Archives For Theological Education

Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel
Pt 3
The Good News About God’s Mission

The bible teaches that the gospel is not only good news about God’s mission to redeem and restore fallen creation and humanity. It’s also good news about God’s kingdom coming to earth in three amazing ways.

Learn what the Scriptures teach about a 3-fold vision (past, present, and future) of the good news of God’s kingdom coming to earth.

In the Applied Theology Series, “Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel, Part 3” by Drs. John Frame and Steve Childers, you’ll also learn what Jesus meant when he taught that we will do “greater works” than he did.


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Chapter 2: The Good News About God’s Kingdom

A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel
Drs. John M. Frame and Steven L. Childers

We learned earlier that we are living in a unique time in history between the resurrection of Christ and the restoration of all things in him when God will bring the fullness of his kingdom on the earth forever.

The Scriptures give us a three-fold vision of this good news about God’s kingdom. The good news is that God’s kingdom has come in the past, is coming today, and one day will come at the end of time. This understanding of the gospel gives a deep purpose to followers of Christ in both their private and public lives. So, let’s begin by taking a closer look at how God’s kingdom has already come into the world in the first century.

God’s Kingdom Has Come
God’s kingdom came into the world in a new way in the first century through the person and work of Jesus Christ, specifically in the historic events of his humiliation and exaltation. Jesus’ birth, life, death, resurrection, and ascension were both historic events and saving events with rich, spiritual meaning.

The good news is that Jesus, as the eternal Son of God, took on humanity in order to live the life we should have lived and die the death we deserve to die in our place, thereby completely satisfying God’s just wrath against us so we might be reconciled to God. Then Jesus was raised from the dead and ascended to God’s throne in heaven where he poured out his promised Holy Spirit on his church as evidence of his kingly rule.

Jesus’ death and resurrection demonstrate his victory over all the powers of evil, including his and our archenemies of the world, the flesh, the devil, and death. Because of God’s rich mercy and great love for us, he saved us from his just wrath we deserve and delivered us from all the evil powers that held us in spiritual death.

Jesus’ birth, life, death, resurrection and ascension demonstrate God’s inauguration of the promised new age to come. It’s the good news of a whole new world being born on the earth. God’s original intent for creation was for it to be a paradise where “heaven is on earth,” where heaven and earth are essentially one and God dwells with his people.

Because of sin, God banished humanity from his gracious presence. “He drove out the man, and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim and a flaming sword that turned every way to guard the way to the tree of life.” (Gen. 3:24) So, we live our lives “east of Eden” (Gen. 4:16), away from God’s loving presence and his many blessings that were originally ours in the garden paradise.

The original unity of God’s creation became divided, heaven and earth were separated. There is a separation between God and his fallen creation. Now we see God not only as our Father, but also as our Judge. God is pictured as up in heaven, no longer dwelling with sinful humanity on earth below.[1]

So, in the first century, when Jesus begins his ministry by proclaiming the good news that God’s kingdom is “at hand” (Mk. 1:15), his Jewish listeners understood this to mean that God’s kingdom in heaven was finally returning to earth in a new way through him. Jesus’ miraculous signs and wonders were magnificent displays of how God’s kingdom had already come to earth through him. This caused his followers to long for the time when God would fulfill his promise to return the fullness of his kingdom on earth forever.[2]

God’s Kingdom Is Coming
But the good news about God’s kingdom is not only that it has come in the past through the person and work of Jesus, but that God’s kingdom is still coming today. The ascended King Jesus continues his ministry on earth today by his Holy Spirit and through his visible body–the Church.

Jesus’ ministry on earth did not end when he ascended back to heaven at the right hand of God the Father. Instead, that was just the beginning. Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.” (John 14:12)

Jesus does not mean that his disciples, as individuals, then or now would do greater miracles than he did. No individual will ever come close to doing greater works than Jesus did in the first century. Instead, Jesus is referring to the greater impact that his ministry on earth will have after his ascension to the throne of God through his people, the Church, by the power of his Holy Spirit.

The Apostle Paul teaches that the highest blessing of the gospel for believers is being united to God “in Christ.” From this mystical union with God flows all the riches of Christ’s redemption including a new status with God as forgiven and adopted, a new heart from God by his Spirit, and a new world from God in the age to come.

When the Holy Spirit unites us to God “in Christ” he also mysteriously unites us to God’s new community of his people on earth–the church. The church is the embodiment of the present rule of King Jesus on the earth today. It’s the visible body of Christ set apart and anointed by God’s Spirit to be a blessing to all nations on earth now as a foretaste and hope of God’s kingdom that is not yet. Jesus said, “I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” (Matt 16:18)

After giving his disciples the Great Commission to “make disciples of all nations,” the resurrected Jesus promises them, “I am with you always to the end of the age.” (Matt 28:20) And just prior to his ascension back to heaven, Jesus said to them, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

Because the ascended King Jesus continues his ministry on earth today by his Spirit and through his church, this includes all his followers. Therefore, our individual purpose in life is linked directly to God’s corporate purpose for his church. Jesus’ union with his church is so strong that we, as his followers, share in his ongoing ministry as prophet, priest, and king in the world today.

In our prophetic roles we proclaim and uphold God’s truth in a world filled with lies. In our priestly roles we pray and intercede for others to experience God’s mercy and blessing. And in our kingly roles we use all our resources to help make God’s invisible kingdom more visible, not only in human hearts, but in every sphere of our lives until it reflects the order of heaven.[3]

God’s Kingdom Will Come
But the good news about God’s kingdom is not only that it has come in the past through the person and work of Jesus, and it is still coming today by his Spirit and through his church, but also that it will come in all its fullness at the end of time.

God promises us in Scripture that one day Jesus will return and bring the fullness of God’s kingdom on earth by restoring all things that were lost because of sin. On that day we will be made new in soul and body and delivered not only from sin’s penalty and power, but also its influence and presence forever. Then Jesus will bring an end to all suffering and restore all things to God’s original design.


[1] Although God is never absent from the world he made, because of sin there is a barrier between God and his people, later symbolized by the veil in Israel’s temple, which barred worshipers from the most intense form of God’s presence.

[2] So, “heaven” is glorious but it is not the Christian’s ultimate destination. Instead, it’s a temporary, “intermediate state” after death that awaits God’s renewed cosmos where we’ll have renewed bodies on a renewed earth forever.

[3] Richard Lovelace, Renewal as a Way of Life, IVP


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Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel Pt 2
The Good News About God’s Mission

The Bible gives us a broad understanding of the Gospel as good news about the Triune God’s historic mission of redemption for the restoration of his fallen universe and in particular his fallen human race. The Scriptures teach that the good news of God’s salvation in Jesus Christ is as wide as creation, reaching beyond the redemption of souls to the redemption all things.

The Gospel is good news about the Triune God’s historic mission of redemption for the restoration of his fallen universe and in particular his fallen human race.

Therefore, the Apostle Paul, Augustine, Calvin, and Bavinck taught that the essence of salvation in Christ is the Triune God’s transformation of all things – seeing the Father’s creation as formation, the Fall of humanity as deformation, and Christ’s redemption and the outpouring of his Spirit as reformation. The gospel is more than a set of propositional truths to believe. It’s also a unified, unfolding story in real history by which God tells us how to shape our lives.

Read the first chapter to Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel below.


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Chapter 1: The Good News About God’s Mission

A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel
Drs. John M. Frame and Steven L. Childers

The Bible gives us a broad understanding of the gospel in four unfolding, historical events that reveal the Triune God’s purpose for the whole universe and in particular the human race:

  • God’s creation of the world and humanity,
  • the fall of humanity and the world into sin,
  • the redemption of all things lost in the fall through Jesus by his Spirit, and
  • the restoration of all things when Jesus returns to establish God’s kingdom on earth forever.

These events give us a broad biblical and historical definition[1] of the gospel as the good news that the Father’s creation, ruined by the Fall, is being redeemed by Christ and renewed by His Holy Spirit into the Kingdom of God.[2]

This is the good news that there is one infinite, personal God who exists in three persons and who created and rules over all things as Triune Lord. And his rule, his kingdom, uniquely entered the world two thousand years ago through the person and work of Jesus, by the Holy Spirit, to make all things new.

Therefore, the gospel is more than a set of propositional truths to believe. It’s also a unified, unfolding story in real history by which God tells us how to shape our lives. He brings our lives into it by drawing us into its plot and calling us to align our life purpose with his for the world. It’s the story about God’s lordship over everything. It starts with God and finds its goal in God. It reveals God’s ultimate purpose for humanity to know, love, serve, and glorify God as Lord in all of life.

God’s Mission of Restoration
This understanding of the gospel includes a robust biblical doctrine of creation that far transcends a narrow focus on what happened at the beginning. It’s a vision of God’s lordship over the whole universe he has made, both at the beginning, and for all time. It is a view of God’s salvation that is as wide as creation, reaching beyond the redemption of souls to the redemption all things.

The early church father Augustine (354-430 AD) describes the essence of God’s saving work in Jesus Christ as restoring all things lost in the fall by using a series of Latin couplets that describe God as “Former and Re-Former,” “Creator and Re-Creator,” and “Maker and Re-Maker.” Augustine presents to us the essence of salvation in Christ as transformation, seeing creation as formation, the fall as deformation, and redemption as reformation.

Likewise, in his theological writings from the late nineteenth century, Herman Bavinck concludes from Scripture that the essence of salvation is “Grace restores nature.”[3] Consequently, human beings are restored image bearers flourishing on the earth as God intended in creation. Bavinck writes,

Grace serves, not to take up humans into a supernatural order, but to free them from sin. Grace is opposed not to nature, only to sin … Grace restores nature and takes it to its highest pinnacle.[4]

Bavinck’s view of grace is not abstract or philosophical. Unlike the Greek philosophers, he does not see human beings as a lower order of being, and our need as the need to reach higher levels. Rather, we are persons, reflecting the tri-personal character of God. Our need is not that we are finite creatures of God; that is a good thing. Rather, our need is for God’s forgiveness, after we have sinned against God.

Our need is not, as many philosophers have thought, to ascend to a higher level of reality, to transcend our finitude, to rise above our humanity and become god. That can never be. God alone will always be God, and we will always be his creatures, nothing more. Rather, our need is for God to restore us to the relationship he always intended, to become again obedient, devoted servants of the Lord.

So, the essence of salvation is the restoration of God’s original purposes in creation. What needs to be restored is primarily our broken relationship with God. And through the restoration of our broken relationship with God is meant to come the restoration of our broken relationships with ourselves,[5] others, and creation[6] because of the Fall.
The Triune Lord carries out this plan of redemption in history to bring salvation to fallen humanity and creation. Therefore, the central message of the Bible can be summed up as “salvation belongs to the Lord” (Jonah 2:9). The goal of the Lord’s salvation is not merely to forgive and relocate believers to heaven, but to redeem and restore fallen humanity and creation so they will flourish on a new earth for eternity.

God’s Mission Through Christ
The Scriptures present Jesus Christ at the center of this biblical story of salvation. They proclaim the good news that God’s kingdom has entered the world through Jesus, to redeem and restore fallen humanity and creation from sin and all its consequences. And the ultimate goal of God’s redemptive plan is to restore all things in heaven and earth in Jesus Christ that God would be “all in all” (1 Cor. 15:28).[7]

The historical context for the biblical word “gospel” is the declaration of a news report about something that has happened, something both very big and very good. At its heart is the proclamation about something significant God did in the person and work of Jesus Christ by his Holy Spirit.

To understand what God did and why it’s good news, it’s helpful to know the gospel’s backstory in history. God’s plan of salvation did not begin in first-century Palestine, but in the garden of Eden after Adam and Eve sinned. In Gen. 3:15, God promised the tempter that the “seed of the woman” will one day avenge his evil actions.

Then God’s plan unfolded through covenants God made with his people like Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, and the prophets. The Old Testament prophets foretold the day when a great Messiah King would come and deliver them from their oppression. Isa. 52:7 speaks of those who bring the “good news” that “Your God reigns.”

In Jesus’ day the Jews had been greatly oppressed by the Roman government for many years. They longed for Messiah King to come, set up His kingdom, and save them from their oppression.[8] So they were excited when Jesus began his public ministry calling them to “repent and believe in the good news” that “the time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand (Mark 1:14b-15).

However, the Jews soon learned that the kingdom Jesus was inaugurating was not what they expected. The nature of his kingdom was more spiritual than political, as was the oppression from which Jesus came to deliver his people. And to their amazement, the citizens of this new kingdom were no longer limited to the Jews but included Gentiles from all nations.

When the Apostle Paul writes the Corinthian church, he quotes what seems to be a standard summary of the good news in the first century:

Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. (1 Cor 15:3-6)

Paul’s repeated use of the phrase “in accordance with the Scriptures” refers to God’s purposes revealed to Israel in the Old Testament Scriptures to rescue the world after Adam and Eve sinned. Here he builds on the good news of the Old Testament that “Your God reigns.” (Is. 52:7, Rom. 10:15) Then he describes how Jesus “appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me (1 Cor 15:7-8).

Jesus as the last Adam and the new Israel
Drawing from the Old Testament Scriptures, Paul later presents Jesus as the second man and the last Adam. (1 Col 15: 45-47) When the first man, Adam, was tempted in the garden, he failed to obey God resulting in eternal death for humanity (Rom. 5:12-14). But when the second man, Jesus, was similarly tempted throughout his life, he perfectly obeyed God resulting in eternal life for humanity. (Rom 5:18-19)

By God’s grace, he did not destroy humanity after the Fall, neither did he change his demands. Instead, God established a covenant of grace promising to send a second man, the last Adam, who would obey his demands and restore his people to his favor.[9]

There is also a sense in which the nation of Israel was called to be the new Adam. God called Israel, like Adam, to be fruitful and multiply (Gen 1:27-28; 35:11) and to obey all his demands perfectly in order to have life (Lev 18:5). But God’s commands for Israel to make sacrifices for sin were reminders of their failure to keep God’s demands and their need to look ahead for God’s promised Redeemer.

The Bible shows several parallels between Israel and Jesus, including Israel’s temptation in the wilderness for forty years (Ex. 14, Deut. 8:1-2) and Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness for forty days (Matt. 3:13-4:2). So, Jesus is the new Israel, the second man, and the last Adam through which God is graciously restoring what was lost in the Fall.[10]

But Paul’s explanation of the gospel extends beyond Jesus death and resurrection in the past (1 Corinthians 15:3-4) to include Jesus’ present and future rule as the ascended King over all things by the Spirit. (1 Cor. 15:25-28) Jesus will continue his rule until he completes the mission that God the Father gave him to make all things new:

For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death…[W]hen all things are subjected to him, then the Son himself [Jesus] will also be subjected to him who put all things in subjection under him [God the Father], that God may be all in all. (1 Cor 15:25-28)

In the rest of this chapter Paul proclaims the good news that what God did for Jesus, raising him from the dead, he promises to do for all his people when Jesus returns to re-establish God’s kingdom on earth forever (1 Cor. 15:35-58).[11] This is why Paul describes Jesus as “the firstborn among many brothers” (Rom 8:29).

God’s Mission Through History
For Paul, the good news about what God has already done in history through Jesus points to the good news about what God will do to make all things new at the end of history when Jesus returns. Paul’s announcement of what God has done in the past is matched by what God promises he will do in the future, when

the Father’s creation, ruined by the Fall, will be redeemed by Christ
and renewed by his Holy Spirit into the kingdom of God on earth forever.

So we are living in a unique time in history, between what God has done in the person and work of Jesus Christ in the first century, and what God will do through the consummation of all things when he returns. In the meantime God intends for us to experience what he is doing in and through our lives today as we learn how to find our story in his.


Footnotes:


[1] We will be unpacking this broad, historical definition of the gospel later, showing how creation includes humanity and the cosmos, redemption includes Christ’s birth, life, death and resurrection, and renewal includes the Holy Spirit’s work in personal regeneration, etc.

[2] By renew we mean re-form reflecting Bavinck’s description of re-formation, not re-creation: “The re-creation that will take place in the renewal of heaven and earth (Matt. 19:28) is not the destruction of this world and the subsequent creation out of nothing of another world but the liberation of the creature that is now subject to futility … Christ, accordingly, is not a second Creator, but the Redeemer and Savior of this fallen creation, the Reformer of all things that have been ruined and corrupted by sin … sin is not part of the essence of creation; it pushed its way in later, as something unnatural and contrary to nature. Sin is deformity. When re-creation removes sin, it does not violate and suppress nature, but restores it.” “Re-formation, Not Re-creation, Reformed Dogmatics,Volume 4,Holy Spirit and New CreationThe Transformation of Creation, 716-727.

[3] Herman Bavinck, Reformed Dogmatics, Vol. 3: Sin and Salvation in Christ, ed. John Bolt, trans. John Vriend (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2006) 577.

[4] Ibid. 577.

[5] Most of us do not think of having a relationship with ourselves. Whether we realize it or not, we talk to ourselves constantly. Often it’s subconscious. Our self-talk is a reflection of being an image bearer designed by a triune God, who at creation revealed his intra-Trinitarian discourse in the heavenly court saying, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness” (Gen 1:26a). On many occasions, the authors of Scripture write words to themselves. The Psalmists frequently speak to themselves. In Psalm 42 and 43 David talks to himself when he is experiencing fear, saying things like “Why are you cast down, my soul?” “In the narrative, God, in a remarkable conference with the heavenly host, makes a special announcement of this particular creative act (Gen. 1:26) …” John Frame, Systematic Theology, chapter 4, in the section The Edenic Covenant.

[6] Most of us do not think about “having a relationship with creation.” In Genesis 1:28 we find the first explanation of why God created human beings–to exercise authority over his creation as his representatives: “And God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it.’” In Genesis 2:15 we find a more direct explanation of God’s purpose for creation and humanity: “The Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and keep it.” As we compare and contrast the imagery in Genesis 1 with that of Genesis 2, we go from a picture of God exercising sovereignty through humans over all creation (Gen. 1), to God exercising this same sovereign rule through individual humans in very specific places on the earth–such as the Garden of Eden (Gen. 2). Here we learn that God designs us in his image so that we will cultivate and protect the realms of his creation which he places under our influence, to accomplish his will on earth. These realms or spheres include our marriages, families, work, education, politics, art, etc.

[7] “Paul teaches that God’s redemptive plan encompasses heaven and earth. Its penultimate goal is to restore cosmic wholeness by unifying heaven and earth in the Messiah (Eph. 1:9–10); its ultimate goal is that once again, God would be “all in all” (1 Cor. 15:28).  John J. Hughes, The Transforming Power of Christ’s Love, in Scripture and the People of God: Essays in Honor of Wayne Grudem, p 138

[8] Ridderbos 1975:48

[9] “The first covenant made with man was a covenant of works, wherein life was promised to Adam, and in him to his posterity, upon condition of perfect and personal obedience.”, “Man, by his fall, having made himself incapable of life by that covenant, the Lord was pleased to make a second, commonly called the Covenant of Grace, whereby He freely offers unto sinners life and salvation by Jesus Christ, requiring of them faith in Him, that they may be saved; and promising to give unto all those that are ordained unto eternal life His Holy Spirit, to make them willing, and able to believe.” Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter 7.2-3

[10] Examples of Jesus and the kingdom he inaugurated seen as the fulfillment of Israel’s story include: 1) Jesus’ return from Egypt as a child mirroring Israel’s Exodus out of Egypt, 2) Jesus’ temptation in the desert wilderness alluding to Israel’s temptation in the desert wilderness, 3) Jesus’ twelve disciples remind us of the twelve tribes of Israel, 4) Jesus’ teachings in Matthew parallel Moses’ Pentateuch, 5) Jesus’ sufferings are linked to Israel’s call to be a suffering servant, 6) Jesus’ sacrificial death is tied to Israel’s sacrificial lamb, and 7) Jesus’ resurrection fulfills Israel’s long-awaited, promised hope for resurrection.

[11] See how Paul also refers to Adam as the “first man” and Jesus as the “second man” when teaching on the the future resurrection of the body: “Thus it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being,’ the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven.” (1 Cor. 15:45-47)


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The Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel

Introduction by Dr. John M. Frame

Introducing the Applied Theology Project Series

The Applied Theology Project provides you accessible, affordable seminary-level teaching designed to help you learn how to apply theology to your life and ministry in practical ways – with the goal of helping you better know, love, serve, and honor God as LORD in all of life. Seminary professors John Frame and Steve Childers combine their almost 90 years of teaching and ministry experience to help you apply theology to your life and ministry in practical ways.

Introducing their soon-to-be-released Applied Theology book and course: 

Good News! A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel

“We realize that in this book we are treading on holy ground. As we try to understand the gospel of Jesus, we realize that souls are at stake. So as we prepare this book we pray that God will accompany it, to plant churches and to plant his Word deep in the hearts of those who hear it.” – from the Introduction

Read the New Introduction to Good News: A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel by Dr. John Frame below.


Introduction to the Good News

A Biblical Exposition of the Gospel
Dr. John M. Frame

It is hard to believe that after two thousand years the Christian church is still discussing, even debating, “What is the gospel?” The gospel, the “good news,” is the fundamental truth of our faith, what we believe and proclaim to the world. If we don’t know what the gospel is, and if it doesn’t motivate everything we think and do and say, then what’s the point in claiming to be Christian at all?

At one level, of course, it is very simple: God saves sinners. But further questions and study draw us into a world of vast complexity and mystery. From that world, it is difficult to return to ordinary life, the world in which we are trying to communicate the gospel to needy people.

This is the sort of problem for which God raised up Pathway Learning. What we are all about is helping evangelists and church planters to bring the biblical message, even the most mysterious parts of it, to those hearing it for the first time. We are trying, as Cornelius Van Til used to say, to “put the cookies on the lower shelf.” But what we place on the shelf have to be real cookies, with all the sweet ingredients. To drop the metaphor: Not dumbed-down formulae, but the real biblical teaching, in all its richness.

The job is perilous. Theological accounts of “gospel” abound in oversimplification and overcomplication. How can we formulate the essence of it without getting lost in the details? How do we avoid the temptations of either parading our own academic subtlety or boasting of our down-home earthiness?

Prayerfully, we have concluded that the doctrine of the Trinity helps us to meet such challenges. In Scripture, God is three in one. So salvation from sin is the work of the three divine persons: the Father’s eternal plan, the Son’s actions in history, and the Spirit’s work in our hearts. So it is threefold, but it is also one. Each divine person is present in the others and in the great drama of redemption. So in the end it is a simple gospel, but one that is open to the riches and mystery of the eternal God.

In the history of debate over “gospel,” especially in recent years, some have emphasized its application to individual persons, what God does for me (1 Tim. 1:15). Others have emphasized that the gospel renovates the entire cosmos (Rom. 8:18-25). Still others call attention to what redemption does for God himself: that it vindicates his sovereignty and glory (John 17:1-4).

We see these three emphases, not as rival understandings of the good news, but as aspects of the full Trinitarian gospel. When you look closely at one of them, you will see the other two lying within it. To invoke our buzzword: the three are “perspectivally related.” Each of these understandings is a perspective on the whole and on the other two. So, as the Trinity itself, the gospel is wonderfully simple, and it envelops a rich, threefold, blessing.

We do not present this approach as a novelty, to be commended for its creativity. We find this Trinitarian structure and balance within the historic creeds of the church, and in the thought of its greatest theologians, such as Augustine and Calvin. So this book seeks unity, not only between different theological intuitions, but also between theological methods: we want to bring together systematic theology, biblical theology, and historical theology.

Nevertheless, we do not perceive this work primarily as an academic exercise. We realize that in this book we are treading on holy ground. As we try to understand the gospel of Jesus, we realize that souls are at stake. So as we prepare this book we pray that God will accompany it, to plant churches and to plant his Word deep in the hearts of those who hear it.

Dr. John M. Frame
Emeritus Professor of Systematic Theology and Philosophy
Reformed Theological Seminary


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