Category Archives: Karl Barth

The Danger of a Respectable Gospel: Karl Barth on the Greatest Threat to the Preaching of the Cross (Reformission Monday)

Many are the obstacles that we as a church face when we obey Christ’s commission to be his witnesses to the ends of the earth. Depending on where we are and those with whom we speak, we may encounter opposition, resistance, indifference, derision, … Continue reading

Posted in Gospel, Karl Barth, Missiology, Mission & evangelism, Preaching, Reformission, Theologia crucis | 2 Comments

Not By Bread Alone: Karl Barth on the Word of God as the Divine Determination of All Humanity

Sometimes when presenting the gospel, it is all too easy to speak as though an act of faith or an existential decision play some sort of determinative role in altering the reality of the individuals in question. Appeals are made to … Continue reading

Posted in Election, Gospel, Judgment of God, Karl Barth, Kingdom of God, Missiology, Mission & evangelism, Pope Francis, Preaching, Word of God | Leave a comment

The Christological Limits of Our Knowledge of God: Karl Barth on the Primacy of Christ in Theology

Many people are critical of Karl Barth’s insistence on not simply a Christocentric approach to biblical interpretation and theology (something that, as Richard Muller has shown, is pervasive in the Reformed tradition) but a Christo-constricted approach. That is, instead of … Continue reading

Posted in Biblical interpretation, Christology, Critiques of Karl Barth, Karl Barth, Scripture, Theological methodology, Theological science, Word of God | 1 Comment

The Reformed Theology of T.F. Torrance

Last week, Bobby Grow offered some thoughts on his blog The Evangelical Calvinist about his experiences in the infamous “Reformed Pub” discussion group on Facebook after he had been permanently expelled. I can empathize, not because I myself have been banned from the Pub (though I … Continue reading

Posted in Bobby Grow, Classic Calvinism, Confessions, Evangelical Calvinism, Karl Barth, Reformed theology, T.F. Torrance, Word of God

The Impossible Possibility: Karl Barth on the Paradoxical Relation between Grace and Unbelief

In talking with someone about my recent post on why a commitment to universal atonement, at least as articulated by T.F. Torrance, does not entail a corresponding commitment to universal salvation, I was reminded of how counterintuitive this seems, especially to … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Doctrine of sin, Evangelical Calvinism, Karl Barth, Kingdom of God, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Sin and evil, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Universalism, Word of God | 2 Comments

True Ecumenism: Pope Francis and the Centrality of Jesus Christ

As of late I have written a number of articles that address the now 500 year old division between the Roman Catholic and Protestant Churches. I have been largely critical of what I see in the Catholic Church as standing … Continue reading

Posted in Church history, Ecumenism, Karl Barth, Martin Luther, Pope Francis, Protestantism, Reformation, Roman Catholicism | 2 Comments

No Secular Sphere: Karl Barth on the Universal Claim of the Word of God (Reformission Monday)

For today’s edition of ‘Reformission Monday’, I would like to offer a reflection, inspired by Karl Barth, on the universal claim that the Word of God has made and continues to make on every aspect of human life and culture … Continue reading

Posted in Eschatology, Gospel, John Webster, Karl Barth, Kingdom of God, Mission & evangelism, Preaching, Reformission, Sovereignty of God, Word of God | 2 Comments

God Was In Christ: Karl Barth on the Significance of God’s Being in his Act of Reconciliation

While explaining, in a recent post, why T.F. Torrance considered the traditional Calvinist doctrine of limited atonement to involve an implicit heretical Christology (Nestorianism, to be precise), I touched on the critical importance of Scripture’s affirmation that “God was in Christ … Continue reading

Posted in Apostle Paul, Christology, Five points of Calvinism, Gospel, Heresy/Heterodoxy, Incarnation, Karl Barth, Love of God, Reformed theology, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Trinity

How Not to Read the Bible: Modalist Edition

In this edition of “How Not to Read the Bible” (a series in which so far I have only written one article), I look at one of the fundamental interpretative errors that leads to the heresy of modalism, the notion … Continue reading

Posted in Biblical interpretation, Doctrine of God, Heresy/Heterodoxy, Karl Barth, Natural theology, Scripture, T.F. Torrance, Theological methodology, Trinity, Word of God

Reforming Calvinism: Why the Doctrine of Limited Atonement Implies a Heretical Christology

T.F. Torrance is known to have criticized the traditional Calvinist doctrine of limited atonement (i.e. that Christ died in an efficacious way only for the elect) on the basis of its implicit Nestorianism, the early Christological heresy, condemned by the … Continue reading

Posted in Atonement, Christology, Church history, Classic Calvinism, Election, Evangelical Calvinism, Five points of Calvinism, Heresy/Heterodoxy, Incarnation, Karl Barth, Orthodoxy, Patristic theology, Predestination, Reformed theology, Reforming Calvinism, Soteriology, T.F. Torrance, Vicarious humanity of Christ | 10 Comments