The Power of Prayer . . . at the Kmart

By Rev. Susan Sparks When I want to remind myself of the power of prayer, I go to the Astor Place Kmart on the lower east side of Manhattan. Sure, I could read Kierkegaard or Augustine, but I prefer the Kmart. Specifically I favor an area in the far back corner of the basement. It is devoid of windows or natural light with a back wall of clear glass that faces the dungeon-like dark tunnel of the Number 6 subway train. There, you will find the most unexpected of things -- a plant … [Read more...]

How to Vote like a Christian: Mark 12:28-34

By Eric D. BarretoIt seems so easy, doesn’t it? Love God. Love your neighbor. The two greatest commandments encapsulate the core of faith and could--if we really were to trust God--transform the world.Similarly then and with election day looming, voting should be an easy affair: people of faith should vote for the candidates whose policies would most embody a love of God and neighbor.It seems so easy, but it isn’t if we are honest with ourselves and gracious towards those who dis … [Read more...]

Sticks, Stones, and the Power of Words: James 3:1-12

By Rev. Dr. Eric D. BarretoWhy do we repeat adages we know are false? Why do we deceive ourselves with seemingly soothing words that instead burn invisible scars upon us? Why do we persist in the deception that words cannot harm?Watch the Video:ON Scripture: Speech Can Unite or DivideThe Rev. Dr. Eric D. Barreto, assistant professor of New Testament at Luther Seminary, discusses the Biblical text James 3:1-12, featured in the ON Scripture The Bible article, "Sticks, … [Read more...]

Perilous Power: 2 Samuel 11:26-12:13a

By Rev. Dr. Eric D. BarretoEvery Bible ought to have a warning on its cover.Watch the Video: ON Scripture: Nathan Rebukes DavidEric Barreto, an assistant professor of New Testament at Luther Seminary, expands on the story of King David, Bathsheba, and a man called Nathan who rebukes the king. … [Read more...]