What Jesus might write in a Letter to the 21st Century Church

On Friday the SCOTUS, in a 5-4 decision, made same-sex marriage the law of the land expanding the right beyond the 36 states in which it was already legal (link). We should not be surprised. When a nation, governed as “we the people”, is comprised of a such a diverse group of people, not all of which are Christians, why should we expect it to adopt laws that model Christian ethics? Continue reading

Grace for All: Grace is Personal

The essay … The Spirit of Grace, was originally written by William G. MacDonald (link) and was edited by John D. Wagner. 415xXkjORGL

The authors present a challenge to any theologian, one that is probably not considered often enough.

The most complicating factor for system building in theology is the personhood of God. … A force, idea, or principle is far more consistent and controllable in thought than a living personality …

It is not possible, the authors contend, to fully understand grace unless we first grapple with God as One who is living and dynamic.

The concept of the grace of God is grounded in the doctrine of God’s holy Self, his personhood

The authors challenge the “working definition” of grace, Continue reading

Bring Out Your Dead (A look at Death in Ephesians 2)

The passage in Ephesians 2 starts off highlighting our need for a Savior.

And although you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you formerly lived … and were by nature children of wrath … (Eph 2:1-3 NET)

Eric-Idle-Monty-Python-Holy-Grail-bring-out-deadPaul addresses the Ephesians as those who were dead. In doing so he leaves the reader hanging.

This chapter, as noted in the translation notes in the NET, starts off with an incomplete sentence. The participle finds its completion in verse 4 and 5 where we learn that we are “made alive together with Christ”.

What does Paul mean by the term “dead”?

Some possibilities include:

  • physical death
  • spiritual death
  • the natural inability to do good or respond to the gospel

Continue reading