At what point did we begin relegating all the stories of scripture to children's Sunday school? The good news of the Gospels is communicated primarily in stories and images. Why is it then that we seem more interested in theology, doctrinal statements, and theory than the stories of scripture? The answer is that prose is easier to understand than poetry. Prose is easier to manipulate to our own cultural viewpoints and language than a story is. Yet, it's the stories that Jesus told that most impacted the crowds - including his own disciples. It's the stories that Jesus told that most encouraged the weak and poor – including the untouchables of his society. It's the stories that Jesus told that most incensed the religious. It's the stories that Jesus told that most connected with the culture. Maybe if Christians will tell stories that reflect Jesus' stories, they can re-capture a sense of God's creativity, character, and good news to our world.
Belief is an ancient word; or worse, a vague one. Many Christians don't really know what they believe – especially in regard to their beliefs about Jesus and his teachings. As a result, reading the scripture seems tedious and impractical. Yet, it's an exposure and understanding of scripture that builds our beliefs or at least helps us ask the all-important question: do I believe this? If you aren't reading the scripture with the honest question constantly in your mind – do I believe this? - you aren't reading correctly! There is a right and wrong way to read the scripture. In contrast to many of our postmodern assumptions that “any reading should be good,” the scripture doesn't invite us to a passive reading, a reading that appreciates the story but misses the point. The scripture challenges us to the core of our being, asking us, do you believe this? Do you live this? It's okay not to believe; it's better to be honest, and ask for help to believe than to pretend. The scripture says so.
Christians today need an understanding of, and more importantly, need experience of the Spirit in our lives if we hope to know God and follow Jesus. Pentecostalism not withstanding, Evangelicals have focused on theology in order to respond to many of the modern philosophies of the past few centuries...Read More
Race and the Gospel may not seem like a very necessary sermon series. After all, does the scripture really talk about race? And our society, although it has its issues, isn't the type of overtly racist society it once was...Read More
We are currently in the midst of a sermon series called from Jesus to Paul to Practical Living. The goal of the series is to try to apply theology to our lives. In essence, we are exploring how faith and good work interact in our lives and how spiritual growth happens. In our "inherited" theology we have a tendency to either focus on Jesus and his ushering in the kingdom, which challenges us to treat...Read More