Stay Awake for Advent (A Sermon)

Advent began last Sunday, November 30. I had the joy of preaching, and leading the divine liturgy, at Lutheran Church of the Master in Carol Stream, Illinois. This is the audio of my sermon based upon the lectionary Gospel text in Mark 13:24-37. I pray that this sermon will encourage you in your worship, edification and spiritual transformation during this … Read More

The Cruciform God

When the concept of the atonement is primarily understood as divine forgiveness we have been given a clear way to understand how God can be both just and justifier. He can demand payment for an offense and yet at the same time he can provide forgiveness in himself as the person who pays for our offense. He can do both … Read More

The Depth & Extent of God’s Forgiveness Displayed in the Atonement – Part 2

Over the centuries theologians have developed numerous models for expressing the saving significance of Jesus’ death. We have sketched out several of these models, ever so simply I freely admit, in several blogs the past few weeks. I have concluded, along with Joel B. Green, Professor of New Testament at Fuller Theological Seminary, that: “No interpretation of the atonement can … Read More

Watch Out for "Christian Karma"

The words “karma” and “Christian” do not naturally go together. Karma comes from Indian religions and is most definitely not a Christian concept. Karma refers to the concept of “action” or “deed” and is understood as that which causes the entire cycle of cause and effect. Thus people popularly speak of someone who experiences a lot of bad events in … Read More

Christ Our Center – The Lausanne Conversation at Mundelein Seminary

The past two Monday blogs (May 20 and 27) have included information about our April 18 public meeting, “Christ Our Center.” This event was held at the University of St. Mary of the Lake, Mundelein Seminary. This event was a small part of the first ever Lausanne Catholic-Evangelical Conversation, a private dialogue between twenty-five leaders. ACT3 Network worked with our … Read More

St. Cyril of Alexandria – Our True Unity Flows from Divine Diversity

Our Lord Jesus Christ did not pray only for his twelve apostles, who became the solid foundation of the Christian church. He also prayed, as we read in John 17:20-24, for all who would believe in him in every age since the apostles. He prayed for all of those who would yield to him and obey the words that call … Read More

Testimony Has the Greatest Weight

The famous Samuel Johnson (1708–1784), often called quite simply Dr. Johnson, was a devout Anglican essayist, poet, literary critic and editor. He has been called “the most distinguished man of letters in English history.” He is also the subject of the most famous single work of biography in the whole of literature, James Boswell’s Life of Samuel Johnson. Johnson observed, as … Read More

A Canadian Leader Who Models Christian Grace in Leadership

A Canadian Christian friend recently introduced me to the head of state in his province by sharing an email link. I thus learned about a remarkable politician named Brad Wall. Wall was elected Premier of Saskatchewan in the November 2007 provincial election.  Since that election, the Wall's leadership of the government can point to a remarkable list of achievements, including;   … Read More

“I Have Never Found Anyone in Israel with Such Faith” Part Two

Yesterday I showed how God coming into this world made this the “visited planet,” to quote one of my favorite lines from the late J. B. Phillips. Today I want to explain further what this means for true faith. I begin by making a statement that I have come to understand over the last decade. Until I understood the incarnation … Read More

“I Have Never Found Anyone in Israel with Such Faith” Part One

In Matthew 8 we have an astonishing account of true faith. I have heard many theological definitions of faith given over the years but none comes close to this story. (Have you ever noticed that Jesus did not give definitions of faith but stories that reveal what true faith looks like in a person’s actions?) This is such an account. … Read More