Author Archives: salooper57

Is Christianity a List of Dos and Don’ts?

A few of Jesus’s many commands can be kept, even without faith.
For example, no one has ever sued me for my tunic, so Jesus’s command to give such a person my cloak as well has never been a problem for me. However, the
command to stop worrying has been a problem. So has the command to love my
neighbor as myself, to guard against hypocrisy, to get rid of all bitterness, and to do everything without complaining or arguing.

As it stands, it is simply impossible to check off these and
the other New Testament commands in the way one checks off items from a to-do
list. To consistently do these things and, more to the point, to be shaped in heart and mind in such a way that doing these things becomes natural, a person must have faith. This kind of faith is not mental assent to a doctrine, even a
doctrine about God, nor is it a belief that God exists and that everything will work out in the end. It is not that these things are wrong; it is that they are not what Jesus and his early followers meant when they spoke of faith. Continue reading

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Posted in Christianity, Faith, relationships, Spiritual life | Tagged , | 1 Comment

The God Who Feeds the Ravens

Hypocrisy and greed are responses to a real problem: fear. Hypocrisy is the pathological response of a malfunctioning soul brought on by the fear of what people think of us. Greed is the response of the soul to the fear of not having enough. Hypocrisy and greed are ways of self-medicating. They alleviate the fear problem … for a while.
But hypocrisy and greed are only temporary fixes; they are stop-gap measures. And, unfortunately, the temporary fix makes the long-term solution less likely. Continue reading

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It’s Just a Matter of Time

…when Christ came into the world, he brought the new age with him. People aligned with him have already synchronized their watches to the age to come. Continue reading

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PARTY-PLANNER: The Joyous God

God is not only a planner; he is a party planner. He is the party planner. He loves a good party. Continue reading

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The Family Business: Doing the Work of God

How often we … miss what is happening around us. Because we don’t see it, we think nothing is happening, that God is on break. But Jesus helped us to see that his Father is working all around us, all the time. Continue reading

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When God Moved to the Old-Folks Home

…have relegated God to the celestial nursing home. They may visit him on Sundays or they may not, but they don’t expect to meet him on Main Street. Continue reading

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The Empty Promise: Salvation Without a Savior

Some people are looking for salvation without a savior, justice without a judge, and utopia without a heaven. Continue reading

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Jesus Reveals God: Father

http://lockwoodchurch.org/media (Listening time: 26:47) My wife Karen became a mom before I became a dad. At least, our awareness of parenthood happened at different times. She became a mom on the day she learned she was carrying a child. I … Continue reading

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The Insurgency of Love Is Looking for Recruits

In 2007, President George W. Bush ordered the deployment of more than 20,000 soldiers to Bagdad and the Anbar Province in Iraq. The objective was, in part, a “unified, democratic federal Iraq that can govern itself, defend itself, and sustain … Continue reading

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What Jesus Revealed About God: God is Light

http://lockwoodchurch.org/media (Listening time: 25 minutes) The most religious thing I heard when I was a boy – and I heard it often – was from my mother: “Cleanliness is next to godliness.” I hardly thought about God at all but, … Continue reading

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