Category Archives: video

Calvin Documentary

This is from Faith Matters and is called “John Calvin: Reformer and Man of Controversy”:

Part 1

Part 2

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Presuppositionalism Resources

Tomorrow I have the privilege of giving a talk on presuppositional apologetics at the People’s Christian Academy; Tim Challies is speaking at their chapel tomorrow as well, so I have big shoes to follow! For those students who want to delve deeper into the subject, this post gives a collection of resources that I think are very helpful.

Cornelius Van Til (1895-1987)

– An audio interview done by the “Office Hours” online radio program of Westminster California with John Van Til, a nephew of Cornelius: “Cornelius Van Til: Father, Friend and Pastor

– A good, and short biographical piece is by Van Til’s friend Robert Den Dulk, who helped published a number of Van Til’s works: “Cornelius Van Til

– The guys from the Reformed Forum online radio show talk to John Muether [click here], author of this excellent biography of Van Til–it’s very informative (check out my review of Muether’s biography)

– By far the most helpful internet resource on all things Van Til is the Van Til Info website, run by James Anderson (a noteworthy Van Tilian himself!)

Presuppositionalism 

– Michael Butler was a student of Greg Bahnsen, he wrote this recently for Faith For All of Life magazine; it is a good intro to presuppositionalism: “The Pulling Down of Strongholds

– I wrote an essay for an apologetics course at Toronto Baptist Seminary taught by Stephen Wellum, I then morphed it into an article for the journal Hope’s Reason: A Journal of Apologetics (of which I am the review editor). The title isn’t very creative: “An Introduction to Presuppositionalism

– Greg Bahnsen, author of this excellent book on Van Til, was one of the most well-known Van Tilians. These are some audio lectures he did on “Van Tilian Apologetics

– S. Joel Garver wrote this “A Primer on Presuppositionalism” where, at the end, he gives some potential objections to the method and his replies

Transcendental Argument for God’s Existence (TAG)

– After Bahnsen died, a number of theologians came together and honoured his memory with a book. This article from the book is by Michael Butler, and is on TAG: “The Transcendental Argument for God’s Existence

– John Frame, a former student of Van Til, and author of an important book on Van Til’s thought, wrote this: “Transcendental Arguments: An Essay

Debates

– By far the most enjoyable debate I’ve ever listened to, this is between Greg Bahnsen and atheist Gordon Stein, held at the University of California (Irvine) in 1985. Bahnsen uses presuppositionalism to utterly demolish Stein (wait for the moment when the whole audience realizes that Stein has been obliterated–they all laugh). Here’s the MP3 (free) and here’s the transcript PDF

– John Frame used his brand of presuppositionalism in an online debate with the atheist philosopher Michael Martin

– Bahnsen also debated atheist Edward Tabash where again he used TAG to devastating effect (you can buy the DVD here, and actually watch them debate, instead of just having the audio):

– Finally, Bahnsen also did a radio debate with atheist George Smith:

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Adam According to Alister

I have tremendous respect for Prof. Alister McGrath. He is surely one of Christianity’s foremost apologists, and is a brilliant scholar of the Reformation. A couple of years ago I had the privilege of driving him to and from a conference and enjoyed the short time spent together. He has PhD’s in both the sciences and theology from Oxford and taught there for a long while, before going to London. He has authored a large number of scholarly books on the Reformation, the history of atheism, theology, spirituality and the sciences. He has also debated famous atheists like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens.

In this video (yes, that’s spittle dribbling down my chin–look at that library!!), Dr. McGrath discusses the significance of Adam and Eve for theology and takes a more Barthian approach to seeing Adam as theologically significant, but not necessarily historical. This isn’t surprising as Dr. McGrath also holds to theistic evolution, and is an admirer of Thomas Torrance, a well-known Barthian who wrote much on science and theology.

Without wanting to sound presumptuous–who am I to take issue with Alister McGrath???–it strikes me that when he draws the parallel between Adam and Christ there is an incongruity. If Christ is an historical person, as McGrath would affirm, and he undoes the work of Adam, as McGrath said, how can it be that Adam didn’t exist? Everything in the story of redemption is historical but Adam, which hardly seems to make sense. John Piper, at the end of this video, makes the same point. An historical Christ, an historical redemption, requires an historical Adam and an historical Fall.

For a more thorough exegetical treatment that supports Piper’s view, see Don Carson’s essay “Adam in the Epistles of Paul.”

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Filed under adam, alister mcgrath, don carson, interviews, john piper, theology pub, video

Mohler and Wallis Debate Social Justice

The Carl Henry Center at Trinity International University recently held a debate on the question of whether “social justice is essential to the mission of the church.” Taking the affirmative was Jim Wallis, founder of Sojourners, a noted evangelical activist for social causes. On the negative side was Al Mohler, president of Southern Seminary, and a well-known voice on Christianity and the public square. Both are in basic agreement when it comes to the question of whether Christians should engage in social justice causes–they both say yes. The difference is that Wallis sees social justice as essential to the mission of the church itself (note: not merely individual Christians), while Mohler says that the church exists to equip Christians in the the gospel and the “whole counsel of God” to empower them to live out their faith in the world. It may seem like a slight distinction, but it’s not. The church, as an institution, is not to be involved in politics, but Christians are. Thus the church should not define itself as a place of social justice; Christians, however, should be deeply involved in it.

Check out the debate here: http://www.henrycenter.org/media/player_video.php?id=318

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Frederick Douglass and the Fight for Freedom

Here’s a lecture hosted by the CATO Institute, given by Robert McDonald on the great abolitionist and freedom fighter, Frederick Douglass. {HT: Matt Bufton}

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Bloodlines Documentary

Bloodlines is a documentary based upon a book by John Piper dealing with the subject of race. In both, Piper recounts his growing up in the South, how his mother helped him see the evils of segregation, and how he was confronted by the real evils of racism when he did doctoral studies in Germany. This is a short documentary, but a powerful one. It serves as a reminder of why a proper understanding of the gospel should shatter any racist tendencies in us all:

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Keller, Piper and Carson on Mercy Ministries

This six part video series is from the 2008 meeting of The Gospel Coalition. It is a discussion between Tim Keller, John Piper and Don Carson on the subject of mercy ministries (i.e. helping the poor, etc). I like what Piper says about wanting to eliminate all suffering, especially eternal suffering. I think that strikes the biblical balance. I also like how Keller pushes back and adds some nuance. Anyways, the whole thing is pretty helpful. I like the first video, so you can click through to the subsequent ones after it’s done.

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Filed under don carson, gospel coalition, john piper, poverty, social justice, tim keller, video

Keller Lecture on the Poor

In my last post I gave a quote by Jonathan Edwards on the poor and noted that my attention was directed to it as I read Tim Keller’s Generous Justice, which I find to be a helpful resource. I Googled Keller and poverty and found this video that is basically a summary of the book, it’s good too:

Tim Keller: The Gospel and the Poor: A Case for Compassion from Here’s Life Inner City on Vimeo.

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Innocent Smith’s Modern Proposal

If you haven’t read G. K. Chesterton’s brilliant Manalive you need to stop everything, go out and buy it (if you live in Toronto, Crux Books has it in stock!). You’ll be in for a hilarious, but incredibly insightful read. If you know anything about this book, it is likely the story of the character–in a flashback scene–when he was in university. This character, Innocent Smith, was a philosophy student who sat through a class taught by a professor who declared that there was no meaning in the world (or something to that effect). The not-so-innocent Smith meets this professor in his room one night and produces a pistol with the aim of pushing the limits of this professors philosophy. You must read the scene for yourself to soak in all its brilliance.

As it turns out, screenwriter and theologian Briand Godawa has redone this Chestertonian scene for a modern audience. While it may not have the wit of the great writer, it paints the meaning of a meaningless worldview in crystal clarity. Check out “Cruel Logic” here {HT: Steve Bedard}:

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Editing Ron Paul

A friend of mine linked this video on Facebook. In it, Ron Paul is questioned by a badgering Lawrence O’Donnell about a quote Paul gave in Congress about the Civil Rights Act. It is a 4 minute video that makes Paul look unsure of himself and, in an uncharitable interpretation of him, could even leave him looking racist. Check it out:

However, after I watched it, I noticed that YouTube linked a longer clip of the video. When I watched the second video in its entirety, I came away with a very different take on what Paul has to say. If you care about this sort’ve thing, watch the second video about 4 minutes in. You’ll see Paul excoriate O’Donnell for going beyond the topics that Ron Paul and O’Donnell’s producers had agreed on beforehand; hence why Paul appears flustered and unprepared in the beginning of the clip. You’ll also see Paul regain his feet and explain that Martin Luther King Jr. actually used principles of civil disobedience and law repeal–what Paul sees as libertarian principles–to gain civil rights for African Americans. Here’s the second video:

The interview and its posting are unfortunate on a number of levels. First, O’Donnell comes across like a civil rights freedom fighter in the first video, but a jerk in the second one. What is he trying to prove by asking Paul a heated question without allowing him to prepare beforehand? At best, it’s bad journalism, at worst, it’s intentionally devious. Second, that someone would edit the video without the full context of Paul’s last statement is typical of people who have no substantial arguments against his libertarianism. I don’t doubt that certain Ron Paul supporters would do the same thing, but if this is what political debate devolves to, that’s pretty bad.

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MacArthur Part One


John MacArthur was interviewed by Christianity.com about his views on the Reformed revival of the last fifteen years; what is often called the Young, Restless and Reformed movement (YRR). He has some strong misgivings about a number of things that he’s seen and predicts that there will be a reversal of the movement in the future. He has a number of good points, the foremost being his stress on ecclesiology. His concern is that many YRR have a shallow ecclesiology; all style, no substance. He is right, if Calvinists think that because they’ve got their soteriology down that they get a hall-pass on everything else, the YRR will implode. Any gospel-oriented movement, like the Reformation of the sixteenth century, must be deeply grounded in the church. Otherwise, it is floating on air and will go wherever the wind blows.

If I may, respectfully (that’s not a mere sentiment), interject a request: I would like to ask Dr. MacArthur to be more specific in his critique. I know that he has had some strong criticisms of Mark Driscoll in the past, and I suspect that it is Driscoll and Acts 29 that MacArthur is thinking of especially. But, at least in my understanding, based on those covered in Collin Hansen’s Young, Restless, and Reformed book, the YRR movement is much larger than Acts 29 and the emerging church blend of Reformed theology. When MacArthur uses the term, does he include other young Reformed leaders like Kevin DeYoung, Tim Challies, Owen Strachan, Denny Burk, the Reformed Forum guys or Justin Taylor? It strikes me that these guys are catalysts for this movement, but all have a fuller orbed understanding of theology than just soteriology. And what of some of the older men who have worked so closely with YRR that, aside from age, they are virtually indistinguishable from it like Don Carson, Tim Keller, James White, Ligon Duncan, R. C. Sproul, John Piper (though he gets a critical nod), Mark Dever, Carl Trueman, Russ Moore, Mike Horton, Doug Wilson and even John MacArthur. This latter group are a huge reason for YRR and share some of the same cultural sentiments as the movement, some even drink. Are they also included in the terminology?

It would be great if MacArthur could be clearer. I think it would help those of us who have been unnecessarily lumped in with what he sees as a theologically immature crowd. Maybe we could come up with a name to distinguish them from us. If it is just Acts 29/Driscoll, maybe it would be better just to deal with them specifically. I definitely don’t feel as though MacArthur describes me, my theology or my practice in his critiques. I agree with his warning (though the tone is off-putting) and would hope that I don’t fall into the trap he sees awaiting YRR. If he named names, so that those of us watching could have specific examples of problem areas, and those who are named would know that it was them that had the problem, all of us involved would have greater clarity on how to move forward. These generalities aren’t as helpful.

I look forward to the second part of this interview.

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John Stott – When He Felt Most Alive

This is a very sweet video of the late John Stott answering the question: “When do you feel most alive?” His multi-faceted answer is brilliant (it involves worship, friendship and bird-watching).

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Only Halfway Home

This is a fantastic video about Levon Helm’s album “Electric Dirt.” The opening track, “Calvary” by Byron Isaacs, is chilling. This is American folk music at its very best:

 

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Sister Golden Hair by Choir!Choir!Choir!

My old friend Tim McCready was (is?) part of Choir!Choir!Choir!–a music conglomerate who do some classic rock corporate singing. This version of America’s “Sister Golden Hair” is absolutely fantastic. It gives me goosebumps:

They also do some Fleetwood Mac, Sloan and The Beatles.

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Film: Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl

Nate (Nathan? N.D.?) Wilson is a best-selling author who wrote Notes From the Tilt-A-Whirl, a fun and philosophical reflection on the goodness of life. I read it around two years ago and thoroughly enjoyed myself from cover to cover. The book has the paradoxical quality of being light-hearted yet profound. It is mixed with the author’s personal reflections on life and sophisticated treatments of the vapid hedonism of this world. Basically, Wilson points up the true way to enjoy the world, and enjoy it to its fullest.

Now, with the help of Gorilla Poet and Beloved Independent, he has made the book into a film. It’s strange, but the two-minute trailer, short though it is, gave me the same feeling of fullness and joy as the book did. I hope this film does well:

Notes from the Tilt-A-Whirl Movie Trailer from Gorilla Poet Productions on Vimeo.

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Holiness of God Sermon Jam

Dr. Richard Ganz is the pastor of Ottawa Reformed Presbyterian Church in Ottawa, Ontario. Back in 2009 he preached a sermon from Revelation 5 on “Worshiping Jesus” from which this sermon jam on God’s holiness comes. This is really worth watching:

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Bunny in a Blender

Here’s a provocative ad from the American Life League about the amount of U.S. taxpayer dollars that goes to funding Planned Parenthood {HT: Challies}:

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Futato on Translations

Mark Futato, Academic Dean of Reformed Theological Seminary in Orlando, FL, is interviewed on Fox News about bible translations in light of the updated NIV and NAB.

http://www.myfoxorlando.com/video/videoplayer.swf?dppversion=7885

US Catholic Bishops unveil new Bible, also available on the iPad: MyFoxORLANDO.com

 

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The Next Story by Tim Challies

I know how easy it is to allow my time get eaten up by Facebook, Gmail, blogging and Twitter. In his upcoming book The Next Story:Life and Faith After the Digital Explosion blogger, author and conference speaker Tim Challies deals with the questions “Do you own technology or does technology own you?” I think this will prove to be both an informative and convicting book for the technological church. Here’s the ad from Zondervan:

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SSMI Blog: Lyrical Theology

Here is my latest blogspot at the Sola Scriptura Ministries blog called “Lyrical Theology.” It deals with what is sometimes called “holy hip-hop” or “Christian rap.” I mentioned in the post a spoken-word rap called “Faithfulness” by Stephen the Levite at YouTube which I’ve embedded below:

 

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