How To Not Miss Jesus (At Christmas)

Fourth Sunday in Advent: Mic. 5:2-5a, Heb. 10:5-10, Mt 2:1-12 Introduction How could the chief priests and scribes know that the Christ was to be born in Bethlehem and still reject Jesus? How could Herod so dramatically misunderstand the mission of Jesus? We commonly describe the answer as sin and pride, but what is it…

Catholicity & Excellence

Over the years, one of the virtues we have sought to cultivate at Trinity is a deep and rich catholicity. And we have wanted to express that geographically, denominationally, as well as historically. The Church, the Body of Christ, is One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic as the creed says. So with that One Church, we…

Screaming Goat Scandals

One of the important lessons that Christians must learn in the face of sin and failure is honest confession and repentance. This means naming sins biblically. Confession literally means to “agree with God.” This must be done simply, straightforwardly, and cheerfully. At the same time, one of the other lessons that must be remembered is…

The Foam Sword of Relativism

One of the questions I’ve received several times in response to my recent post on modern liberalism is the objection that this assumes that Christians can’t be “liberals” or if they are, they must be really bad Christians. So several follow up thoughts. First, I did qualify my original post in two ways. I stated…

The Brave Face of Nihilism

Modern social liberalism really is something of a Grinch worldview. It is very much like the grown up in all the movies that doesn’t believe in Santa Claus and thinks that fairy tales like that are really bad for children. The reason they’re bad is because they aren’t true and even more importantly they cause…

The Gospel of Modern Liberalism

“Know that the Lord, He is God! It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves. We are His sheep, and the sheep of His pasture” (Ps. 100:3). This is one of the most fundamental realities in the world. If there is a God who made us, then we are His. We belong…

Rejoicing in the Dust

Third Sunday of Advent: Is. 12:1-6, Phil. 4:4-7 Introduction I said last week that we aren’t particularly good at being serious because we’re concerned about being thought of as grumpy or difficult. There’s a similar dynamic with joy. Depending on who you are, you might gravitate toward a certain censoriousness and resent all the smiles….

The Serious Business of Advent

Second Sunday in Advent: Mal. 3:1-4 Introduction We are not very good at seriousness. We are not very good at seriousness because we frequently mistake being cranky or in a bad mood for seriousness, either in ourselves or others. So we tend to opt for and prefer levity, laughter, and we often praise people for…

The Sound an Empty Ketchup Bottle Makes: A Brief Anatomy of Liberalism

There doesn’t seem to be a week that goes by in which there isn’t some cultural event or tragedy that exposes the deep divide in our country between liberals and conservatives. There are deep spiritual forces at work, so that isn’t a simplistic party-line endorsement of anybody. But in so far as the divide causes…

What Is A Christian Marriage?

What is a Christian marriage? Is a Christian marriage one where the man and woman both attend a Christian church, are members, or were baptized once? Is it where the individuals in the family try to be good and kind and follow the teachings of Jesus? Many marriages and families participate in churches and perhaps…