I Can Win Because He Won

I Can Win Because He Won

I was talking to a gentleman a few days ago about what it means to follow Jesus when the topic of sex came up. During the course of the discussion I made a side comment about Jesus having an erection… oh wow, did that open up a whole other avenue of discourse! But why? Why should we be so shocked with the idea that Jesus got aroused? The writer of Hebrews tells us that Jesus became “fully human in every way” (2:17) – meaning that he pooped, peed, throw up when sick, got the cold and flu, scraped his knees, had wet dreams, got tired, enjoyed a good meal and got a bit irritable at times. He also saw his fair share of pretty girls – including those of various stages of undress who were trying to sell him sex. None of those things, however, are a sin in and off themselves. They are simply part of what it means to be a human living on planet earth. Getting aroused is a physical reaction to a visual or emotional simulate. There is nothing innately wrong about this response as it was something God build into us. It is what we do AFTERWARDS that matters. Do we stop and dress the person in our mind? Do we treat that person as an object? Or do we bless that person as someone made in the image of the Creator? Do we hold captive the thoughts of our mind knowing that the Lord has put a fence around sex for our benefit and enjoyment? Jesus – who is our example on how...
“How (Not) to Speak of God” by Peter Rollins

“How (Not) to Speak of God” by Peter Rollins

Peter Rollins is a postmodern pastor, theologian and philosopher born and raised in Northern Ireland. In 2006, he published his first book, “How (Not) to Speak of God,” as an attempt to bring the mystical approach of viewing God into the wider Christian community of the Western Church. The core of this endeavor can be found in the following statement articulating the tension between mystical humanism and religious fundamentalism: “That which we cannot speak of is the one thing about whom and to whom we must never stop speaking” (page xiv). Drawing heavily on postmodern philosophy and the tradition of medieval mystical thought (especially that of Meister Eckhart), the book itself was directed to those engaged or interested in the “the emerging conversation” (page xvi). Accordingly, Rollins spends the first part of the book providing a theological framework for this view of God before shifting into a more practical outworking of the material. While Rollins’ application of his theoretical framework is interesting, this review is going to focus solely on the theological first part of the book. In the first chapter, Rollins introduces two very important concepts. The first is that each of us unconsciously projects our view of the world on to the Scriptures, affecting the way in which we see and understand God. Once we know this, then we are able to understand the second major concept, that of mystery and concealment. It is this later concept that serves to drive the book forward as Rollins explores how God can both be concealed and revealed at the same time: “revelation embraces concealment at one and the same...
It is not the task of Christianity to provide easy answers…

It is not the task of Christianity to provide easy answers…

It is easy to forget that Christianity is about a relationship with a person (i.e. Jesus) and not about having answers to all of our questions. No matter how much we study or how many years we follow Jesus, there will always be unanswered questions. Rather than getting upset at this, we should embrace the mystery and wonder of the Creator King who actively seeks a personal and intimate relationship with each of...
Top 14 Books For Every Pastor or Church Leader

Top 14 Books For Every Pastor or Church Leader

My friends over at Think Theology have started listing out their top books every pastor should either own or have read. After reading over Able Baker, Robby McAlpine, and Kenny Burchard lists, I just had to respond as I think they missed the mark on some must have books!! 😀 1) “Breakthrough: Discovering the Kingdom” by Derek Morphew The Scriptures tell us that central message of Jesus and the 12 was the Kingdom of God. Sadly the original meaning behind these words have been shifted and changed as the years march by. Building upon the works of George Ladd, Albert Schweitzer, John Wimber and others, Derek Morphew lays out the historical and biblical foundation for the in-breaking of the Kingdom of God in human history. If you are at all interested in Enacted Inaugurated Eschatology of Kingdom Theology, you simply MUST read this book. 2) “The Pastor: A Memoir” by Eugene Peterson I first read this book a few months after I became a senior pastor, and I have to say that it did more to shape my view of pastoring than any other book I have ever read. Drawing from 30 years of experience as the pastor of a small 300 member church in Maryland, Peterson shares the tough times and the good times, the happy times and the not-so-happy times. And in doing so he lays out an amazing pastoral model built on empowering the people to be the people of God. A model that can, and should be adapted to the modern setting through the use of modern Church Software. Due to technological and software advance...
Happy Theophany/Epiphany!

Happy Theophany/Epiphany!

The 12 Days of Christmas are over and a new season of liturgy has begun. To mark this shift, Eastern Orthodox brothers and sisters celebrate the feast of Theophany in remembrance of when Jesus as baptized by John the Forerunner. The name Theophany means the “appearance of God” as it was at that baptism that the Trinity appeared clearly to humanity for the first time. God the Father spoke from the heavens while the incarnated God the Son physical stood in the Jordan river with the God the Spirit descending upon him. Among our Roman Catholic and liturgical Protestant family, today is celebration of Epiphany. That is, the day when the magi visited Jesus in Bethlehem, most likely when he was one years of age. The feast’s name, epiphany, means “manifestation” or “revelation” as the magi represented all the non-Jewish people of the world (i.e. the Gentiles) who received the revelation that God had taken on the likeness of humanity to rescue us from darkness. Both feasts have been celebrated by Jesus followers since the fourth century, if not earlier. So, if you are able, lift up a cup and shout: “Hallelujah! For our Lord God Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Revelation...