Our Name is Forgiven

A few other thoughts have been rattling around in my head related to my previous post on sex offenders in the church. It touches on several other topics related to counseling in these kinds of difficult situations. And it has to do with the potency of naming. We know that naming is powerful because in…

Faith that Overcomes: Second Sunday in Easter: Jn. 20:19-31

Introduction The Christian belief in the resurrection of Jesus is the lynchpin for the entire religion. But what Christians are often accused of, and sometimes capitulate to, is the claim that this belief is entirely a matter of irrational, unsubstantiated “faith.” On this view, Christians “believe” not based on evidence or testimony, but based on…

The Truth in the Jungle

Jesus upholds all things by the word of His power. Only in Jesus do all things make sense. Part of this is protological: He created all things. Part of this is ontological: He upholds all things. Part of this is eschatological: All things are being brought together in Him. This means of necessity that everything…

Our Jesus Holds the Keys: Good Friday 2014

Note: The audio recording for this message is available here. One of the most unusual elements of the Christian gospel is the fact that we celebrate the death of our leader. For most movements, for most religions, for most kingdoms or empires, the death of the leader is a moment of instability, chaos, disillusionment. But…

All Are Yours

“Therefore let no one boast in men. For all things are yours: whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or things present or things to come – all are yours. And you are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s” (1 Cor. 3:21-23) This is a mind blowing statement by Paul…

God Wants Your Heart

Sixth Sunday in Epiphany Lessons: Dt. 30:15-20, 1 Cor. 3:1-9, Mt. 5:1-37 Introduction As we noted last week, the commandments of God have always been meant to offer God’s people life with Him. And those who looked to God in faith tasted some of that fellowship (e.g. Moses, David, etc.). But the law simultaneously displayed…

The Last Enemy

Let me just make a quick plug for the upcoming conference we are hosting at Trinity: The Last Enemy, a Christian view of death with Steve Jeffery. First, you should know that Steve is the Minister of Emmanuel Evangelical Church, in Southgate, North London. He co-authored Pierced for Our Transgressions (IVP, 2007), a defense of the doctrine of penal…

Salt, Light, and Law

Fifth Sunday in Epiphany Is. 58:1-12, 1 Cor. 2:1-16, Mt. 5:13-20 Introduction As we continue to celebrate the season of Epiphany, we are studying what it looks like for the light of Jesus to shine in and through our lives. As we noted last week, this light is God’s wisdom, His righteousness, which is the…

Open Your Mouth Wide: The Beatitudes

Fourth Sunday in Epiphany: Mic. 6:1-8, 1 Cor. 18-31, Mt. 5:1-12 Introduction The theme that ties our lessons together is the surprising wisdom of God. God loves to work through unlikely people and situations because it highlights His grace and inspires our praise. Another name for this is God’s blessing. But the real challenge is learning…

Come & See

Life in our New Building II Is. 49:1-7, 1 Cor. 1:1-9, Jn. 1:29-42 Introduction Epiphany celebrates the fact that God is our Father who redeems us from sin, Satan, and death through His Son Jesus, and does so in order to train and equip us for His mission of bringing many more sons into the…