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Advent Archives

Christmas Day

posted by Scot McKnight

We Celebrate the Birth of Christ In the season of Advent we have used the Advent wreath and its candles to help us get ready for this great celebration of the birth of Christ. When we lit the first purple […]

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Christmas Words 19: God

posted by Scot McKnight

The first Christmas was a Magnificat kind of Christmas. It wasn’t a Dickens kind of Christmas, and it wasn’t a Midwestern kind of Christmas, and it wasn’t a Tennessee kind of Christmas. It was a Mary kind of Magnificat kind […]

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Christmas Words 18: Poor

posted by Scot McKnight

A Magnificat kind of Christmas, which understands Christmas as about God’s acts to redeem through the incarnation, is also about the poor. Here are the words of the Magnificat, and I’d like you to observe words connected to poverty and […]

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Christmas Words 17: Promise

posted by Scot McKnight

A Magnificat kind of Christmas knows that Mary experienced profound release the moment she realized her son would be Messiah. Her release found its way into a marvelous song that extolled the faithfulness of God to his promise. Once again, […]

Christmas Words 16: Gifts

posted by Scot McKnight

“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). Christmas, the […]

Fourth Advent Candle

posted by Scot McKnight

Prayer for God’s Help Dear God, thank you for this season of Advent that helps us to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas.  As we read the Bible and light a candle, may excitement for Christ’s coming burn […]

Christmas Words 15: Magi

posted by Scot McKnight

“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.   We three kings of Orient areBearing gifts we […]

Christmas Words 14: Herod

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

Christmas Words 13: Star

posted by Scot McKnight

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 do […]

Christmas Words 12: Immanuel

posted by Scot McKnight

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 Immanuel(meaning, God is […]

Christmas Words 11: Save

posted by Scot McKnight

“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. Here is […]

Third Advent Candle

posted by Scot McKnight

Prayer for God’s Help Dear God, thank you for this season of Advent that helps us to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas.  As we read the Bible and light a candle, may excitement for Christ’s coming burn […]

Christmas Words 10: Son

posted by Scot McKnight

“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). One thinks here of Abraham and Sarah longing for […]

Christmas Words 9: Angel

posted by Scot McKnight

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.” Matthew 1:20 reads: But after he had considered this, an […]

Christmas Words 8: Exile

posted by Scot McKnight

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: […]

Wow, Watch this!

posted by Scot McKnight

Amazing Grace Techno – Computer Controlled Christmas Lights from Richard Holdman on Vimeo. HT: MT

Christmas Words 7: David

posted by Scot McKnight

Jesus is, Matthew 1:1 tells us, the son of Abraham and the son of David. David is another Christmas word. An important one. The promise to David in 2 Samuel 7 was that someone in the line of David would […]

Christmas Words 6: Abraham

posted by Scot McKnight

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 and his brothers […]

Second Advent Candle

posted by Scot McKnight

Prayer for God’s Help Dear God, thank you for this season of Advent that helps us to prepare for the coming of Christ at Christmas.  As we read the Bible and light a candle, may excitement for Christ’s coming burn […]

Christmas Words 5: Glory

posted by Scot McKnight

“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 […]

Christmas Words 4: Flesh

posted by Scot McKnight

“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.” The Christmas message, embodied in one word, is that the Word becomes Flesh. Real, breathing, […]

Christmas Words 3: Light

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

Christmas Words 2: Life

posted by Scot McKnight

“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? I begin with this: John does not say only that the Word “gives” life but […]

Christmas Words 1: Word

posted by Scot McKnight

“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 […]

First Advent Candle

posted by Scot McKnight

Advent is a word that means “coming” or “visit”.  In the Christian season of Advent we prepare for the “advent” of Christ at Christmas.  Our preparation includes many things: ? We remember Israel’s hope for the coming of God’s Messiah […]

Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

Advent is a season of waiting, expecting, and hoping.  Beginning four Sundays prior to Christmas and ending on Christmas Eve, Advent helps us to prepare for the coming, or “advent” of the Christ child at Christmas.  (The word “advent” comes […]

Merry Christmas!

posted by Scot McKnight

Kris and I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas from Wrigley!

Christmas Candle

posted by Scot McKnight

On the eve of our Christmas celebration, Jesus’ birthday, we light all of the candles of the Advent wreath.

Christmas Prayer

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

Acts of Advent: Christmas Day

posted by Scot McKnight

It’s Christmas Day, Advent is here. Today we read this text aloud throughout the world. May God bless the reading of God’s Word this day:

Acts of Advent 18

posted by Scot McKnight

What is hinted at in the Benedictus of Zechariah and in the Gloria in excelsis of the Angels, and what comes out into clear focus with Simeon, becomes concrete reality in Matthew’s Gospel, chp 2. The magi, Gentile star gazers, […]

Acts of Advent 17

posted by Scot McKnight

What the Angels envisioned – “peace on earth” – Simeon envisions as well. Here are the words of this aged saint who spent his time waiting for the Messianic kingdom: 25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, […]

Acts of Advent 16

posted by Scot McKnight

The four acts of advent are adoration, activism, community-building and – our theme this week – expansion.  Today we look at the message of the Angels from Luke 2: 13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with […]

Advent Prayer of the Week

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

4th Candle of Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

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.

Acts of Advent 15

posted by Scot McKnight

We can’t neglect Anna this Christmas. Here is her story from Luke 2: 36 There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years […]

Acts of Advent 14

posted by Scot McKnight

One of my favorite Advent figures is Simeon, another witness to Advent being the act of God to form the new Messiah-led community. Notice what Simeon says when God reveals to him that the little baby in the Temple is […]

Acts of Advent 13

posted by Scot McKnight

Notice how Zechariah’s vision of what God is about to do on the First Advent was completely shaped by building the community of God in this world: 67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied:68 “Praise be to […]

Acts of Advent 12

posted by Scot McKnight

The acts of advent, those actions that advent generates, include adoration, activism, and building community. Any reading of the birth stories, those stories that are designed to shape how we understanding Advent, reveals how central it is to God to […]

Acts of Advent 11

posted by Scot McKnight

Three acts of advent: adoration, activism, and community-building. I’m struck in the advent stories of how focused they are on the people of God … and today’s text makes that abundantly clear. It comes from Matthew 1:20-21. 20 But after he […]

Third Sunday of Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

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, […]

Advent with Christine Sine

posted by Scot McKnight

A high resolution here: Christine Sine.

Acts of Advent 10

posted by Scot McKnight

It is easy to get stuck in Luke’s grand and glorious vision of advent, and to find that kind of advent activism to be the whole story. But there’s a great example of what is meant and it can be […]

Acts of Advent 9

posted by Scot McKnight

I’m impressed not only with the activist vision of Mary in the Magnificat but also of the same kind of vision in Zechariah’s Benedictus vision. Here are his words from Luke 1: 67 His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy […]

Acts of Advent 8

posted by Scot McKnight

The second act of advent is activism in the kingdom work of God. We now look at what Mary thinks the kingdom will bring and so today I bolden the Magnificat’s appropriate portions that spell out what that kingdom means: […]

Acts of Advent 6

posted by Scot McKnight

The first act of advent, which we looked at last week, is “adoration,” the second act of advent is activism. By that I mean this: a genuine commitment to the advent vision of the Bible is a commitment to active […]

Second Week of Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

Prayer: Second Week of Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

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 […]

Acts of Advent 5

posted by Scot McKnight

The first Act of Advent is Adoration, and today’s text, drawn from the stories about Simeon and Anna from Luke 2, once again draws us into seeing why we are led to adoration.

Acts of Advent 4

posted by Scot McKnight

The first Act of Advent is Adoration, adoration of God who in Jesus Christ has enacted his great and lasting promises to Israel. Why is the first Act of Advent Adoration?

Acts of Advent 3

posted by Scot McKnight

Advent begins on bended knee, on the knee of adoration of Jesus Christ as Messiah and Lord and Savior and King. Today’s text is from Luke 1, and this text too illuminates the nature of Advent adoration.

Acts of Advent 2

posted by Scot McKnight

The first “act” of advent is to adore the Lord. Our text this morning, one that can give us more than enough space to see why we need to begin Advent on the note of adoration, is Mary’s Magnificat from […]

Acts of Advent

posted by Scot McKnight

This year’s series on Advent will focus on the acts of Advent: adoration, activism, community, and expansion. Each week will be dedicated to one of these themes, and this week — the first week of Advent — we will focus […]

First Advent Candle

posted by Jesus Creed Admin

Here is a liturgy for the first candle: Today we light the first candle of the Advent wreath. This is the candle of HOPE. With Christians around the world, we use this light to help us prepare our hearts and […]

First Sunday of Advent

posted by Jesus Creed Admin

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 us in great humility; […]

Advent Practices

posted by Jesus Creed Admin

A letter about advent resources. What are your suggestions? Hi Scot, I’ve been taken in a big way by the return of the spiritual practices / ancient way. I’m particularly interested as we approach Advent how I, as a member of […]

Christmas Words: Gifts

posted by xscot mcknight

“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). […]

Christmas Prayer

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Eve Candle

posted by xscot mcknight

On the eve of our Christmas celebration, Jesus? birthday, we light all of the candles of the Advent wreath.

Christmas Words: Worship

posted by xscot mcknight

“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 […]

Prayer of the Week

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Advent Candle Prayer

posted by xscot mcknight

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.

Christmas Words: Magi

posted by xscot mcknight

“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…

Christmas Words: Herod

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Words: Star

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Words: Immanuel

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Words: Save

posted by xscot mcknight

“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. […]

Christmas Words: Son

posted by xscot mcknight

“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).

Christmas Words: Angel

posted by xscot mcknight

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.”

Christmas Words: End of “Exile”

posted by xscot mcknight

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:

Christmas Words: David

posted by xscot mcknight

Jesus is, Matthew 1:1 tells us, the son of Abraham and the son of David. David is another Christmas word. An important one.

Christmas Words: Abraham

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

2d Week of Advent

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Prayer for the Week

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Words: “Glory”

posted by xscot mcknight

“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 […]

Christmas Words: “Flesh”

posted by xscot mcknight

“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.”

Christmas Words: “Light”

posted by xscot mcknight

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 […]

Christmas Words: “Life”

posted by xscot mcknight

“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?

Christmas Words: “Word”

posted by xscot mcknight

“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 […]

Joy to the World!

posted by xscot mcknight

The Birth of Jesus (Click here for a reading.) 1In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2(This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor […]

Caroling Scrooge’s Noel

posted by xscot mcknight

Ever ponder much what happened to old Scrooge in A Christmas Carol? Here’s the opening description of Scrooge:

Lighting the Christmas Eve Candles

posted by xscot mcknight

CHRISTMAS EVE On the eve of our Christmas celebration, Jesus’ birthday, we light all of the candles of the Advent wreath. First we light the candle for HOPE because Jesus is our hope.

Lighting the 4th Advent Candle

posted by xscot mcknight

Fourth Sunday of Advent 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.

Marko, One for Us

posted by xscot mcknight

Is that cookie really worth a 17-minute run? Associated Press Posted Friday, December 22, 2006

Christmas is about Promise

posted by xscot mcknight

A Magnificat kind of Christmas knows that Mary experienced profound release the moment she realized her son would be Messiah. Her release found its way into a marvelous song that extolled the faithfulness of God to his promise.

Lighting the 3d Advent Candle

posted by xscot mcknight

Third Sunday of Advent Today we relight the first two candles of the Advent wreath. The candle of HOPE and the candle of PEACE.

All a-Julbord

posted by xscot mcknight

Kris and I went with Joel and Karla Willitts to Tre Kronor last Friday evening for the 5:30pm sitting of Julbord — a delicate, abundant, and cultural Swedish Christmas meal. Four courses — kinds of pickled herring, cold fishes (salmon […]

Christmas is about the Poor

posted by xscot mcknight

A Magnificat kind of Christmas, which understands Christmas as about God’s acts to redeem through the incarnation, is also about the poor. Here are the words of the Magnificat, and I’d like you to observe words connected to poverty and […]

Lighting the 2d Advent Candle

posted by xscot mcknight

Second Sunday of Advent Today we relight the candle of HOPE.

95% say “Yes” to…

posted by xscot mcknight

Americans agree: It’s ‘Merry Christmas’ Reuters Posted Friday, December 08, 2006 Americans are ready to put “Merry Christmas” back into holiday shopping, a new poll shows. The majority of Americans surveyed — 95 percent — said they were not offended […]

Lighting the 1st Advent Candle

posted by xscot mcknight

Kris and I read this liturgy, and then lit the first advent candle in our home — with a little creche behind it.

The Nativity Story: A Review

posted by xscot mcknight

I was asked to write a review of The Nativity Story for Relevant Magazine.

Christmas is about God

posted by xscot mcknight

The first Christmas was a Magnificat kind of Christmas. It wasn’t a Dickens kind of Christmas, and it wasn’t a Midwestern kind of Christmas, and it wasn’t a Tennessee kind of Christmas. It was a Mary kind of Magnificat kind […]

Advent Reflections

posted by xscot mcknight

I will do a series of Advent Reflections, beginning December 3 (1st Advent Sunday) and continuing through Dec 24. They will be based on the Magnificat. Hope you can join us for this Christmas season.

Peace on Earth!

posted by xscot mcknight

Luke 2:1-20 1 In those days a decree went out from Emperor Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration and was taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 All went to their […]

A Christmas Carol

posted by xscot mcknight

Every Christmas I read Charles Dickens’, A Christmas Carol, and am in Stave 4 now. It is the story of a conversion from miserliness to generosity, from self-preoccupation to other-directedness. One assignment I give when I teach about conversion is […]

Christmas 3: God with us

posted by xscot mcknight

This is the last post in my Advent and Christmas series. Today’s post will move from Matthew’s Gospel to John’s Gospel. John has his grip around an idea that Matthew just mentions: Matthew tells us that they are to name […]

Christmas 2: Hunted and Heralded Savior

posted by xscot mcknight

If Luke’s emphasis of Jesus’ birth can be seen through the lens of the “great contrast,” Matthew’s can be viewed in the hunted and heralded Savior. In Matthew, Joseph and Mary co-habit, Joseph names the baby boy (“Yeshua” or Jesus […]

Christmas 1: The Great Contrast

posted by xscot mcknight

Nothing can be set in greater contrast: Mary wraps the Messiah, the One destined to wipe the slate clean and restore Israel and bring good news to the whole world, in swaddling cloths and places him in a manger. Messiah’s […]

Simeon and Anna 5

posted by xscot mcknight

For Anna, Christmas meant a moment to prophesy liberation/redemption for God’s people (2:36-38). There was a Mary and Joseph, an Elizabeth and Zechariah, and now an Anna and Simeon. Anna was a widow. Widows — they are more prominent in […]

Simeon and Anna 4

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas, for Simeon, meant the beginning of the Cross (2:33-35). I continue to marvel at the infancy narratives and the way the Christmas characters are depicted. Joseph bore the cross by adopting Jesus and marrying Mary (a woman with a […]

Simeon and Anna 3

posted by xscot mcknight

For Simeon, Christmas meant “salvation (Luke 1:30). What does “salvation” mean for Simeon? This could be answered by asking how Luke uses this term, which is a big, big term for him and which refers to the fullness of God’s […]

Simeon and Anna 2

posted by xscot mcknight

For Simeon, Christmas meant death (Luke 2:27-32). Simeon was told that he would not “see” death before he “saw” the Messiah, and when he “saw” the Messiah he was also “seeing” the end of his own life. The aged Simeon […]

Simeon and Anna 1

posted by xscot mcknight

This week of posts on Advent will look at Simeon and Anna, two charming seniors who gathered at the Temple to pray and long for God’s justice and Kingdom because they knew Israel’s condition was not what God planned. No […]

Mary and Elizabeth 5

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas for Mary meant learning what to teach her kids (Luke 1:46-55). Those of you who have read my Jesus Creed will know that I think Mary had a hand in teaching Jesus a thing or two about kingdom mission. […]

When Christmas falls on Sunday

posted by xscot mcknight

There has been a flurry of blogging about (mostly) mega-churches that have opted not to have a Sunday service in light of their attention to Christmas Eve services. Most of the blogging has been negative, some of it sharply so. […]

Mary and Elizabeth 4

posted by xscot mcknight

For Mary, Christmas end the beginning of the end for systemic violence (1:51-55). A student told me the other day that Christians don’t believe James 1:26-27 (pure religion is taking care of widows and orphans). In my mind, I went […]

Mary and Elizabeth 3

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant justice for a poor woman (Luke 1:46-50) When Mary hears the words of Elizabeth, when she hears that Elizabeth’s little baby leaped in her womb at the very sound of Mary’s voice, when she hears Elizabeth’s blessing on […]

Mary and Elizabeth 2

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant role reversal for Mary and Elizabeth (1:39-45). Mary comes from a hamlet; Elizabeth is from a hill town in Judah, where her husband, a priest, had a house so he could manage his way to the Temple when […]

Mary and Elizabeth 1

posted by xscot mcknight

This week, as we prepare for Advent 3, we will look at Mary and Elizabeth. Christmas for them meant the favor of God (1:23-25, 26-38) Elizabeth, an old woman, is barren — a sign of the lack of God’s blessing. […]

Advent: Joseph 5

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas, for Joseph, meant obedience and restraint (1:24-25) Roman Catholics and Protestants have been fighting for far too long about what Joseph and Mary “did” after the birth of Jesus. Does “had no union with her until…” mean that he […]

Advent: Joseph 4

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas, for Joseph, meant that God was at work on earth (1:20-21). It strains my mental abilities to think that Joseph could knowingly become the (adopted) father of a baby who was “Immanuel” — God with us. I’m not sure […]

Advent: Joseph 3

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant that Joseph learned that sometimes God surprises (1:20-21) I doubt that many think of Joseph when, this Christmas, they give to their loved ones a “good surprise” at Christmas. We’ve all had our share of presents that were […]

Advent: Joseph 2

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant that Joseph practiced a rare combination: both righteousness and mercifulness (1:19) The text says Joseph was “righteous.” Now this translates a Greek term (dikaios) which translates a Hebrew term (tsadiq) – and all these terms point to one […]

Advent: Joseph 1

posted by xscot mcknight

This series is my own preparation for Advent, and it will look at the First Christmas and how various characters encountered the First Christmas. “What was Christmas like for….?” is the question we are asking. We will look at Zechariah […]

Advent: Zechariah and Elizabeth 5

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant Missional Transformation: Luke 1:76-79 John (Yohanan)’s task is clear: Zechariah tells him, at his birth, that he is to be a prophet who will prepare the way for Someone Else – the Messiah. John’s life is a life […]

Advent: Zechariah and Elizabeth 4

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant Liberation Praise: Luke 1:68-75 Like many of his day, no one perhaps more than the pious priests, Zechariah longed for the day when the Roman occupation of the Land of Israel would end. Some scholars today are nervous […]

Advent: Zechariah and Elizabeth 3

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant a New Name for a baby: Luke 1:57-66 The neighbors were thrilled for Elizabeth (they do not mention Zechariah), and they understood her pregnancy and birth as the “great mercy” of the Lord. On the day of circumcision, […]

Advent: Zechariah and Elizabeth 2

posted by xscot mcknight

Christmas meant Silence and Speech: Luke 1:18-25 Zechariah yearned for the day when God would step in and redeem Israel from its problems. But, when that day was announced, Zechariah, like Abraham (Gen 15:8), asked this question: “How can I […]

Advent: Zechariah and Elizabeth 1

posted by xscot mcknight

This series is my own preparation for Advent, and it will look at the First Christmas and how various characters encountered the First Christmas. “What was Christmas like for….?” is the question we are asking. We will look at Zechariah […]

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Thank you for visiting Jesus Creed. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Red Letters with Tom Davis Recent prayer post on Prayables Most Recent Inspiration blog post Happy Reading!  

posted 11:15:58am Aug. 16, 2012 | read full post »

Our Common Prayerbook 30 - 3
Psalm 30 thanks God (vv. 1-3, 11-12) and exhorts others to thank God (vv. 4-5). Both emerge from the concrete reality of David's own experience. Here is what that experience looks like:Step one: David was set on high and was flourishing at the hand of God's bounty (v. 7a).Step two: David became too

posted 12:15:30pm Aug. 31, 2010 | read full post »

Theology After Darwin 1 (RJS)
One of the more important and more difficult pieces of the puzzle as we feel our way forward at the interface of science and faith is the theological implications of discoveries in modern science. A comment on my post Evolution in the Key of D: Deity or Deism noted: ...this reminds me of why I get a

posted 6:01:52am Aug. 31, 2010 | read full post »

Almost Christian 4
Who does well when it comes to passing on the faith to the youth? Studies show two groups do really well: conservative Protestants and Mormons; two groups that don't do well are mainline Protestants and Roman Catholics. Kenda Dean's new book is called Almost Christian: What the Faith of Ou

posted 12:01:53am Aug. 31, 2010 | read full post »

Let's Get Neanderthal!
The Cave Man Diet, or Paleo Diet, is getting attention. (Nothing is said about Culver's at all.) The big omission, I have to admit, is that those folks were hunters -- using spears or smacking some rabbit upside the conk or grabbing a fish or two with their hands ... but that's what makes this diet

posted 2:05:48pm Aug. 30, 2010 | read full post »

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