Category Archives: Theology

Panorama: The Bible’s Big Picture

I have a very old suitcase in a closet upstairs. It has not latched for generations; its hardware is broken and rusted, its leather cover torn and dried. I keep it because it came from my parents and because it … Continue reading

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I Shall Be Made Thy Music

A few years ago, and for a few years in a row, it seemed like the song, “I Can Only Imagine” played at nearly every funeral I officiated. It is a good song, but I think a slight change of … Continue reading

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Up, Up, but not Away: The Ascension of Jesus (3)

esus’s ascension, his disciples had assumed that he would continue with them in much the same way he had been with them before. But it was clearly not so. The great transition was taking place, and he had been taken from their sight. But he had given them work to do; they were to be his witnesses to the ends of the earth. They had been commissioned. Continue reading

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How to Read the Greatest Story Ever

In this way of reading the Bible, the story is a quest, and the object is to reach heaven. The problem is sin, which destines people to hell, which is so unthinkably bad that it must be avoided at all costs. Nevertheless, humans are ineluctably headed there. Then comes the eucatastrophe, when God sends his Son to rescue humanity through his own sacrifice, enabling people to enter heaven and live happily ever.

There is much that is true and helpful about this reading. However, there is another reading that is more consistent with the biblical authors’ intent. Continue reading

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Up, Up, but not Away: The Ascension of Jesus (2)

When Jesus was crucified, his followers despaired. When he was raised, they were astounded. They realized that something phenomenally important had happened, but they didn’t realize where it would lead. They did not understand that they were living in a … Continue reading

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Up, Up, but Not Away: The Ascension of Jesus

When the first Ford rolled off an assembly line in 1913, some people thought it ingenious, some thought it a novelty, but only a few recognized it as an era-changing event. The same could be said of the first mobile phone call made in 1973 by a Motorola engineer as he walked down the streets of New York City. Or one might mention the Internet Protocol Suite that was introduced in 1982.  It transformed the computer networks of a few eggheads into the world wide web. These were transforming events, but at the time most people missed their significance. Continue reading

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Do Not Judge Me by the Enemies I Have Made

Franklin Delano Roosevelt famously said, “I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.” He may have drawn on the Arabian adage, “Judge a man by the reputation of his enemies.” It seems people have long defined … Continue reading

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Uniquely His: The White Stone of the Revelation

What do people call you? A name, nickname, or maybe just, “Hey, you!” Or maybe “Mom” or “Grandma.” What will God call you – sinner or saint? What other people call you matters little. What God calls you matters a … Continue reading

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The Good Shepherd: That They Might Have Life

In John 10, Jesus used a figure of speech while he was teaching and, verse six, people did not get it. That is a comfort to me, a preacher, for there have been times when I was speaking that I … Continue reading

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An Alphabet of Praise

For years, I went to sleep repeating the alphabet and finding a characteristic of God for each letter. Sometimes it is a stretch – especially at 2 am! Many times, I have used the same exercise on a half-day of … Continue reading

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