Una Introdución a las hermenéuticas para interpretar la escatología y el libro de Apocalipsis


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Esta clase dominical de La Iglesia Evangélica de la Gracia ubicado en Barcelona, España (la qual es una iglesia bautista reformada) da una buena resumen de los principios de interpretación para la escatología bíblica  y como deberemos interpretar el libro de Apocalipsis.


“¿Qué es la Teología Bíblica?” por Claudio Garrido


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Una buena introdución a la Teología Bíblica y también una buena explicación de la hermenéutica Cristocéntrica.  Es muy importante para creyentes entender estas temas para interpretar la Bíblia con un centro en Cristo en vez de un centro solamente en nuestros mismos.  Si entendemos bien la Teología Bíblica y a hermenéutica Cristocéntrica entonces volvemos a nuestros raices de las hermenéuticas de la Reforma en el Siglo XVII.


Solamente no concordo con el uso de Tim Keller porque su teología en muchas areas está errada, aunque la citación de él en esta presentación explica bien la hermenéutica Cristocéntrica.

An Introduction to the Doctrine of Divine Simplicity Part I


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I want to briefly introduce this first post in a series of blog posts condensing the material from the book written by Dr. James Dolzeal, God without Parts: Divine Simplicity and the Metaphysics of God’s Absoluteness (Eugene, Oregon; Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2011) and give a basic overview of each chapter to show the importance of this often neglected doctrine and conclude with a post on some practical applications of the Doctrine of Divine Simplicity.  Bold text in quotes is added by me for emphasis of a key point.  I abbreviate the Doctrine of Divine Simplicity as the DDS, as does Dr. Dolzeal in his book.

I have already alluded to some apologetic implications of this doctrine in my critique of Dr. K. Scott Oliphint’s book, Covenantal Apologetics:


Due to the technical nature of the book I won’t be covering every detail. I will try to cover the main points and define key terms in each chapter, so hopefully this series will be useful for anyone trying to read through the book to get a condensed chapter summary and serve as an introduction to the DDS.  This series will also provide a useful starting place to understanding the DDS as the foundation for understanding the Doctrine of Divine Impassibility which is currently debated among many theologians.  Divine Impassibility assumes the DDS, so in order to properly understand Divine Impassibility it is important to get the context of the doctrine by first studying the DDS.  As will be demonstrated in this series the DDS upholds many essential doctrines of God, such as His Immutability, Aseity, Eternality, and Impassibility.

For anyone who wants a useful brief overview of the Doctrine of Divine Impassibility I highly recommend Sam Renhian’s book, God without Passions: A Primer


I. Defining Divine Simplicity

What is Divine Simplicity?  Dr. Dolzeal defines this doctrine as follows in the Preface of his book,

The classical doctrine of simplicity, as espoused by both traditional Thomists and Reformed scholastics, famously holds forth the maxim that there is nothing in God that is not God.  If there were, that is, if God were not ontologically identical with all that is in him, then something other than God himself would be needed to account for his existence, essence, and attributes.  But nothing that is not God can sufficiently account for God.  He exists in all his perfections entirely in and through himself.  At the heart of the classical DDS (Doctrine of Divine Simplicity) is the concern to uphold God’s absolute self-sufficiency as well as his ultimate sufficiency for the existence of the created universe[1].

Dr. Dolzeal also provides this more concise definition in the first chapter of his book,

The doctrine of divine simplicity teaches that (1) God is identical with his existence and his essence and (2) that each of his attributes is ontologically identical with his existence and with every other one of his attributes.  There is nothing in God that is not God[2].

What Dr. Dolzeal is expressing here is the distinction between God as self-sufficient Creator, who is not dependent upon anything, and the creation.  This distinction between Creator and creature assumes that God is not composed of parts or pieces in contrast to creation which is composed of parts and is therefore dependent and not self-sufficient.  All created things are made of parts whether it is a house, car, or a computer, which makes the whole dependent on the parts because if one part isn’t working it may not function properly.  However God is self-sustaining, He is not dependent on something else to be God because by nature God is Creator and in a separate category of being from His creation.  He cannot be composed of parts or dependent on something outside of Himself because then He would cease to be God and be just like us, dependent on something else to exist.  We as creatures are dependent upon God to sustain us, but God requires no one to sustain Himself.

The first chapter of Dr. Dolzeal’s book gives an overview of the current landscape of the DDS among evangelical Christians; both current proponents and opponents of this doctrine.  Rather than re-iterating the historical theology of the DDS and all of the critiques by contemporary opponents of the doctrine of divine simplicity I will summarize the key presuppositions of both positions that Dr. Dolzeal provides in an outline format.  This will help provide a historical framework for some of the reasons why this classical and historical doctrine of God is often rejected by contemporary theologians.

II. Historical Theology & the DDS

Dr. Dolzeal gives a brief overview of the DDS as affirmed by patristic sources, medieval theologians, and reformed and modern theologians to demonstrate its historical significance as a catholic (universal) Christian doctrine.  In the patristic section Dr. Dolzeal briefly discusses 2 important apologetic uses of the DDS as employed by patristic authors:

(1) Irenaeus used the DDS in response to Gnostic views of God involving emanations, and God undergoing passions and mental changes to affirm and uphold God’s Immutability in his book, Against Heresies.

(2) Gregory of Nyssa affirmed the DDS to affirm unity of essence when describing the Doctrine of the Trinity in response to accusations of tri-theism by opponents.  Augustine also affirmed DDS, in order to affirm that each subsistence of the Trinity is Immutable [3].

Dr. Dolzeal mentions several Medieval writers who affirmed the DDS in order to affirm God’s Immutability and Aseity (self-sufficiency) such as Boethius, Anselm, and Thomas Aquinas, and Duns Scotus.  He focuses on the importance of Aquinas’ articulation of the DDS as it pertains to the Creator-creature distinction to contrast creatures’ essence as separate from its being, and therefore contingent on something outside of itself, whereas God’s essence is identical with his existence.  This leads to the conclusion that God is necessary and self-sufficient in contrast to creation which is contingent and dependent on a source outside of itself to be sustained.  Aquinas’ first cause argument for the existence of God assumes the DDS because everything else needs a cause outside of itself to exist, whereas God is the First and necessary uncaused, and self-sufficient being.

Dr. Dolzeal observes continuity among the Protestant Reformers and Scholastics who affirmed Aquinas’ articulation of the DDS.  He cites John Owen’s used of the DDS as a polemic against Socinian distortions of the doctrine of God.  The DDS was affirmed by Reformed writers into the 19th and 20th century.  Here are two citations from John Owen and Herman Bavinck showing their affirmation of the DDS,

John Owen on the DDS, “With reference to Exodus 3:14-15, Owen also explains God’s unity via the DDS: “[W]here there is an absolute oneness and sameness in the whole, there is no composition by an union of extremes….He, then, who is what he is, and whose all that is in him is, himself, hath neither parts, accidents, principles, nor anything else, whereof his essence should be compounded[4].

Herman Bavinck on the DDS, “If God is composed of parts, like a body, or composed of genus (class) and differentiae (attributes of differing species belonging to the same genus), substance and accidents, matter and form, potentiality and actuality, essence and existence, then his perfection, oneness, independence, and immutability, cannot be maintained[5].

Dr. Dolzeal even mentions how the DDS was affirmed by 19th and 20th century Catholic theologians such as Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, however a shift began to occur in the 20th century away from an affirmation of the DDS as Louis Berkhof stated in his systematic theology,

In recent works on theology the simplicity of God is seldom mentioned.  Many theologians positively deny it, either because it is regarded as purely metaphysical abstraction, or because, in their estimation, it conflicts with the doctrine of the Trinity[6].

III. Recent Criticisms of the DDS

Atheistic philosopher Richard Gale gives 3 primary reasons for rejecting the DDS:

  1. It makes God equivalent to abstract attributes, thereby making God impersonal.
  2. If God is identical to His properties, then His properties cannot be shared by his creation, otherwise they would be God.
  3. If all of God’s properties are one and the same, then there should be no distinction between God’s attributes, but there appears to be differences between God’s attributes e.g. Omnipotence vs. omnibenevolence. Therefore distinctions between God’s attributes prove that God is not simple.

As will be observed later in the chapter overviews these criticisms are rooted in a foundational misunderstanding of the Creator-creature distinction.   Many of Richard Gale’s arguments are likewise employed by Christian theologians and philosophers to deny the DDS, so the arguments are not exclusive to Atheists.   Two primary criticisms that Dr. Dolzeal briefly responds to at the end of his first chapter are:

  1. Ontological Univocism (a denial of analogical predication and the Creator-creator distinction between the being of God and man. This assumes that there isn’t a fundamental distinction of God’s essence and the essence of creatures).
  2. Biblicist Hermeneutics ( a proof-texting approach to the Doctrine of God that argues that since there isn’t a single passage that explicitly says God is simple, therefore it cannot be a Biblical doctrine).

There are a large range of criticisms of DDS, which I will not be able to elaborate in a concise amount of space and since Dr. Dolzeal will address them in later chapters which I will be summarizing for blog posts I don’t need to list them all here.  It is better to address them progressively as the DDS is explained.

Dr. Dolzeal does observe a crucial underlying criticism among opponents of DDS, which is a tendency towards univocism, thereby denying the distinction between God and man by not making a careful distinction between the being of God and man.  It is this fundamental hermeneutical presupposition that critics of DDS deny before beginning to study DDS that results in their denial of it:

But it is precisely this ontological univocism that the DDS will not allow.  Though creatures bear the image of God’s existence and attributes, their similarity to God is better understood as analogical than univocal.  The manner in which God exists and possesses attributes is so radically unlike anything found in creatures that he cannot be classified together with them in a single order of being or as the highest link on a great chain of being.  As the one who ultimately accounts for being in general, as its first and final cause, God does not stand within the general ontological order.  In this connection the various critics surveyed in the foregoing section seem to have gratuitously precluded the very ontological outlook in which the DDS is intended to make sense[7].

The second common presupposition amongst critics of the DDS is a Biblicist hermeneutical presupposition as expressed by Dr. John Feinberg’s denial of the DDS[8]:

Are the biblical writers really making a metaphysical point in these passages?  Furthermore, would not any passage that speaks of God as possessing attributes argue equally well for the position that God is not identical with his attributes?  Feinberg concludes that the biblical data “underdetermine the issue.”  Indeed, this lack of explicit biblical data for the DDS “should be disconcerting at the least, and a good argument against it at most[9][10].

Many of the same arguments Dr. Feinberg is using here to deny the DDS could also be used by Biblicists such as Jehovah’s Witnesses arguing against the doctrine of the Trinity because it is not explicitly stated in one passage, but is rather the result of observing the totality of the Witness of Scripture and then being able to see the logical connections.  These arguments are not novel; the same Biblicist approach was employed by Socinians to deny the Deity of Christ and the doctrine of the Trinity. We cannot reduce the doctrine of God to mere proof texting arguments, we have to look at Scripture in its totality and have a consistent hermeneutic that accounts for the passages and doesn’t undermine fundamental doctrinal presuppositions that we cannot deny such as the Creator-Creature distinction.  No one interprets the Bible with a blank slate, with absolutely no presuppositions, when we study the Doctrine of God or any doctrine of Scripture.  This requires us to carefully think through our presuppositions as we study the DDS.

IV. Conclusion

In conclusion we can see that disagreement over the DDS is a hermeneutical difference at the most foundational level.  We must be humble as we study the Doctrine of God since as finite creatures we can never fully grasp the totality of all that God is.  This should encourage us to worship God who defies our limited creaturely categories in all his Divine perfections.  The importance of the DDS and its practical implications will become clearer as we progress.  I have attempted to address some of the reasons why this doctrine is so crucial to an orthodox doctrine of God in this brief introduction and overview of chapter 1.  As Dr. Dolzeal stated in the 2015 SCRBPC when he was discussing the DDS, we can rest in the assurance that God is immutable since according to the DDS God is not made of parts, and therefore we don’t have a God who will fall apart on us in the midst of the trials that we face in life.  It is the greatest comfort for believers to have an immutable God that is a firm foundation, than a mutable God who changes due to circumstances and causes since a mutable God would give us no assurance and would be creaturely and not Self-Sufficient and Sovereign.

33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!34 For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? 35 Or who has first given to Him that it might be paid back to him again? 36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:33-36, NASB).

[1] Dr. James Dolzeal, God without Parts: Divine Simplicity and the Metaphysics of God’s Absoluteness (Eugene, Oregon; Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2011), xvii

[2] Ibid, 2

[3] Often referred to as person, but subsistence is more precise and avoids confusion of terminology by defining person in a creaturely way, which unravels the doctrine of God and the Trinity.  The 1689 LBC uses subsistence rather than person in Chapter 2.3.  I have discussed in more depth some of the issues regarding the use of person and why it is better to use subsistence in an earlier blog post on the Doctrine of the Trinity:



[4] Owen, Vindicae: Evangelicae, XII:72, cited in Ibid, 9

[5] Bavinck, Reformed Dogmatics, II: 176, cited in Ibid, 9

[6] Berkhouf, Systematic Theology, 62, cited in Ibid, 10

[7] Dr. James Dolzeal, God without Parts: Divine Simplicity and the Metaphysics of God’s Absoluteness (Eugene, Oregon; Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2011), 29

[8] I recommend Dr. Richard Barcellos’ excellent thorough study of reformed/confessional hermeneutics and critique of Biblicist hermeneutics, Dr. Richard Barcellos, The Family Tree of Reformed Biblical Theology: Geerhardus Vos and John Owen Their Methods and Contributions to the Articulation of Redemptive History  (Owensboro, KY; RBAP, 2011)

[9] Feinberg, No One Like Him, 329

[10] Dr. James Dolzeal, God without Parts: Divine Simplicity and the Metaphysics of God’s Absoluteness (Eugene, Oregon; Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2011), 27


A Biblical Theology of the Lord’s Day, sermons on An Orthodox Catechism Q. 114-5 by Dr. Richard Barcellos


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Here are the first 4 sermons of a series on a Biblical Theology of the Lord’s Day from an Orthodox Catechism Q. 1114-5.  I’ll add more links as more sermons are uploaded:









A necessidade da Aliança das Obras


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Tem um ditado entres os crentes sobre a doutrina da justificação, – a justificação e como se nunca tivesse pecado – mas este ditado somente contém uma metade da verdade, a outra metade é a justiça imputada aos crentes por meio da obediência perfeita do Senhor Jesus Cristo.  Se não temos a sua justiça perfeita estivermos a pé perante Deus condenados igualmente como o profeta Isaías quando ele viu a santidade de Deus na sua visão (Isaías 6:1-5).

Esta doutrina da imputação da obediência perfeita do Jesus Cristo é negado por muitos que professam ser crentes principalmente devido à influência da teologia dispensationalista. O qual nega a aliança das obras porque a palavra aliança não acontece até o capítulo 6 do Gênesis o qual descreve a aliança com o Noé e por isso não há uma aliança das obras nem uma aliança com o Adão na Bíblia.

Por exemplo aqui é uma citação de dois teólogos Dispensationalistas que ensinam no Seminário teológico Dallas que fica em Texas. Eles dizem que Cristo somente pagou a maldição da lei em nosso lugar, mas não obteve justiça perfeita para nós por meio seu próprio obediência. Acordo com estos dois teólogos, o Darrel Block e o Craig Blaising, Jesus só foi obediente porque se tivesse pecado então não poderia morrer em nosso lugar pagando a maldição de Deus; mas eles não incluem a necessidade da justiça perfeita de Cristo imputado aos crentes.

Em Gálatas 3:10-13, Paulo explica como o morte de Cristo foi cumprido e por isso terminou a aliança Mosaico. -Cristo nos resgatou da maldição da lei, fazendo-se ele próprio maldição em nosso lugar (porque está escrito: Maldito todo aquele que for pendurado em madeiro),- (Bíblia Sagrada João Ferreira de Almeida Revista é Atualizada 1993, Gálatas 3:13). Cristo tomou a maldição da aliança Mosaico sobre ele próprio para satisfazer as exigências de Deus. Esto não tivesse acontecido, entretanto, se ele próprio fosse um pecador quem precisaria a expiação para os seus próprios pecados. Mas como o Paulo diz no 2 Coríntios 5:21, -Aquele que não conheceu pecado, ele o fez pecado por nós; para que, nele fôssemos feitos justiça de Deus- (Bíblia Sagrada João Ferreira de Almeida Revista é Atualizada 1993). Esto é porque eles quem estão em Cristo são contados justos ( cf. Deuteronomio 6:25; 1 Corintios 1:30) e acham a maldição de Deus satisfeito por eles [1].

Esto não é suficiente só ter nossos pecados perdoados para entrar no céu porque Deus requer a justiça perfeita como Jesus disse no Sermão no Monte,

-Portanto, sede vós perfeitos como perfeito e o vosso Pai celeste- (Mateus 5:48, Bíblia Sagrada João Ferreira de Almeida Revista é Atualizada 1993)

O Paulo explica a importância da aliança das obras quando ele compara o Adão com o Cristo no Romanos 5:12-21, se o Adão não fosse nossa cabeça federal nem representativo, então acordo com o Paulo Cristo não fosse nossa cabeça federal também. Se o Adão caiu sem representar ninguém como um representante federal então Cristo somente morreu por ele próprio. O teólogo A.W. Pink explica a necessidade da aliança das obras para preservar o evangelho porque se alguém nega a aliança das obras então pode resultar na negação que o Adão fosse nossa cabeça federal.  O fato que o Adão foi nossa cabeça federal, o qual mesmo alguns crentes acreditam quem negam a aliança das obras, supõe que houvesse uma aliança das obras no jardim porque a palavra “federal” é sinônimo com “aliança”. O Adão precisou ter uma aliança com Deus para ser uma cabeça federal, estos dois fatos não podem ser separados.

A desobediência do primeiro Adão foi a fundação judicial por nossa condenação; a desobediência do último Adão é a nossa fundação judicial em qual Deus só pode justificar um pecador.  A substituição do Cristo no lugar do seu povo, a imputação dos seus pecados para ele e a sua justiça para eles, é o fato  essencial do evangelho.  Mas o princípio de ser salvo pela obra de outra fez só é possível na fundação que nós fomos perdidos por meio o que outro fez. Os dois se sustém juntos.  Se não houvesse uma aliança das obras então não teria acontecido a morte em Adão, não teria a vida em Cristo [2].

Em conclusão, nos vemos a importância da teologia da aliança para o evangelho. Esto não é somente uma sistema abstrato para os teólogos; ao contrário esto é muito prático para como estudamos a Bíblia e como entendemos o evangelho.

Ainda que este método da interpretação não é consistente para eles que negam a aliança das obras porque a aliança Davídica não usa a palavra “aliança” no 2 Samuel 7:8-17, mesmo que ninguém negue que há uma aliança Davídica porque os componentes de uma aliança acontecem se bem que a palavra explícito “aliança” não seja usado. Depois a Bíblia chama 2 Samuel 7:8-17 uma aliança em 2 Samuel 23:5 e Salmos 89:3-4. O mesmo princípio da interpretação é usado para a aliança das obras embora em Gênesis 2 a palavra “aliança” não suceda, mas depois no Antigo Testamento é chamado uma aliança em Oseais 6:7, Isaías 24:3-6, e também pelo Paulo no Novo Testamento em Romanos 5:12-21.  A Bíblia nos dá uma interpretação infalível de se mesmo e por isso quando a Bíblia se refere a outra passagem na Bíblia é sem erros ainda que aconteça em outra parte da Bíblia. Esto é porque a Bíblia não foi escrito só pelos homens mas também por Deus, Ele é o autor principal pelo meio do Espírito Santo de todos os livros da Bíblia.

Nós vamos confiar na inspirada é infalível interpretação do Apóstolo Paulo em Romanos 5 explicando a necessidade de Adão como o nossa cabeça federal para que Cristo pode ser a cabeça federal dos crentes ( o qual supõe a aliança das obras) ou vamos ler Gênesis 2 somente focalizando no autor humano sem ler Gênesis 2 no contexto de todo a Bíblia? A segunda opção focaliza no argumento que a palavra “aliança” não acontece lá ( no Gênesis 2 ) e por isso é impossível que houvesse uma aliança das obras, o qual dá a prioridade ao autor humano em vez de permitir a Bíblia interpretar se mesmo.  Quando a Bíblia interpreta a Bíblia é um comentário infalível o qual não deveríamos ignorar, porém deveríamos usar a sua interpretação infalível para melhorar o nosso entendimento da Bíblia.

Podemos observar todo deste material resumido e aplicado à proclamação do evangelho na confissão de Fé Batista de Londres 1689 capítulo 20.1 [3],

1. O Pacto das Obras foi quebrado pelo pecado, e tornou-se inútil para conduzir à vida, então, Deus Se agradou em desvelar a promessa de Cristo a semente da mulher, como o meio de chamar os eleitos, gerando neles a fé e o arrependimento[1]. Nesta promessa a essência do Evangelho foi revelada, e é feita eficaz para a conversão e salvação dos pecadores[2].

[1] Gênesis 3:15

[2] Apocalipse 13:8



[1] Blaising, Craig and Bock, Darrel, Progressive Dispensationalism (Grand Rapids, MI.  Baker Books: 2003), 197-198

[2] Arthur Walkington Pink, The Divine Covenants (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1973), 33

[3] http://oestandartedecristo.com/data/CFB1689CPCHSporEC.pdf



SCRBPC 2015 Panel Discussion on Divine Impassibility


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This video was recently uploaded on You-tube for the Panel Discussion on Divine Impassibility from the 2015 Southern California Reformed baptist Pastor’s Conference.  A profitable discussion on the crucial doctrine of Divine Impassibility.  Questions range from more technical questions to pastoral application of the Doctrine of Divine Impassibility:


This is the playlist for all of the Conference Sessions and additional interviews with Conference Speakers as well as some book interviews.  The Conference sessions are well worth listening if you want a thorough introduction to the doctrine of Divine Impassibility as Dr. Dolzeal traces the history leading up to contemporary positions on the Doctrine of God and faithfully exposits from Scripture the Doctrine of Divine Impassibility upholding a Classical Doctrine of God:

Um argumento Batista reformada para o batismo dos crentes & e a natureza dicotômica da Aliança Abraâmica


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O seguinte é uma tradução das perguntas 72 e 73 do catecismo ortodoxo pelo Pastor Hércules Collins, um dos pastores batistas reformadas quem assinou a confessão Batista de fé de Londres 1689. Se Pode ver desde o seu argumento para o batismo dos crentes e o seu argumento em contra do batismo dos infantes que o seu argumento vem desde a sua teologia da aliança, especificamente a sua posição sobre a aliança Abraâmica e a aliança de graça:

Q. (Pergunta) 72 pode a semente infante dos crentes baixo o evangelho ser batizados assim como a semente infante de Abraão baixo a lei foi circuncidado?

A. (Resposta) Não.  Abraão teve um mandamento nesta hora de Deus para circuncidar-lhe a sua semente infante, mas crentes não tiveram ninguém mandamento para batizar a sua semente infante baixo o evangelho.
(a) Gênesis 17:9-12

Q. (Pergunta) 73 Porque alguns dizem que os infantes dos crentes estão na aliança de graça com os seus pães, porque não podem eles ser batizados baixo o evangelho, assim como a semente infante de Abraão foi circuncidado baixo a lei?

A. (Resposta) por afirmar que os infantes dos crentes estão na aliança de graça, eles devem querer dizer da aliança de graça absolutamente considerado, e se é assim, então não tem ninguém total nem final apostasia de qualquer semente infante dos crentes da aliança, mas então todos precisam ser salvos (a).
(a) Jeremias 2:38-40; João 10:28

Ou eles precisam significar condicionalmente, o que quando crescem até a maturidade, então por fé verdadeira, amor, e santidade de vida, segurando a aliança de graça de Deus, terão o seus benefícios. Se isso é o seu significado, então, Que benéfico espiritual tem a semente infante dos incrédulos, se eles vivem até anos da madurez, e por a fé verdadeira e a or seguram a aliança de Deus? Além disso, Não pertenceria o selo da aliança tanto como aos filhos dos incrédulos como aos filhos dos crentes? Sim, porque a semente infante do incrédulo a vezes chega a aceitar a aliança de Deus, e a semente infante do crente não o faz; tantas vezes como isso é visto para a tristeza de muitos pães devotos (b).
(b) Isaías 56:3-8; João 3:16; Atos 10:34-35

Suponha que toda a semente infante dos crentes estiveram absolutamente na aliança de graça; mas os crentes baixo o evangelho não deveriam batizar a sua semente infante mais que Ló circuncidou seu mesmo e a sua semente infante, se tivesse masculinos assim como fêmeas, embora Ele foi relacionado ao Abraão, um crente, e na aliança de graça, porque a circuncisão foi limitado ao Abraão e a sua família imediata.  Se a semente infante dos crentes estivesse  absolutamente na aliança de graça, nós traríamos infantes a Ceia do Senhor porque as mesmas qualificações são requeridas ao necessário desempenho  do batismo assumo como a Ceia do Senhor (c).
(c) Atos 2:41-42

A aliança Abraâmica teve dois partes:

Primeiro um componente espiritual, o qual consiste por Deus prometer ser um Deus ao Abraão e todo a sua semente espiritual numa maneira particular (d), se foram circuncidados ou não, quem creram como Abraão o pai da fé creu (e). E isso foi significado por Deus aceitar assim como a sua gente as quais não são da semente de Abraão, mas comprados pelo seu dinheiro esta promessa foi selado ao Abraão pela circuncisão, que por Jesus Cristo (quem Isaque tipificou) os gentios, os não circuncidados quem creram (f), deveriam ter a fé considerado pela justiça, como Abraão foi antes de ser circuncidado (g).
(d) Gênesis 17:19,21; 21:10; Gálatas 4:30
(e) Atos 2:39; Romanos 9:7-8
(f) Gálatas 3:16,28-29
(g) Romanos 4:9-14

Segundo, esta promessa foi composto de um componente temporal. Por isso, Deus prometeu que a semente de Abraão deveria desfrutar a terra de Canaã, e tiveram suficiente benções externas (h), assim que Ele selou esta promessa pela circuncisão (i).  A circuncisão também distingue os judios como o povo de Deus desde os gentios , qual até agora não foram a semente de Abraão.  Mas quando os gentios chegaram a crer e pela fé chegaram a ser o povo de assim como os judios, então a circuncisão, esta marca distintiva parou.  As marcas distintivas de ser os filhos de Deus agora são a fé em Cristo e a circuncisão da coração (j). Portanto qualquer pretexto poderá ser para batizar os infantes dos crentes não vale nada, seja seu ser na semente dos crentes, seu ser na aliança ou que a semente infante de Abraão , um crente, foi circuncidado. A circuncisão foi limitado também até o oitavo dia, e qualquer pretexto for feito, não fosse feito nem antes nem depois. Foi limitado aos masculinos, o qual se o batismo veio no lugar da circuncisão e é o selo da aliança baixo o evangelho, assim como a circuncisão foi baixo a lei, ninguém mas os masculinos precisam ser batizados. Ainda assim baixo a leia circuncisão teve regulados particulares, assim é baixo o evangelho com o batismo.  Estes regulados sobre o batismo dependem somente sobre a vontade do legislador, aquele Profeta a quem nós faríamos bem escutar-lhe (k). Ele determina sobre quem, quando, e como o batismo deveria ser administrado.
(h) Gênesis 12:6-7; 13:15-17; 15:16, 18.
(i) Gênesis 17:8-11.
(j) João 1:12, Romanos 2:28-29; Gálatas 3:26-28; Filipenses 3:3.
(k) Atos 3:22.

Se pode comparar a resposta de Hércules Collins com o argumento para batizar os infantes de acordo com o Catecismo Heidelburg no português, pergunta 74. Se pode ver para comparar os dois que as diferenças sobre a doutrina do batismo vêm das suas diferenças na sua teologia da aliança:



Un Argumento bautista reformado para el bautismo de creyentes & la naturaleza dicotómica del Pacto Abrahámico


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Lo siguiente es una traducción de preguntas 72 y 73 del Catecismo Ortodoxo escrito por Pastor Hercules Collins, uno de los pastores baptistas reformados quien firmó la confesión bautista de fe de Londres 1689.  Se puede ver desde su argumento para el bautismo de creyentes y su argumento en contra del bautismo de infantes que su argumento viene desde su teología del pacto, específicamente su posición sobre el pacto Abrahámico y el pacto de Gracia:

Q.(Pregunta) 72 ¿Puede la semilla infante de creyentes bajo el evangelio ser bautizados así como la semilla infante de Abraham bajo la ley fue circuncidado?

(Respuesta)  No.  Abraham tuvo un mandamiento a esa hora de Dios para circuncidarle a su semilla infante, pero creyentes no tienen ningún mandamiento para bautizar su semilla infante bajo el evangelio.

(a) Génesis 17:9-12

(Pregunta) 73 ¿Porqué algunos dicen que los infantes de creyentes están en el pacto de Gracia con sus padres, porque no pueden ellos ser bautizados bajo el evangelio, así como la semilla infante de Abraham fue circuncidado bajo la ley?

(Respuesta) Por afirmar que los infantes  de creyentes están en el pacto de Gracia, ellos deben querer decir del pacto de Gracia absolutamente considerado, y si es así, entonces no hay ningún total ni final apostasía de cualquier semilla infante de creyentes del pacto, pero entonces todos necesitan ser salvos (a).


(a) Jeremías 32:38-40; Juan 10:28

O, ellos necesitan significar condicionalmente, que cuando crecen a su edad de madurez, entonces por fe verdadera, amor, y santidad de vida, agarrando el pacto de Gracia de Dios, tendrán sus beneficios.  Si eso es su significado, entonces ¿Qué beneficio espiritual tiene la semilla infante  de los incrédulos, si ellos  viven hasta años de madurez, y por fe verdadera  y amor agarran  el pacto de Dios?  Además, ¿No pertenecería el sello del pacto  tanto como a los hijos de los incrédulos como los hijos de creyentes?  Sí, porque la semilla infante del incrédulos a veces llega a aceptar el pacto de Dios, y la semilla infante del creyente no lo hace; tantas veces como eso es visto para la tristeza de muchos padres piadosos (b).

(b) Isaías 56:3-8; Juan 3:16; Hechos 10:34-35


Suponga toda la semilla infante de creyentes  estuvieran absolutamente en el pacto de Gracia; pero creyentes bajo el evangelio no deberían bautizar su semilla infante más que Lot circuncidó  su mismo y su semilla infante, si tuviera varones así como hembras, aunque Él fue relacionado al Abraham, un creyente, y en el pacto de Gracia, porque la circuncisión fue limitado al Abraham y su familia inmediata.  Si la semilla infante de creyentes estuviera absolutamente en el pacto de Gracia, nosotros traeremos infantes a la Cena del Señor porque las mismas cualificaciones son requeridas al necesario desempeño del bautismo así como la Cena del Señor (c).

(c) Hechos 2:41-42


El pacto Abrahámico tuvo dos partes:

Primero, un componente espiritual, lo cual consiste por Dios prometer ser un Dios a Abraham y todo su semilla espiritual en una manera particular (d), si fueran circuncidados o no, quienes creyeron como Abraham el padre de la fe creyó (e).  Y eso fue significado por Dios aceptar así como su gente los cuales no son de la semilla de Abraham, sino comprados por su dinero, y esta promesa fue sellado a Abraham por la circuncisión, que por medio de Jesucristo (quien Isaac tipificó) los gentiles, los no circuncidados quienes creyeron (f), deberían tener la fe considerado por justicia, como Abraham fue antes de ser circuncidado (g).

(d)  Génesis 17:19,21; 21:10; Gálatas 4:30.

(e) Hechos 2:39; Romanos 9:7-8.

(f) Gálatas 3:16, 28-29

(g)  Romanos 4:9-14

Segundo, esta promesa fue compuesta de un componente temporal.  Por eso, Dios prometió que la semilla de Abraham debería disfrutar la tierra de Canaán, y tuvieron suficiente bendiciones externas (h), así que Él selló esta promesa por la circuncisión (i).  La circuncisión también distingue los judíos como el pueblo de Dios desde todas las naciones de los gentiles, cual hasta ahora no fueron la semilla de Abraham.  Pero cuando los gentiles llegaron a creer y por la fe llegaron a ser el pueblo de Dios así como los judíos, entonces la circuncisión, la marca de distintiva, paró.  Las marcas distintivas de ser los hijos de Dios ahora son la fe en Cristo y la circuncisión de la corazón (j).  Por lo tanto, cualquier pretexto podrá ser para bautizar los infantes de creyentes no vale nada, sea su ser en la semilla de creyentes, su ser en el pacto, o que la semilla infante de Abraham, un creyente, fue circuncidado.  La circuncisión fue limitada también hasta el octavo día, y cualquier pretexto podría ser hecho, no fue hecho ni antes ni después.  La fue limitado a los varones, quienes si el bautismo llego en lugar de la circuncisión y fue el sello del pacto de Gracia bajo el evangelio, como la circuncisión fue bajo la ley, nadie pero los varones deben ser bautizados.  Así como bajo la ley la circuncisión tuvo reglas particulares, también la fue bajo el evangelio con respecto al bautismo.  Estas regulaciones con respecto al bautismo depende solamente sobre la voluntad del legislador, aquel Profeta a quien nosotros haríamos bueno para escucharlo (k).  Él decide  sobre quien, cuando,  y como el bautismo debería ser administrado.

(h) Génesis 12:6-7; 13:15-17; 15:16, 18

(i) Génesis 17:8-11

(j) Juan 1:12; Romanos 2:28-29; Gálatas 3:26-28; Filipenses 3:3

(k) Hechos 3:22


Se puede comparar la respuesta de Hercules Collins con el argumento para bautizar los infantes según el Catecismo Heidelburg en español, pregunta 74.  Se puede ver por comparar los dos que las diferencias sobre la doctrina del bautismo vienen de sus diferencias en su teología del pacto:



Presuppositions and the Resurrection of Christ


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During Easter there are many popular apologetics books promoted to persuade unbelievers of the veracity of the Resurrection of Christ such as Lee Strobel’s, The Case for Easter.  Unfortunately most of these books don’t even defend the Christian worldview since they abandon the authority of Scripture to seek neutral ground with the unbeliever and to use archaeological and non-biblical historical data to prove the Resurrection.  This is a vain attempt because even if sufficient evidence is provided that evidence is not interpreted in a vacuum, it is interpreted by everyone’s worldview, and without abandoning naturalism the naturalist will not accept the Resurrection as an act of God.  Neither will the Muslim accept the Resurrection based on extra-biblical historical proofs until he has denied the authority of the Qur’an which explicitly denies the Crucifixion of Christ in Surah An-Nisa: 157 (4:157) and only affirms that he ascended into heaven, so there was no need for the Crucifixion nor the resurrection according to the Islamic worldview.

The following quotes from Van Til explain the importance of evaluating one’s presuppositions and worldview when interpreting facts since there is no “neutral ground” on which everyone comes to the facts without prior assumptions and arrives at the same conclusion [bold and italics were added for emphasis, also parenthesis are given in the quotes with explanations for more technical terms].

“…We must show that the philosophy of fact as held to by Christian theism is the only philosophy that can account for the facts.  And these two things must be done in conjunction with one another.  Historical apologetics becomes genuinely fruitful only if it is conjoined with philosophical apologetics.  And the two together will have to begin with Scripture, and argue that unless what Scripture says about itself and all things else which it speaks is true, nothing is true.  Unless God as an absolutely self-conscious person exists, no facts have any meaning.  This holds not only for the resurrection of Christ, but for any other fact as well[1].

Van Til also points out the futility of trying to prove the Christian worldview one piece at a time, which places the unbeliever as the ultimate judge and authority over God’s Word, rather than God being the final authority.  So even if an unbelievers accepts the resurrection of Christ, but has not denied himself as the ultimate authority rather than accepting  God as the true final authority,then he has not truly believed in Christ’s atoning work for sinners, his perfect life unto death obedience, crucifixion, and resurrection, and the true person of Christ as fully God and fully man, and accepted the Christian worldview. The sinner still assumes he is the standard of truth, and has not been convicted by the Law of God to show him his need of Christ’s redeeming work, which is why a genuinely biblical apologetic cannot be separated from the proclamation of the Law and Gospel.  As we confront unbeliever’s suppression of the truth by confronting their worldview we are not treating the Gospel as an intellectual fact to believe, but are confronting them with the Law of God and their need of Christ, which provides a transition to further explain the law of God and the Gospel.

The Scriptures nowhere appeal to the unregenerate reason as to a qualified judge.  On the contrary, Scripture says over and over that the unregenerate reason is entirely unqualified to judge.  When Scripture says, “Come, let us reason together,” [Isaiah 1:18] it usually speaks to the people of God, and, if it does speak to others, it never regards them as equal with God or as really competent to judge.  The unregenerate man has knowledge of God, that is, of the revelation of God within him, the sense of deity, which he seeks to suppress [Romans 1:18-21].  Scripture does appeal to this sense of deity in man, but it does so and can do so only be denying that man, when acting on his adopted monistic assumption [the monistic assumption is the view that man is the interpreter of truth apart from God’s revelation of Himself in Scripture, that man is the ultimate authority rather than God], has any ability or right to judge of what is true or false, right or wrong[2].

“Historical apologetics is absolutely necessary and indispensable to point out that Christ rose from the grave, etc.  But as long as historical apologetics works on a supposedly neutral basis, it defeats its own purpose.  For in that case it virtually grants the validity of the metaphysical assumptions [views about reality e.g. whether only natural events occur or whether miracles are possible as in the Christian worldview] of the unbeliever.  So in this case a pragmatist may accept the resurrection of Christ as a fact without accepting the conclusion that Christ is the Son of God.  And on this assumption he is not illogical in doing so.  On the contrary, if his basic metaphysical assumption [views about reality] to the effect that all reality is subject to chance is right, he is only consistent if he refuses to conclude from the fact of Christ’s resurrection that he is divine in the orthodox sense of the term.  Now, though he is wrong in his metaphysical assumption, and though, rightly interpreted, the resurrection of Christ assuredly proves the divinity of Christ, we must attack the unbeliever in his philosophy of fact, as well as on the question of the actuality of the facts themselves.  For on his own metaphysical assumptions, the resurrection of Christ would not prove his divinity at all” [3].

[1] Cornelius, Van Til, edited by William, Edgar, An Introduction to Systematic Theology 2nd Edition: Prolegomena and the Doctrines of Revelation, Scripture, and God (Phillipsburg, NJ; P&R, 2007), 243

[2] Ibid, 69

[3] Ibid, 242


This video by the LutheranSatire provides a comical application of the points made in this blog post applied to the reasons for why Atheists, based on a naturalist worldview, deny the resurrection of Christ:

An Overview of Key Islamic Worldview Presuppositions


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This is an overview of the previous lessons listing the essential information in an outline format for easier reference.  Not all of the details from the previous lessons/posts on the Islamic Worldview are posted in this list, and I have included a few new citations and Muslim arguments, so that this outline isn’t only review for those who have read the previous posts on the Islamic Worldview.  I have included some important responses to the listed Muslims views in parenthesis directly after the position stated and in the footnotes.  Other responses can be found in the previous lessons which I didn’t repeat here in order to make this a brief overview.





It should be observed that it is inconsistent with both the Christian and Islamic Worldview to use double standards when addressing someone’s presuppositions (theological assumptions).  The list of presuppositions given provides a list of key Islamic presuppositions, so that Christians can directly respond to them in evangelism and be aware of them when we hear Islamic apologetic arguments against the Christian Worldview.

Proverbs 20:10, “Differing weights and differing measures, Both of them are abominable to the LORD” (NASB).

Surah 17:35, “And give full measure when you measure, and weigh with an even balance. That is the best [way] and best in result”.

*All Quranic citations are from the Saheeh International Version

I. The Doctrine of God in the Islamic Worldview:

  1. Tawhid-the oneness of God
  2. Categories of Tawhid: Tawhid-ar-Rubbubiyah (God is one & unique in his Lordship), Tawhid al-Asma’ waṣ-ṣifat (God is one & unique in his name & attributes), and Tawhid al-‘Ibadah/Tawheed al-Uluhiyah (God is one & unique in his right to be worshipped)
  3. Man is born believing in Tawhid i.e. born a Muslim (a state of fitrah via God’s covenant w/Adam)
  4. Violation of Tawhid in any of the 3 categories is called shirk (associating partners with God, assumes Unitarian monotheism) resulting in polytheism & eternal damnation


II. The Doctrine of Christ in the Islamic Worldview:

  1. Christ is considered a prophet sent to the Jews with the revelation of the Gospel (Injeel)
  2. The virgin birth of Christ is affirmed in Islam (although he did additionally prophesy from the cradle, Surah 19:27-33)
  3. While the Ascension of Christ is affirmed by the Qur’an his crucifixion is explicitly denied, Surah 4:157, “And [for] their saying, “Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah.” And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain”.
  4. Muslim apologists will use heretical sects such as the Gnostic Ebionites to argue that Christians only believe in the humanity of Christ. Here is the argument as presented in the Muslim apologetic book Izhar-Ul-Haq (The Standard of Truth), “The Ebionites, a Christian sect of the first century, had the belief that Jesus was only a human being, born of his parents Joseph and Mary, like other human beings[1] (This is a double standard borrowing from other worldviews since the Ebionites were Gnostics they viewed all matter as evil, but that would also mean that Muhammad was evil.  Also since the Ebionites denied the virgin birth of Jesus, they would also be denying the Qur’an’s affirmation of the virgin birth of Jesus).
  5. The concept of Sonship is explicitly denied by the Qur’an; Surah Al-‘Ikhlas (112:1-4), “Say, “He is Allah, [who is] One, Allah, the Eternal Refuge. He neither begets nor is born, Nor is there to Him any equivalent”.
  6. The most common Muslim argument against the Deity of Christ stated by Ahmed Deedat and his followers is, “If Jesus was God, then why did he never say, “I am God, worship me!”


 III. Doctrine of the Trinity & the Incarnation in the Islamic Worldview:

  1. The Qur’an assumes the Trinity consists of Allah (God the Father), ’Isa (Jesus), and Mary (Surah 4:171-2)
  2. The Doctrine of the Trinity is assumed to be teaching Tritheism (since in Islam God is Unitarian), and it is viewed as illogical (This is based on the assumption that our creaturely understanding of God is equal to God’s understanding of Himself).
  3. The common argument that the Trinity is not taught in the Bible because the word Trinity isn’t used is a contradiction since Tawheed (Oneness of God) is affirmed by the Qur’an, although the word itself occurs in the Hadeeth (i.e. Saheeh Al-Bukhari), not the Qur’an
  4. Within the Creator-Creature Distinction, man is viewed as imperfect, so the Incarnation is viewed as a contradiction (there is no glorified state of man), “According to the Qur’an, human beings are a blending of clay (which is the source of their weakness) and the soul. As a result, human beings have always been imperfect[2].
  5. Muslims typically view the Incarnation of Christ as Jesus ceasing to be God and becoming human, rather than the hypostatic union which affirms Christ is both fully God and fully man
  6. Christ being fully God and fully man is viewed as a contradiction because the attributes of God and man are viewed as opposing one another i.e. omniscience vs. limited knowledge [For example Mark 13:32 is a common verse used by Muslim Apologists, “But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone” (NASB)].
  7. Paul is viewed as an innovator & false teacher who taught the doctrine of the Trinity and Deity of Christ contradicting the teachings of Jesus according to Islam, “Christians, influenced by the teachings of Saul from Tarsus (later called Paul), deified Prophet Jesus and directed their prayer to him and his mother[3]”.


IV. The Qur’an & The Bible in the Islamic Worldview:

  1. The Qur’an claims only a single Divine author, it was dictated to Muhammad, so his (Muhammad’s) role was passive in the process of the Qur’an being revealed
  2. The Qur’an was revealed in Arabic, but has eternally existed in the Arabic language, thus preceding Muhammad, so to truly read & understand the Qur’an (from a Muslim perspective) you need to read it in Arabic
  3. Modern Muslim Apologists assume the Old and New Testament have been corrupted (although this was not the majority position prior to Izhar-Ul-Haq in the 20th century)
  4. The Qur’an is assumed to be in continuity with previous revelation Old & New Testament (Tawrah & Injeel). The Qur’an commands the People of the Book (Ahl-al-Kitab) to judge the Qur’an by previous revelation (Surah 5:42-48, 65-68).
  5. The Old and New Testament teaches prophecies about Muhammad according to Islam, so they cannot be viewed as completely corrupt only partially corrupt ( 18:15-19, John  14:16-17,16:7-14, Song of Solomon 5:16)


Surah 5:42-48, “[43]But how is it that they come to you for judgment while they have the Torah, in which is the judgment of Allah ? Then they turn away, [even] after that; but those are not [in fact] believers. [44] Indeed, We sent down the Torah, in which was guidance and light. The prophets who submitted [to Allah ] judged by it for the Jews, as did the rabbis and scholars by that with which they were entrusted of the Scripture of Allah , and they were witnesses thereto. So do not fear the people but fear Me, and do not exchange My verses for a small price. And whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed – then it is those who are the disbelievers. [45]And We ordained for them therein a life for a life, an eye for an eye, a nose for a nose, an ear for an ear, a tooth for a tooth, and for wounds is legal retribution. But whoever gives [up his right as] charity, it is an expiation for him. And whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed – then it is those who are the wrongdoers.  [46] And We sent, following in their footsteps, Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming that which came before him in the Torah; and We gave him the Gospel, in which was guidance and light and confirming that which preceded it of the Torah as guidance and instruction for the righteous. [47] And let the People of the Gospel judge by what Allah has revealed therein. And whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed – then it is those who are the defiantly disobedient”.


Surah 5: 65-68, “[65]And if only the People of the Scripture had believed and feared Allah , We would have removed from them their misdeeds and admitted them to Gardens of Pleasure. [66] And if only they upheld [the law of] the Torah, the Gospel, and what has been revealed to them from their Lord, they would have consumed [provision] from above them and from beneath their feet. Among them are a moderate community, but many of them – evil is that which they do. [67] O Messenger, announce that which has been revealed to you from your Lord, and if you do not, then you have not conveyed His message. And Allah will protect you from the people. Indeed, Allah does not guide the disbelieving people. [68] Say, “O People of the Scripture, you are [standing] on nothing until you uphold [the law of] the Torah, the Gospel, and what has been revealed to you from your Lord.” And that which has been revealed to you from your Lord will surely increase many of them in transgression and disbelief. So do not grieve over the disbelieving people”.

[1] Rahmatullah Kairanvi, Maulana, Izhar-Ul-Haq (Truth Revealed): Proof of the Divine Origin of the Qur’an and the Authenticity of the Hadiths Part 3 (Jedda, Saudi Arabia; World of Knowledge for Publishing & Distribution, 1992), 100.

[2] Hamza Mustafa Njozi, The Sources of the Qur’an: A Critical Review of the Authorship Theories (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Islamic Publishing House, 2005), 78

[3] Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips, The Fundamentals of Tawhid (Islamic Monotheism), (International Islamic Publishing house: Saudi Arabia, 2005), 38; this view of Paul is not held by some of the earliest Muslim Commentators such as Ibn Kathir commenting on Surah 36:13-16, where three messengers are sent to a city, and Ibn Kathir identifies the third messenger as Paul (Bulus in Arabic), “Ibn Kathir records a tradition (8:178-179; Al Suyuti does also), which he himself does not follow, that “The names of the first two Messengers were Sham’un and Yuhanna, and the name of the third was Bulus, and the city was Antioch…Qatad bin Di’amah claimed that they were messengers of the Messiah, peace be upon him, sent to the people of Antioch” cited by James White in What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an, 190.  Also if Paul was considered a false teacher and promoter of shirk, then the Qur’an should have explicitly condemned him as a false teacher.