This Sunday we begin a sermon series from the book of Isaiah: "Holy, Wholly, Holy." The prophet Isaiah is the Shakespeare of the Bible. He covers the heights and depths of human experience, takes us from the cesspool of our depravity to the very glory of the presence of God, and calls us from his first words to his last to be wholly God's. Our tendency is to be immersed in our own lives and to dabble in the things of God. Isaiah beckons us to stop and consider the King who gave us the breath....
There aren't many Bible stories that can claim a recent Bruce Springsteen song and a Veggie Tales movie, but Jonah can. And it makes sense. The story offers everything we love: a villainous hero (or is he a heroic villain?), fast-paced action, profound insights about the human condition, and a mesmerizing look at God's scandalous mercy. It is one of the few Old Testament books that seems to speak to everyone—scholar or preschooler, the specialist in Hebrew syntax or one who barely knows English (and it's your mother tongue!).
Of course, the best way…
In our last post we introduced Daniel's seventy weeks, this mysterious reference from Daniel 9:24-27. It is often used as a defense of a 7-year time of hardship called "the great tribulation." Yet, we are taking a different approach to the passage. We began with verse 24 yesterday, and today we will look at the rest of the passage going verse-by-verse.
If you've read much of anything connected to the end times, you've likely heard about "the great tribulation." Or maybe you've even heard about Daniel's 70 weeks. These issues are connected to our view of the end times or eschatology, "the study of the last things." All of this can be endlessly fascinating but also wildly speculative. Arriving at solid conclusions from the biblical text can be difficult at times, impossible at others. Here we want to examine one piece of this complex puzzle, Daniel 9:24-27.
This Sunday morning we have the opportunity to do something unique, life-changing, vitally important to every facet of our life, and also mysterious: We can draw near to God. James 4:8 says, "draw near to God, and he will draw near to you." The author of Hebrews calls us to "draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith" (10:22).
In the critical last hours of Jesus’ earthly ministry, he instituted what we call the Lord's Supper at his last meal with the disciples. As we saw in our Sunday sermon, the Lord's Supper is a simple act, but it has profound meaning. What is the Lord's Supper? We answered that question in four parts.
In Team of Rivals, Doris Kearns Goodwin wrote that Abraham Lincoln "has unequalled power to captivate the imagination and to inspire emotion." For me, King David is the Bible's Abraham Lincoln equivalent in his power to capture imaginations and inspire emotions.
War, romance, anger, depression, dancing, judgment—it's the stuff of history, especially Old Testament history in 1-2 Samuel and 1-2 Kings where we will be for our new sermon series beginning in September. Here are some over-arching aspects of this exciting history.
Finding "the living Christ" in the New Testament presents no difficulty. Close your eyes and open it up and point, and you'll find Christ. But finding Jesus in the Old Testament holds a greater challenge.
New Year's is a good time to think about your Bible reading and what changes you might make for the coming year. Here's a new reading plan organized around "the story line of the Bible: God's plan of redemption.