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…

Barbed-Wire Love: What to do with Sex Offenders

A number of recent posts have been circulating regarding pedophiles and sex offenders in the Church, specifically claiming that because of the extreme clinical nature of this sin/crime, known child sex offenders ought not be ever allowed to attend worship services where children are present. A few thoughts: 1. First, as a Bible believing Christian,…

My Thoughts On the Future of Protestantism Conversation

So there’s been a fun spat of posts and discussions about protestantism of late, following the Future of Protestantism round table discussion a week ago. I watched most of the event live and caught up on the parts I missed shortly thereafter. I’ve also enjoyed the follow up posts by the participants themselves. But lest…

From Dust to Light

Ash Wednesday Homily Mk. 8:27-38 We’ve said before, and it’s no trouble to be reminded, that we think of the church calendar like a devotional guide. Over the course of the Christian Year, we are reminded of the most crucial, most important parts of our life in Christ: what it means to know Jesus and…

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…

What are Deacons Like?

Introduction Jesus said that you know a tree by its fruit. Good trees make good fruit; bad trees make bad fruit (Mt. 7:17-18). In context, Jesus is warning about false teachers, wolves in sheep clothing, but there’s a more fundamental reality also being assumed: you can’t be what you aren’t, you can’t give what you…

Wisdom is a Screamer

To cop a phrase from James Jordan, we really need to understand the difference between “weird” and “deep weird.” Please understand I’m using these terms in my own way and I don’t mean to implicate my friend in anything that follows (unless he joins in the fun of his own volition). In our world, and…

A Starbucks Run Blindfolded

Often we set ourselves up to lose certain arguments by the way we define our terms. We sit there on the branch, manfully sawing the dern thing, and then we wonder how we ended up on the ground with the knot on our head. One of those arguments has to do with the role of…

When the Gospel Sticks Out Your Back

The gospel is a sword that is meant to go all the way into you, all the way through you, but many Christians, many in the church assume that because it has gone half way in, that is good enough. They understand; they get it. But Jesus said you cannot live unless you have died….

Halloween: Trick or Treat?