Recent Magazine Articles

12 May 2017

Defender of God’s justice

by William den Boer | Issue 122

WtenbogaertTHE NAME JACOB ARMINIUS (1559–1609) still provokes resistance in Calvinist circles, most notably because many Calvinists say he awarded a decisive role to man’s free will in salvation at the cost of God’s sovereign grace. The real story, as so often is the case, is more complex. 

when did God choose? 

Though we know him today by the Latin version of his Dutch name, Arminius was born Jakob Hermanszoon in 1559 in Oudewater in the Netherlands. His father died around that time; later he lost his mother, sister, and older brothers in the Spanish...

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12 May 2017

Picturing saints

by Virginia C. Raguin | Issue 122

Teresa's ecstacyIN THE WAKE of the Protestant Reformation, what piety looked, smelled, sounded, and tasted like varied depending on where you were. 

In Germany Luther’s reform had challenged the hierarchical structure of the Roman Church, with its privileged priesthood, sacraments, and the language of Latin for church services. Consequently while Lutherans kept a role for music and religious art, they rejected the saints as intercessors, the priesthood as a special class, and Latin as the language of worship. At the same time, more radical resistance to...

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12 May 2017

The road not taken

by Edwin Woodruff Tait | Issue 122

MargueriteLUTHER’S TEACHINGS SPREAD like wildfire in the 1520s throughout Europe, attracting sympathetic, enthusiastic readers. From 1523 on they also created martyrs; both civil and religious authorities responded with violence to the threat to religious stability. 

[Marguerite of Navarre; Wikipedia ]

These early martyrs were not yet known as “Protestants,” a term first used in 1529 for German princes who protested an imperial order to stop making religious changes. Catholic opponents called anyone sounding even remotely like Luther a “Lutheran.” The...

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12 May 2017

Helping souls

by Katie M. Benjamin | Issue 122

Ignatius in armorSEVERELY INJURED BY A CANNONBALL that had wounded both his legs, the young Spanish man knew his military career was over. In spite of the doctors’ dire predictions, he had survived surgery (no easy feat in a pre-anesthesia era) and was now learning to walk again. 

This young man, of wealthy birth and luxurious tastes, had once longed only for battle and tales of chivalry, but he now had a growing interest in spiritual things; he was beginning to pray and meditate, desiring to follow God. He would make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, he decided.

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23 Feb 2017

Spreading light in a dark world

by Jared S. Burkholder | Issue 121

In 1944, the same year Allied forces stormed the beaches of occupied Europe, the congregation of Boston’s historic Park Street Church began giving up some meals during Lent. They sent the money they would have spent on food to the War Relief Fund, an initiative created by the newly formed (1942) National Association of Evangelicals (NAE). They were not alone in their desire to alleviate the suffering in war-torn Europe. Now known as World Relief, this fund was just one of many new Christian service organizations spurred into being by the...

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23 Feb 2017

A war story: “There is no pit so deep God’s love is not deeper still“

by Kaylena Radcliff | Issue 121

One was an ethnically Jewish Carmelite nun , the other a Dutch Reformed watchmaker. One received her doctorate, the other initially failed to get even a Bible training certificate. On the surface Edith Stein (1891–1942) and Corrie ten Boom (1892–1983) had little in common, but their faith and choices during World War II bound them in suffering.

[Last photograph of Edith Stein]

The Watchmaker’s Daughter

Cornelia (Corrie) ten Boom was the fourth surviving child of a poor but generous Dutch Reformed couple, Casper and Cornelia ten Boom. After...

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