Category Archives: Church History

Supplements for the Weary Anxious Heart

I’ve been mulling over some things pertaining to God’s goodness and greatness, His might and mercy, His wisdom and ways.  And my need to be ever steeping in those realities. Apparently, I’m not alone in this. Case in point, the … Continue reading

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A Prayer for the New Year – Adapted from Jonathan Edwards’ Resolutions

Lord God Almighty, I understand that I am unable to do anything without your help, so I ask you to enable me by your grace to fulfill your will. Give me grace to do whatever brings most glory and honor … Continue reading

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2013 Book List – Part Three

Do We Know Jesus?  Daily Insights for the Mind and Soul (Adolf Schlatter) – This was my main source of devotional reading this past year.  Schlatter (1852-1938) was a German theological professor, writer, pastor, and speaker well known in his … Continue reading

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2013 Book List – Part Two

Common Prayer:  A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals (Shane Claiborne, Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove, Enuma Okoro) – My wife and I have been using this in our devotionals together in the mornings.  Not that we actually do that every morning but, when we … Continue reading

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2013 Book List – Part One

As has been the case these last few years, I’ve pulled together a list of the books I’ve read over the last twelve months.  That is, books that were not related to sermon preparations and such.  Perhaps if you got … Continue reading

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Easter Reflections from Days Gone By

There are many traditions surrounding Easter, many of which have to do with bunnies, food, and pastels.  All of which, in itself, is fine and fun.  But there are also words, words of greeting that go back some centuries.  “Christ … Continue reading

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William Wilberforce – A Model of Perservering Endurance

How could we begin to describe a man like William Wilberforce?  Certainly as an English politician and a generous philanthropist.  But most especially, history knows him as a key leader in the 18th and 19th century movement to abolish the … Continue reading

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He Became a Curse for Us

The terrible irony of Good Friday is too often too little felt by us.  We speak and sing in such ways often at Christmas.  There’s something about the beginning of Jesus’ earthly life that stirs our awe.  But I’m not … Continue reading

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The Providence and Prayer of the Irish

This is the entry for today, March 17th, in Common Prayer: Patrick of Ireland (389-461) At the age of sixteen, Patrick was kidnapped from his home by Irish marauders and taken to Ireland, where he was sold as a slave to … Continue reading

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The Gospel and the Farewell Sermon (Part 2)

Jonathan Edwards served the church of Northampton, MA for twenty-three years.  He began in 1726 as the assistant to his grandfather who had been there since 1672.  It ended in 1750 with Edwards being ingloriously dismissed for various reasons – … Continue reading

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The Gospel and the Farewell Sermon (Part 1)

Jonathan Edwards, 48, painting attr. to Joseph Badger To the church in Collossae, Paul wrote, “Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has … Continue reading

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It’s Christmas. Come and stand amazed…

Some beautiful words to hear and heed from a medieval Dutch carol, based on a translation by Klaas Hart (1906-1973)… “Come and stand amazed, you people, See how God is reconciled! See his plans of love accomplished, see his gift, this newborn … Continue reading

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A message to Grinches

First, a disclaimer.  I love the Grinch.  Watching him and Charlie Brown (the original classic version) are on my short list of “must-see-TV” for the Christmas season.  His annoyance with the Hoos (and who can blame him?), the sled ride … Continue reading

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The ministry of listening

This is a quote I had to pass along.  It comes from Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together. “The first service one owes to others in the fellowship consists in listening to them.  Just as love to God begins with listening to His … Continue reading

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Opportunity cost and lost

I was an economics major in college.  Among the (too few) things I remember from those classes is the concept of the “opportunity cost.”  Here’s how investopedia.com defines it: What Does Opportunity Cost Mean? 1. The cost of an alternative that … Continue reading

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How could he say that?

Memorial site at Flossenburg Early morning, April 9, 1945, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was martyred, hanged along with six others at the extermination camp of Flossenberg, Germany.  The camp doctor, who had to witness the executions, remarked as he watched Bonhoeffer kneel and pray … Continue reading

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Church and State – the Basics

Here’s a quote to consider as we head into the elections tomorrow.  This is from Dietrich Bonhoeffer in his “The Church and the Jewish Question”: “There are three possible ways in which the church can act toward the state: In … Continue reading

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Alien righteousness

No, that’s not from Star Trek.  It’s from Martin Luther, speaking to “the righteousness of another, instilled from without.”  What might this look like? Imagine that you need a great deal of money for something important.  However, not only do you not … Continue reading

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Moving Towards Good Friday (Part 3)

In a collection published in 1707 , Isaac Watts gave us his hymn, “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.”  Such is the power and beauty of these words that Charles Wesley is reported to have said that he would have … Continue reading

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Moving Towards Good Friday (Part 2)

O, death, where is your sting?   Let’s pick up where we left off last time with the Heidelberg Catechism in the section exploring the Apostles’ Creed… 40. Q. Why was it necessary for Christ to humble Himself even unto death? … Continue reading

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