Category Archives: Karl Barth

The Answer is More Certain than Our Prayer: Encouragement to Pray from Question 129 of the Heidelberg Catechism (with commentary by Karl Barth)

Heidelberg Catechism 129 Q. What does the word “Amen” signify? A. “Amen” signifies, it shall truly and certainly be: for my prayer is more assuredly heard of God, than I feel in my heart that I desire these things of … Continue reading

Posted in Church history, Devotional, Heidelberg Catechism, Karl Barth, Prayer, Sovereignty of God | 1 Comment

The Limitless Many of the Elect: Karl Barth on Grasping the Multi-Dimensional Nature of Election

The following section taken from Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics II/2 sets forth a layered, multi-dimensional understanding of the contentious doctrine of election. Many, if not most, of the critiques levelled against Barth’s view tend to flatten it out into two-dimensional straw man, … Continue reading

Posted in Biblical interpretation, Christology, Critiques of Karl Barth, Election, Karl Barth, Mission & evangelism, Predestination, Reformed theology, Soteriology, Universalism

The Impossible Possibility of Proving “Sola Scriptura”: Karl Barth & John Calvin on the Self-Authenticating Authority of the Bible

In dialoguing with Catholics about sola Scriptura, I am often challenged to “prove” that Scripture truly is the supreme authority in the church independent of any interpretation (or misinterpretation) to which it might be subject. I understand why Catholics would demand … Continue reading

Posted in Critiques of Protestantism, Five Solas, John Calvin, Karl Barth, Protestant theology, Protestantism, Reformation, Roman Catholicism, Scripture, Sola Scriptura, Word of God | 2 Comments

The Blood of God: Understanding the Atonement as a Work of the Trinity (A Reflection for Good Friday)

On this Good Friday, I would like to offer a reflection from Adam Johnson on the way in which we must understand the atonement accomplished in the crucifixion of Jesus as not merely a work of the Son, or of … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Doctrine of God, Gospel, Judgment of God, Karl Barth, Love of God, Seasonal, Soteriology, Trinity | 4 Comments

Undivided in Being and Act: Karl Barth on the Inseparable Operations of the Trinity

As a prelude to what I plan to post for Good Friday, I would like to offer Karl Barth’s summary of what St. Augustine called the orthodox faith of the catholic [universal] church, namely, that as the being of the Triune … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Augustine, Biblical interpretation, Doctrine of God, Karl Barth, Orthodoxy, Patristic theology, Trinity

Reforming Rome: Karl Barth and Vatican II (according to D.W. Norwood)

Over the course of many posts that I have written on Roman Catholicism, Reformation, and Karl Barth — and especially on all three combined — it has sometimes been asked (or disputed), by Catholics and Protestants alike, if these subjects … Continue reading

Posted in Church history, Karl Barth, Pope Benedict XVI/Joseph Ratzinger, Protestantism, Reformation, Reformed theology, Reforming Catholicism, Reformission, Roman Catholicism

The Only Point of Contact: Karl Barth on the Possibility of Knowing the Word of God

Following yesterday’s post on why Jesus Christ in the gospel is the only apologetic for the truth of the Word of God, I thought that the following section from Karl Barth’s Church Dogmatics I/1 was a fitting supplement to what was said concerning our inability … Continue reading

Posted in Anthropology, Gospel, Karl Barth, Missiology, Mission & evangelism, Natural theology, Nature and grace, Preaching, Reformed theology, Soteriology, Word of God | 2 Comments

The Exegetical Barth

For many people, especially for those who have never actually read him for themselves, the Swiss theologian Karl Barth can seem to be something of a pariah due to many places in his dogmatics where he appears to depart from traditional Protestant, … Continue reading

Posted in American evangelicalism, Biblical interpretation, Critiques of Karl Barth, Election, Evangelical theology, Karl Barth, Predestination, Reformed theology, Revelation, Scripture, Sola Scriptura, Theological methodology, Word of God

The Urgent Task of Waiting: Blumhardt and Barth on the World-Shaking Power of Patient Expectancy (Reformission Monday)

Reformission Monday is the time when I pause from writing in reformission to reflect on reformission itself. Reformission aims at fulfilling the church’s commission through reformation and renewal, bringing the gospel of Jesus Christ to bear on every sphere of human thought, … Continue reading

Posted in Church history, Karl Barth, Kingdom of God, Missiology, Mission & evangelism, Prayer, Reformission, Spiritual warfare

God’s Speech is His Act: On the Contemporaneity, Power, and Unicity of the Word of God (with reference to Karl Barth)

By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and by the breath of his mouth all their host…For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm. (Psalm 33:6, 9) In the beginning was … Continue reading

Posted in Five Solas, Karl Barth, Protestant theology, Reformation, Scripture, Sola Scriptura, Sovereignty of God, Word of God