Sunday Night Theology is designed to provide extended time of Bible teaching as well as talks about current issues that should be addressed by the church of Jesus Christ. Christ Church West Chester seeks to provide excellent resources and to expert speakers here to our church as both a ministry to our members as well as an outreach to our community. All events are completely free and require no reservation.
The Trinity in the Bible — The God whom Christians trust and worship is one God in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. But does Scripture really teach the doctrine of the Trinity? Isn’t it more of an abstract, philosophical speculation imposed on the text? By engaging in-depth with John 5:17-30, this message will show not only that Scripture teaches the Trinity, but that Trinitarian doctrine is necessary for reading Scripture rightly. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, February 28, 2021 at 5pm, by Dr. Bobby Jamieson, Associate Pastor of Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC.
Venture All For God: How A 17th Century Pastor Helps 21st Century Christians Life the Christian Life — Many Christians are familiar with The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan’s (1628-1688) famous book written from a prison cell, which portrays the Christian life as one traveling from the City of Destruction to the Celestial City. During Bunyan’s life, however, he produced nearly sixty books and tracts. This SNT will trace the significant events that shaped Bunyan’s life and thought and examine a variety of this great man of faith’s writings to give us a glimpse of his piety, which flowed from his desire to venture all for God. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, March 28, 2021 at 5pm, by Dr. Phil Newton, Co-Pastor of South Woods Baptist Church in Memphis, TN.
Evangelical Identity and Public Witness: The Legacy of Carl F.H. Henry for Today — The term “evangelical” is more contested than ever, leaving many to wonder if it still holds any real use. Does it represent a political platform? A theological tradition? Something else altogether? In the 20th century, perhaps no American theologian was more formative in articulating a vision for evangelical identity than Carl F.H. Henry (1913-2003), and yet he has disappeared from much of evangelicalism’s collective memory. This seminar will propose a retrieval of Henry’s project for today, albeit one that recognizes some of its inherent limitations. Henry’s vision continues to offer American evangelicals a model for Christian faithfulness in a secular age, one that resists the dual temptations of withdrawal and accommodation. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, April 25, 2021 at 5pm by Dr. Matthew Hall, provost and associate professor of church history at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.
“The Hardest Work of All”: Lessons Learned through the History of Christian Prayer — In a sense, the history of Christian prayer may be considered a continued expression of the Disciple’s request to Jesus as recorded in Luke 11:1, “Lord, teach us to pray.” The earliest Christians were known even by their adversaries as those who “pray to Christ as God.” But how did believers in the early, medieval, and Reformation church pray? What Scriptures guided their prayers and what were their methods? By noting various expressions of Christian prayer in the history of the church, this talk will illustrate what believers from the past have to teach believers in the present about what Martin Luther called “the hardest work of all.” This SNT talk will be taught on Sunday, May 30, 2021 by Dr. Dustin Bruce, Dean of Boyce College in Louisville, KY.
The Ology: Ancient Truths, Ever New — Arranged within a traditional systematic theological framework, The Ology connects theology to the larger redemptive story of Scripture. This storybook of systematic theology takes abstract concepts in the Bible and makes them easier to understand with the use of creative examples, illustrations, and analogies so that children can know who God is and how to relate to him (and so parents can more faithfully instruct them as they catechize them in the teachings of Holy Scripture). This seminar will inspire you to pass on the incredible story of redemption to the next generation. God passed Theology to us through the great redemptive storyline preserved in the Bible. We carry on this mission to pass on the good news the same way, by sharing his story with our children and grandchildren. God, by his Spirit, will work through even our most feeble efforts to pass on his transformative biblical truth to our kids. This SNT talk will be taught on June 27, 2021, by Marty Machowski, Executive Pastor at Covenant Fellowship Church in Glen Mills, PA.
The Fifth Gospel: The Servant Songs of Isaiah — The book of Isaiah has been a central text in the Christian faith, even called the “Fifth Gospel” by many. A fitting title, because the New Testament’s use of the word “gospel” is largely rooted in Isaiah’s own use of it. Against the backdrop of God’s judgment, Isaiah says, “herald of good news” (Isa. 40:9). It is the good news that, although God’s people rightly deserve judgment, God will come as their king and bring peace and salvation to all who trust him (Isa. 40:9; 52:7). At the heart of this “gospel” is the coming of a Servant who will accomplish our salvation through his righteous life, guilty death, and victorious resurrection (Isa. 53:4–6, 10–12). This is the heart of Isaiah’s gospel and ours. It is the substitution of Jesus Christ, the righteous for the unrighteous, that we might be restored to God. This SNT talk will be a study of the Servant Songs in Isaiah which focus on God’s suffering Servant and will be taught on Sunday, July 25, 2021 by Dr. Raymond M. Johnson, Senior Pastor at Christ Church West Chester.
Why Is It So Hard to Talk About Race? — Have you ever asked a question like that? Why is there so much defensiveness and division, suspicion and strife on racial matters among those who claim to be united in Jesus? Christians expect difficulty with the world; Jesus promised as much in John 16:33. And sure, opponents do also arise from within the church, and this presents its own trouble (Acts 20:30). That said, churches are fundamentally families, aren’t they? Should talking about race with brothers and sisters in the faith be this hard? This SNT will be taught on August 29, 2020 by Isaac Adams, Assistant Pastor at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC. Adams founded United? We Pray — a ministry devoted to prayer about racial strife, especially between Christians.
Descriptions and Prescriptions: A Biblical Perspective on Psychiatric Diagnoses and Medications — OCD, ADHD, PTSD, Bipolar Disorder . . . these are not just diagnoses from the DSM; they are part of our everyday vocabulary and understanding of people. As Christians, how should we think about psychiatric diagnoses and their associated treatments? We can’t afford to isolate ourselves and simply dismiss these categories as unbiblical. Nor can we afford to accept the entire secular psychiatric diagnostic and treatment enterprise at face value as though Scripture is irrelevant for these complex struggles. Instead, we need a balanced, biblically (and scientifically!) informed approach that is neither too warmly embracing nor too coldly dismissive of psychiatric labels and the psychiatric medications that are often prescribed. Biblical counselor, CCEF Faculty, and retired physician, Michael R. Emlet, will present a helpful way forward on these important issues. He will guide us through the thicket of mental health diagnoses and treatments and will show how the Bible informs our understanding of both psychiatric diagnoses, and the medications that are often recommended based on those labels. Through this time together, we will seek to form biblical, gospel-formed categories that will help us understand and minister to those who struggle with mental health issues. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, September 26, 2021 at 5pm by Michael R. Emlet, M.D., faculty member at CCEF in Glenside, PA.
Why Do The Churches Rage? – The Bible is the foundational document of the church: its charter and constitution. But whose interpretation counts, and why? How do we answer those critics who say the Protestant Reformers “broke” the church and opened up a Pandora’s box where everyone reads the Bible in a way that is right in his or her eyes? There is nothing more important for “a people of the book” than to understand what the key Reformation principle sola Scriptura (“Scripture alone”) means – and what it doesn’t. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, October 31, 2021 at 5pm by Dr. Kevin Vanhoozer, research professor of systematic theology at TEDS in Deerfield, IL.
Just Retribution in Job – Many teachings of the book of Job focus on the oft-treated issue of theodicy by asking exasperating questions like: “What does Job have to say about the righteous suffering and its relation to the justice of God?” However, there is an antithesis to the dilemma of the righteous suffering that Job points out—the prosperity of the wicked (ch. 21). The prosperity of the wicked is just as much of a problem in relation to the justice of God and a consistent system of just retribution as is the suffering of the righteous. So, how do Job and his companions depict the fate of the wicked within their respective paradigms of justice? How can there possibly be justice in a world in which the wicked prosper as Job claims? Join us as we will address these questions that not only intrigued Job and his companions, but also continue to perplex savants up to this very day. This SNT will be taught on Sunday, November 28, 2021 at 5pm by Dr. Dominick Hernández, Assistant Professor of Old Testament Interpretation at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY.