July 16, 2018

It Always Comes Back to the Ending

Advent is about eschatology. That five dollar theological term simply means “the study of the eschaton” (the last day). The Bible divides time into two great epochs: this present age and the age to come. We live in the now; we await the not yet. Scripture anticipates the end from the start. When Genesis 1:1 […]

Advent I: Apocalypse Then. What about Now?

ADVENT IC Jeremiah 33:14-16 Psalm 25:1-10 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13 Luke 21:25-36 Prayer of the Day Stir up your power, O Lord, and come. Protect us by your strength and save us from the threatening dangers of our sins, for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. […]

Nativity

Nativity of Our Lord — Christmas Eve December 24, 2011 Isaiah 9:2-7 Psalm 96 (11) Titus 2:11-14 Luke 2:1-14 [15-20] Prayer of the Day Almighty God, you made this holy night shine with the brightness of the true Light. Grant that here on earth we may walk in the light of Jesus’ presence and in […]

The Magnificat vs. Today’s Gospel (3)

Today we conclude our posts on Mary’s Magnificat. In the first post, we contrasted Mary’s song with the “soterian” gospel that focuses primarily (if not solely) on personal salvation. In contrast, we affirmed that in the Magnificat, “Mary proclaims the Gospel. As we will see, it is no mere ‘personal plan of salvation,’ no ‘steps’ […]

The Magnificat vs. Today’s Gospel (2)

Today, I had marvelous conversation with an African-American woman who had grown up in Mississippi, moved to Indianapolis, whose family had relocated to other rust-belt cities like Chicago and Detroit in the 1960’s and 70’s. She could talk about picking cotton, participating in civil rights marches, employers who were members of the Ku Klux Klan, […]

Contradicting the World’s Propaganda

Long before I read N.T. Wright and other contemporary authors, my eyes were opened to what Scot McKnight calls “The King Jesus Gospel” through the work of the great Roman Catholic Biblical scholar, Raymond E. Brown. His two little books, A Coming Christ in Advent, and An Adult Christ at Christmas, though considered “liberal” by […]

The Magnificat vs. Today’s Gospel (1)

Scot McKnight ran a post earlier today called, “Justin Holcomb and the Soterian Gospel.” In it, he commented on a piece by one of the pastors at Mars Hill Church in Seattle, designed to answer the question, “What Is the Gospel?” McKnight rightly commends Holcomb for an excellent presentation of a certain kind of “Gospel” […]

Go Forth to Meet Him

Monday Merton Musings, December 19, 2011 Go Forth to Meet Him The week before Christmas has arrived. The words we hear from Thomas Merton today for our weekly meditation are brief but searching. For Christmas will come this year, just as it did long ago in Bethlehem. As on that occasion, some will be ready […]

Another Look: Building a Cradle for Jesus

Originally posted Dec. 1, 2010 Where meek souls will receive Him still The dear Christ enters in. • “O Little Town of Bethlehem,” Brooks I am not good at working with my hands to fashion beautiful artistic creations. Never have been and probably never will be. I’m better with books and people and such, and […]

Advent IV: There Are Few Words

Fourth Sunday of Advent December 18, 2012 2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16 Luke 1:46b-55 or Psalm 89:1-4, 19-26 Romans 16:25-27 Luke 1:26-38 Prayer of the Day Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come. With your abundant grace and might, free us from the sin that would obstruct your mercy, that willingly we may bear your redeeming […]