Friday, March 26, 2010

Palm Sunday Meditation - The Cost of Love

Read Luke 19:28-40

The Triumphal Entry is a watershed moment in the ministry of Jesus.  It is His Rubicon.  Once he arrives in Jerusalem, there is no looking back.  Only forward to the cross.

Believers see that cross as the price to be paid for the redemption of the world. His motivation was love for His fallen creation.  Jesus crossed this line and faced the cross because He was willing to pay the price of real love.

And make no mistake, real love is not only about receiving or exchanging for our personal benefit. There are seasons when real love is very costly. 

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Son of Laughter - Chapter 6

God made a special promise to Abraham in Genesis 12.  The promise was more wonderful than anything Abraham could have done for himself, and met the deepest hope of his heart.  But there was something else about that promise that is like every other promise that God makes.  How often I overlook it though.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Glen Beck Through Gospel Eyes: My Two Cents

Wow!  So Glenn Beck is now passing out advice on where to go to church!  There are two things that I'd like to say about that.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Gospel Eyes and Violence in the Bible - A Reflection on Jihad, Herem and NPR

This week NPR aired a segment meant to compare the levels of violence advocated by the Bible and the Quaran.  Click here to read and listen.  In it, a Penn State professor named Philip Jenkins focuses on the Old Testament practice of herem, the practice of total destruction of people groups as Israel enters the land or faces an enemy people.  Professor Jenkins refers to it as genocide and makes the case on these grounds that the violence of the Bible is of a wholly different nature - genocide rather than self-defense - and degree than the violence of the Quaran - jihad in particular.

Interesting.  Frankly, I think he is wrong on many levels and agree with Andrew Bostom who takes him to task in the NPR segment.  I was struck though by a particular point of difference I would have with Professor Jenkins' contention.  And it is about how the Bible is meant to be read and understood.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Giant Staircase to Heaven - Chpt. 5

Even as unreliable as my memory is, I can look back through my life and see different perspectives that I have carried regarding God and what He is like.  They are fresh in my memory, because I see these same three perspectives held by people I meet and talk with every day.  Reading the story of the Tower of Babel with "Gospel eyes" reminds of how different each of those perspectives are.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A New Beginning - Chpt. 4

Sometimes starting over is not enough.  And trying harder doesn't always get us to the goal.   Sometimes the problem is so deep that it is just repeated at every new start and the goal is too far to reach with the resources that we have.  That's one of the lessons from the story of Noah.

Consider Noah as a "start over" project that demonstrates beyond the shadow of a doubt that humanity's problem is something that can't be overcome by one more fresh start or by more effort with the same resources.  The story makes clear that in the end, we'll need rescue from the outside.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Terrible Lie - Chpt. 3

Trust.  That is the heart of the story.  Who do I trust?  And will I obey someone, even when I don't fully understand or appreciate their guidance?  If I trust them, I will.  But if I don't trust them, I will obey whatever I do trust instead.  In the end, I can get a sense of who or what my heart is trusting, by observing who I am obeying.
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