City of God Lectures

The Mystery Of The Gospel: Union with Christ by the Gift of The Spirit

lecture by Dr. Lane Tipton - September 2016

In Ephesians 1 Paul tells us in a praise saturated passage, that we as Christians have been blessed by God with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.  It is a wonderful and encouraging word from the Lord, but it comes with an important qualifier, namely, that we have this fullness of blessing β€œin Christ,” that is, in our union with Him.  Union with Christ is the sum, substance, and center of every benefit and blessing the Christian experiences.  In his death, Resurrection, and ascension, we have received an eternal and abiding inheritance that we are already beginning to experience by the Spirit in our new birth, faith, justification and sanctification all of which flow from this union alone.  Dr. Lane Tipton, associate professor of systematic theology at Westminster Theological Seminary in Philadelphia, challenges us in this lecture to direct our hearts to this Christological foundation and center of our salvation

Before The Fig Leaves: Gender and the Image of God

lecture by Steve Froehlich - April 2016

Ours is an age of rapid cultural change.  Gone are the days of our grandparents in which the basic Christian understanding of truth and reality was the default perspective of the culture.  At every point it seems the former assumptions are being challenged and the epicenter of that challenge is coming on the issue of gender and sexuality.  As Christians we must wrestle with how to think clearly in this new age and especially how to minister to our neighbors.   As a minister in a university town, Steve Froehlich has worked long and hard to grapple with the Biblical teaching on gender and what it means to love those with whom we disagree and in this lecture he shares his thoughts with us

The Great Divorce: A Thematic Introduction

lecture by Bill Spanjer Jr. - November 2015

In his wonderful work, The Great Divorce, C.S. Lewis provides an imaginative look at the realities of Heaven and Hell and forces us to reckon with the state of our own souls.  This lecture was given in preparation for a trip that Dwaarkill sponsored to NYC to watch Max MacLean's production of the book.  In the lecture we considered Lewis's understanding of Hell, repentance, and Heaven.

Head And Heart: The Role of Reason and Emotion in the Gift of Faith

lecture by Guillaume Bignon - September 2015

There has long been a debate over whether the intellect has a priority over the emotions or vice versa when it comes to one's faith.   Becoming a Christian involves at least some change of mind, but arguably demands a whole lot more, including a change of heart. Is faith in Christ a rational decision? Is it then only a rational decision? What role do arguments and reasons play in coming to faith and persisting in it, and what is the place of emotions in the Christian life? This lecture will explore the relationship between mind and heart for the Christian: love? hate? or "it's complicated?"

A Resonating Joy: The Necessity of a Musical Life

lecture by Ben Russell - May 2015

Music is a foundational part of human life.  It moves us and helps us to express truth at levels which mere propositions cannot reach.  In this Lecture, Ben Russell, founding member of the Bryant Park Quartet, uses his great gift of music to help us better understand the power and importance of music in our lives. 

 God In The Whirlwind: Job And The Problem Of Evil

lecture by Justin Chiarot, December 2014

No issue has challenged the hearts and minds of Christians nor been used as a argumentative weapon by those who are not Christians, like that of God and the problem of Evil.   But Christians must avoid dealing with this difficult issue as an abstract philosophical problem.  In This Christmas season lecture we are reminded by the story of Job that the entire question must be wrestled with in the light of the Incarnation.  For, it is in the incarnation and ultimately the cross, that we discover our God with us in the chaos that troubles us so greatly.  We discover God not only sovereign over, but also in the midst of the whirlwind.

The Dawn's Early Light: Rethinking Our Eschatology

lecture by Dr. Kevin Chiarot - April 2014

While many Christians think of Eschatology, or the study of last things, to be a study of future events, Dr. Chiarot challenges us in this lecture to reconsider our understanding.  Rather than viewing the "end times" as something one generation will experience around the time of Christ's second coming, we are encouraged to consider the ramifications of the incarnation and particularly of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.  For, it is in the resurrection of Jesus that the "end times have broken into our time" so to speak.  New creation's dawn has begun in Him and we are called to live in its light.

God In The Ash Heap

lecture by Bill Spanjer Jr. - December 2013

"Who is like the Lord our God?" asks the Psalmist in Psalm 113.  But what is it that sets our God apart from the claims of all other would-be gods?  It is not simply that the God of the Bible is more exalted than what the others claim to be.  Rather, it is that as the One exalted high above the heavens, he is mindful of the lowly, the poor, the sinner. In this Christmas season lecture we are reminded that the God of the Bible, revealed in the Incarnation, is not a distant God, unwilling to get His hands dirty.  The God revealed in Christ Jesus is the God of Psalm 113 who loves His people enough to enter into the ash heap in order to lift us out and seat us with the princes of His people.