The Wrath of God

Wrath is not as cut and dry a concept as many of us have been taught. We see in the Hebrew Scriptures the priority and abiding nature of God’s loving kindness over God’s limited wrath. As Jesus teaches in Luke 15, God seeks the lost sheep and the lost coin until She finds them. And if we continue our rejection of love, goodness, and shalom, God gives us a free rein to continue our folly. But we see in Paul that even when God gives us over to our sin and consigns us to disobedience, Her mysterious plan finds a way to have mercy on each of us. Continue reading

Matthew 7: 1-5; Luke 6: 37-38 “Compassionate Judging”

Read the Scripture Perhaps no verse has been quoted by those outside the church to those inside the church more than our passage today: “Judge not lest you be judged.” Do Jesus’ words mean that we are never to make judgements in this life? Do we have no right or… Continue reading

Shalom: Part Three

(19 minutes) The third dimension of shalom can be seen in the following definition (I do not know who first offered this definition, but I have seen it in several publications without reference to authorship): “Shalom is a state of being where nothing is broken and no one is missing.”… Continue reading

Heaven or Hell? (Part Three)

For every passage one may quote confirming the finality of hell for non-believers, I can quote another passage which presents a more compassionate option. In the final analysis, we must decide which is stronger—our human, puny capacity to subvert the will of God for our salvation or God’s infinite grace. Continue reading

Psalm 109: A Problematic Prayer

(Based on the exegesis of Walter Brueggemann in Tenacious Solidarity: Biblical Provocations on Race, Religion, Climate, and the Economy, pp. 369-373) Read Psalm 109 For a few moments I want you to think back on your life to those times when you have been wronged, mistreated, betrayed, abused, used, hurt,… Continue reading

Some Musings About Karma and Grace

(This short article is intended for five groups: Christians who are prone to limit God’s grace to those who believe exactly as they do; Christians whose predominant images of God are punitive and judgmental in nature; Christians who are confused regarding the nature of grace; non-Christians who mistakenly assume the… Continue reading

Genesis 6:5-9:17 “The First Things” (The Great Flood) Part 14

In a previous sermon [Genesis 1:1-12:3 “The First Things” (Ancient Near Eastern Traditions and Historical Context) Part 2], we looked at the similarities between the flood story in Genesis and the account of a great flood in the Babylonian Gilgamesh Epic—a story which dates many years before Israel ever came… Continue reading