Reformed Podmatics

Reformed Podmatics

Welcome to Reformed Podmatics! Hosted by Pastor Mark VanDyke and Pastor Zac Dewey of Almond Valley CRC in Ripon CA, this podcast exists to promote the vibrant, biblical, and historically informed face of Reformed theology both in our context and beyond.

Episodes

June 19, 2024 35 mins

The days are getting longer, the temperatures are rising, and school is no longer in session. That can only mean one thing: it is VBS season! In this week's episode, Mark and Zac take a few moments to talk about the ins and outs of Vacation Bible School from a Reformed perspective and offer a few ways to improve your VBS program, particularly from a Reformed perspective. Article mentioned by Zac in the episode:

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Today marks the beginning of Synod 2024 and delegates have begun arriving at the campus of Calvin University for a weekend of deliberations and discussion. In this week's episode Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac get into some of the weightier matters about to be worked through in the crucial week ahead.

 

Visit www.almondvalley.org for information about Almond Valley Christian Reformed Church in Ripon, CA.

Music by Jonathan Ogden used wi...

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As the ministry year has now ground to a halt and Christians find themselves entering into the dog days of summer, Pastor Zac and Pastor Mark settle into a conversation about books they've read and recommend as well as books they're hoping to work through over the summer months ahead. If you have a little extra margin on your hands in these summer months and would like to continue growing in your faith, this is just the episode for...

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In the final installment of their "It Matters More Than You Think" series, Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac tackle two final subjects: what we wear at church and how our churches are governed and organized. While the two subjects have nothing to do with each other, we hope our thoughts stimulate some deep thinking and reflection.  If you have any other topics you'd like us to address this summer, please reach out to us. We'd love to hea...

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Continuing the series "It Matters More Than You Think," we turn our attention to the calling of Christian parents to lead their children in worship at home. This episode gives a theological and biblical argument for family worship and provides practical advice for how to guide children towards a life of Christian discipleship.

Visit www.almondvalley.org for information about Almond Valley Christian Reformed Church in Ripon, CA.

Mus...

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In the communication of God's holy Word and Christ's holy gospel, one often overlooked element is the pastor's use (and misuse) of humor in the pulpit. In this week's episode Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac seek to consider ways in which reliance on jokes, laughter, and humor can either hamper or aid in the preaching of God's Word.

Visit www.almondvalley.org for information about Almond Valley Christian Reformed Church in Ripon, CA.

M...

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Though it's one of the less discussed issues in modern Evangelical churches, the order of worship in our Lord's Day liturgy is an incredibly important subject because of the way it shapes the warp and woof of our daily walk with the Lord. In this week's episode, Pastor Mark is rejoined by Pastor Zac to discuss the gospel logic of the Reformed tradition's approach to the biblical ordering of the worship service.

 

Visit www.almondva...

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This week we continue the series "It Matters More Than You Think," in which we consider topics that could go unnoticed by many churchgoers but will actually have great impact on our spiritual lives. Today we ask why it matters to everyone (not just those in ordained ministry) that pastors pursue a seminary education. In today's episode we are joined by Pastor Patrick Anthony of Immanuel CRC in Ripon, California.

Visit www.almondval...

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There are many things in the life of the Church that matter far more than many Christians typically realize, but which are still of very great importance. In this week's installment of this new series, Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac embark on the journey by turning some attention to the topics of church architecture and expository preaching, as they consider how the Reformed tradition tends to approach these subjects and why they matte...

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Who knew such a simple question could require such a long answer? In this week's episode pastors Mark and Zac try their best to tackle a perennial question in the life of the Church: what's the ideal size of a local congregation? While their answers (spoil alert!) aren't exactly set in stone, the question opens up pandora's box of important things to consider about what it means to be a church. We hope that despite the length of th...

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As C.S. Lewis warns us in his famed Screwtape Letters, we must always be alert to the temptation to love Christianity not for the sake of Christ, but for the sake of using it for our own purposes and ends, whatever they may be. Thus we must ask, What is Christianity for? In this week's episode Zac and Mark dive into this weighty question, trying to tease out the Bible's teaching on the matter. Along the way, words of warning are of...

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In today's world, with the panoply of so many great Christian conferences, resources, books, podcasts, blogs, and parachurch ministries, it has become all too tempting for Christians of all denominations to place less and less value on their denominational identities all while, in turn, placing more emphasis on a certain kind of theological eclecticism. And so in this week's episode, Mark and Zac dive into how this temptation plays...

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Anyone who's ever studied Church history, including the development and transmission of the Reformed tradition, has probably noticed that some fairly important things have changed in church life and practice over the millennia. Sometimes these changes are for the better, and yet other times it seems they're for the worse. In this week's episode, Mark and Zac aim to make the case that our churches ought to strive to make ministry de...

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February 7, 2024 59 mins

We may know our story and the contours of our tradition, but as the CRCNA today, who are we really? And more importantly, who are we going to be? In the midst of our ongoing denominational identity crisis, Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac spend time in this week's episode casting a vision of sorts for the CRC as a denomination who seeks always the glory God in our doctrine, cultural engagement, and piety. The article mentioned by Pastor...

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February 1, 2024 48 mins

With classis season right around the corner, one of the perennial subjects on many people's minds is the upcoming ordination examinations that are coming up for prospective ministers and other servants of the church. So in this week's episode, Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac sit down for a discussion about what kinds of exams take place, how they should be conducted, why they're important, and how classis delegates should approach them....

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January 10, 2024 54 mins

What does it mean to be a member of a church? Is membership biblically valid? And how should we go about becoming members, and pastorally caring for members? And when do we "lapse" members versus "excommunicating" them? All these questions and more are the topic of this week's episode of Reformed Podmatics.

 

Visit www.almondvalley.org for information about Almond Valley Christian Reformed Church in Ripon, CA.

Music by Jonathan Ogd...

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January 5, 2024 41 mins

On December 18th, one week before Christmas, the Roman curia released a document titled Fiducia Supplicans which gave permission, under specific circumstances and conditions, for Roman Catholic priests to perform blessings of same-sex couples. While there is no shortage of debate within the Roman church as to what this means and doesn't mean, the aim of this episode is to consider this document from a Reformed Protestant perspectiv...

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December 21, 2023 53 mins

Get out the milk and cookies! For the final episode of the year, Mark and Zac look back on the past year and reflect on the Christian Reformed Church in North America and all that has taken place in the denomination, paying special attention to Synod 2023, the issue of "gravamen", and the more recent goings on in the lead up to Synod 2024. Thanks for tuning in!

  • Paul VanderKlay's episode "5 Stages of Nightmare for CRC Progressiv...
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Pastor Mark and Pastor Zac are back at it again this week with a festive Christmas ("holiday"?) episode full of funny Freudian slips and serious reflections on how people today seem to think of the Christian faith and its place in our modern, secular culture. As Christians seeking to share the gospel with our neighbors, it's important that we consider the ways in which ordinary people tend to think of Christianity as a faith, a wor...

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In his 1943 classic, The Abolition of Man, C. S. Lewis took modern education to task and aimed instead to offer a better vision for the education of young people, particularly in regards to morality and virtue. And so in this episode, Mark and Zac spend some time reflecting on a famous quote from the book and its implications for ministry in the 21st century: "The task of the modern educator is not to cut down jungles but to irriga...

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