A brother challenged me after reading my book, where I talk about how sacred space and time are transformed through the Lord Jesus from being temple- and sabbath-oriented, to being person- and whole-life-oriented. He suggested that I am inconsistent to simultaneously hold that attending church is worship per se, and that we enter the heavenly court during this time (a view I briefly argue for here).
He linked me to the work of a brother of yours, Tony Payne of the Sidney Anglicans, who argues for a view in which attending church is not any more worship than any other part of life, but merely an embodiment and acting-out of the communion we have at all times in the Lord Jesus—a view he dubs the “gathered in heaven” model of church.
I’m sympathetic to Tony’s view, but I equally find it hard to abandon the idea that meeting on the Lord’s Day is especially worship in some sense (perhaps something like ritual worship as opposed to mundane worship). Similarly, although I agree that we are, at all times, in the presence of God through his Spirit, there does nonetheless seem something significant about the symbolic representation of drawing near to his throne, which actually does draw heaven and earth together in a way that isn’t true during the ordinary course of life. One possible avenue of relieving this tension that has occurred to me is in the threefold intensification of sacred space in the temple itself; can we perhaps correlate the “mundane” worship of Rom. 12:1 to service in the courtyard, while the “ritual” worship I see hinted at in Acts 13:2; 1 Cor. 14:25 is service in the Holy Place, with Jesus’ everlasting service being in the Holy of Holies?
Jake Meador, the editor-in-chief of Mere Orthodoxy and vice president of the Davenant Institute, joins me to discuss his recently released book, In Search of the Common Good: Christian Fidelity in a Fractured World.
One of my supporters has very kindly transcribed this video, on the Church’s relationship with the natural family. I don’t have time to transcribe my videos myself, so anyone willing to volunteer to transcribe one video every week or fortnight would be greatly appreciated! The transcript is very lightly edited at a few points for the purpose of comprehension.
One of my supporters has very kindly transcribed this video on my understanding of election in Ephesians 1. I don’t have time to transcribe my videos myself, so anyone willing to volunteer to transcribe one video every week or fortnight would be greatly appreciated! The transcript is very lightly edited at a few points for the purpose of comprehension.
Trying to understand Ephesians 1 and was wondering if you could help. Paul seems to be addressing the visible/historical church in Ephesus. If my assumption is right then he is saying that the people in the visible church of Ephesus are predestined to adoption as sons, have redemption through Christ’s blood, have been gifted with every spiritual blessing, etc. My trouble is that as a Calvinist I don’t know how to make sense of the fact that he calls all of that visible church elect? Could you help me work through this important passage?
Given that Paul is the most prominent evangelist / church planter in the Bible, why are exhortations to evangelize seemingly so rare in his work? In many parts of the evangelical church we seem to foreground the need for evangelism and background discussion of ethics, should we reverse this?
What is your view of the miraculous gifts (like prophecy and the gifts of tongues) in the New Testament period? Did these discontinue with the closing of the Scriptural Canon or, maybe, they took on a new form after this? And how did the Scriptures relate to the work of the prophets in the New Testament?