On Being—and Doing—Church

There are many good New Testament passages one can explore to envision what the church should be and do: Romans 12-15, 1 Corinthians 12-14, and Ephesians 4-5 are all good options, among others. Still, when I think about the church there’s one specific verse that always seems to come to mind first: They devoted themselves …

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Being Disturbed toward Love and Good Deeds

Tucked away in the sermon-letter known as Hebrews, in its summary of its central section, is this evocative statement: “Let us consider how to provoke one another to love and good deeds” (10:24). The Greek word translated “provoke” in this version is paroxysmos, and it’s actually a noun. It’s almost always negative in connotation. It’s …

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Bishop Curry, Luke and Acts, and “Christianity Lite”

There was a lot of buzz this past weekend about the wedding of Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, now the Duchess and Duke of Sussex. And a good bit of that buzz was about the sermon by Bishop Michael Curry, presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5gonlKodrmk Responses to Bishop Curry’s sermon have ranged from …

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Adult Bible Study Online Supplements

I've not been blogging much here lately, but I have been writing short weekly pieces for MennoMedia's online supplements to their adult Bible study curriculum. That began the first week of December and will go through February 2018. Here are the links to the pieces I've done so far, and I'll keep this updated as …

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Jesus and Hell

I preach the good news of Jesus, including Jesus’ way of radical, nonviolent love. As one might expect, I get some pushback on this. “What about sin?” I hear frequently. “What about God’s judgment?” “What about God’s wrath?” “What about hell?” Yes, what about hell? After all, Jesus mentions hell more than anyone else in …

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Christians, We’re Bluffing on Love

Christians, I’m calling our bluff. All of us. Me included. Pick your hot topic, your emotional issue, your heart-in-throat or blood-pressure-rising reality. Doesn’t matter what it is. Muslims and immigration. LGBTQ inclusion and same-sex marriage. Racism and policing—both north and south of the border. Anything related to politics, religion, or sex, in other words. In …

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