SATAN’S FIRST CENTURY BINDING (1)

Satan falling 1PMW 2020-075 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

The Christian worldview recognizes the reality of the spirit world. We certainly believe in God “who is a spirit” (John 4:24) and in the Third Person of the Trinity, the “Holy Spirit” (Matt. 28:19). Even we ourselves are compounds of spirit and body (Gen. 2:7; James 2:26), so that when we die “the dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it” (Eccl. 12:7; cp. Matt. 10:28).

We also know of angels who are spirit-beings created by God to do his will: “Of the angels he saith, Who makes his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire” (Heb. 1:7). Some of these angels are holy, elect angels always serving God in righteousness (Luke 9:26; 1 Tim. 5:21). Others are fallen angels who resist God, determining to do evil against us (Luke 8:2; 1 Tim. 4:1). They have as their ruler, Satan the chief of the fallen angels (Matt. 25:41; Mark 2:22). Continue reading

IS REV 20 A REPETITION OF REV 12 (2)?

RepeatPMW-2020-074 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

In my last article I introduced my rebuttal to the notion that Rev 20:1–3 (the binding of Satan) recapitulates Rev 12:7ff (Satan’s casting out of heaven). Recapitulation is a common feature within Revelation. But it does not appear everywhere that some think it does.

In this article I am continuing my response to G. K. Beale who argues for recapitulation on Rev 20:1–3. Continue reading

IS REV 20 A REPETITION OF REV 12 (1)?

Circle arrowPMW-2020-073 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Revelation is a powerful, intriguing, and confusing book. Some of the confusion arises from its internal structure. John often engages in recapitulation, that is, rehearsing earlier visions in later portions of his work. However, he does not always recapitulate his material.

One significant area of concern for proper interpretation involves the question as to whether Rev. 20:1–3 recapitulates Rev. 12:7ff regarding Satan’s judgment. Continue reading

IN THE SPACE OF SIX PAGES (3)

god-and-creationPMW 2020-072 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

In this article I am concluding a three-part study of a Reformed writer’s attempt to re-interpret the Westminster Confession of Faith’s statement on six day creation. The paper I am critiquing was written by Dr. Lee Irons.

Irons complains: “assuming that these men almost universally held to a young earth, logically we cannot conclude that the Confession itself affirms or requires the young earth position.” In response we should note:

(1) Irons’ choice of terms unfortunately tends to bias his readers against Hall’s work: once again he speaks of “assuming” something. Hall does not assume the young earth perspective of the divines: he provides what Irons himself calls “a catalogue of quotes”; that is, he documents their views. Continue reading

IN THE SPACE OF SIX PAGES (2)

six-daysPMW 2020-071 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

This is the second in a three-part series on the creation statement in the Westminster Confession of Faith. Six-day creation is an embarrassment to many evangelical and Reformed theologians. It is such an embarrassment that some will even re-interpret historic Reformed statements on the matter. One such re-working of the meaning of the Confession has been attempted by Reformed theological writer Lee Irons. Let’s continue my critique of his effort.

Irons opens his actual response to Hall’s research in the writings of the Westminster divines with this rather surprising comment, a comment that exposes a fundamental flaw in Irons’ effort: Continue reading

IN THE SPACE OF SIX PAGES (1)

creation-beginningPMW 2020-070 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

The power of God and the clarity of his revelation are on trial in the courtroom of Reformed theological opinion. Despite the clarity of the statement on creation in the venerable Westminster Confession of Faith, some theologians attempt to re-interpret it to allow for evolution. In this three part series I will analyze one effort to this end.

Lee Irons has provided us with a Framework Interpretation response to David Hall’s important speech to the PCA General Assembly a few years back. In that speech Hall dealt with the Confessional meaning of creation “in the space of six days.” In his response titled “In the Space of Six Days: What Did the Divines Mean?”1 Irons mounts a vigorous assault on Hall’s historical research into the original meaning of the Confession of Faith’s statement. Continue reading

IS SIX-DAY CREATION NAIVE FUNDAMENTALISM?

PMW 2020-069 by Kenneth L. Gentry, Jr.

Many academic evangelicals decry Six-day Creation as naive fundamentalism. They reject it as beneath the dignity of serious exegetical theology. Of course, this is quite mistaken. For a compelling, sophisticated exegetical argument can be made in defense of this view.

As a Reformed Christian trained in exegetical theology, I do not tenaciously hold to an approach to Scripture more in keeping with a “naive fundamentalism.” Rather my view of creation continues an exegetical tradition with a well-argued, long-standing, traditional orthodoxy — an orthodoxy including many noteworthy biblical and exegetical scholars from the past and the present.

Though counting noses is not the way to argue a theological point, I do want to point to many world-class scholars who have held and continue to hold to Six-day Creation. Continue reading