Brotherhood by Baptism

In some modern translations of the Bible, the translators have thought that it is very important to translate the word “brothers” as “brothers and sisters” – even though the apostles just used the word brother. I think people are too quick to assume that the apostle was just a man of his times which turned…

The Gospel in Wedding Clothes

Isaiah 61 is about a great restoration, a great release, a great renewal of Israel, and through Israel, the whole world. And this renewal is pictured in wedding garments: the garments of salvation and the robe of righteousness are like a bridegroom that decks himself in ornaments, like a bride adorned with jewels (Is. 61:10)….

A Love Story

Minor Prophets III: Hosea 1-3 Introduction While many scholars do not believe that Hosea is the first minor prophet chronologically, this underlines the intentionality of putting it first as an introduction to the Book of the Twelve. The theme of the first three chapters of Hosea is the determined love of God for His people,…

You are the Bread

“And you shall bring from your dwellings two wave loaves of two-tenths of an ephah. They shall be of fine flour; they shall be baked with leaven. They are the firstfruits to the Lord.” (Lev. 23:17) You may know that just before Passover, the Israelites kept the Feast of Unleavened bread, and they spent a…

Pentecost for Kids

In Deuteronomy 16, God commanded His people to keep the feast of Pentecost like this: “You shall rejoice before the Lord your God, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and female servant, the Levite who is within your gates, the stranger and the fatherless and the widow who are among you…”…

Friends of God

Minor Prophets I: Ascension Sunday Introduction Today we begin a series of sermons on the Book of the Twelve Minor Prophets. This coincides with our celebration of the Ascension of Jesus and the pouring out of the Spirit at Pentecost (Joel 2:28-29, Acts 2). What are the Twelve Minor Prophets? Hosea through Malachi. They are…

Beauty on a Bloody Ground

Santiago & Kate, Psalm 145 is a song about the kingdom of God, about the majesty of God’s reign, and we know from our vantage even more fully what the psalmist is talking about because Jesus is God with us. Jesus is the perfect image of the invisible God. And He came proclaiming the Kingdom of…

Where Jesus Promises to Be

Baptism is entry to the people of God. When an individual is baptized, he or she formally joins the Church, the Body of Christ. But when parents bring their little ones to be baptized, this can be somewhat scary. The obligations to bring up children to love and serve Jesus are daunting. How can we…

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,…