Wrath, Love, and Christmas

First Sunday after Christmas Lessons: Is. 63:7-9, Heb. 2:10-18, Mt. 2:13-23 Christmas is not always an easy time of the year. Of course children love it. They give us some of the best facial expressions, some of the best responses to the gifts, to the lights, to the candy. Their intensity, their joy, their delight…

Stay There

The most important thing for a husband to remember is the most important thing for everyone to remember, and that’s the gospel of Jesus. The death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus is the most important thing to remember. This is for many reasons, but take just one. Men were made to be strong and to…

Untimely Birth

Paul uses an unusual phrase hosper ektroma “untimely birth” to describe his vision of Jesus and conversion to Christianity (1 Cor. 15:8). N.T. Wright points out that normally, ektroma refers to a miscarriage or abortion, and clearly Paul doesn’t mean the word in it’s normal, literal usage since the result of such a birth is death….

Witnesses of the Resurrection

We’ve just celebrated Easter yesterday, proclaiming Christ is risen! and in many of our communities and churches we will continue to celebrate over the next number of weeks proclaiming this truth, singing this truth, sharing this truth with neighbors and family members and friends. This is the good news, the gospel, that Jesus is risen…

3-2-1 Gospel

I already linked this on twitter/facebook, but I really think this is a helpful summary of the gospel, so I’m posting it here as well.

God Never Saved A Friend

“I am the Lord, and there is no other; there is no God besides Me. I will gird you, though you have not known Me, that they may know from the rising of the sun to its setting that there is none besides Me.” Here, in our sermon text for today, God is speaking of…

Jesus Died with You in Mind

This meal is a covenantal meal. Jesus said specifically: this cup is the new covenant in His blood. A covenant is a real, personal relationship, sealed in blood, with blessings and curses attached to it. Keeping covenant results in blessings while breaking covenant hauls out the curses. But how do we keep covenant? How do…

Jesus & the Bikinis

There’s hardly any way to talk about the way women dress without coming off as the voyeristic pervert, the old cranky prude, or the fire-eating, Bible-thumping legalist, but whatever, there is a verse in the Bible somewhere that says Christian girls shouldn’t dress like harlots. And every once in a while someone should say so….

Girard on the Atonement

In an interview published in Touchstone, Rene Girard, explains his understanding of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross: You have advocated what is seen as a “non-sacrificial” reading of the death of Christ that is significantly at odds with the usual understanding of that death as a “hilasterion” that satisfies the wrath and justice of God….

Mark & Hannah

“With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the High God? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body…