Last weekend I was in Elizabethtown PA (E-town to locals), in the heart of God’s country, speaking at the E-town Brethren in Christ church on Sunday and the addressing the pastors and leaders of the Atlantic division of the Brethren in Christ churches. I want thank Steve Lane for hosting this event, my friend Nathan Yoder for the invitation and hosting me from arrival to departure, and to all the kind of folks in E-town who made this such a wonderful event.
On Sunday I preached twice at the E-town church, both on the gospel of Acts 10:34-43, and taught Sunday School on ways we read the Bible — dipping into the images I used in Blue Parakeet. I focused on the temptation narrative of Jesus in Matthew 4, illustrating how each of the images (e.g., Rorschach) falls short of leading us to the heart of the passage, and how a Story approach takes us back into the depths of Israel’s Story — Deut 6, 8 — to reveal in the temptation a Jesus who succeeded in the wilderness unlike Israel. He becomes the Second Israel, and the temptation becomes something about Jesus and not about us. (We get to enter into the Story only as those who participate in Christ.)Then Tom Grosch hosted an event for the Emerging Scholars Network, and I was both surprised how many showed up to the “luncheon,” and how stimulating the discussion of universalism in the church ended up being … by 2pm I was bushed. (Don’t know how Wesley did it for all those years.)
On Monday I addressed the pastors on themes connected to young adults and postmodernity, the questions this generates among young adults, and then sketched the King Jesus Gospel project.
My hotel was in Hershey,
And a great time with Nathan, his brother Michael, George Davis, and so many others. Thanks BiC!