Category Archives: Carl Trueman

“The intercession of Christ” by Carl Trueman

“When we turn to the intercession of Christ at the Father’s right hand in the present age, we must not think of Christ as somehow begging, cajoling, or bribing the Father to be merciful.

Rather, we should think of the heavenly session of Christ as involving the mutual delight of Father, Son and Holy Spirit in the accomplished work of the Incarnate God and as rejoicing in the great work of salvation.

The Father does not hear the Son’s intercessions unwillingly or impatiently; He takes pleasure in hearing the Son and in granting His requests, for in a very real sense the intercessions of the Son are the deepest intentions of the Father as well.

The very presence before Him of the Son with His wounded hands and side is a source of immeasurable satisfaction, pleasure and joy. This should fill believers with confidence as they pray.

We need no intermediary other than that which we already have in God Incarnate.”

–Carl Trueman, “Seated at the Right Hand of the Father,” Reformation21. As cited on: http://www.reformation21.org/blog/2011/05/seated-at-the-right-hand-of-th.php (Accessed May 9, 2011).

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“The gospel is for Christians too” by Carl Trueman

“Let us never forget that the gospel is for Christians too. We need to hear the Word preached to us, whether from the pulpit on a Sunday or in conversation with other believers. If a brother or sister is mourning, then let us not simply tell them that the death of their loved one is all within the will of God.

Let us not even stop with simply feeling compassion and sympathy for them. Let us also point them to the Lord Jesus Christ who rose from the dead. Death is an outrage, an illegitimate boundary. It is nasty and brutish. But the captain of our salvation has burst through that boundary and come out on the other side.

He is risen from the grave. And in His resurrection we see that, though we live in a vale of tears and agony here and now, where death seems to hold all the trump cards, there is a day most certainly coming when we know that we too, and all the loved ones who have gone before us in Christ, will rise to be with Christ.

His death was agonizing but it could not hold Him. Ours will no doubt be terrible and traumatic. But because of Christ, death will not hold us either.”

–Carl F. Trueman, “Death, the Final Boundary,” in Minority Report: Unpopular Thoughts on Everything From Ancient Christianity to Zen-Calvinism (Geanies House, Fearn, Scotland, UK: Mentor, 2008), 202.

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“What can miserable Christians pray?” by Carl R. Trueman

“You will find in the Psalms that there is not a single emotion which you feel which the Lord Himself has not given us the words to express to Him in prayer and praise. Learn to pray the Psalms in private, for there you find the resources to cope with the day of death and darkness.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. The neglect of the Psalter in public Christian worship lays the groundwork for pastoral disaster: it has the effect of shortchanging the brokenhearted when they come to God in the company of their brothers and sisters on the Lord’s Day. Miserable Christians have every right, and indeed really must, express their misery to God in prayer and praise.

To prevent them from doing so is an act of pastoral cruelty. And isn’t it wonderful that we have such a God as the one who condescended in love and grace towards broken humanity to give us the Psalms for these very times of darkness? Let’s not neglect them; let’s use them as much as we can, in private prayer and in public worship.”

–Carl F. Trueman, “Death, the Final Boundary,” in Minority Report: Unpopular Thoughts on Everything From Ancient Christianity to Zen-Calvinism (Geanies House, Fearn, Scotland, UK: Mentor, 2008), 201-202.

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“You need to be there” by Carl R. Trueman

“Church involvement is absolutely critical for any healthy Christian life because it constitutes a basic reality check. Most Christians spend their weeks surrounded by people who are not Christians, being exposed to ideas, images, and values which are antithetical to Christianity which sell us myths as if they were reality, which teach us that madness is sanity and sanity is madness. Time spent with brothers and sisters in Christ on the Lord’s Day is thus time spent resetting your moral, spiritual, and intellectual bearings.

Whether you are a banker being tempted to greed by life during the week or a New Testament PhD student being bombarded with scholarship that mocks God’s word in the classroom from Monday to Friday, meeting with the people of God, singing his word, hearing his word read and preached and, indeed, meeting with the Triune in the awesome context of a worship service, is vital to your well-being.

You need to be there; and in nearly two decades of teaching, I have never yet met a student who messes up badly at an intellectual level who did not first mess up at an ecclesiastical level, whether through wrong choice of fellowship or no choice of fellowship at all. Put simply: if you are not involved in a church, then do not look for sympathy when your life leaves the rails and dives into a ditch.”

–Carl R. Trueman, “Minority Report: A Question of Accountability,” Themelios 34.2 (2009): 158-161. Available online here.

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“Advice to seminarians and PhD students” by Carl R. Trueman

“The simple way for theological students to resist both the temptation to pontificate beyond their pay grade and the temptation to pride and the moral and intellectual problems that inevitably come in its wake-fall is to find the proper context for accountability, to find their true home; and the good news is that this true home is easy to find—simply join an orthodox, gospel-believing and proclaiming church as member, submit to the elders, attend the corporate worship services, fellowship with the saints on a regular basis, get involved in the day to day work of the local body, even if it is ‘only’ the cleaning rota (and, hey, worshipping in a dirty church quickly reveals how important that is), and pursue a disciplined life of private devotion.”

–Carl R. Trueman, “Minority Report: A Question of Accountability,” Themelios 34.2 (2009): 158-161. Available online here.

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“Humble servants of the church” by Carl R. Trueman

“Too many theological students come unstuck not because they do not master the sophisticated intricacies of their chosen fields of specialization but rather because they failed their apprenticeships in the basics, the corporate disciplines of church attendance, submission to elders, hard work for the local body, and the individual disciplines which flow from these: private prayer and Bible reading, a crying out to God for his mercy, and a burning desire to be mastered by the Word of God.

Successful theological students are never the subjects in theological study; rather they are always the objects of God’s grace. And the church is the place where they will be held accountable for these things. The church, not the seminar room, provides their only true home, their best classroom, and their best form of strenuous spiritual rest. Theological study at the highest level is a high calling indeed; but just for this very reason those who pursue it need to make especially sure that they truly are humble servants of the church.”

–Carl R. Trueman, “Minority Report: A Question of Accountability,” Themelios 34.2 (2009): 158-161. Available online here.

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“The key to systematic theology” by Carl Trueman

“The key is always biblical balance, allowing God’s revelation to check our speculations.”

–Carl Trueman, “Sin in High Places” in Risking the Truth, Ed. Martin Downes (Geanies House, Scotland, UK: Christian Focus, 2009), 40.

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