Author Archives: salooper57

About salooper57

Husband, father, pastor, follower. I am a disciple of Jesus, learning how to do life from him. I read, write, walk, play a little guitar, enjoy my family.

Things I’m Glad My Dad Didn’t Teach Me

(For Father’s Day I am posting a piece first published in 2015 by Gatehouse Media.) After reading an article by Peter Scholl, a forty-something married man with kids, living in Australia, I find myself grateful for the things my dad … Continue reading

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Can You Hear Me Now? (1 Samuel 2-3)

Listening time: Approximately 25 minutes.

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Life on Earth: Comedy or Tragedy?

We owe the words “comedy” and “tragedy” to the ancient Greeks, whose stage plays in the fifth and fourth centuries B.C. gave rise to the terms. A hundred years of films and about 80 years of commercial television have left us thinking that comedies are comic and tragedies are sad. The Greeks were more nuanced.

Tragedy may contain humorous moments and funny characters, but what makes a tragedy tragic is that it ends badly. The hero fails, the aspiration goes unfulfilled, night falls. Continue reading

Posted in Theology, Worldview and Culture | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

What Does the Author of Hebrews Mean by “Made Perfect”?

I was reading Scot McKnight’s book, Embracing Grace, and was surprised to see how he correlates the author of Hebrews use of the term “made perfect” (τελειωθεὶς) with the resurrection. In Hebrews 5:8-9, we read that the Son “learned obedience … Continue reading

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The Convergence

God is working in our lives and world, but we are liable to miss it because we are expecting something else: something obvious, something “religious,” something extraordinary. But in Samuel we learn that God works through the mundane events of life, its pleasures and its pains. Continue reading

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Learning Theology at the County Fair

I went to my first county fair during the summer between sixth and seventh grade. My friend’s parents took us, and we boys headed immediately to the midway to scope out the rides. The first one we tried was “The … Continue reading

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Nothing Fails Like Success

Failure sometimes follows close on the heels of success. The person who gets the dream job (success) allows that job to take the place of their spouse (failure). He or she gets promotions but ends up with a divorce.

The child of an alcoholic vows never to be like his dad. He doesn’t drink (success). But the resentment he carries around with him damages his own kids (failure), and they choose to get back at their dad by – what else? – drinking. Continue reading

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Failure: Not the Last Word (1 Kings 19)

Everyone fails but not everyone rebounds from failure. What – or who – makes the difference?

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Share Your Favorite Books (Just for fun Sunday)

When I am in an airport, sitting in the blue vinyl chairs (why are they always blue?), and one person out of the 200 surrounding me is reading a book, I am immediately curious about that person – and their … Continue reading

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How to Stay Christian After Graduation

In a study of peer influence, psychologists displayed three charts, each with three lines of different lengths, to groups of ten teens. The teens were asked to raise their hands when the teacher pointed to the longest line on each chart. The teens in each group, minus one, had been secretly instructed to raise their hands when the teacher pointed to the second longest line. 75 percent of the time, the lone teen, wanting to blend in, joined the others in casting a wrong vote. Blending in can be deadly to the spiritual life. Continue reading

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