At this year’s Reformation Heritage Conference, Carl Trueman recently gave a series of lectures and sermons detailing the German Reformation and addressing the role of tradition and history within the life of the believer. He first discussed the heart of the German Reformation along with its key figure, Martin Luther. His characterization of Luther is quite informative and entertaining. Recalling one bit of history, Trueman tells the story of Luther’s cold response to the news that Ulrich Zwingli, leader of the Swiss Reformation, had been killed on the battlefield. Reformation history is Trueman’s bread and butter. His lectures are engaging and quite helpful in grasping a world that is not far removed from our own.
In the final three messages, Trueman dispells the false dichotomy between the bible and tradition. He talks about the faulty reasoning present in the argument that there is no place for tradition when it comes to the bible and christian living. Many people claim that all they need is the bible and that’s it. Forget about tradition or history. Yet they are fooling themselves by believing that tradition and history had nothing to do with the interpretation of Scripture that went into the translated bible they hold so dear. Trueman makes this point crystal clear.
The six messages are not only beneficial to the church historian or historical theologian but to every Christian who desires to live faithfully by the Word of God for the glory of God. It is a call to examine our past so that we might better engage the present. Listen to all six and be blessed.
Today I began listening to the recorded sessions from the Convergent Conference at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. Let me just say that so far they are stellar. I have listened to the first three and now wish I would’ve been in attendance. J.D. Greear is soon to become one of my new favorite preachers. He gave some great examples of how to better serve your community. Ed Stetzer did a great job of reminding us of the inherent relevance of the gospel. I thought the highlight of his message came when he distinguished between changing modes and changing theology. The methods of reaching out and sharing the gospel can and inevitably will change as culture changes. However, the message of the gospel is timeless and not subject to the popular notions of the day. This is where the most extreme manifestation of the emergent church has gotten it wrong. Stetzer’s discussion naturally led itself into Mark Driscoll’s session. He gave an overview of his life and ministry and then explained the three streams of the emerging church: relevants, revisionists, and reformed.
These messages are quite possibly the best I have heard on the subject of the emerging church, cultural engagement, and differing methods. They are so good that I’m going to post them all here so you can have easy access to them. And if you are an iTunes user you can download all of the audio directly at the Southeastern podcast.
Last fall Dr. Carl Trueman gave a series of lectures at the Theology for All Conference entitled Church and Theology Today: What is Really at Stake? Dr. Trueman is currently the Professor of Historical Theology and Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia. His lectures discussed many issues concerning the church and theology including the disconnect between our theology and history/tradition, challenges to faith today, and what a theological church should look like. What I gained from these lectures is a different perspective on these issues from the view of a church historian. That being said, I commend them to you.
1. Theology and Everyday Life: The Reformation and Beyond
2. Contemporary Challenges to Theology and Church Life
3. What should a theological church look like?
4. Q & A
I listened to these messages today at the prompting of my wife. What exactly is she hinting at? Seriously though, it is probably one of the most interesting sermons I have heard in a while. The preacher is Paul Matthies from The Village Church in Highland Village, TX. He submits that gluttony is deeper than external appearances. He contends that it is a heart issue that may be present in large and small people alike. It deals with an attitude of selfishness. Listen and comment for yourself.