Quote of Note #145: Blessing our Enemies

Photo by GAC "Repentance and tearing down walls that we've built also means that we speak differently of 'them'. 'Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you' (Luke 6:28). To bless means to speak well of. This biblical command can radically change our interactions within our circle of friends. When the topic … Continue reading Quote of Note #145: Blessing our Enemies

Quote of Note #144: Success & Power

Photo by GAC "You could say I was successful, but success is such a fleeting, arbitrary notion. Who decides what it is? Who determines whether you've achieved it? Does being crucified on a dung heap outside the walls of Jerusalem, cursed as someone lower than the beasts, spat upon, and mocked as he cried out … Continue reading Quote of Note #144: Success & Power

Bible Note #53: Colossians 3 Series–Raised with Christ

There is richness and deep truth to be found everywhere in the Bible, often in passages that might seem mundane and unremarkable at first glance.  In fact, that sounds like an interesting challenge.  So, maybe someday I’ll do a series of studies on some of those seemingly uninspiring passages of the Bible.  But for now, … Continue reading Bible Note #53: Colossians 3 Series–Raised with Christ

Quote of Note #137: Bearing the Cross

photo by GAC "Honesty impels me to admit that transformed nonconformity, which is always costly and never altogether comfortable, may mean walking through the valley of the shadow of suffering, losing a job, or having a six-year-old daughter ask, 'Daddy, why do you have to go to jail so much?' But we are gravely mistaken … Continue reading Quote of Note #137: Bearing the Cross

Quote of Note #136: The Real Nature of True Freedom

photo by GAC "However, I think it is important to note that another trajectory in the Christian tradition argues that we should not understand freedom in libertarian terms. Augustine, for instance, emphasized a 'positive' understanding of freedom as empowerment: I am free insofar as I am able to achieve the good. On this score, freedom … Continue reading Quote of Note #136: The Real Nature of True Freedom

Bible Note #51: James 2:1-4 & Valuing What Jesus Values

I enjoy fishing.  I’m not very good at it, but I do enjoy going out to the water and trying to catch fish.  As I share this with you, we are a day away from the opening of trout season in Pennsylvania.  Opening day can be a pretty crowded time on the water around here.  … Continue reading Bible Note #51: James 2:1-4 & Valuing What Jesus Values

Pastor Note #120: James 1:27 & the Essence of the Christian Life

[Note: The text below is the script for a video/audio teaching I posted to my Facebook page and my YouTube channel.  If you’d like to see the video version, follow the instructions in the material below.] How can human beings live flourishing and authentic lives in this complicated and troubled world?  That’s the question that … Continue reading Pastor Note #120: James 1:27 & the Essence of the Christian Life

Quote of Note #125: Kindness and Gentleness

Photo by GAC "We were created for kind and gentle living. Indeed, kindness and gentleness are two of the fruit-of-the-Spirit characteristics that the apostle Paul mentions in Galatians 5. When Christians fail to measure up to the standards of kindness and gentleness, we are not the people God meant us to be." Richard Mouw, Uncommon … Continue reading Quote of Note #125: Kindness and Gentleness

Quote of Note #123: Christianity & Coercion

Photo by GAC "Christian civility takes human freedom seriously. I may want people to believe as I do about some basic matters--but what I want is for them to choose to see things that way. This means that I must rely on testimony and persuasion in presenting my views to them. Civil Christians will be … Continue reading Quote of Note #123: Christianity & Coercion