Reformed Forum

All Christian parents are called to raise their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Eph. 6:4). In Deuteronomy 6:4–9, the Lord commands his covenant people,

Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

It is non-negotiable for covenant families to raise their children according to the Lord’s commands. However, this education may take different forms amidst different circumstances.

In this episode, Erica Bucey, Director of Development at Westlake Christian Academy in Grayslake, Illinois, speaks about various trends in Christian education given the COVID-19 pandemic, which has uprooted education in America. Families have been influenced to think about education in ways that they have not before.

We speak about different approaches to education, the trade-offs involved in each form, as well as current legislation in Illinois that encourages a form of progressive indoctrination in public schools. We conclude by discussing ways in which churches can support families by talking about these matters and educating them.


Direct download: ctc691.mp3
Category:Christ the Center -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Whether you are a scholar, pastor, theological student, Bible study teacher, or someone engaged in serious personal study, it is critical to document your sources. Regrettably, most people don’t do this well.

Along with many best practices, there are tested tools used by many scholars in a wide range of disciplines. One of these is Zotero. At root, Zotero is a citation manager. But it does much more than that. It is a tool that helps you collect, organize, cite, and share research.

Direct download: rmr129.mp3
Category:Reformed Media Review -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Occasionally the New Testament provides a direct connection to the words of the Old, pointing like a bright beacon to the person of Christ. We find that is the case as we look at the story of God’s ladder from Genesis 28. Angels ascend the ladder with a message for God from Jacob and descend from heaven with a message from God for Jacob.

Direct download: pc097.mp3
Category:Proclaiming Christ -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Lane Tipton discusses “Van Til’s Trinitarian Theology,” the latest on-demand video course released with Reformed Academy. Designed to equip the student to engage critically central issues in trinitarian theology, this course will focus on the architectonic significance of the Trinity both in Van Til’s theology and apologetics. Special attention will be given to Van Til’s historical and theological context, his theology of triune personhood, the structure and function of the representational principle, the distinctively trinitarian character of the transcendental method, and his rejection of all species of correlativism, ranging from Karl Barth to contemporary expressions of Evangelical mutualism.

Enroll for free at

Direct download: ctc690.mp3
Category:Christ the Center -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Ryan Noha brings his collection of Van Til books to the studio for show-and-tell. Join us for a surreal Reformed home shopping network experience. This was recorded in the summer of 2020 along with our course Introduction to the Theology and Apologetics of Cornelius Van Til.

Direct download: rmr128.mp3
Category:Reformed Media Review -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

This week on Theology Simply Profound, Rob and Bob continue a discussion of John Bunyan’s, The Pilgrim’s Progress, Book 2. In this episode, we discuss how Bunyan brings Christiana and Mercy up to and through the Wicket Gate where they meet the Gatekee

Direct download: tsp228.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:03pm CDT

Dr. Christopher Watkin joins us to speak about his book, Michel Foucault, published by P&R Publishing in the Great Thinkers series. Michel Foucault (1926–1984) was a French philosopher, historian of ideas, writer, political activist, and literary critic. Although he was widely influential during his lifetime, Foucault’s philosophy has come to even greater influence and applicability in recent years within the contemporary cultural and political discourse regarding sexual ethics and identity. Dr. Watkin is a lecturer at Monash University in Melbourne. He is the author of a number of academic books in the area of modern European philosophy. Over the past few years he has written four books published by P&R Publishing, including Thinking through Creation: Genesis 1 and 2 as Tools of Cultural Critique and three books in the Great Thinkers series: Jacques Derrida (2017), Michel Foucault (2018) and Gilles Deleuze (2020).

Direct download: ctc689.mp3
Category:Christ the Center -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Direct download: rmr127.mp3
Category:Reformed Media Review -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Although Jacob and Esau both show themselves unworthy to inherit the covenant promises, we see, through two theological paradigms – the offspring and the land – that God Almighty will lead his people to the land of promise.

Direct download: pc096.mp3
Category:Proclaiming Christ -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

This week on Theology Simply Profound, Rob and Bob continue a discussion of John Bunyan’s, The Pilgrim’s Progress, Book 2. In this episode, we discuss Christiana interaction with Mrs. Timorous and Mercy as she and her children make their way to the Wi

Direct download: tsp227.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:44pm CDT

Danny Olinger, Lane Tipton, and Camden Bucey discuss Geerhardus Vos's sermon, "Hungering and Thirsting after Righteousness" from Matthew 5:6. This sermon is included in Grace and Glory: Sermons Preached at Princeton Theological Seminary.

Direct download: ctc688.mp3
Category:Christ the Center -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

A Book on Notetaking? It’s Not What You Might Expect Amazon showed me Sönke Ahrens’s How to Take Smart Notes: One Simple Technique to Boost Writing, Learning and Thinking – for Students, Academics and Nonfiction Book Writers about twenty times in sponsored posts before I finally broke down to see what it was all about. I decided to retrieve a sample chapter on my Kindle. I couldn’t put the book down and read it well into the night. My wife even asked me what in the world I was reading, to which I sheepishly confessed it was a book on taking notes. This book is not about Reformed theology, church history, or even philosophy, but I’m confident many of you will be intrigued. I loved this book so much that I ordered several copies to give as gifts to friends. This book isn’t what you might expect. It’s not a self-help book with tips for becoming a better student, for listening better, and capturing your thoughts for better processing and recall later on. I believe that following the model suggested in this book may in fact make you a better student and researcher. It will certainly help you to process your thoughts. But this book goes much deeper than a series of tips and tricks. It’s a proposition for a more disciplined—yet much more liberating—process of contemplation and writing. The Heart of the Book At the heart of Ahren’s How to Take Smart Notes is a somewhat idiosyncratic notetaking system developed by German sociologist Niklaus Luhmann. He used a system that is known as a Zettelkasten, or notes box. Ahrens categorizes notes into three types. • Ephemeral notes (these get thrown out) • Literature notes (write these as you read a book, but keep them separate) • Zettelkasten (process your literature notes and write permanent notes—one per idea)

Link your note to the other notes in your existing network or note-ideas.

In my conceptualization, Luhmann’s method is a form of atomic writing. You must force yourself to formulate your thoughts and write them as if writing them for someone else. This can be difficult, and you may find much personal inertia to this approach. That’s because you think you know the subject matter better than you do. Writing is the thinking process. By using this method, Luhmann was able to write more than 70 books and 400 scholarly articles before he died at the age of 70. That is impressive. But perhaps even more impressive than his scholarly output is the nature of his scholarship. He was able to approach subjects in fresh ways, finding surprising connections among disparate disciplines. This was due in part to the unexpected connections made by his Zettelkasten.

Luhmann wrote his notes on cards and filed them in a physical catalogue. There is much to be said about the benefits of handwriting and the tactile qualities of this form of note-taking, yet there are also many limitations—particularly with linking and searchability. For those who are interested in a digital approach to Zettelkasten, an entire ecosystem is developing around what generally is called Personal Knowledge Management (PKM). People not only use the Zettelkasten method and its variants for academic research and writing, but also for all types of creative work, personal journaling, and even for CRM (customer/constituent relationship management).

I am currently exploring how to link my thoughts as I read and contemplate Scripture. Intelligently linking all the Scripture references in my notes and sermons may prove to be immensely useful when approaching related texts in the future.

Direct download: rmr126.mp3
Category:Reformed Media Review -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

Matthew’s account of the visit of the Magi is not exactly the story as we know it from our cultural Christmas traditions. The response of these wisemen to the birth of Jesus is what the response of Herod should have been, and what our response should be, namely, worship.

Direct download: pc095.mp3
Category:Proclaiming Christ -- posted at: 11:00pm CDT

This week on Theology Simply Profound, Rob and Bob continue a discussion of John Bunyan’s, The Pilgrim’s Progress, Book 2. In this episode, we discuss how Christiana is convicted of her sins, repents, and begins her pilgrim journey . . . "the bitter i

Direct download: tsp226.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:05pm CDT