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,…

Let Them Know

Here in 1 Thess. 2:1-12, Paul reminds the Thessalonians that he and his companions labored for the gospel honestly and honorably. They used extreme care not to look or sound as if they were trying to score anything. They weren’t looking for money, and they weren’t looking for glory. They loved the Thessalonians like a…

The Objectivity of the Word

In recent years, many of my teachers and elders and friends have helpfully reminded the Church that God’s grace, His covenant and loyalty to His people is objective, historic, outside of the feelings of wavering, doubting, sin-ridden people. The Church is the center of this objective reality. Here, in the historic, concrete, gathering of believers…

Stay Awake

First Sunday in Advent: Mk. 13:24-37 Introduction What is it like to feel drowsy? To be nearly uncontrollably on the verge of falling asleep? Perhaps you have felt this way after driving for many hours or you’ve seen a small child or an elderly relative with their drooping eyelids and head repeatedly nodding in their…

Reconciliation Accomplished

When you take this bread and wine, you are not only receiving God’s promise to forgive all of your sins, you are also receiving God’s promise to forgive all who seek His forgiveness. Here, God displays His willingness to forgive your dad for his harsh words. Here, God displays His willingness to forgive your husband…

Prepare Him Room

As Christians, we insist that because of Jesus all is grace. Holidays, perhaps like no other time, press us, inquiring whether it really is all grace. Holidays are gifts. They are feasts. They are mini-Sabbaths. They mean grace, rest, relief, laughter. But there’s something about grace piled up, grace over flowing, kindness unleashed that tempts…

Where I Should Breathe

I feel words like hands holding My hands, leading me down a path Blindfolded while my feet trip Over stones stitched together By centuries of stepping and the taste Of briny rocks and anemone Filling up my mouth.   Stopping, the hands pull the Cloth from my eyes. One hand Shields against the glinting glare,…

Voddie Baucham, Mick Jagger & the Sucker Punch of “Systemic Sin”

Just a few quick thoughts on Voddie Baucham’s post at the Gospel Coalition this morning: I want to connect what I wrote here about the Ferguson situation with Baucham’s post. My point was not directly a comment on the justice or injustice of the decision not to indict Wilson. My inclination was expressed modestly in…

Ferguson & the Lamb of God

Just a few quick thoughts on Ferguson for tonight. Maybe more later. First, how should Christian’s respond to this decision and the various responses? We should respond the way Christians always respond in the face of confusion and hurt and anger: We preach Jesus. We preach the cross. We preach the gospel. But get this:…

Like Pooh & Piglet in the Snow

Paul in Philippians 2 says, “Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For it is God who works in you both to will and to do according to His good pleasure.” How do you know that God is at work in you? Sometimes it doesn’t feel like God is at work. Sometimes you…