Monthly Archives: July 2011

Robert L. Reymond on Apologetics and Theology

Noted scholar and theologian, Robert L. Reymond has written several books on theology, church history and biblical preaching. Ten of his books are available through Christian Focus Publications. Learn more about Robert L. Reymond by reading his author profile here at Christian Focus Book Notes.

Books by Robert L. Reymond on Apologetics & Theology:

Faith’s Reasons for Believing

Using extensive Biblical references, Reymond takes us on a comprehensive tour of why it is possible for belief to exist as a result of knowledge in the Christian faith. He gives us both reasons for believing in key aspects of the Christian faith and a defense of the presuppositional apologetic method.

“Militant Atheistic writers are making an all-out assault on the Christian faith today – they speak of ours as a ‘mindless Christianity’ – and as a result many people today, including many scientists and many poorly taught Christians, would think it very strange to talk about faith’s reasons for believing, for if there is one thing not understood today about biblical faith it is that it eschews any and all anti-intellectual, fidelistic ‘leaps’ of faith. But according to scripture “saving faith” is grounded in the knowledge of propositional truths about Jesus Christ.” ~ Robert L. Reymond

Learn more about this book at


Contending for the Faith: Lines in the sand that strengthen the Church

“Contending for the Faith” offers a selection of Reymond’s papers in the areas of Systematic Theology and Apologetics. The one thing these articles generally have in common is their apologetic flavor, that is to say, each in its own way contends for the Biblical and Reformed Faith. Many of these papers have never been previously published.

Robert offers them to a broader readership as they address topics that are, in many cases, being debated within the Church at large today. We are given unique insights into a huge range of subjects from Creation to Lord’s Day Observance, from the Trinity to Islam. This is a hugely significant contribution to the defense of the Christian Faith that makes points that are difficult to ignore.

“With customary thoroughness and exacting exegesis, Professor Reymond leads us through a maze of theological topics which call out for a clear biblical perspective in our day. His guiding principle is that God can be glorified in our theological reflection only as we listen to the teaching of his authoritative Word. Reymond is a much-needed prophetic voice in our day, calling us to pay attention to ‘Thus says the Lord.” ~ Iain D Campbell, Minister, Point Free Church of Scotland, Isle of Lewis

Learn more about this book at


What Is God? An investigation of the perfections of God’s nature

God has been downgraded! Can you recognize the God of the Bible from what churches say? Many seem to think that God is limited, primitive and unenlightened. Can you recognize God from scientific announcements? Many scientists are boxed into a self limiting corner, only thinking in exclusively materialistic ways and limiting possibilities open to previous generations of ground breaking scientific endeavor. Can you recognize God from the media? here religion is only news so long as someone is using God’s name in reprehensible way. So it is surprising then, that many people do not know what God is like? The apostle Paul said that everyone on some level already knows that God exists (even atheists!). So the more important question exists but ‘What is God’ This is the question that Robert Reymond sets out to answer in his book.

“..this is theology at its core – the very doctrine of God – and theology at it’s best, informative, challenging, readable. It should be widely read.” ~ Dr S. Westcott

Learn more about this book at


The Reformation’s Conflict With Rome: Why It Must Continue
Written in an inoffensive yet honest way, Robert Reymond has studied the essential divisions between Roman Catholics and the Reformed church to find out the real issues and points of conflict.

Reymond looks at historical watersheds of doctrine, the development of Roman Catholic authority and contemporary attempts at rapprochement (including ‘Evangelicals and Catholics Together’ and Robert Sungenis’ ‘Not by Faith Alone’). In doing so he helps us understand the great truths of salvation worked out through the sacrifice of Jesus, the Messiah.

“Dr Reymond clearly demonstrates in this monograph that there are serious doctrinal differences between the Roman catholic teaching and Biblical Christianity… I am confident the reader will find this work clear, fair and accurate. I highly commend its close reading” ~ R C Sproul, Founder & Chairman of Ligonier Ministries, Orlando, Florida

Learn more about this book at

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Robert L. Reymond on Preaching and Biblical Interpretation

Noted scholar and theologian, Robert L. Reymond has written several books on theology, church history and biblical preaching. Ten of his books are available through Christian Focus Publications. Learn more about Robert L. Reymond by reading his author profile here at Christian Focus Book Notes.

Books by Robert L. Reymond on Preaching & Biblical Interpretation:

The God-centered Preacher: Developing A Pulpit Ministry Approved by God

Walk into most Christian churches in the western world today and the chances of you hearing a biblically relevant message is, to be polite slim. Even churches claiming to be evangelical or reformed to often tend towards market led, comforting talks on the one hand and impenetrable, jargon filled theological lectures on the other. How can preachers maintain a sensible balance? Roberts Reymond has trained hundreds of pastors and has an intimate understanding of the areas where preachers are inclined to fail He often points to 8 qualities that all pastors should aspire to in their ministries, qualities that are all to often lacking.

“I would highly recommend this book to preachers. The theological points are well argued and very relevant to our own day. It is the sort of book that one may refer to time and again, benefiting from studying individual chapters. Above all the emphasis that preaching and worship should be God-centered and God-glorifying is refreshing.” ~ Evangelical Times

Learn more about this book at


The Lamb of God: The Bible’s unfolding revelation of Sacrifice

The central theme of Holy Scripture is the unfolding revelation of its doctrinal teaching on Jesus as the ‘slain Lamb of God’. The doctrine of Jesus as God’s slain lamb runs like a thick cable from Genesis to Revelation binding the entirety of Scripture together. Indeed Revelation 13:8 speaks of Jesus as the lamb who was slain from the creation of the world, while 1 Peter 1:19-20 speaks of the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect who was chosen before the creation of the world.

Reymond examines the biblical depictions concerning the Lamb of God – illuminating to us the central place that the suffering of the Messiah as God’s lamb occupies in God’s eternal purpose and earths history. Christ’s Lamb work is to be found throughout the Old and New Testaments and its pivotal importance for each of our lives is explored in depth. Challenging, absorbing and full of spiritual nourishment Robert Reymond has produced a unique devotional study.

Learn more about this book at


Jesus Divine Messiah: The New and Old Testament Witness

What does the Bible REALLY say about Jesus? Jesus Divine Messiah is a comprehensive source for all the evidence in the Bible concerning the divinity of Jesus by a scholar of international reputation. It is an updated and combined volume of Robert Reymond’s two previous books on the subject.

“Takes great care to analyze various critical views of recent vintage and to show how they fail to give us a consistent picture of Christ. Probably not since H.P. Liddon’s The Divinity of our Lord (1867) has such a massive defense of the deity of Jesus appeared in print. Dr. Reymond worthily functions in the train of Vos, Warfield, and Machen” ~ Roger Nicole, Late Professor of Theology, Emeritus, Reformed Theological Seminary, Orlando, Florida

Learn more about this book at

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Interview with Brian Cosby

We recently had the opportunity to speak with Christian Focus author Brian Cosby. Brian has written John Bunyan: Journey of a Pilgrim (CF4K, 2009) and David Brainerd: A Love for the Lost (CF4K, 2011) in the Trailblazers series.

Click here if you can’t see the video in your RSS reader.

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Robert L. Reymond on Church History & Biblical Theology

Noted scholar and theologian, Robert L. Reymond has written several books on theology, church history and biblical preaching. Ten of his books are available through Christian Focus Publications. Learn more about Robert L. Reymond by reading his author profile here at Christian Focus Book Notes.

Books by Robert L. Reymond on Church History & Biblical Theology:

John Calvin: His Life And Influence

Robert Reymond brings us John Calvin the man. A reality quite different from the caricature often painted today. Here is a man of deep spirituality with a real love for his fellow man and God. A man also with tremendous intellectual abilities. Whether the moniker ‘stern Calvinist’ is applicable or not – his life has much to teach us.

“…sheds new light on a famous and familiar name. His writing style is scholarly and authoritative… intensely interesting reading.” ~ D. James Kennedy, Late Pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church, Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Learn more about this book at


Paul, Missionary Theologian: A Survey of his Missionary Labours and Theology

A compelling presentation of Paul’s theology enriched by insights from the field of Systematic theology. It is biographical, theological, geographical, missiological, historical, hermeneutical, inspirational!

“Helps students of the Bible to grasp the historical sequence of Paul’s missionary work and introduces the main themes of Paul’s teaching about God’s work in his Son… Of particular note is a serious defence of the now generally abandoned view that Paul was the author of Hebrews.” ~ Douglas Moo, Professor of New Testament, Wheaton College Graduate School, Wheaton, Ilinois

Learn more about this book at


John – Beloved Disciple: A Survey of his theology

Examines the themes, concepts and theology of John in his gospel, his letters, and in Revelation. A superb analysis of the writings and theology of the books written by John. Reymond also responds to the two modern theologies of Bultmann and Kaseman.

“Having whetted our appetite with his excellent book Paul, Missionary Theologian, we are now further in the debt of the publisher through the publication of this work on John. Reymond is a significant scholar in the Reformed tradition but above all he is a biblical theologian. Indeed, he is quite prepared to be critical of the tradition if he believes that the biblical evidence justifies it. This book is the result of detailed and painstaking study and yet it remains accessible and useful to all who have a serious interest in Scripture.” ~ ATB McGowan, Minister, East Church of Scotland, Inverness

Learn more about this book at

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July Book Giveaway – Carl Trueman 3 Pack

Our July book giveaway features the Carl Trueman 3 pack, which includes Reformation (Christian Focus, 2011), Minority Report (Mentor, 2007) and The Wages of Spin (Mentor, 2005).

In Reformation;  Yesterday, Today, & Tomorrow Dr. Trueman examines the origins of contemporary Reformed theology in the Reformation world of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. After tracing how this heritage shaped and transformed the intervening period, he then describes some of the major challenges being faced by the evangelical church at the present time and suggests ways of responding which remain faithful to the Scriptures and the theology of the Reformers drawn from it and points towards a future that embraces and disseminates these wonderful doctrines of grace.

Theological essays are dusty, humourless affairs aren’t they? Well, they don’t have to be! This is the second collection of essays by Carl Trueman. His first collection was received with the enthusiasm. This time Chick Lit, Adolf Eichman, the i-pod, Roger Beckwith, the Blues, Watership Down, American Idol, Nietzsche, zen-calvinism, Augustine and ferrets(!) all get a mention.

If you want to inform your mind and chuckle at the same time – Carl’s your man!

Do you have an opinion? There is an increasing tendency in Evangelical circles to regard disagreement in our allegedly post-modern world as inherently oppressive. Too many people sit on the fence and ignore, or are unaware of, the fact that Christianity is an historical religion. As Laurence Peter once said “History repeats itself because nobody listens.” The point of having a debate is not to have a debate and then agree to differ (sitting around in a mutually affirming love-fest) – the point of debate, as the Apostle Paul clearly demonstrates time and again in the book of Acts, is to establish which position is best.
Carl Trueman’s intends to provoke you with this collection of essays into thinking for yourself and to have an opinion on THINGS THAT MATTER!

Contest Details:

There are five ways to enter the contest. Completing all five of the items listed below will give you five entries into the contest.

  1. Fill out the form at the bottom of this post (Required)
  2. Follow @Christian_Focus on Twitter
  3. Like Christian Focus Publications on Facebook
  4. Write a post about the giveaway on your blog, helping to promote the contest.
  5. Leave a comment on this blog post answering the following question: How can the challenges of the protestant reformation equip us to deal with the challenges we face in the church today?

Terms and Conditions:

  • This contest is limited to residents of the 48 state continental United States and the UK.
  • Contestants may submit five entries as outlined under contest details.
  • We are awarding one prize that includes the three books by Carl Trueman noted above.
  • The contest will run through end of day July 31, 2011.
  • The winner will be announced August 1, 2011.

This contest is now closed. We will be announcing a winner shortly.


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Radio Interview: Carl Trueman – The Janet Mefferd Show

Christian Focus author Carl Trueman was interviewed on the Janet Mefferd Show this past Friday (7/22/2011) about his book Reformation:  Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow. Some of the topics covered in the interview are:

  • the renewed interest in the reformation amongst the young, restless and reformed
  • the beliefs that Luther and Calvin shared in common
  • the issues faced by the reformers that parallel issues faced by the church today
  • the solas and the great confessions of faith

You can download the interview in its entirety here: LINK.
About Carl Trueman:
Carl Trueman is Professor of Historical Theology and Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He has contributed to the Dictionary of Historical Theology, the Dictionary of National Biography, The Cambridge Companion to Reformation Theology and the Blackwell Companion to Modern Theology.

Books by Carl Trueman:

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Reformation Blog Tour

This week we have several bloggers participating in a blog tour for Reformation:  Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow by Carl R. Trueman. Links to the reviews are below:

(Reviews will be linked to above as they go live on the respective blogger’s web sites.)

If you’d like to learn more about Reformation:  Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow, please visit the book detail page at


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Author Profile: Robert L. Reymond

Robert L. Reymond is a Christian theologian of the Protestant Reformed tradition. He is best known for his New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith (1998). Reymond holds B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. degrees from Bob Jones University and did post-doctoral studies at Fuller Seminary, New York University, Union Seminary (New York), Tyndale House, Cambridge, and Rutherford House, Edinburgh. Reymond taught for more than 25 years on the faculties of Covenant Theological Seminary (St. Louis, Missouri) and Knox Theological Seminary (Ft. Lauderdale, Florida), and is now Emeritus Professor of Systematic Theology at Knox Theological Seminary.

Reymond is also an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church in America and the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. He has served on the Presbyterian Church in America’s General Assembly’s Theological Examining Committee, and recently retired from the pastorate of Holy Trinity Presbyterian Church, a young congregation in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

Reymond has lectured in various countries in Europe and the East, and is the author of numerous articles in theological journals and various reference works, as well as more than ten books.

Find a list of available resources by Dr. Reymond at The Gospel Coalition. Also, check out his Sermon Audio page for .mp3s of his sermons and lectures. has a list of several of his books.

Below is a selection of Robert Reymond’s books available through Christian Focus, for a full listing, click here.

Selected Christian Focus Titles from Robert Reymond:

Note: The John Calvin Blog Tour, featuring Reymond’s book on Calvin above, is postponed to the first week of August.


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Notable and Quotable — R.C. Sproul on Satan

The Angel of Light

One of the things that’s most often overlooked about the nature of Satan is his metamorphic character. When we speak of metamorphosis, we speak of that which changes in its outward appearance. For instance, the crawling caterpillar goes through a metamorphosis to become a beautiful butterfly. What I mean in describing Satan as metamorphic is his capacity, as we say in theology, to manifest himself subspecies boni, which literally means “under the auspices of the good”–that far from being the ludicrous character in a red suit and carrying a pitchfork that we talked about in the last chapter, he rather has the capacity to manifest himself as Scripture says, as an angel of light (2 Cor. 11:14). He doesn’t come against us baring fangs, with a hideous visage; rather, he approaches us disguised in beauty, looking attractive. That’s part of the allure of his seductive techniques. If Satan were to manifest himself in a human person, it would not be some horrible, famous, miserably wicked person like Osama bin Laden or Adolf Hitler. Rather, he would come on the stage of history looking like a saint. Satan would try to appear as someone laudable, someone who manifests some kind of righteousness, but of course, he would do it in a hypocritical manner because he is a liar.

Excerpted from Unseen Realities: Heaven, Hell, Angels and Demons by R.C. Sproul (Christian Focus, 2011). A PDF sample of the table of contents and the preface are available here: LINK.

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Notable and Quotable – Kevin DeYoung


Writing a foreword is funny business. Even though I’ve asked plenty of people to write a foreword for my books, now that I’m writing one for someone else I have to stop and think what they’re for. I suppose a foreword is kind of like a big endorsement, a really long one that gets put at the front of the book instead of the back. The prospective reader is meant to think, ‘Hey, would you look at that—some- one I know really likes this book written by someone I’ve never heard of.’ The foreword grabs your attention and makes you say, ‘I’ll give this book a try.’

Herein lies my dilemma with the book in your hands: I should not be writing a foreword for Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. I mean, he never even asked for one! Okay, so the fact he died when I was three years old makes a personal invitation from the great Welsh preacher a bit unlikely. But that’s precisely my point. By standard foreword protocol, the good Doctor should be writing for me. He’s is my elder, my example, my teacher, one of my heroes. It was kind of Christian Focus to ask me to supply a foreword, but there’s a chance this could backfire for them. I can hear it now: ‘Lloyd-Jones I know, but who is DeYoung?’ This is one work where we must hope the foreword writer doesn’t distract the reader from noticing the real author of the book.

Having said all that, let’s imagine by some strange (and most unfortunate) fluke that you’ve read something by Kevin DeYoung and nothing by Martyn Lloyd-Jones. So here you are, reading this foreword, looking for a push over the edge into the canyon of consumer spending. I know the feeling. Let me try to give you a nudge.

Martyn Lloyd-Jones, the medically trained doctor and famous pastor at London’s Westminster Chapel, has been one of the biggest influences on my Christian life and pastoral ministry. Here’s how it went: First I read The Puritans, a collection of his addresses from Puritan and Westminster Conferences. I loved the history and was quickly enthralled with Lloyd-Jones theological acumen. I then poured over his early evangelistic sermons at Aberavon. Then I plowed through his most famous work, Studies in the Sermon on the Mount (a book my wife was reading when we first met—a strong indication I had found the right woman!). Later I read and reread Spiritual Depression. Ditto for Preaching and Preachers. Several other books from the best English-speaking expositor of twentieth century also sit on my shelves.

And I’ll never forget getting Iain Murray’s two volume biography of Lloyd-Jones as a Christmas present while I was still in college. I read it day and night during my break and whenever I got a chance into the spring semester. It was an exhilarating experience, which is saying something for a work that tops out over a thousand pages. Reading about Lloyd-Jones I knew I wanted to preach, and I wanted to preach the same gospel he preached with the same precision, the same fearless passion, and the same unequivocal commitment to the truth of Scripture.

I agreed to write this foreword because it gives me great pleasure to think of a new generation of Christians and ministers finding the same spiritual treasures I’ve found in Lloyd-Jones. If I can lead anyone to Lloyd-Jones I’m glad to have done my part.

A stubborn Welshman, Lloyd-Jones was far from perfect. He too quickly slipped into superlatives and could be too opinionated at times. But anyone who has read his books or heard his sermons (and his books are more or less typed up sermons) will testify that this man was anointed by God to preach the Word. His writing is theologically precise, without being arid. His prose is conversational, yet without being cloying and colloquial. His exegesis is slow and plodding, but never boring. His ability to take a phrase of Scripture and hold it up the light so we can see all the angles and refractions, all the implications and applications, was Piperesque before there was John Piper. His books are spiritual in the best sense of the word.

This particular book is a searching exposition of Psalm 73, that great chapter that starts with doubt, ends in delight, and has God everywhere in between. In the first chapter, Lloyd-Jones hints that this is a book for the ‘battered and beaten,’ for the one who can no longer ‘give the impression that he or she is always walking on the mountain top.’ For anyone who has ever wondered if life is fair, or if God is fair, these sermons will speak to your predicament. The Doctor will apply the balm of Scripture to soothe your soul and strengthen your faith.

And yet, like a good doctor, Lloyd-Jones will also expose our real condition. He had little patience for those who used the fine sounding phrases of Scripture ‘like drugs’ to dull our senses and mask the real problems in our hearts. He always pressed home the hard parts of the Bible, so that by an honest assessment of ourselves we could find grace to help in our time of need. This book is no different. Lloyd- Jones challenges us on everything from thinking spiritually to accepting God’s sovereign discipline in our lives. He calls the Christian away from self-pity and introspection. He rebukes the Christian, on the one hand, for believing he has a right to God’s mercy, and on the other hand, for fearing that God’s mercy will ever let him go. This book has the right mix of affliction for the comfortable and comfort for the afflicted.

So by all means, take advantage of this new book of old sermons. If you haven’t read Martyn Lloyd-Jones before, this is as a good place to start as any. Faith on Trial makes for wonderful devotional reading. It can also be a supplement to your study of Psalm 73. It’s also an engaging, honest look at Christianity perfect for an inquiring non-Christian. The truths are deep, but the approach is accessible. Lloyd-Jones gives you meat, but he cuts it up first.
And yes, the book is better than the foreword. Trust me.

Kevin DeYoung
Senior Pastor, University Reformed Church
East Lansing, Michigan

Excerpted from Faith on Trial:  Psalm 73 by Martyn Lloyd-Jones (Christian Heritage, 2011). A PDF version of the foreword is available here:  LINK

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