Martin Luther: Comforting the Sick

I know the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation is over, but I just happened upon an old essay I wrote on Luther’s pastoral approach to the sick and dying I found interesting. Martin Luther’s book Comfort For the Sick and Dying provides a window into his faith and theology as it is worked out in the face…

Where Thou Dwelleth?

Like the angels ascending and descending on Jacob’s ladder, the person who “abides” or “dwells” in Jesus by faith will experience the grace and peace of God ascending and descending in our lives on a regular basis. We’ll experience grace as Heaven’s promises descend into our valleys of despair and need. We’ll experience the “peace that surpasses understanding” as our faith leads our hearts in worshipful ascent to where we are seated in heavenly places and given a God’s perspective on things (Eph 2:6-7). 

A Case for a Cruciform Justice

It seems hardly necessary to make an argument for the universally experienced suffering and injustice prevalent in the world. If pain really is God’s “megaphone to rouse a deaf world”, as C. S. Lewis argued, then the message is deafeningly clear and God might consider turning the volume down a bit. What then is the church’s appropriate response to the world’s injustice and suffering?

A City on a Hill: A Biblical Theology of Missions

“Preach the gospel at all times, and if necessary use words.” – St. Francis of Assisi Modern readers tend to take the above statement as a kind admonition towards acts of charity and service in the name of Jesus.  But, they are usually quick to make clear that the primary means of evangelizing is through…

Jesus, Rabbinic Judaism & Personality-Driven Ministry Today

This is the concluding section of a research paper on “Rabbi Jesus & the Embodiment of Torah” exploring the Rabbi-Pupil relationships and dynamics in the ancient world — especially the role of charisma and personality in church teaching.  At First Church, Pastor Stern had the difficult task of succeeding the long-tenured and beloved Pastor Slick who…

ESSAY: Rabbi Jesus & the Embodiment of Torah

For that one strange person out there who may be interested, I’m posting a small portion of my first doctoral research essay exploring Jesus and Rabbi-pupil dynamics in the ancient world. Warning: Academic essays tend to be more technical and boring. ——————————— There’s no denying the fact that at the center of Jesus’ earthly ministry…

God’s ‘Man-centered’ Gospel & Glory

Human beings glorify God not by curling up in a helpless, hopelessly depraved blob just relieved that God is great enough for the both of us. Rather, God is most glorified in us when we, God’s image-bearers in the world, are living most in tune with God’s purposes for our lives, utilizing our God-given gifts and passions, flourishing in our God-directed pursuits, and accomplishing great things in the name of God and for the expansion of the Kingdom of God. 

Apocalyptic Literature: 4 Views

How does one approach reading and interpreting the strange, other-worldly Book of Revelation? Here’s a short introduction and overview of the four main approaches often used.  INTRODUCTION Interpreting Revelation and other apocalyptic literature, like any specific genre, demands its own set of prescribed rules.  Yet, when we approach the task of shedding light on the mysterious…