Monthly Archives: February 2017

Theology Gals | Episode 3 | Catechism and Confession

On this episode of Theology Gals Coleen and Ashley discuss confessionalism, the purpose and benefits of Confessions and Catechisms.
Episode Resources:
A creed is a brief statement of faith used to list important truths, to clarify doctrinal points and to distinguish truth from error. Creeds are usually worded to be easily memorized. The word creed comes from the Latin word credo, meaning, “I believe.” The Bible contains a number of creed-like passages. For example, Jews used the Shema, based on Deuteronomy 6:4-9, as a creed. Paul wrote simple creed-like statements in 1 Corinthians 8:6; 12:3 and 15:3-4. 1 Timothy 3:16 also appears as a creed, a concise statement of belief

“God’s Word as confessed (theology, piety, and practice) by the Reformed churches.” R. Scott Clark

Regarding the reformed confessions:

“These are the ecclesiastical summaries of the Christian faith in the Reformed tradition. In these documents, the churches expressed their official interpretation of God’s Word on those things they considered most essential. This is how the churches intend for you to learn theology (doctrine), piety (prayer, worship), and practice (the Christian life). Start with the Heidelberg Catechism (1563), the Belgic Confession (1561), and the Canons of Dort (1619). See also the Westminster Confession (1648), the Westminster Shorter Catechism (1648), and the Westminster Larger Catechism (1648).” (This link offers resources on discovering the reformed confessions.)

“The Latin slogan sola scriptura means “by Scripture alone,” not “Scripture alone” (solo scriptura)5 For example, both Lutheran and Reformed churches regard the ecumenical creeds, along with their own confessions and catechisms, as authoritative and binding summaries of Scripture, to which they are all subordinate” – Michael Horton, The Christian Faith

“As Reformed Christians, we profess to believe that the confessions (for me, the Three Forms of Unity equally with the Westminster Standards) are a faithful summary and interpretation of the main tenets of the Word of God. The confessions are our roadmaps for the sometimes rugged biblical terrain. If so, we should never shelve the confessions as an obstacle to unity or evangelism or whatever we want to do without those pesky old documents getting in our way–all of these things are both ‘doctrinal’ and ‘practical’ issues.

“Maybe one good way to avoid noncofessionalism among the contemporary Reformed is to cultivate an appreciation for the theology of the confessions as they relate the historic Reformed understanding of Scripture to what we actually- individually- believe. For one thing, the confessions are consensus documents agreed upon by the Church, yes, but they are my confession of faith, too. They don’t contain everything I believe to be contained in the Christian faith, and of course they’re not perfect (they aren’t Scripture itself), but they hit all of the most important things dead on, and in a powerful and engaging way, and they call upon us to do the same…which is one of their most important functions.Another function, as John Webster suggests above, is that when we personally and as a community affirm the confessions, we testify clearly to the redeeming work in history which God has accomplished in Christ and applies to us by the Holy Spirit. By confessing we claim that this basic biblical content, summarized faithfully but not perfectly by this Spirit-led community on our pilgrim journey, answers the questions, “What must I believe to be saved? What is my proper response to so great a salvation?” It is our communal (covenantal) ‘answering back’ after God calls us to himself in Christ by the same Word that we confess in summary in the confessions. It is also our clear and united testimony before a watching world, and within a Church badly in need of biblical and theolog…

Theology Gals Episode 2 | Calvinism

On this episode Coleen and Ashley discuss Calvinism, what it is, why we believe it, it's history and some wrong ideas about it.


Episode Resources:
Five Points of Calvinism TULIP

Total depravity: Our bondage to sin in Adam is complete in its extensiveness, though not in its intensity. In other words, we’re not as bad as we can possibly be, but original sin has thoroughly corrupted every aspect of our existence — including the will.

Unconditional election: Out of his lavish grace, the Father chose out of the fallen race a people from every race to be redeemed through his Son and united to his Son by his Spirit. This determination was made in eternity, apart from anything foreseen in the believer.  

Limited Atonement or Particular redemption, definite atonement: Christ’s death is sufficient for the whole world, but secured the redemption of the elect.

Irresistible Grace or Effectual grace: The Holy Spirit unites sinners to Christ through the gospel and faith is the effect, not the cause, of the new birth.

Perseverance of the saints: All of those chosen, redeemed, and regenerated will be given the gift of persevering faith, so that not one will be lost.

*Definitions taken from For Calvinism by Michael Horton

TULIP and Reformed Theology R.C. Sproul

The Origins of Calvinism by Joel Beeke

The Canons of Dort

What we believe about the five points of Calvinism by John Piper

TULIP and Reformed Theology: An Introduction by RC Sproul

Limited Atonement by R Scott Clark

Regeneration Precedes Faith by RC Sproul
For further reading, suggested books on Calvinism:
Putting Amazing Back Into Grace by Michael Horton

For Calvinism by Michael Horton

Calvinism: A History DG Hart

The Potter's Freedom James White

Five Points John Piper

The Doctrines of Grace: Rediscovering the Evangelical Gospel James Montgomery Boice, Philip Graham Ryken

Episode Music from Castle Pines

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Theology Gals | Episode 1 | Women and Theology

Introducing Theology Gals.
Meet Coleen and Ashley. On this episode the ladies discuss why theology is important for women too.
Check out Coleen’s article, Theology is for Women Too
Episode Resources:
“Whether you realize it or not, you are a theologian. You come to a book like this with a working theology, an existing understanding of God. Whether you are an agnostic or a fundamentalist — or something in between — you have a working theology that shapes and informs the way you think and live. However, I suspect that you are reading this book because you’re interested in examining your theology more closely. You are open to having it challenged and strengthened. You know that theology — the study of God — is more than an intellectual hobby. It’s a matter of life and death, something that affects the way you think, the decisions you make each day, the way you relate to God and other people, and the way you see yourself and the world around you.”
― Michael S. Horton, Pilgrim Theology: Core Doctrines for Christian Disciples

“Many Christians assume that we can just experience God in a personal relationship apart from doctrine, but that’s impossible. You cannot experience God without knowing who he is, what he has done, and who you are in relation to him. Even our most basic Christian experiences and commitments are theological. “I just love Jesus,” some say. But who is Jesus? And why do you love him?”
― Michael S. Horton, Pilgrim Theology: Core Doctrines for Christian Disciples

Reasons to study theology:

1 To know God, the object of our worship, the one we are to love

2 For discernment and protecting ourselves from false doctrine

3 For obedience

4 For comfort and wisdom in trials

5 To defend our faith

Acts 17:11 Now these were more noble-minded than those in Thessalonica, for they received the word with great eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see whether these things were so.

Philippians 1:9-10 And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ;

Hebrews 5:14 “But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.”

Discernment Sites

These sites have articles about various women teachers:

Berean Research

Michelle Lesley

Wise in His Eyes

Women can join our Facebook Group Theology Gals-Ladies Theology Discussion and Encouragement
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On Instagram theologygals
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