-forming letters, a narrative, apocalyptic, theopolitical gospel (1) in continuity with the story of Israel and (2) in distinction to the imperial gospel of Rome (and analogous powers) that was centered on God’s crucified and exalted Messiah Jesus, whose incarnation, life, and death by crucifixion were validated and vindicated by God in his resurrection and exaltation as Lord, which inaugurated the new age or new creation in which all members of this diverse but consistently covenantally dysfunctional human race who respond in self-abandoning and self-committing faith thereby participate in Christ’s death and resurrection and are (1) justified, or restored to right covenant relations with God and with others; (2) incorporated into a particular manifestation of Christ the Lord’s body on earth, the church, which is an alternative community to the status-quo human communities committed to and governed by Caesar (and analogous rulers) and by values contrary to the gospel; and (3) infused both individually and corporately by the Spirit of God’s Son so that they may lead “bifocal” lives, focused both back on Christ’s first coming and ahead to his second, consisting of Christlike, cruciform (cross-shaped) (1) faith and (2) hope toward God and (3) love toward both neighbors and enemies (a love marked by peaceableness and inclusion), in joyful anticipation of (1) the return of Christ, (2) the resurrection of the dead to eternal life, and (3) the renewal of the entire creation.

( Michael J. Gorman, Reading Paul, Eugene:
Cascade Books, 2008. p. 8 )

[HT: Christ Tilling]

The Future of Justification Series by Trevin Wax

Trevin has provided a helpful review of John Piper’s new book on Justification and N.T. Wright. Here are the 18 posts, in order, for all of you to have easy access to read through them. Enjoy and please let me know what you think!

john piper speaking tom wright

1. Some Preliminary Thoughts
2. Piper’s Introduction
3. On Controversy
4. Historical Research
5. Covenant and Law-court
6. Penal Substitution
7. Defining “Righteousness”
8. Imputation
9. What is “The Gospel” Anyway?
10. The Gospel is “Jesus is Lord”
11. Our Standing Before God
12. Justification and “The Gospel”
13. Justification By Works
14. Common Ground?
15. Judaism in the First Century
16. Self-Righteousness
17. The Righteousness of Christ
18. Piper’s Conclusion

The New Perspective on Paul – Now Online

For those of you interested, Mark M. Mattison, over at the Paul Page, has just published the entire, original essay by James D. G. Dunn entitled “The New Perspective on Paul” plus Dunn’s 1990 “Additional Note.” This is the key essay in the development of “The New Perspective” (the phrase that Dunn himself coined) and it is a must read for those seeking to understand the trajectory of most New Testament scholars today.

I will refer you back to a previous post I made that contains both positive and critical analysis of this movement by two very prominent men in Pauline scholarship.

Trevin Wax Interview with N.T. Wright

Here is the full transcript of the interview Trevin conducted with N.T. Wright. This is a really great interview and I hope that every one of you will read through it or listen to the mp3 of it. The mp3 is available for direct download here.

I really appreciated Wright’s response and comments regarding his critics, in particular John Piper. Here is what Wright had to say about Piper and his new book:

Piper is in a different category. He graciously sent me an advance manuscript of his book which is critiquing me and invited my comments on it. I sent him a lengthy set of comments. I’ve only just got on email about two days ago the book in the revised form and I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet. So I cannot say whether he’s being fair or not at this stage.

But I do know that he has done his darndest to be fair and I honor that and I respect that. People have asked me if I’m going to write a response, and the answer is that I don’t know. I’m kind of busy right now. But I maybe should, sooner or later.

I would love to see that response! Pray that Wright will find the time to respond and that this Piper/Wright dialogue will continue to bear fruit for God’s Kingdom.

The breakdown of the interview is also available in individual postings. Here is the breakdown:

  1. Introduction
  2. Wright’s conversion, calling, and personal worship
  3. Wright on “the gospel”
  4. Justification by faith
  5. Justification – present and future
  6. Justification and the Roman Catholic Church
  7. Sola Scriptura
  8. Is Wright arrogant to assume he has just now figured out what Paul meant?
  9. Wright on his critics
  10. Justification in practice
  11. Wright on penal substitution
  12. Wright on the resurrection
  13. Wright on Evangelism
  14. Wright on Church and State
  15. Upcoming Writings and Conclusion

John Piper’s Book is FREE to read online!

The Future of Justification: A Response to N. T. Wright

This is the free PDF of Dr. Piper’s new book that Desiring God Ministries has made available for free online! Wow! I cannot say thank you to John Piper’s ministry enough. I’m just waiting for N.T. Wright to make some of his books available for free in response to Piper’s mass distribution campaign. 😉

BTW, if you missed it or if you cannot read the book right now, here is the interview series where Dr. Piper talks about his critique of N.T. Wright and why he wrote the book: