Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

(Posts Archive)

Salt and Light

According to Matthew, Jesus described his people as the salt and light of the world— after telling them what it would take to make them good in the eyes of heaven (Matthew 5:1-16). By the time he was done showing what that looked like, he had, at his own expense, taken apart a religious community […]

Left Unsaid

Have you ever imagined what it might be like to sit down with the Apostle Paul and— with no time constraints—to ask him, “What were you thinking when you wrote: ‘Every part of Scripture is God–breathed and useful one way or another— showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live […]

Reading Between the Lines

In the end, God will make his enemies his footstool (Hebrews 10:13). For most of my life I saw this as an allusion to the way God will condemn and humble his enemies “under foot”— as ancient warlords put their feet on the necks of conquered enemies. What I didn’t notice until recently is that […]

This I Believe

I don’t know whether what I’m about to say is right, or true. But I’ve come to a place where I don’t know how it couldn’t be. Many of us believe the Bible is inspired, a gift from God, containing words that give us meaning and hope, important for every moment in life—and yet subject […]

Imagine!

Imagine being able to spend a couple of hours every week with our neighbors, in a local theatre, watching on a big screen a reality-show-documentary of The Word of God— without words. No sound. No closed-captioning. Just action—all the way to the last scene when he leaves his friends staring into the clouds. What would […]

The Politics of Jesus

If Jesus was a king, he was a different kind of king. His politics and policies call for a different kind of revolution. His wars are to be fought with a different kind of spirit. His victories with a different understanding of outcomes. If Jesus was a king, his face doesn’t need to be seen […]

Touch Wood

Touch wood. Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring? So much wonder. In such simplicity and complexity. In a Japanese cell phone commercial. Geek.com describes it like this: “We promise you’ve never heard Bach’s Cantata 147, “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” quite like this. It’s rare to see an advertisement so artfully and skillfully done, but Sharp’s […]

Who’s There?

There’s a story going around the Internet suggesting that some of us may not see or hear ourselves the way others do. It goes something like this: Knock. Knock. Who’s there? Jesus. What do you want? Let me in. Why do you want me to let you in? So I can save you. Save me […]

Does Love Make us Gullible?

From time to time I’ve wondered what the Apostle Paul was thinking when he wrote that love “always believes”— or as some translations put it “always trusts” (1Cor 13:7). Could he possibly be urging the kind of love that believes whatever anyone tells or promises us? Over the years I’ve tried to take his words at […]

Alive Inside

Earlier this week I watched a documentary about the effect of music on persons with dementia and memory loss. I hope I never forget what I saw. You may be aware of the work of Dan Cohen since video excerpts of his research and work have gone viral on social media. The film is an […]

Mercy

With the thought of mercy, what comes to mind? The cold kindness a bully shows when his victim admits defeat? Or Jesus on the cross praying, “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing.” My guess is that if we could sit down around the same table— and share a meal of memories about […]

Who for Who?

Does God exist for us, or do we exist for God? Isaiah spoke of the God who acts for his own Name and glory (Isaiah 48:9-11). Yet, the Apostle Paul asked, “If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31). He follows with, “He who did not spare his own Son, but […]

Legalists Anonymous

While spending time in Paul’s letter to the Galatians I’ve begun to wonder whether getting intoxicated together at the open bar of the law is actually more dangerous than alcohol. Early on, Paul describes how violent he used to be— while living by a system of Law he thought he was keeping (Gal 1:13-14). Now […]

Irenaeus and the Word

Irenaeus was a second-century follower of Jesus known for his writings against heresy and for his summary of teachings handed down from the Apostles. Tutored by the martyr Polycarp, Bishop of Smyrna, who in turn was taught by the Apostle John, Irenaeus is important because of the way he used both Old and New Testament […]

Empathy

Why does the Bible say nothing about how Eve was feeling after her first son killed his younger brother? Did word get back to her that, when asked where Abel was, Cain had said, “Am I my brother’s keeper?” Did she know that he seemed more concerned about losing the affections of his fields than […]

Connecting Epic Dots

In Genesis, the Serpent shows up as an accuser and a deceiver. In the story of Job, Satan shows up as an accuser of both God and Job— allowed to do violence to Job—to deceive Job and friends… In the story of the Cross—Satan is allowed to enter Judas to do violence to the Son […]

On the Ground

I appreciate your willingness to smile and reflect with me on the stunning repetition Moses used to describe what happened on the ground—shade in the day, warmth and light in the night—as God led in The Cloud overhead (Numbers 9:15-23). Your comments show that in the wilderness of then and now, the direction of God depends […]

Day in Day out

I’ve been thinking again about a section of the book of Numbers that we’ve looked at together in years past. But it always makes me smile. It’s about how the LORD led his people— day in day out, as he protected and provided for them through the wilderness on their way to a Promised Land […]

On Wikileak Sea

How can we make sense of a world where all who have something to hide live in constant fear of being exposed by a power seeking, money hungry— or ever loving rival? How different are such thoughts from the “What is truth?” asked by a cynical judge when he was asked to seal the fate […]

Why?

Why did God create us with such an enormous capacity for hurt, misunderstanding, bad blood, family division, and tribal warfare? Could it be for the same reason Jesus was born not just to die, but to be crucified? In allowing himself to be insulted, tortured, and killed, did the Source of all power, authority, and […]

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