Imagine a World: Treasure Seekers (Matt 13:44-46)

We gathered at the beach for our annual baptism service and potluck. Always a highlight to preach in the open air with the lapping waves and morning breeze coming off of Lake Minnetonka. I resisted making mention (this time!) that just a few hundred yards down the shoreline Bill Bright housed the Campus Crusade headquarters…

God’s Masterpiece

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago” (Ephesians 2:10). If I were called to the hospital bedside of a person who just attempted but failed to take their own life, I think I would bring this…

Bono & the Psalms

I’m going to see U2’s 30th Anniversary Joshua Tree Tour concert at U.S. Bank Stadium in a few weeks. My only other U2 concert was their Popmart Tour 20 years ago at the Metro Dome (a horrible echo-chamber for concerts). Needless to say, it’s about time. I’m pumped. I’m a long time fan of U2 and an…

Imagine a World: Grateful Stewards (Matt 21:33-40)

Jesus’ parables, in the words of my teacher Scot McKnight, invite hearers to “imagine a world like this…” Like a good novel or film, you get swept up into another world for a moment and when its over you’re dropped back into our world pondering what you just saw, heard, experienced or imagined. Jesus’ parables fire…

Acts 2:42-47 Rewritten for Today

I’ve been reflecting again on the community life of the first Christians described in Acts 2:42-47. We now stand 2,000 years removed from this first glimpse into the radical social experiment called ‘church’, and we marvel at the quality of their koinonia, or life together. I wonder what Christians 2,000 years in the future (if…

Christ Encounter #5: Who am I Really?

This is from a Bible Study series I wrote called Christ Encounters exploring some of the most well-known encounters with Christ in the Gospels.  Each study provides (1) initial observations/questions, (2) interpretation & exegesis, and (3) practical life application questions. 27Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked…

PHILIPPIANS 34: Evening Grace (4:23)

“May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit” (Phil 4:23). Paul begins with “grace” (1:2), and ends with “grace.” The gracious love of the Lord Jesus was the joy of his heart. For Paul, grace was the name of his game. Grace was the blood running through his veins. Grace was the…

PHILIPPIANS 33: The Secret (4:10-19)

After pushing ‘pause’ for about 8 years, I finally concluded my reflections on the entire Book of Philippians recently. I’ll share the last few parts in the days ahead. See rest of the series here. “How I praise the Lord that you are concerned about me again. I know you have always been concerned for…