Pastors face a great deal of pressure in our day. We hear often of church decline across the U.S. (For example, refer here and here). In my estimation, pastors wrongly bear a preponderance of the burden to right the ship and build church attendance and overall growth. It must get lonely at the top. Perhaps due to the pressures they face from boards, congregations and other domains, at times pastors slip into using commodifying language such as “giving units” to… Read more

Hebrews 1:4-2:4 compares Jesus and angels, and Jesus comes out on top. Just when you think there are no more comparisons left to make between Jesus and angels, the author of the Epistle makes one more, as recorded in chapter 2: Jesus even comes out on top when he is at the bottom of the pit. Here’s what the author of this letter to the Hebrew Christians writes, “But we see him who for a little while was made lower than… Read more

In our day, the church in the West, which has so often been a sending church, is in many respects in need of the church in the East and the South to send witnesses to Jesus here. Read more

Jesus is so good that he takes damaged goods and makes them whole. Read more

Those who are subject to extreme suffering for their faith need a supreme object of affection to worship if they are to be resilient and enter God’s rest. Read more

If and when I sketch something out on paper, and it doesn’t meet my meager expectations, I crumple up the paper and throw it away—or better, recycle it. But I don’t make any attempt to restore it. After all, it wasn’t a masterpiece. Thank God that God did not take us, crumple us up and throw us away, when we ruined his great expectations for humanity at the fall. After all, there is a big difference between my sketches and… Read more

Norway outscores the US as a country with a great quality of life. Refer here and here for rankings for the past two years. Perhaps that’s one reason President Trump wants Norwegians to immigrate here. Perhaps many Norwegians ask, “Why?” After all, they rank higher than we Americans do on the quality of life scale. I should add that the US outranks Norway as to the best country list, but the US is still outflanked by such nations as Sweden,… Read more

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Civil Rights movement do not reside in the past. They live on in people’s hearts and lives today. As poet and performer Emmett Wheatfall reminds us here in “Miles to Go,” the race is not over. We have “miles to go before we sleep.”  Other voices join in the refrain below. I have asked several friends and colleagues in various settings to share about the import of Dr. King’s life and legacy for… Read more

I have always been struck by Mark’s account of Jesus and the rich young ruler. It is one of those passages to which I turn for consideration of the impact of sin on people’s lives. The rich young ruler knows Jesus is a person of sound substance and wise. Thus, he refers to Jesus as “Good Teacher” (Mark 10:17; ESV). When he asks Jesus how to inherit eternal life, Jesus directs him to the Law’s commands (Mark 10:19). In response,… Read more

The following is an interview with Pastor Mike Hayes. I first heard of Mike from John Walter Matthews, former President of the International Bonhoeffer Society, English Language Section. John informed me that Mike is a retired pastor working on a book on Bonhoeffer for evangelicals. So, who’s Mike? In answer to the question, Mike packed 55 years of his life as a follower of Jesus into one paragraph: “I live in Red Wing MN, retired after ten years as a… Read more

Follow Us!

Browse Our Archives