The Good Shepherd

The Good Shepherd

Americans and American Christians have long had a deep ambivalence in our feelings about leaders. We are deeply suspicious of leaders and power, but we also idolize charismatic and powerful leaders in politics, business, and church leadership. But it’s interesting, that this ambivalence is not reflected in the Bible. The Bible’s attitude toward human leadership of other humans is, from start to finish, highly skeptical and typically negative. Not because of any biased pessimism, but because of the Bible's extreme realism about the human heart and the temptations of power...

Is Reformation Anglicanism Still Relevant?

Is Reformation Anglicanism Still Relevant?

We are now nearly 500 years down the road of history from Thomas Cranmer and the early reformation of the English church, and it's fair to ask if our tradition is still as relevant for people today as it was then. As someone who has come to Anglicanism from the outside, I would say, it absolutely is. Though, if you asked me about it over a cup of coffee, I certainly wouldn't be able to explain it as well as Ashley Null has in this recent article in The Gospel Coalition blog...

Knowledge of God: Where does it come from?

Knowledge of God: Where does it come from?

God has made Himself known to us through the deposit of apostolic eyewitness testimony, through the long record of His interaction with Israel and the church down through the centuries, and above all, through His self-revelation to us, both in the past and in the present through the power of the Holy Spirit. All three of these focus our attention on the life, death, and resurrection of our Lord and Savior. And taken altogether, they provide a powerful witness to the hope we have in him. But it takes real courage and faith to believe, especially in an age of skepticism like ours.

Easter Sermon (with audio)

Easter Sermon (with audio)

He is Risen indeed. The resurrection of Jesus is the linchpin of our faith and the foundation upon which Christian hopes are founded. As Leslie Newbigin once said, “I am neither an optimist nor a pessimist. Jesus Christ is risen from the dead!” And for these reasons, it’s very important that the story is true. As the Apostle Paul said to the Corinthians, “If Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Those who have died in Christ are dead, and we are of all people most to be pitied"...

Good Friday Sermon (with Audio)

Good Friday Sermon (with Audio)

The Roman governor of Israel, Pontius Pilot, has been arguing with the leaders of Israel over whether to put Jesus to death. He is desperate to avoid a bad PR situation on the most politically charged day of the year. But finaly, the king of the Jews is condemned to death with these words from Israel’s leaders: “We have no king but Cesar.”

Jesus & the Samaritan Woman (sermon)

Jesus & the Samaritan Woman (sermon)

We’ve been talking a lot about personal and cultural narratives over the last weeks. And this week’s gospel passage takes what we’ve been talking about and displays it in a very practical way. Jesus changes the life of the Samaritan woman not by healing her or doing anything practical to better her circumstances. Instead, he changes her life by changing the story of her life. He changes her life by helping her to see that her story can be part of the gospel story of what God is doing in the world through the Messiah...

A Tale of Two Kings

A Tale of Two Kings

His birth was heralded by signs and portents, declaring him a coming king of his homeland and the ruler of the world. Before he was born, both of his parents had dreams that foretold his greatness, and during his mother’s pregnancy, a dream showed her that the child in her womb was the son of a god – Apollo or maybe even Jupiter. Further signs and good fortune would follow him throughout his rise to adulthood and the surprising events that made him the ruler of the known world.

The ancient record of Augustus Caesar’s birth and life has some strange parallels with the birth and early life of Jesus as Luke relates it in his gospel...