The Eye of a Needle (Part Three)

(24 minutes) What Jesus meant by “the Kingdom of God” is often misunderstood by those in and outside the church. By “entering the Kingdom of God,” he did not mean going to heaven when we die. Part of that misunderstanding is based on Matthew’s preference for the phrase “Kingdom of… Continue reading

The Eye of a Needle (Part Two)

(13 minutes) In part one of “The Eye of a Needle,” we acknowledged the addictive danger of wealth in Jesus’ teachings. We also recognized that his warning about the love and pursuit of money can be found in several parables and various teachings. He even saw wealth as the chief… Continue reading

The Eye of a Needle (Part One)

(11 minutes) Jesus said, “How hard for those possessing wealth to enter the Kingdom of God, for it is easier for a camel to enter through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of God.” And those hearing this said, “Can any… Continue reading

Demons: Part Four

(17 minutes) If we are enslaved by sin, how can we become free? How does God “save” us through the Christ Event (Jesus’ incarnation, life, teachings, deeds, death, resurrection, and ascension). In the previous article, I rejected the dominant theory of atonement in Western Christianity known as Penal Substitutionary Atonement… Continue reading

Demons: Part Three

The article series examines the nature of demonic forces according to Brad Jersak and Brian Zandh, Rene Girard’s mimetic theory, and biblical interpretations of sin. While demonic forces are seen as metaphorical, their destructive impact is real, fostering competition and scapegoating in societies. This entry delves into sin as a form of demonic enslavement, critiqueing the Penal Substitutionary Atonement theory prevalent in Western Christianity. It suggests aligning with Eastern Christianity’s approach of viewing sin as a disease needing healing, rather than a crime for punishment. Continue reading

Demons: Part Two

(10 minutes) Part two of this series looks at the demonic nature of scapegoating in the philosophy of the late Rene Girard. The demonic, understood as a “psycho-spiritual” phenomenon originating within individuals and metastasizing throughout society, is partially explained by Girard’s mimetic theory.  Child psychologist Jean Piaget taught that children… Continue reading

Demons: Part One

(8 minutes) Not long ago, my ten-year-old grandson asked me, “Granddad, do you believe in the Devil and demons?” Apparently, he had heard some talk from his friends about the presence and danger of the satanic in this world. His question reminded me of a comment by the nine-year-old son… Continue reading

The Greatest Threat to American Christianity

(8 minutes) Many followers of Jesus Christ are deeply disturbed by the threats to our democracy and any Christian faith resembling the Jesus of the Gospels. Such threats come from “Christian Nationalism,” racism, misogyny, homophobia, xenophobia, and the continual ravages of an economic system which is based on greed and… Continue reading

Cotton Patch Gospel for Today

(31 minutes) I was invited to deliver the sermon at Downey Avenue Christian Church on July 30, 2023. It is based on the vision and ministry of Clarence Jordan, who in 1942 led in establishing Koinonia Farm, christened with a Greek word meaning “a community that is united by common… Continue reading