Archive for the ‘In the World’ category

Spiritual Practice #8: “Intentionally Seek to Integrate Your Life in Christ with All Areas of Your Life”

November 30, 2016

integratedDuring Advent we reflect upon and prepare for the coming of Jesus. We remember his birth and make sure our preparations are on track for his return.

So why did he come? And what can we expect the second time around?

The Jesus whose birth we celebrate, and whose return we anticipate, is Jesus Christ, or Jesus the Messiah. Messiah is a Jewish word that basically means Savior/King. In other words, Jesus means to save and he means to rule. His intent then and now is to reclaim this world as God’s kingdom. He wants to restore all things according to God’s original design (Acts 3:19-22). He intends to make all things new.

Christ is King and he is Lord. This is the fundamental truth of the Christian life. Christ himself qualified us to enter his kingdom, but now each Jesus Follower is called to apply themselves to learning what it means to live under the Reign of God. (more…)

Nitty Gritty Christianity

October 21, 2010

Today’s gospel reading is the Parable of the Good Samaritan. It’s a parable that usually makes me feel uncomfortable. I realize how much I’m like the “expert in the law” that asks Jesus a question about eternal life, and when Jesus turns the question back to him, gives a really great answer: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’, and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.‘” What great concepts! What profound thoughts! Jesus says, “Great response . You hit the nail on the head. Do this, and you’ll be fine.” (more…)

Essential 100 Journey: Day 99 — Revelation 19:1-20:15

April 9, 2009

fourhorsesWe’re approaching the end, folks. Tomorrow’s the grand finale – literally (you’ll see why when you read the passage). I really don’t have time to write this post this morning, but I feel like I’d be pastorally negligent if I didn’t say at least something about the today’s obviously difficult reading. (more…)

Essential 100 Challenge: Day 75 — Acts 10:1-11:18

March 16, 2009

spiritglassPeter is about to experience another conversion, his world turned upside down. To this point, Peter believed that the Jewish people and the Jewish nation were the focus of God’s attention. When Jesus had told the apostles to be his witnesses throughout the world, they assumed he meant the Jews throughout the world. (more…)

Essential 100 Challenge: Day 48 — Daniel 6:1-28

February 17, 2009

daniel1Today’s story about Daniel and the lion’s den illustrates well why it’s important to see the Bible as not just a collection of stories with a “moral,” but as stories and events that are part of a larger Story. If we read this story in isolation from the larger Story, we’re likely to interpret it as saying: ‘If you do the right thing, God will always rescue you from your troubles.’ (more…)

Essential 100 Challenge: Day 27 — Judges 4:1-5:23

January 27, 2009

DeborahDeborah is the man, uh woman, of the hour. As she is described in our text, Deborah is clearly regarded as one of the greatest leaders in Israel’s history. This reminds me of another woman, Junias, whom the apostle Paul describes as “outstanding among the apostles” (Romans 16:7).  So in the Bible we have women as prophet/judges and women as apostles. (more…)

Essential 100 Challenge: Days 23,24,25 — Joshua 1:1-18; 3:1-4:24; 5:13-6:27

January 25, 2009

AngelSwordBack at the beginning of Genesis, just before the account of the flood, we read that “the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence.” Then God said, “I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth.”

God hates violence. That’s why he sent the flood — to get rid of it. I realize how contradictory this sounds: using violence to obliterate violence. We will encounter many more contradictions in this Essential 100 journey. (more…)