Heidelcast 152: Calls On Church History, Theocracy, Biblical Languages, Final Salvation Through Works, Jesus’ Faith, And Civil Disobedience

It is time for the monthly Heidelcast call-in show and, as always, we have thoughtful and interesting questions on how to learn church history (and what to read), whether I agree with the 1646 edition of the Westminster Confession of Faith or the American revision of 1788, on studying the biblical languages, on turning the means of salvation into the instrument of salvation (i.e., the doctrine of the so-called “final salvation through works”), on the difference between Jesus’ faith and ours, and how to sort through responsibility to the civil magistrates when the “lesser magistrate” (Calvin’s term) is more strict than the superior magistrate (e.g., the governor of Texas) regarding re-opening. This month the Heidelcast is sending a copy of Faithful and Fruitful: Essays for Elders and Deacons to Ben Badgley for his question on church history. Congratulations Ben! We will be in touch with you to arrange shipping. The subtitle says that the book is for elders and deacons and some of the chapters are intended specifically for them, but there are a number of essays that apply directly to all Christians, e.g., on prayer, catechesis (Christian instruction), witness, taking care of and evaluating pastors, how to serve on a search committee, on congregational singing, and promoting the work of missions. Yours truly contributed two chapters to this volume.

Call the Heidelphone anytime at (760) 618-1563. Leave a message or email us us a voice memo from your phone and we may use it in a future podcast. Give us a call. The plan is to do another call-in show next week. We are giving away copies of Baptism, Election, and the Covenant of Grace to every caller on the show. You are welcome to send us a voice memo from your smart phone. Record it and email it to Heidelcast at heidelcast dot net.

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  1. You mentioned in this podcast that Christians have from antiquity been labelled as followers of Christ, vs. “Little Christs”. Since listening to this podcast, I’ve come across some quotes by Luther, translated that we are “Little Christs” or “Little Saviors”. Is that where this idea originates from? I’m assuming that the current idea “W
    e have the same mission as Christ”, is very different that what Luther meant?

    • Yes, I think Luther was saying this:

      32. But why are you called a Christian?

      Because by faith I am a member of Christ and thus a partaker of His anointing, in order that I also may confess His Name, may present myself a living sacrifice of thankfulness to Him, and that with a free conscience I may fight against sin and the devil in this life, and hereafter in eternity reign with Him over all creatures.

      Distinguish the Christ from Christians:

      31. Why is He called CHRIST, that is Anointed?

      Because He is ordained of God the Father and anointed with the Holy Spirit to be our chief Prophet and Teacher, who has fully revealed to us the secret counsel and will of God concerning our redemption; and our only High Priest, who by the one sacrifice of His body, has redeemed us, and ever lives to make intercession for us with the Father; and our eternal King, who governs us by His Word and Spirit and defends and preserves us in the redemption obtained for us.

      Some Pentecostalists make themselves into “little Christs” as if they were Saviors so too the moralists who talk as if we are little saviors.

  2. Just to give a quick note to what I said on episode 148, Ussher also said that ministry students should know some Chaldean in addition to Greek, Hebrew, and some Syriac. A transcription of the manuscript where Ussher gave this advice is set to be published in the 2020 issue of Confessional Presbyterian Journal for those who are interested.

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