Click to read these books and articles I've written on various biblical, theological, and historical subjects.
The Tragedy of 1662: The Ejection and Persecution of the Puritans
Was 1662 a good year or a bad year? Something we should look back to as a golden moment of doctrinal and liturgical soundness or the start of a tragic tale for those who love the gospel more than the institutional Church? This study unpacks the story of the Great Ejection where nearly 2000 puritans were forced to leave the Church of England, and the Great Persecution which followed for the next 25 years.
Preface to The Anglican Evangelical Doctrine of Infant Baptism by John Stott & J. Alec Motyer
I was delighted that John Stott and J. Alec Motyer, two Anglican Evangelicals I respect and admire immensely, were happy to give their permission for Latimer to publish together material they have written on the doctrine of baptism. I had the honour of editing the book and contributing a preface, which I share here by way of a taster for the book.
From Life's First Cry: John Owen on Infant Baptism and Infant Salvation
A short book (an extended version of the 2008 St. Antholin's Lecture) looking at the teaching of the great puritan John Owen on the controversial and related subjects of infant baptism and infant salvation. I tried hard to interact with Owen's 17th century opponents as well as present day detractors (I mean, Baptists!) in presenting and applying Owen's doctrine. I believe this is the only extended treatment of Owen's view in print!
Christianity and the Tolerance of Liberalism: J. Gresham Machen and the Presbyterian Controversy of 1922-1937
A short book looking at how we can learn from the troubles in the Presbyterian Church in the USA and Princeton Theological Seminary during the Fundamentalist-Modernist controversy, with a particular focus on conservative hero J. Gresham Machen.
It's quite topical, I think, considering all the shenanigans in the Church of England at the moment... despite the immensely long subtitle!
The Inexhaustible Fountain of All Goodness: Union with Christ in Calvin’s Commentary and Sermons on Ephesians
Union with Christ is the defining theme of John Calvin's teaching on the way we receive the grace of Christ in salvation, to which he attached "the highest degree of importance." This article looks at how this doctrine is taught in Calvin's commentary and sermons on the book of Ephesians, in which being united to Christ is a unifying principle, and how it serves to highlight many of Calvin's doctrinal and pastoral concerns.
Justified Hesitation? J.D.G. Dunn & the Protestant Doctrine of Justification
This article explores the teaching of Professor J.D.G. Dunn on the subject of justification. The basic thesis is that we should have no hesitation at all in sticking to the traditional Protestant doctrine of justification, because Professor Dunn's "New Perspective" critique of it is not sufficiently solid. First published in Churchman 115/1 (2001).
The Manifesto of the Reformation: Luther vs. Erasmus on Free Will
This article examines “one of the most famous exchanges in western intellectual history”, the clash between Martin Luther and Desiderius Erasmus over the issue of free will. The debate between these two titans reveals not only the reasons behind humanism’s repudiation of the Reformation, but also exposes the heartbeat of the Reformation itself, since Luther’s contribution is the nearest to a systematic statement of his principles that he ever made. But did he do so in a godly way...? Published in Churchman 123/3 (2009).
A Christian Response to Terrorism in London
Reflections on the impact of the 7/7 terrorist attacks on London in July 2005, and thoughts on how to respond to such atrocities in a Christian way. First published in The Briefing in September 2005.
Biblical Authority in Recent Evangelical Books
An examination of recent books by John Stott, Alister McGrath, and J.I. Packer on the subject of the Bible and its authority. First published in Churchman 120/4 (2006).
Abortion and our Attitude to the Foetus
Abortion remains an emotive issue in theology and politics. This article makes the case for seeing our assessment of the foetus as determinative on the issue. It examines various "pro-choice" (pro-abortion) arguments which see the foetus as human, and concludes that Christians must stress not only the humanity of the foetus but also the sacredness of all human life in order to be properly heard in the debate. From Churchman 119/3 (2005) and also on The Theologian.
The Autobiography of a "Meer Christian": Richard Baxter's Account of the Restoration
This paper examines the autobiography of puritan theologian Richard Baxter (the Reliquiae Baxterianae of 1696) and assesses its value as a historical source for the religious settlement of 1660-1662. Baxter is a complicated source whose account requires sensitive handling, but is of immense use and interest - the premier starting point for any serious engagement with this crucial episode in English Church history. First published in Churchman 122/2 (2008).
“Shades of opinion within a generic Calvinism”: The Particular Redemption Debate at the Westminster Assembly
In October 1645, the Westminster Assembly of Divines debated the proposition "Christ did intend to Redeeme the elect only", revealing in the process that there was more than one way to be a Calvinist and not every way involved 'limited atonement'. This article (with some surprising conclusions) looks at the Divines' debate itself, the background to British hypothetical universalism (as opposed to French Amyraldianism), and what the Westminster Confession actually teaches on this controversial point of doctrine.
Limited Atonement: A Biblical, Theological, and Practical Investigation
Did Jesus die for everyone, or just for the elect? Why did the Father send him, and what did he set out to do? A look at a controversial and sometimes tricky doctrine, examining the biblical, theological, historical, and practical importance of the idea of effective personal atonement, and objections that have been raised against it.
The Reformed Consensus on Justification
This article outlines the doctrine of justification by grace alone through faith alone as taught by Reformed theologians from the 16th to 21st Centuries. It includes data from major Reformed thinkers John Calvin, Francis Turretin, Charles Hodge, Louis Berkof, and Robert Reymond.
Love is the Greatest thing (1 Corinthians 13)
An exegetical examination of this famous chapter, often read at weddings and funerals.
The Difficult Issue of Pre-Marital Sex
This article examines the biblical arguments against non-marital sexual relations, putting them alongside other theological, pragmatic, and social-psychological arguments. An earlier version of this article also appeared on The Briefing website in February 2002.
Evangelistic Sermons in the Book of Acts
An exegetical examination and comparison of the evangelistic sermons of the Apostles Peter and Paul, and what we can learn from them.
The Warning Passages in the Book of Hebrews
A discussion of the rhetorical function and purpose of the warning passages in the book of Hebrews, often used in theological debates between Calvinists and Arminians on the subject of the perseverence of the saints. Does Hebrews teach that an elect Christian can fall away?
The Place of the Plagues Narrative in the Book of Exodus
A biblical-theological assessment of the function and purpose of the plagues narrative (Exodus 7-14) in the book of Exodus.
September 11th 2001 and False Gospels
Some thoughts on the impact of "9/11" and how it exposed the false gospels on offer by the secular world.
Is Christianity a Revealed Religion?
Can Christianity really claim to have been revealed by God? What is involved in making such a philosophical argument, and can it be believed?
Building Bigger Barns: A short Observation on Life in the City
A short piece I wrote for a blog on the parable in Luke 12
about the rich fool, and what it says about the City I work in...