What's the big deal about repentance? It is realizing the value of the relationship in front of you and letting go of anything that would be in the way. Repentance is rooted in a radical belief that things do not have to stay this way.
This past year I spent some time studying Revelation 2:1–7 and the topic of repentance in the Bible. "Repentance" as I understand it is a turning away from something and a turning toward something. When the Bible talks about humans repenting it generally means people are turning away from sin and turning to God with … Continue reading Real Roots of Repentance (Part 1)
So far this year I have been re-captured by the stories of the book of Genesis. One of those stories is the story of Abraham (Genesis 12-25). And one of the greatest scenes in Abraham's life is in Genesis 22 when God gives the 100-year-old a final test. A lot had happened in Abraham's life … Continue reading The Old Guy with Muscular Faith
You know how all the Sherlock Holmes stories and all the detective shows on TV included both "good guys" and "bad guys?" Well if we imagined a world with only bad guys committing violence with no good guys to pursue justice, that would come close to the world that Noah inhabited in Genesis 6-9. Noah's … Continue reading Noah and the supporting cast
Do you think Jesus (if he were on earth today) would come to your birthday party? How about your wedding? And if he would come, what would he do? Would he stand awkwardly in the corner sipping punch or would he be the center of attention? Would he be the life of the party? Would … Continue reading The passionately pious party-goer (John 2)
One phrase persistently jumps out at me from the first chapter of the Gospel of John. The phrase is in verse 29: "[John the Baptist] saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, 'Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!'" Its a curious phrase. It seems kind of out of … Continue reading That’s one Ferrari! (John 1:29)
In church yesterday I was thinking about Acts 7 and the genius of Stephen's sermon. In Acts 6:13-14 the Jewish religious leaders accuse Stephen of speaking blasphemous words about the temple, the Mosaic law, Moses, and Jesus. Stephen preaches a sermon in Acts 7 that is a response to that accusation. The sermon is inductive (moving … Continue reading The dead (but not boring) preacher