I'm trying to create a separate page called Blog.php that is separate from the main index.php page on a site I've created. The front page (index.php) is a 3 column layout, with the two recent blog posts and other stuff in the left and right sidebar (but *no* links to archived entries/etc. in either of those columns - the left is a links column while the right is a "take action on this issue" thing).
The blog.php page is the sort of "blog landing page;" e.g. when a user clicks on the link it will show the most recent blog posts (probably 2 or 3), the same left column from the index.php page, while the right column is going to be different than index.php's - instead it will have the links to archives by category/date/etc.
I should note here that the left sidebar/column is pulled from sidebar.php while the right column is written directly into the index.php page.
How do I set up a page to do this? I've tried duplicating page.php, renamed it blog.php and used
<?php include ___;?> instead of get for the header/sidebar/footer. I then created a new Page using this template, and it comes out fine, except it doesn't show any of the recent blog posts even though
<?php if (have_posts()) : while (have_posts()) : the_post(); ?>
<?php the_content(); ?>
<?php endwhile; endif; ?>
is in there.