My own definition of what counts as a “novel” fluctuates. You might say I fudge. If it is a classic, like Homer’s stuff, it’s not fiction. If it is theological, it’s theology. Otherwise, I don’t read novels. Unless it’s the […]
Almighty God, you have poured upon us the new light of your incarnate Word: Grant that this light, enkindled in our hearts, may shine forth in our lives; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you, in […]
My Weekly Meanderings will be sparse this week with so much of our time spent traveling and with family. You thinking of blogging? (HT: Henriet)
Telford Work closes this book,Ain’t Too Proud to Beg, a series of ruminations leading to themes in the Lord’s Prayer, with three sermons under the chp title “Amen.”
Our day needs its best theologians, historians, biblical scholars, missiologists and pastors to sit down at table to discuss world religions. The issues pressing for answers are enormous in significance, and that is why I’d like to open a series […]
Some of you may know I like to cook, and my favorite dish is risotto. For a few years I’ve been using a nice pan but it was wearing out. Very kindly, Lukas and Annika (probably mostly Annika) bought me […]
Kris bought herself something, wrapped it up, and opened it for Christmas (well sort of since she opened it a few days before Christmas). Kris likes to know what time it is at night, our eyes are such that we […]
John Piper and Robert Webber (The Divine Embrace) have one big, central idea in common: Christian spirituality is not about the self but about God. Whereas Piper focuses on a Calvinist vision of God, Webber focuses on a liturgical vision […]
This may have happened to you, but it has happened to us too often – as in 2 times in the last 3 months. We check into a hotel, sometimes as the guest of someone else but even when not, […]
It’s not easy to decide when the Christmas season begins, perhaps when Thanksgiving is over or at the lighting of the First Advent candle or when grading is over and the grades are submitted or when … it’s all a […]
… on January 7 when I will begin a lengthy series on the meaning of Kingdom of God. I will examine every reference to “kingdom” in the Gospels to examine this question: Is the kingdom bigger than the Church?
For Webster … What do you expect for a 15 year old Bichon …
“On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh” (Matthew 2:10-11). […]
The Nativity of Our Lord: Christmas Day December 25 O God, you make us glad by the yearly festival of the birth of your only Son Jesus Christ: Grant that we, who joyfully receive him as our Redeemer, may with […]
On the eve of our Christmas celebration, Jesus? birthday, we light all of the candles of the Advent wreath.
Do you have a “rule of life”? What have you learned from adapting or forming a rule of life? In the 9th chp of Robert Webber’s The Divine Embrace we are treated to three groups of three teachings, each of […]
Every generation needs to examine for itself the reliability of the Gospels. Is the depiction of Jesus accurate? Can they be trusted? Are they reliable enough for us to anchor our faith in Jesus? There are now “three bears” in […]
“We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.? So said the Magi according to Matthew (2:2). Herod, a filthy deceitful tyrant, wants to know where Jesus is born so he, too, can worship the newborn […]
Purify our conscience, Almighty God, by your daily visitation, that your Son Jesus Christ, at his coming, may find in us a mansion prepared for himself; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one […]
Today we relight the first three candles of the Advent Wreath — the candles of HOPE, PEACE and JOY. Now we light the fourth candle of Advent. This is the candle of LOVE.
I mentioned this once, but I have to mention it again. Just in case you haven’t listened to The Bible Experience, I think it is a must. As I am driving I often listen to this recording of the Bible […]
Chicago Skylilne … can’t beat it:
If any one chp summarizes Robert Webber’s take on spirituality, chp 8 of The Divine Embrace is it.
Telford Work’s style in Ain’t Too Proud to Beg is to begin somewhere, not always one might think, and meander his way to the principle idea in one of the petitions in the Lord’s Prayer. This week he begins here:
“We three kings of orient are” is another Christmas song that combines a rich legend (like names: Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar) about the magi and some nice theology. Here it is. Go ahead, Steph, tell us something about it…
“Now let us examine,” John Calvin says with a scorching pen, “the arguments by which certain mad beasts ceaselessly assail this holy institution” [infant baptism]. This is found in Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion, 4.16.10. So, we enter today […]
You can’t have a good story with a protagonist as highly exalted as Jesus, not the least in his birth story, without having a solid antagonist — and we’ve got one: Herod the Great who populates Matthew’s second chapter like […]
In chp 7 of The Divine Embrace Robert Webber tells “My Story” of God’s embrace. This is not what you think it might be, and for me it reveals the genius of the Ancient Future approach of Webber. “My story” […]
It is customary for many today — and I’m a big fan of this — to speak of the Bible as Story. There is another story we need to know, and it is the story of the Church. Why? I […]
My penitence for the Bears losing to the Vikings is to read John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, Book 4, chp 16, on infant baptism. Calvin doesn’t begin on a good note for me when he refers to Anabaptists, […]
Nearly every piece of Christmas art work I have scence has a bright, shiny star, the Star of Bethlehem, the star that guided the Magi from the East to Jesus, he was born to be King of the Jews. What […]
I tire, as many of you no doubt do too, of the word Episcopalian meaning “debate about gays and lesbians.” There is much more to the Episcopal church and the Anglican Communion worldwide than this debate, but it has garnered […]
One of the richest Advent texts is this one: All of this happened to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet: “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and he will be called […]
“God’s story,” Robert Webber argues in chp 6 of The Divine Embrace, “is the brief interpretation of everything” (142).
Tonight’s game between the Bears and the Vikings pits McKnight against John Franke.
As many of you know who follow this blog, T won the “To Scot from Scot” challenge. We ordered his choice of crocs (Sobek, chocolate/khaki) and they should be on their way (no shipping cost, can’t beat that). And he […]
“She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus [Yeshua — YHWH saves], because he will save his people from their sins? (Matthew 1:21). Christmas is about salvation and God saves at Advent. […]
Stir up your power, O Lord, and with great might come among us; and, because we are sorely hindered by our sins, let your bountiful grace and mercy speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, […]
Today we relight the first two candles of the Advent wreath. The candle of HOPE and the candle of PEACE.
There is a steady supply of prayer books, but the new one by Thomas Oden and Cindy Crosby, Ancient Christian Devotional, is unique. If you’d like to draw deeply on Orthodoxy’s rich heritage, this is the book for you. Here’s […]
We are now brewing one of the finest coffees one can find — and winner of all kinds of awards — Intelligentsia, Chicago’s own and best coffee. We are drinking Black Cat Espresso. It has that hint of chocolate and […]
I’m wondering how many out there have purchased Kindle: Amazon’s New Wireless Reading Device and what they think of it? I’m not the most advanced of technology of folks but this one is getting quite the buzz and two publishers […]
The response yesterday was delightful. What fun we had laughing and last night in our small group we laughed and laughed about some of the responses. Originally I thought I’d reveal the gift on December 26, but Kris insisted that […]
“I believe in the forgiveness of sins,” a famous line in the Apostles’ Creed, means “I believe in the rebirth of relationships” according to Telford Work in Ain’t Too Proud to Beg (166). To help himself discuss the Lord’s prayer […]
Chp 5 is one of the more important chps in Robert Webber, The Divine Embrace. Here’s why: it addresses the postmodern provocation in spirituality noted by neo-Gnosticism.
“She will give birth to a son,” the angel tells Joseph, “and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins” (Matthew 1:21).
I will be the first to admit that I’m a fan of the great Anglican pastor, writer and apostle to the university student, John R.W. Stott. When I was in college I began reading his books, listening to him speak […]
For many years now at Christmastime I buy something for myself, wrap it up, and write on it “To Scot from Scot.” This has become a bit of a tradition around our house. In the past, I’ve bought myself and […]
Mary’s untimely premature pregnancy was bad enough. That Joseph, her fiance was about to divorce her would have perhaps made the situation unbearable for Mary. So, God sends an “angel.”
Robert Webber, in The Divine Embrace, points six negative influences shaping contemporary evangelical spirituality. Here they are and what are your thoughts?
Today I’m asking those who are voting Republican to announce who they are voting for and provide the positive reasons why they are making their choice. We behaved yesterday admirably, so I’m asking the same today. Democrats need to sit […]
My favorite Christmas hymn is “O Come, O Come Immanuel,” a 12th Century Christian hymn originally written in Latin. Here are the words and I wish Stephanie Seefeldt would make the ivories of her piano sing this song for us:
Three convergences go into this post. The first was Willow Creek’s decision to end Axis, something that I both understood and worried about. The second is Robert Wuthnow’s fact-filled and nearly undeniable claim that the generation of 18-30 year olds […]
At the inspiration of Eugene Cho, I’m trying something perhaps risky. We’ve addressed other controversial topics on this blog in a civil manner and now I’m trying something new: the elections. So, today, I’m asking those who are voting Democrat […]
Jesus is, Matthew 1:1 tells us, the son of Abraham and the son of David. David is another Christmas word. An important one.
A third danger developing in modern evangelicalism’s understanding of spirituality, according to Robert Webber in The Divine Embrace is experiential spirituality. Here are some of his thoughts:
I have given plenty of attention to books on this blog, and want to call special attention to some pastor-type books that have not been blogged much, but which I would judge to be some of my favorites of the […]
Thursday morning David Fitch and I will be on WMBI radio, a little after 7:30am (Central Time), on The Morning Show to discuss Willow’s now controversial “Reveal” study. In my listening and reading of the responses to this study, I’m […]
Matthew opens up his Gospel with these words: A record of the genealogy of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham was the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah […]
We are shocked today by the two shootings in Colorado, one at a YWAM location and the other at a church. We mourn with those who are suffering as a result of these tragic shootings.
Second Sunday of Advent Today we relight the candle of HOPE. Now we light the candle for the second Sunday in Advent. This is the candle of PEACE. As we prepare for the coming of Jesus, we remember that Jesus […]
Merciful God, who sent your messengers the prophets to preach repentance and prepare the way for our salvation: Give us grace to heed their warnings and forsake our sins, that we may greet with joy the coming of Jesus Christ […]
It’s that time of the year again … and Kris and I enjoy our walks in the flurries.
What is wealth? How would you define it? Why is wealth such a hot topic for Jesus but, by and large, ignored today? And even when we do push the topic we know deep inside that our sacrifices don’t mean […]
Not only is legalism a problem for evangelicals, but so is what Robert Webber calls “intellectual spirituality” (84-87 in The Divine Embrace). How does this manifest itself?
“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Flesh and Glory — an odd […]
First, these two teams don’t deserve to be on national TV. I’m glad I’ve got something to read. Second, the game has now become interesting … 3:23 left in 3d quarter.
Please pray for Matt and Nicole and Evie.
Overall, Andrew Purves,The Crucifixion of Ministry , is a profound theological exploration of the significance of the vicarious humanity of Christ and our union with Christ for pastoral ministry. There is much that I like about this; very much. But, […]
Willow Creek’s annual youth ministry conference, April 9-11, is called “Shift.” I will participating in several ways and hope you can find your way to this event if you are involved in youth ministry. We’ve been given the chance to […]
“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us” (John 1:14). The Word who is Life, the Word who is Light, has become “flesh.”
Pray for the fresh outbreaks of a new strain of ebola in Uganda.
Legalism, both ethical and doctrinal, distorts spirituality. So, the first four pages of chp 4 of Robert Webber’s The Divine Embrace is all we’ll look at today.
John Goldingay closes chp 9 of Israel’s Gospel (OT Theology) with this statement, a summing up insight into how First Testament writers understood history and how we might understand our own:
Our third word for Advent is “light.” Here is John 1:4-5: “In him was life, and that life was the light of men.The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.” How is the Word also […]
We close our survey of Andrew Purves, The Crucifixion of Ministry, with today’s post … but on Thursday I’ll offer a brief critical interaction with the book. This chp gets down to brass tacks with what ministry, when conceived as […]
In my book Embracing Grace I tell the story of a little “eikon” I had in my office for many, many years. We called him Pierre because he was a French-looking man with a beret. Now for the rest of […]
“In him,” John says of Jesus Christ, the Word, “was life” (1:4). The second Christmas word in our series is “life.” What does this mean?
The essence of chp 3 of Robert Webber’s The Divine Embrace makes a simple contention: no matter how we turn the dice, the numbers of the earliest spirituality are not turning up in contemporary evangelicalism’s understanding of spirituality. He believes […]
Friday and Saturday, along with Kevin Vanhoozer and Edith Humphrey, as well as Howard Snyder, Vince Bacote, David Fitch, and David Neff, I participated in the Ancient-Evangelical Future Call conference at Northern Baptist’s Seminary‘s pleasant surroundings.
“In the beginning,” the Gospel of John tells us, “was the Word.” He furthers this with this: “The Word was with God and the Word was God” (John 1:1). The first Christmas word we will look at in our Advent […]
1st Sunday of Advent Almighty God, give us grace to cast away the works of darkness, and put on the armor of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came to visit […]
Chicago’s Offense is up in the air now that Hester’s just too good to kick to…