Pastors, the Spirit, and Discernment

Pastors, the Spirit, and Discernment by John Frye (operating with a bum arm … thanks John): I want to seriously address the concept of discernment one more time. I have always been taken by the brief description of the promised Messiah in Isaiah 11: 2-3 (in context). These verses read: The Spirit of the LORD [Read More...]

Calvinist in Thinking, Wesleyan in Living

Don Thorsen, observing over his years many of his Reformed friends, has concluded this: “Although they claimed to be Calvinist, they lived more like Wesley.” Which leads Don to say this: “Although John Calvin profoundly influenced the development of Christianity, John Wesley did a better job than Calvin of conceptualizing and promoting Christian beliefs, values, [Read More...]

Coming Very Soon

I am excited about my soon-to-appear commentary on the Sermon on the Mount. It has a distinctive Introduction (on Jesus and ethical theories) and is an attempt to hear the relentless challenge of Jesus for us to follow him. Here’s the cover: [Read more...]

Why Should Christians Care About Science?

From Big Questions Online by Jennifer Wiseman. Dr. Wiseman is an astronomer. Her research uses optical, radio, and infrared telescopes to explore the ongoing formation of new stars in interstellar clouds. She studied physics at MIT where, in 1987, she discovered Comet Wiseman-Skiff. She continued her studies at Harvard University, where she received a Ph.D. [Read More...]

And Then God Instructs (or Rebukes?)… Job and Us (RJS)

In the last post we began to look at the climax of the book of Job in Chapters 38-41, when Yahweh answers Job. Many commentators seem to view this as a rebuke -a diatribe against Job who has incurred God’s wrath in his response to suffering.  Perhaps, however, the more accurate view is that God [Read More...]

Challenging the New Perspective on Paul

E.P. Sanders, and then following him J.D.G. Dunn and N.T. Wright, challenged the traditional Christian consensus of how to “read” Judaism at the time of Paul (and Jesus) in 1977 with his well-known and must-read Paul and Palestinian Judaism. The consensus was that Judaism was a works-righteousness religion in which Jews, not on the basis of [Read More...]

This is King Jesus Evangelism (Gospeling)

By “Anna”: Instead of starting a new religion, Jesus of Nazareth ushered in a kingdom where he reigns as King. In this kingdom, people are healed physically and spiritually. The poor finally have some Good News. Dead people are raised to new life in Jesus. For any of us to move toward Jesus, the supernatural [Read More...]

Women in the Early Church

What did women do in the church in the “early church”? (By “early church” I mean after the New Testament up to the 4th Century.) A helpful sketch can be found in Everett Ferguson, The Early Church and Today (vol. 1: Ministry, Initiation, and Worship). Ferguson, one of the world’s finest patristic scholars and a professor [Read More...]

An Unlikely Source of Reminder

A most unlikely source to remind of the challenges of parenthood comes from the geneaologies of the Bible. My colleague, Claude Mariottini, in his Rereading the Biblical Text: Searching for Meaning and Understanding, devotes a short chapter to a pattern in the geneaologies of the Bible that can be a source of comfort for parents — [Read More...]

Millennials and Jesus: Affirmations

Stephen Mattson, who teaches at Northwestern in Minneapolis and writes for Sojourners, affirms millennials as like Jesus in four ways: 1. Jesus avoided labels. a large part of his ministry was breaking down preconceived titles, trying to bring about a world where there would be no differentiation between Jew or Gentile. He promoted the idea [Read More...]