Unexpected Grace

Luke XXVIII: Luke 7:18-35 Introduction This story is all about expectations. John needs reassurance that his expectations about Jesus are correct. Jesus asks the people about their expectations concerning John. And finally, Jesus explains why the expectations of the Pharisees are wrong. And the questions looming behind these expectations are about who Jesus is and…

Tactics of Grace

Luke XXV: Lk. 6:27-38 Introduction When you follow Jesus, you are committing your life to the One who became impoverished for us, hungry for us, sorrowful for us, rejected and excluded for us. This is why when we experience those same things, we can rejoice and be glad. The reason we receive those situations in…

Preaching the Kingdom

Luke XVIII: Lk. 4:31-44 Introduction Jesus came healing the sick, but every single person that Jesus healed is dead. Every single healing Jesus performed was a temporary healing – they all eventually died. This raises questions about the healing ministry of Jesus. Why perform healings at all if they will only be temporary? And why…

Led By the Spirit

Luke XV: Lk. 4:1               Introduction Part of the glory of the gospel is that the eternal, infinite Creator God became one of us and was tempted like us in order to lead us back to Himself. Full of the Spirit The first, unmistakable but perhaps terrifying thing to…

Feeling Rightly

One of the things that sin does to people is warps their ability to feel rightly. God gave us emotions; they are a gift from him like our other senses meant to teach us about the world. We feel pain, a hot stove, pressure, and it teaches us about what is wise, what is safe,…

An Open Letter to Women Who’ve Had Abortions

Dear Friend, As you have no doubt noticed, many of your Pro-Life friends and family members have been on an anti-abortion jag in recent weeks with the release of the Planned Parenthood sting videos. I realize that all the shared articles and hashtags and retweets may seem to you like an enormous wave of hate…

Glory on a Platter

One of the immediate conclusions that we must draw about the recent Obergefell decision is that the Lord is giving us this moment. He is giving this set of circumstances to us because He is our faithful and wise Father. He does not give us more than we can bear; He knows our frames. He…

Pride, Prejudice & the Eye-Roll

My friend and fellow pastor at TRC, Joshua Appel, recently recommended Tim Keller’s book Encounters with Jesus to me, and I dutifully mashed the “buy now” button on my phone and lo, here I sit cruising through the first chapter. Now let the reader beware that I have some serious reservations about some of what…

Luke VIII: The Birth of the King

Luke: 2:1-12 Introduction This is one of the most famous episodes in Luke’s gospel and in all of the Bible. Luke tells the story of the birth of Jesus so that we may be assured that He is God in human flesh, the King. The God Who Rules Herod the king of Judea has already…

God the Potter

At the end of Paul’s closing arguments about what God is up to in the world in Romans 9-11, he breaks into doxology. He bursts out: “Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! For who has known the mind of…