By John Piper
Just like the others during this sequence of biographical books, this one includes sketches of the lives of 3 ancient christian leaders besides dialogue of classes the reader can study from each one. the lads whose lifestyles tales are featured during this quantity are Athanasius, John Owen, and J. Gresham Machen, who every one defended fact within the Christian controversies in their day.
The advent of Contending for Our All is a security of these who struggle for "the fact and which means of the gospel" while the reality of the gospel is at stake. the explanation this security has to be made is that "[i]n all ages there's a type of one who attempts to reduce the significance of truth-dening and truth-defending controversy through asserting that prayer, worship, evangelism, missions, and dependence at the Holy Spirit are extra important...."
Of direction, these items are vital, yet all of them rely on transparent instructing of foundational truths. As Piper explains,
"I love the eagerness for religion and prayer and evangelism and worship in the back of these statements. but if they're used to belittle gospel-defining, gospel-defending controversy they chunk the hand that feeds them. Christ-exalting prayer won't live on in an environment the place the maintenance and rationalization and vindication of the instructing of the Bible concerning the prayer-hearing God are devalued. Evangelism and international missions needs to feed at the reliable nutrition of well-grounded, unambiguous, wealthy gospel fact with the intention to maintain braveness and self assurance within the face of afflictions and fake religions. and company worship might be diluted with cultural substitutes the place the deep, transparent, biblical contours of God's glory are usually not noticeable and protected from ever-encroaching error."
Athanasius, Owen and Machen all understood how excessive the stakes have been within the controversies in their occasions. they didn't love controversy for controversy's sake, yet all of them understood how very important definite truths are to the well-being of the church, in order that they contended for the reality out of love--"love to Christ, his church, and his world."
Athansius defended the deity of Christ opposed to the Arians long ago within the fourth century. every now and then, so much of Christendom stood opposed to him. For greater than 40 years--all of his grownup life--Athanasius fought for the reality of Christ's deity, even supposing for far of that point, these in strength have been operating to eliminate him, exiling him 5 occasions. ultimately, besides the fact that, the orthodoxy Athanasius fought for gained out, even though he didn't reside to work out the profitable consequence of his work.
John Owen, a Puritan pastor of the 1600s, wrote to safeguard opposed to mistakes that reduced the gospel. He labored demanding to uphold the reality all through his complete existence, regardless of the heartbreak that got here from burying all 11 of his teenagers. His writings comprise, between different issues, defenses of the doctrines of perseverance of the saints and certain atonement.
J. Gresham Machen did his contending within the first 1/2 the final century, status opposed to the blunders of liberal Christianity. His most vital paintings used to be Christianity and Liberalism. My favourite tale approximately Machen is that this one. As he lay loss of life, he despatched a telegram to his buddy John Murry that acknowledged, "I am so grateful for [the] lively obedience of Christ. No wish with no it." you'll want to love a guy who reveals his convenience in loss of life within the doctrine of the imputation of Christ's righteousness.
John Piper attracts out many classes for us from the lives of those 3 males who contended for the reality opposed to fake educating, yet his significant lesson is this:
"Faithful Christians don't love controversy; they love peace. They love their brothers and sisters who disagree with them. They lengthy for a standard brain for the reason for Christ. yet they're certain through their moral sense and by means of the observe of God, for this very cause, to aim to cajole the church about the fullness of the reality and wonder of God's word."
I love biographies and that i love church background, so I enjoyed Contending for Our All. even if, when you are searching for specific existence tales such as you might locate in such a lot biographies, you can be upset. but when you need to research classes from the lives of those old figures of the church, classes for you to practice on your existence now in our occasions, this e-book will fit you good.
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Extra info for Contending for Our All: Defending Truth and Treasuring Christ in the Lives of Athanasius, John Owen, and J. Gresham Machen (The Swans Are Not Silent, Book 4)
Lviii. R. P. C. Hanson, The Search for the Christian Doctrine of God: The Arian Controversy (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1988), pp. xviii-xix. 8 See the chapter on “The Council of Constantinople” in Robert Letham, The Holy Trinity: In Scripture, History, Theology, and Worship (Phillipsburg, NJ: P&R, 2004), pp. 167-183. qxd 9/19/07 2:21 PM Page 43 Contending for Christ Contra Mundum 43 Athanasius. D. 319. A deacon in Alexandria named Arius, who had been born in 256 in Libya, presented a letter to Bishop Alexander arguing that if the Son of God were truly a Son, he must have had a beginning.
And from Egypt Athanasius wielded his empire-wide influence in the battle for the deity of Christ. NPNF, 4:xx. , p. xx. qxd 48 9/19/07 2:21 PM Page 48 CONTENDING FOR OUR ALL Athanasius, the Desert Monks, and Antony We’ve passed over one crucial and decisive event in his role as Alexander’s assistant. He made a visit with Alexander to the Thebaid, the desert district in southern Egypt where he came in contact with the early desert monks, the ascetics who lived lives of celibacy, solitude, discipline, prayer, simplicity, and service to the poor.
Most of the bishops who had signed the Creed of Nicaea did not like calling people heretics, even if they disagreed with this basic affirmation of Christ’s deity. They wanted to get rid of Athanasius and his passion for this cause. Athanasius was accused of levying illegal taxes. There were accusations that he was too young when ordained, that he used magic, that he subsidized treasonable persons, and more. Constantine did not like Athanasius’s hard line either and called him to Rome in 331 to face the charges the bishops were bringing.