Let’s Not Pretend We Don’t Pretend

Woe to you pretenders. It briefly captures our attention if Jesus says it once. To say it seven times at one sitting captures us for eternity. Woe, woe, woe, woe, woe, woe, woe to you pretenders. Like a methodical boxer, Jesus had picked his spots throughout Matthew’s gospel. The Pharisees were slow-footed heavyweights who stomped and thudded and complained. For three years, they chased Jesus around the ring flailing about […]

Growing Up Roe

abortion

I was born in October 1973.  By bird-and-bees math, I was conceived (yuk!) in January 1973 when seven of nine Supreme Court justices gave birth to twins: Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton. On January 22, 1973, Roe was born just minutes before Doe and abortion took its first constitutional breath. You could say we have all grown up together in the neighborhood. They have accomplished far more than […]

The With Us God

Joseph returned home from a busy day at the shop. He smelled like cedar with a hint of balsam. Sons of David deserved a table fit for kings. Mary would love it. He could hardly wait to enjoy their first meal around it as a family. Then the unthinkable happened. Joseph hadn’t seen Mary in three months. She had gone to visit her older cousin Elizabeth who was pregnant with […]

Running With the Dead

Mom and Dad’s headstone was still the same. As were my memories. The tears were new, though. Amy read a sweet reflection on death as an answer to Christ’s prayer in John 17. The grave is an altar of incense. A fresh grave was dug nearby. I pray that family is comforted by Jesus. In the distance a family released balloons. I pray they will see their child soon. And […]

Thankful for the Last Adam

For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous (Rom 5.19). The typological relationship between Adam and Jesus in Romans 5 is a theological gold mine.  We can simplify all of humanity down to this relationship.  We are sons of Adam until we are sons of Christ.  We are old men (Adam) until […]

A Tale of Two Betrayers

Matthew wove a subtle thread through his crucifixion account.  All the Gospel writers detailed Judas’ betrayal of Jesus, but only Matthew recorded what happened to Judas afterward (Mt 27.3-5; cf. Acts 1.18f.).  He did so in such a way to compare and contrast Judas with Peter: two deniers of Jesus.  Matthew magnified the sovereignty and grace of Jesus to secure his own despite their failings. Satan tried every tactic to […]

With Ev’ry Grace Endued

There is only one kind of Christian life. Every Christian shares the same calling as every other Christian because we all share one body, one Spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all (Eph 4.1-6). God calls each of us into a particular sort of life — the Trinitarian life of humility, gentleness, patience, forbearance, unity, and peace. In a word, the Trinitarian […]

Filthy Fast Balls and Forgiveness

Dirty. That’s how I felt the next morning after our son’s baseball game. The night before we played a team obviously above our caliber. It’s obvious to everyone in the league they’re using us as practice squads. They were baseball kids. Our team is kids who play baseball. There’s a huge difference. They practice hours a day. We practice an hour per week. Their starting pitcher might as well have […]