Whatever may come the way of the church, we know that the faithfulness we exhibit is grounded in the faithfulness of Christ. Without relying on the faithfulness of Christ, to the point of death, the church then and today has little to stand on.Read More
In Christ, we have humanity’s first encounter with the fullness of G-d, fullness of G-d, becoming a physical reality in our world. Jesus is the capital “W” Word of G-d taking on flesh. Every Old Testament prophesy pointed towards Jesus as the fulfillment of those lowercase “w” words. Jesus is the fullness of what G-d has to say to us, and Jesus is the fullness of G-d made visible.Read More
To make Paul’s words through this entire letter plain - Simply put… it is foolish to think we can fool G-d with self-righteous works of the Law to achieve salvation. Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection are sufficient for all people.Read More
As the confirmands receive the sign of the cross on their foreheads and the baptismal waters flow off of your head Milana, we as a community will pray that the Holy Spirit take up residence inside you, inside the confirmands, moving, prodding, and leading you all to be faithful disciples of Jesus Christ.Read More
If the hand tells the food it is not needed and can be cutoff, the body is not unified.Read More
We ask questions with predetermined answers in our minds and when the answer from the responding party does not fit our expectations or needs, we keep asking. We keep asking because we need empirical truths, we think to produce faith.Read More
The calling extended to Peter, “Follow me,” is the same calling extended to each of us when we emerge from our baptismal waters. This calling - “Follow Me” - is an invitation to meet Christ at his table, but “Follow me” is also an invitation to experience the fullness of the freedom extended to us by the power of Jesus’ Easter victory - the final victory over our captivity to sin and death.Read More
The shadow of the cross blinds us to the peace of heaven spilling over into creation. Domination through ruthlessness - Pax Roma - is no match for the justice and mercy - Pax Christi - of the Kingdom of God.Read More
Paul wrote to a church in Philippi contending with issues of arrogance and disunity. Arrogance and disunity act as prohibitors to imitating Christ’s love as a community. Arrogance and disunity were distractions, and Paul extended grace to the Philippians by reminding them of what the love of G-d in Christ had accomplished.Read More
The awesome thing about the identity we receive through our baptism is that this identity is freely given to us without reservation and with the promise that the One who was chased from his hometown will be with us.Read More
Like the magi, we approach the manger not knowing all of the answers. We approach the manger not having all of the junk in our lives we continue to carry with us not quite figured out. We approach the light of the manger still struggling to over come the curse of sin that we fall back into no matter how many times we think we have overcome it.
This is what makes the Good News different from the promise of security and peace offered to us by empires and the elite. The Good News of Emmanuel is a particular promise available and revealed through particular yet unlikely means, in particular yet unlikely places, and at particular yet unlikely times. We can expect the Good News to be revealed to us through powerful kings and prophets but also through those we are told are not capable of bearing such a promise and those who had forgotten the promise all together.Read More
While we look at this season of anticipating a birth we have to also remember that Christ has already been born, and we now live as a Church awaiting his return and with his return the fullness of the Kingdom of G-d will be made known to us.Read More
The incarnation reveals to us is that while the darkness may seem dark, the Light of Christ always prevails.Read More
What Jesus said to the disciples shapes our lives as followers of Jesus, individually, and as a community. Discipleship means following Jesus with childlike reliance and living a cross-bearing life that resists the power and prestige we grasp for when our own security is in question.Read More
Quoting Genesis instead of echoing Deuteronomy, Jesus told the Pharisees that the Kingdom of G-d, G-d’s disruptive reign, will empower those previously without power. Social structures designed to keep people groups in their place will be disrupted. This point is driven home further when Jesus double-down, using children, a segment of the population viewed as property, to illustrate what kind of dependency, reliance on G-d, will be necessary to be apart of the Kingdom building work Jesus has begun in his own ministry.Read More
How we earn money is a clear and accurate indicator of our priorities. We might speak out in favor of honest work that others should be doing but do we follow the same prescription in our own businesses? We can earn by following the footsteps of someone else but at some point we have to begin living into the calling G-d has place on our lives because what you are called to will look different than what your mentor has been called to. We can preach about Sabbath and ethical practices but if we are not observing them ourselves our true commitments become more apparent.
More often than not the phrase is used in a cavalier manner. I do not doubt the sincerity of the hymn being sung in worship and prayed corporately or individually. The problem with this phrase arises when it is used without the acknowledgment of the blessings G-d has already given to America.
Hasn’t G-d already blessed America?Read More
The crucifixion of Jesus alone illustrates that violence is not a form of justice compatible with His teachings. Leading up to Jesus’ moment of death on Calvary, His own disciples attempted to use violence in the prevention of His arrest.Read More
What we proclaim is unmerited and irresistible new life and that we are not the source of that new life. There is nothing we can do to help ourselves corporately or individually experience the unmerited and irresistible new life given to us by through the promise of Christ and by the Holy Spirit.Read More