Monergism Conference 2005-2006

Dear Brothers and Sisters, will be celebrating its fourth anniversary this year. During this time there have consistently been tens of thousands of visitors and over 250,000 pages every month, and millions more on the sites it links to. It has grown and continues to grow exponentially and for this we are truly thankful to God. Your letters continue to be a great encouragement to me. Recently, God has sent me one or two persons, who, seeing both the importance of what God is doing here and the monumental nature of the task before me, have been helping me by occasionally donating of their precious time and labor to keep the site maintained.

You may not be aware that started as a hobby and continues to be a built as such whenever God frees up some of my time - usually a little bit each day. is something that exists simply because I love the study of theology and especially the kind that brings honor and glory to God. The Lord has also put the delight for it in my heart. Since there is so little available today that upholds the silver thread of historic Christian orthodoxy, I desire to somehow fill this gap, however small the influence might be. The Church clearly seems to be adrift, no longer anchored to its historical moorings and that makes the re-evangelization of the church itself one of our greatest priorities. Besides Monergism, I am also involved in seminary studies and have an unrelated full time job to support my family. Juggling all these things is not easy but I still enjoy it immensely. I would like to thankfully acknowledge the many of you who have generously helped pay for costs in maintaining the website and have even paid the full cost of a new computer when my old machine finally died.

Due to the influx of traffic and the reams of unprofitable Christian books in existence, the Lord has recently granted us a small online bookshop, Monergism Books, where we attempt to carry only literature that will surely be of benefit to your soul. My wife Li Yue cares for the store during the day and is working towards an MBA at night. Every time you shop there you do a little to help financially support this site. We thank you in advance for remembering this when you are thinking about buying books. I pray that one day the Lord will provide a way through these avenues and others where we can be used in full-time ministry of sorts. I dream of a time where can be made more excellent and where I can spend more time ministering to people both in the virtual world and in the world of flesh and blood. My friend, Tim Challies, who has helped in this ministry, often suggests that perhaps someday various people could take over the responsibility for different parts of the Monergism website. We are working diligently toward upgrading the site to make this possible in the future.

All this I tell you because I covet your prayers that God would uphold this ministry. There are multitudes of speculations which set themselves up against the knowledge of God, some of the worst being within the church itself. Pray that I would remain sound, and would never fall victim to them; that I would be balanced, compassionate, gentle, and respectful and have no fear of man; and that God would bring glory to Himself in all my weaknesses. Pray that the gospel would prosper in spite of the dishonor I may personally bring to the Lord in the areas I still lack and that I might continue to remain thankful that my sins do not stand against me, for my righteousness is in Christ. May I never tire of the gospel that must be applied every day as my healing balm. And may we all never attempt to grow beyond the simple gospel, for our life is hidden in Christ and not in something God sees on our resumé.

Monergism Conference
Now to the reason I am sending this letter. Recently, I have been approached by various brothers and sisters in Christ who have encouraged me to consider hosting a Monergism conference. This would not be a conference about Monergism the website, but monergism, the biblical truth of grace alone and regeneration of the Holy Spirit apart from any human cooperation. I would seek to highlight this conference with worthy speakers. I am excited by the thought of doing such a thing but would love to hear your input and wonder how many of you would be interested in attending such a conference. It would be a conference focused on the Third Person of the Trinity and His work in bringing glory to the Eternal Son of God. That is, about the work of the Holy Spirit in bringing people to salvation in uniting us to Christ. Many long time visitors of might be interested in such a conference and I trust would be interested in encouraging the attendance of friends who remain skeptical.

I am going to leave the end of this letter open to post the thoughts of anyone who desires to comment on this. If you would like to send me a short email, I may add it to the end of this for all to read. I would like to gauge the interest in such a conference before we expend effort into putting an event like this together. We have the people and resources to make it happen, but need to know if there is sufficient interest. What and who would you like to see? and where? Please do not hesitate to share your thoughts.

(One example of a possible topic would be the preaching of the gospel and the work of the Holy Spirit)

Your brother in Christ,
John Hendryx

Responses Below

Dear John,

I believe there is an urgent and growing demand for a Conference of the sort you describe. It is exciting to hear that it is in the planning stage, as you seek to find out what interest there will be. The growing influence you are having at the website will always be available in cyber space, but there are some who need to hear the message as well as read it. As Romans 10:17 says, "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God." That's true concerning salvation, but also for an understanding of sound doctrine. Understanding comes as God's word is proclaimed faithfully and accurately. For these precious folk to see a living, breathing man of God open up the Scriptures, and a place where questions can be raised and answers given in various workshop settings that a Conference can provide would, I believe, prove invaluable. How do I know? Because it was a question and answer session at a Conference like this that first impacted my life in the year 2,000. I spent the first 13 years of my ministry as an Arminian, but through attending Conferences such as these, my traditions were exposed to the light of Scripture. The consistent exegesis of Scripture, all in its proper context, made me dreadfully alarmed at first, as I realized that there was far more to Reformed Theology than I had ever imagined, and that I may have taught error in former days. I thought I would be able to dismiss the teaching after just a few minutes of hearing texts spoken out of context - but such was not the case. Texts that I thought were arguments against the doctrines of grace were explained in a gracious way, in their proper context, I have to say, much to my annoyance at first. I didn't like to hear my traditons being exposed by proper hermeneutics. Though it meant I had to analyse many of my sacred cows of tradition, it was the Conference setting that sparked the need for it in my mind. Though the journey to understanding the doctrines of grace took many months, it was two days at a Conference that proved to be the start of the whole process. How grateful I am now to those who organized that first Conference I attended. I believe many will also, over time, be very grateful to God, and also to you, for stepping out in such a faith venture. I know that God has His hand on your life John and I am so glad the Lord has put such plans in your heart. I commend you John for your willingness to host such a Conference and offer my continued prayer for its success. If I can be of any help at all, just let me know.

In the Perfect Savior,

Pastor John Samson, Faith Community Church, Phoenix, Arizona



It seems to me that there is a "new Reformation" taking place. Based upon my research, I believe it to be a worldwide move of God. Some would call it "revival", I prefer to refer to it simply as a "calling out".

As you know, I facilitate a discussion group of 10 businessmen on Tuesday mornings who have only recently been introduced to "the doctrines of grace" (Calvinism). Each of them has wholly embraced what I like to call "historical biblical Christianity. The "Amazing Grace" DVDs that you carry on have been instrumental in presenting the historical context of the roots of Reformation and have thoroughly challenged their capacity to understand scripture in light of "election" and God's "sovereignty".

These men are diligently pursuing the Lord and are asking how to apply what they have learned and embraced to their everyday lives. They are asking how to approach their church leaders with the idea that the gospel being preached in most of their churches is in a very real sense a "false gospel". They want to know how they should be thinking about their responsibility to "rightly divide the word" with other Christians and why it is important to do so.

I am strongly in favor of sponsoring a conference on "Monergism". There is no doubt that many of us, especially those who have grown up with a semi-Pelagian view of salvation, need a touch point with other like-minded individuals. We need the leaders of the modern day Reformation to teach and instruct us. We need to be fully equipped to answer the questions that this group of men I have referred to are asking.

Isn't it ironic that the very thing the Reformers protested against is the very thing being taught in our "evangelical churches" today. So, what are we waiting for? It's time for the Protestant church to return to its roots as "protestors". Let's make plans for a conference as soon as is practical. I'm excited about the possibilities and about what God is doing through Thank you for your diligence and hard work and may God bless your continued efforts to provide an excellent resource for reformed theology.

Bob Hubbard



If Solomon could say that, ‘Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body.” (Eccl 12:12) imagine what he would think of the Internet! There are great resources that often lay undiscovered amid the junk. Thanks for providing a way to cut through the clutter and for giving me tools that have added life and depth to my thinking (and preaching!).

That being said, I will definitely be at the conference. The work of the Holy Spirit is the hidden treasure of Reformed Theology. There is life, passion and fire behind every line of our theology. One of my goals in ministry is to incorporate this fire into the life of the church. The work of salvation is an awe-inspiring miracle, and I find myself and many other evangelicals often boiling it down to a mechanical process. God forgive me! When we offer simple prayers, easy models and four-step sermons, people get the idea that being a disciple is something they can do. Its not! It never will be. The power of Christ in us is our only hope for glory! The daily empowerment of the Holy Spirit is requisite! Lets strive to develop men and women who live a life of daily dependence on the Word & Spirit.

Also, a conference on this topic would allow me to bring “non-reformed” friends who share a passion for the work of the Spirit. At times theology can be divisive (often necessarily so!), but the Holy Spirit, as a topic, is a point of unity among many flavors of evangelicals. If we can draw together a group of people who will honestly search the Scriptures together, we will have done a great thing!

Thanks again for your work.

Your brother in Christ;

Tim Schaaf

Senior Pastor
Church of the Good Shepherd

----------------------------- is an oustanding resource and one I pray God will continue to use for His glory. It was with great excitement that I read about the possibility of a Monergism Conference and it is an event I would definitely be interested in attending. Such an event would no doubt be of great service to the church and it would be my honor to pray that God will give you His guidance in this matter.

In His Service,

Tim Challies


This might sound very odd, but I am a Pentecostal preacher and a Calvinist! Within the last year or two, God has gloriously opened my eyes to the truth of the Doctrines of Grace. has been a blessing in my studies. I think the monergism conference would be great even if I couldn't be there personally!

In Christ,

Rhett K.
Georgia, USA.


Dear John:

If you held a conference, I would attend, no doubt. I live in the Puget Sound area, so if it was held in Portland, that would be great. I know a few brothers that would come along too. Keep up the fine work with your website, God has used it to bless me for quite a while now.

Many thanks in Christ,

Joe Loughery


Hi John,

If you decide to hold a Monergism Conference, I would definitely want toattend, unless the time and location make it impossible for me.

If I can have my pick, I would be most interested in hearing people like Vincent Cheung, W. Gary Crampton, David Engelsma, John Frame, Robert Reymond, John Robbins, Brian Schwertley, and maybe several others that I cannot think of right now. But I have no idea whether these speakers are hard to get. And of course, I would love to hear from YOU too!

Besides hearing competent speakers that faithfully uphold the Reformed faith, one benefit of a conference on monergism is that it will allow Reformed believers to, for a lack of a better term, "network," so that we may motivate one another and to discuss the possible ways that we can promote the true gospel, and to, as you say, re-evangelize the church.

And I will expect a big book table with great discounts when I come!

Thanks for what you do.

Michael Foulkes


Count me in!!! is my #1 choice for looking into articels/books on Theology/Doctrines of Grace/Calvinism... Keep up the GREAT WORK!!!!

I would do my best to attened any conference that was hosted by

Jesse Herb



I've enjoyed your site a great deal and I think a conference of this nature would be beneficial to all who could attend. I was wondering if you or others are familiar with the Fellowship of Independent Reformed Evangelicals or F.I.R.E.

Here is a link to their site:

A fellowship such as this might prove helpful in providing a place for a conference and contacting speakers. There is a good well to draw from there with men such as Phil Johnson and Steve Camp. It might help those of us who feel we're on the fringes to broaden our base and discover that God is drawing a greater number to the Doctrines of Grace than we might other wise be aware of.

This is a worthwhile pursuit. Please keep us posted.

Tim Irvin



I would strongly encourage you to proceed with your idea for a monergism conference. Depending upon the date and location, I would be most interested in attending. is essentially my home page. I visit it daily and have used the resources there to help with everything from Sunday School lesson preparation to theological research papers. May God continue to bless you and your ministry.

Dan Wuthrich



I am very interested in attending your conference if it is feasable for me at the time. I feel it would be a great blessing and encouragement to all who attend.
By His Grace,




you have my full support, prayers, and encouragment for such a conference. We would definitely attend if the Lord grants the means to do so, and I know many others who would attend as well. The focus of the conference is what really caught my attention, what a monumental blessing this would be to all in attendance! I look forward to hearing it's a "go"!


C. Rolfe


Hi John,

I am the webmaster of a local congregation of the presbyterian church of Canada in Mississauga, just outside Toronto. I visit monergism almost daily, and often post links from our own site to the valuable resources at monergism. Only a few weeks ago I was corresponding by email to another Presbyterian church in the area who also hosts a reformed web site site and the subject of a conference on reformed theology was talked about. !

For sure I could see that a monergism conference would be most welcome and I for one would not want to miss it ! The where part is easy and I suspect there would be a high level of interest in the Toronto and surrounding areas including Mississauga, Oakville, & Burlington. As for the who I would want to leave that to your better judgement.

Nigel Wilson
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada


Dear John,

Yes it would be a grand idea to host a Monergism conference. To uphold historic Biblical doctrine is extremely important in this day and age. It does not matter the age group from teen to senior they all need to hear the real gospel truths of the whole counsel of God.

Some of the speakers that might be of interest would be John Piper, Mark Dever, Sam Storms, J. I. Packer and Donal Whitney. These men could bring a great round table and experience as well as draw the people to come to further appreciate the doctrines of grace through

In His Adequacy,

Ray Peters
Pastor, Harvest Alliance Church
Minden, IA


Dear John,

I add my hearty approval to the idea of such a conference. As a layman and novice to Reformed and Calvinistic theology, might I suggest a monergism-lite track? Like me, millions of people in mainline evangelical churches have grown weary of the man-centered, purpose-driven theology that predominates. We hunger for something richer and deeper that dates back
further than Finney. But we are not familiar with the history and theology of the Reformation nor do we have the luxury of attending seminary. For possible speakers, I can only add one name that I am familiar with
through the White Horse Inn broadcast: Michael Horton.

Dan Hartzler