From the World’s Foundation

"When were you saved?" This question seeks a specific date, time, and place when the one took action to respond to God's grace, perhaps with a specific prayer. But the Letter to the Ephesians has a very different answer: just as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should… Continue reading From the World’s Foundation

Divine Dependence Day

This week we celebrate our independence from external governments. Yet this Sunday, like any other day we proclaim our dependence on Jesus as our Lord and Savior. The sixth chapter of Mark's Gospel describes two scenes related understanding Jesus as Lord. In the first scene Jesus returns to his hometown and attempts to teach and… Continue reading Divine Dependence Day

Wait, This Person Is Important

Each Sunday during worship I incorporate prayer requests into the prayers of the people. Very rarely is the person who we pray for physically in the room with us. It is much easier to pray for someone, than with someone. Jesus was much more into praying with people. This week's lesson (Mark 5:21-43) includes two… Continue reading Wait, This Person Is Important

Sabbath Keeping

"Please silence your phone as we prepare for worship," the liturgist reminds the congregation each Sunday. We hope that for the next hour we might focus on God. But my phone is my connection for ministry. And you?  I had the privilege of participating in a Navajo Blessing Way. As part of that ceremony we placed… Continue reading Sabbath Keeping

Seeing the LORD

I am not worried about the long term future of the Church. It has been perverted and used by various people throughout history and it continues to survive after thousands of years. On the other hand, the short term prognosis for this congregation, for the Presbyterian Church, and for the entire Church of Jesus Christ… Continue reading Seeing the LORD

Show Us the Spirit

Wear something red for Pentecost, the birthday of the Church. The day when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples as flames. Sermon Notes for Pentecost, May 20, 2018 For two thousand years Jesus has been on trial. The Bible even lays out the strongest evidence against him. Pentecost refutes those claims. At the start… Continue reading Show Us the Spirit

Powerful Faith

Sermon Notes for May 13, 2018 We have a small night light, hidden under a bench, that lights our hall. That small light keeps me from stubbing my toe after shutting off the other lights on my way to bed. The power behind that light is sufficient to light up an entire football stadium changing… Continue reading Powerful Faith

Communion as Love

Who is your BFF? The discipline of texting, cramming one's thoughts into 140 characters or less, has added some interesting abbreviations to our vocabulary. BFF (best friends forever) might be a useful translation of the word Greek word φίλους. The usual translation of φίλους as 'friend' neglects that this word has its root in a verb… Continue reading Communion as Love

Open Doors

Nine of the ten translations of the Bible on the shelf next to me relegate the 37th verse of the 8th chapter of the book of Acts to a footnote. Even my Greek New Testament includes it only as a footnote citing none of the oldest and most reliable manuscripts. Most (including the one translation… Continue reading Open Doors