Podcast Archive

After receiving some intel all the way from Belfast, two thirds of the Spin team are on a mission to solve a mystery involving the third member of the team.

When the kerfuffle is over, things get serious as they address the topic of the day–an article written by William Boekestein, "Ten Benefits of Church Small Groups".

Although some small groups can be unhelpful and even destructive, the Crew focuses on a number of the major benefits of being part of a group with good leadership and oversight. There’s always room for growth in a small church group!

Would you like to learn how you can grow in a small group setting? Follow the link and sign up for an opportunity to win a free copy of Iron Sharpens Iron: Leading Bible-Oriented Small Groups that Thrive. They are a generous gift from Christian Focus Publications.

Reformed and catholic - how so?

No better place to meet Scott Swain for this conversation than Disney’s castle in Orlando. He usually finds inspiration there for his theological writing - I bet you didn’t know that!

Scott makes the remarkable claim that in order to be truly protestant, we have to be good catholics in some sense. But don’t get worked up!

He talks doctrinal development and Sola Scriptura, Augustine’s understanding of faith and reason, Thomas Aquinas’ view of the role and the relationship between theology and philosophy, and when the Protestant theological method of interpretation became distinct from the Catholic method.

Can or should Protestants still be drawing from Aquinas? How has this Roman Catholic theologian and philosopher influenced even our Reformed confession of faith? You might be surprised to learn the practical implications of it all in the private and communal life of Christians and in discipleship. So join us!

Also, Baker Academic has gifted some copies of Reformed Catholicity and we’re giving them away. Sign up to win one!

Aimee can barely contain her excitement because Dr. Robert Godfrey is here to talk about the “other Aimee”! Aimee Semple McPherson or “Sister”, as she’s known, has interested Bob for some years. We gather around him to hear about this woman preacher, faith healer, and founder of the Foursquare church, from the early 1900s.

What is so fascinating about Sister’s life, and what kind of mark did she leave in American Christianity? What practices have Pentecostals and even our churchs learned and adapted from her?

There’s much to be said about the nuanced stories around her personal life. And Dr. Godfrey is more forgiving than Todd when talking about her mysterious disappearance in 1926.

Gather around for this interesting conversation.


By Dr. Godfrey’s recommendation, we’re giving away Sister Aimee: The life of Aimee Semple McPherson. Follow the link and sign up to win a copy!

The crew is in sunny Florida sipping margaritas this week. They’re pleased to be talking with Ismael Hernandez, the president and founder of Freedom and Virtue Institute. He’s written Not Tragically Colored: Freedom, Personhood, and the Renewal of Black America.

Mr. Hernandez tells us what it was like being raised in a militant communist household and what changed after he moved to America. Based on his years of study, observation, and personal experience, Ismael discusses racialism - yes, it is a word, dignity, moral responsibility, and the importance of the family in forming a virtuous individual.

The ugliness of false ideologies have permeated not only society, but also the church! But if you listen closely you’ll hear the beauty of the untold history of blacks in America.


Follow the link and sign up for a chance to win a copy of Ismael Hernandez’ book Not Tragically Colored.

In light of the Larry Nassar child sexual abuse case, the crew talks about Rachael Denhollander and the treatment she’s received from her church leadership. What’s the appropriate response to cases of sexual abuse in the local church? How do you support and love those who have suffered so deeply in this way?

Carl and Todd reflect on their primary responsibility as pastors who have taken vows to protect and care for God’s people, while Aimee talks about ways to minister to the wounded. Together, they look at the circumstances surrounding Rachael’s case and do their own soul-searching by asking the question: Is it I, Lord?

Join the conversation, and let’s examine what the pastor’s first calling is when a member brings an accusation of abuse to the church.


This week we’re giving away On Guard: Preventing and Responding to Child Abuse at Church. The book is a generous gift from our friends at New Growth Press. Please sign up to win a copy!

Carl and Aimee have the privilege of talking to Ryan Anderson today. His most recent book is entitled When Harry Became Sally: Responding to the Transgender Moment. And it’s provoked, dare we say, strong reactions in the media in just the a few weeks since its publication. But what's the stir all about? Well, we’re about to find out!

Today, Dr. Anderson talks about the relationship between gender dysphoria and the overemphasizing of sex stereotypes. He addresses male and female bodily differences and how those differences affect the way we relate in marriage and friendships. What are the factors that determine one’s gender? Physical reality versus emotional feelings of dissatisfaction with one’s body, and if a person can overcome those feelings.

The questions are many, but Dr. Anderson walks us through and leaves a picture of how a healthy culture is able to recognize the equal dignity of the sexes. And at the same time, its complementary differences. Lots of ground to cover!

Grab a snack and join us in this pleasant and very important conversation.


And, of course, we’re giving away copies of Dr. Ryan Anderson’s book When Harry Became Sally which are a gift from our friends at Encounter Books. Sign up for a chance to win one!

Carl is feeling pretty good today — He’s not the only one with a British accent on the show!

The crew enjoys the company of two of his fellow countrymen, Barry Cooper and Nate Morgan Locke. One a former comedy writer and performer, the other, from the far land of Spare Oom just outside of Narnia, is recording from the bright city of War Drobe. They work at Christianity Explored developing courses to equip the Church, focusing on personal enrichment, evangelism, and discipleship by studying books of the Bible.

How important is evangelism for the Christian?

Todd is overly excited about this approach to evangelism. And far be it from him to not give his personal testimony, hardly giving anyone else a chance to talk! But we finally get the full scope from our guests. Please grab your cup of Earl Grey and a biscuit then join this exciting conversation!


We’re excited to give away this week Discipleship Explored Leader’s Kit, which was just launched last week. The kit is a courtesy of Christianity Explored Ministries. Sign up to win!

Smoking or nonsmoking, Democrat or Republican, Trump or never Trump, yoga or stretching? The crew is visiting some hot button issues today! Are Christians allowed to have differing opinions on these topics?

God’s Word neither commands nor prohibits smoking nor does it tell us what political party to vote for. But it does give us some guiding principles that allow us to use wisdom when making decisions. But what if a Christian brother has a different view than you?

The irony of this episode is that our hosts might have some different opinions about these issues too! Todd gives us three helpful questions to ask ourselves before we think that anything goes just because we are in Christ.

Listen to this fun, but very intense discussion on biblical principles and how the Apostle Paul, Aristotle, and the young Michael Allen can help us.


The Mortification of Spin Crew is no celebrity in any sense, but we’re giving away some fun posters signed by our hosts. You can sign up for a chance to win one!

When should a church be concerned, or even discipline a member for his personal views on a given issue?

Todd, Carl, and Aimee weigh in on problematic personal views of church members. Their discussion is brought on by a PCA elder who holds pro-choice views running for public office. Are issues like abortion, racism, opposition to interracial marriage, a matter of concern to local churches and to denominations? The crew takes into account Christian non-negotiables and secondary issues, and who the persons holding the troubling views are: new believers in need of discipleship or an office bearer in the church? Listen to the connection between the Sixth Commandment, the Westminster Confession and Larger Catechism, the concept of personhood, and man as the image of God.


We’re pleased to give away a few copies of the book Fearfully and Wonderfully Made Ethics and the Beginning of Human Life by Megan Best, courtesy of Matthias Media. Please sign up for a chance to win! And while you are there, be sure to browse our store where you will find this title, also for purchase, and other books and audio from trustworthy authors and Alliance speakers.

We’re honored to be talking with not one, but two Van Dixhoorns today. Chad Van Dixhoorn is a church history professor and pastor. He’s written a book entitled Confessing the Faith, a reader’s guide to the Westminster Confession of Faith. His wife Emily is a mother of five and among other things teaches women’s Bible studies. She’s written a study guide for Confessing the Faith. The two books are meant to introduce Christians with the Confession in an easy-to-read format.

What’s the purpose of a confession anyway? The Van Dixhoorns get right to it, emphasizing the richness of our historical heritage and the many ways we can profit from it.

Can a document written in the 17th century be pastorally helpful with the tricky ethical questions we struggle with? Does it mention in vitro fertilization, the legitimacy of some medical treatments, or gay marriage? Not directly, but it provides us with foundational principles to answer these questions. Pull up a chair and join us around the Van Dixhoorns kitchen table.


We’re giving away some copies of Confessing the Faith reader’s guide and Confessing the Faith study guide. The books are a generous gift from our friends at Banner of Truth. Please enter for a chance to win a copy. But if you don’t, please access our Reformed Resources to purchase one. It’s well worth it!


Show Notes

The Minutes and Papers of the Westminster Assembly (1643-1653) - Chad's work.

The Minutes and Papers of the Westminster Assembly (1643-1653) - Emily's multi-purpose use of Chad's work. 

God’s Ambassador: The Westminster Assembly and the Reformation of the English Pulpit (1643-1653)