Reflections on Suffering

The great Apostle Peter once wrote, “Therefore, let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good” (1 Peter 4:19). Clearly Peter understood two very important things: when we do the will of God suffering may come (contrary to the whole health and wealth narrative), and God is faithful in the midst […]

“Walk By the Spirit!”

As the Apostle Paul brings closure to his thoughts regarding love being supreme over and above the fleshly extremes of license and law, he raises a tension regarding how to ensure this love will prevail. Galatians 5:16 and following resolve this tension with profound clarity, and the resolution is the antithesis of self-effort. “Walk by the Spirit,” the apostle pens, […]

He Arrived: A Christmas Poem

He arrived. In the midst of darkness and sin, the Promised Child of the Ages came to the scene. Unpretentious. Without fanfare. Quietly . . . on a still night in Palestine. To ordinary people. He arrived. For the brokenhearted and those filled with shame, the Immanuel came to the scene. A little child . . . a boy. Testified […]

Unpardonable Sin

The writer Mark records the situation as follows: And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, “He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and “by the prince of demons he casts out the demons.” And he called them to him and said to them in parables, “How can Satan cast out Satan? If a kingdom is divided against itself, that […]

Reputation vs. Relationship

Right at that moment when we think Jesus may be watering down the essence of being rightly related to God, we realize that he is actually raising the bar quite a bit higher. The question about fasting, offered by the disciples of both John the Baptist and the Pharisees, as recorded in Mark 2:18 and following, provides an excellent opportunity […]

Christ Has Set Us Free!

Without a doubt, Galatians 5:1 is the key to the entire letter that Paul writes to his Christian friends in the Roman province of Galatia: For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. Not only do these words provide an apt summary of the preceding four chapters, but […]