Nice Christianity & Complementarian End Zone Dances

J. Gresham Machen famously asserted that the liberalism creeping into the Christian churches in the late 19th and early 20th centuries was not merely another form of Christianity, but another religion altogether. It was not even Christianity. He insisted that believing Protestant Christians had more in common with believing Roman Catholics than liberal “Christians” —…

An Armory for Modern Christians #12

The Inescapability of Slavery Introduction We are coming up on one of America’s feast days: Tax Day. Some of you don’t celebrate it at all, as Uncle Sam requires you to give your “fair share,” but for many Americans they begin planning vacations, acquiring new cars or boats, and the like as they see the…

An Armory for Modern Christians #8

Between the Mountain and Me Introduction The transfiguration occurs in Matthew, Mark, and Luke and marks a significant transition in the gospels, functioning as a key hinge of the life of Jesus, the end of his ministry of signs and the beginning of his ministry of suffering. The signs point to who Jesus is, but…

Farming in the Wilderness

Advent III: Is. 35:1-10, Js. 5:7-11, Mt. 11:2-11 Introduction What are you waiting for? What do you long for? Advent is an annual reminder that Christians are a waiting people, and this in turn reminds us that there is a profound blessing to be found in learning to wait on the Lord. Two Prophets Isaiah…

Foundations of Mercy & Mission #2: Time & Resources

Dt. 5:12-15, Gal. 2:16-20, Mt. 6:19-34 Introduction The mission of Jesus is to baptize the nations and teach them everything He commanded. This is how you distinguish between God providing in what seems like scarcity and folly. If God commands it, then He promises to provide for it. Justification is God’s gracious gift of setting…

Authority & Compassion

Luke XXVII: Lk. 7:1-17 Introduction While Luke has finished teaching on leadership and discipleship in His Kingdom, He isn’t done demonstrating what it looks like. In these two episodes, Luke illustrates what the Lordship of Jesus does in a rich and powerful centurion and a weak and defenseless widow. The Powerful Centurion A centurion was…

The Happiness of Jesus

Luke XXIV: Luke 6:20-26 Introduction Setting aside some of the intriguing questions about whether this is the same sermon as the Sermon on the Mount in Mathew 5-6, we can at least acknowledge that it is a very similar one. Nevertheless, Luke has very clearly presented this sermon as delivered to the “disciples” in the…

In Defense of Lent, Masculinity, and Tim Bayly

Sometimes I give myself writing assignments by title. Here, mister smarty pants, try to write a coherent blog post about that. It reminds me of my drama club teacher in high school giving us the most ridiculous juxtapositions and thirty seconds to come up with some way of working them into an improvised scene on the…

Sons of the Light

Second Sunday in Advent: 1 Thess. 5:1-11 Introduction Have you ever stumbled through a dark house at night? Ever tried to change a flat tire in the dark? Then you understand the importance of light, the necessity of light. You need light to see. You need light to find your way. Frequently, when hardships come,…

Covetousness and New Hearts

Minor Prophets X Micah 1-3 Introduction Micah ministers in the southern kingdom of Judah towards the end of the 8th Century B.C. He ministered during the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah (Mic. 1:1) when the northern kingdom of Israel/Samaria fell to the Assyrians in 722 BC (2 Kings 17). The Text: Like Amos before…