Oxford History of Worship

From a quick overview, The Oxford History of Christian Worship (2006), edited by Geoffrey Wainwright and Karen B. Westerfield Tucker, looks to be one of those indispensable reference works. The editors have assembled an international group of contributors, and there are chapters not only on all the . . . . Continue Reading »

France and Assimilation

David Bell has an illuminating article on France in the November 28/December 5 issue of TNR. Contrary to many commentators, he argues, France has a long history of assimilating minorities: “France has been a multiethnic country for a very long time, and, for decades, it did as well as any . . . . Continue Reading »

Jesus’ Genealogy

A few further thoughts on the genealogy of Jesus: 1) Twice in Matthew’s genealogy, “brothers” are mentioned: Judah (1:2) and Jeconiah (1:11). David Garland suggests that this sets up the theme of Jesus’ brothers that runs through the gospel (cf. eg. Matthew 25); like Judah . . . . Continue Reading »

How much does God care?

Gerard O’Collins points out that Arian and modern neo-Arian Christologies have significant implications for our understanding of the extent of God’s favor toward us. According to traditional Christologies, “God so valued us and our historical, space-time world that the Son of God . . . . Continue Reading »

Just Quitting

One day, Henry just quit. He had soldered wires for he didn’t know what in the back room of the Magnavox plant for thirteen years, and enough was enough. His eyes itched, the watery coffee from the machine was bitter, the pinups in the maintenance room never changed, and he had grown to hate . . . . Continue Reading »

Sermon Outline, First Advent

INTRODUCTION When Christians speak of the “holy family,” they normally have in mind Jesus’ “nuclear family,” Joseph and Mary and his siblings. But Matthew begins with Jesus’ larger family, tracing his descent from Abraham and David. THE TEXT “The book of . . . . Continue Reading »

A word for Scotus

Jonathan McIntosh, a student at the University of Dallas, challenges Vanhoozer’s (and Radical Orthodoxy’s) reading of Scotus that I summarized in a previous post, arguing that Scotus does not deny analogy. He has a point. The following discussion of Scotus’ understanding of the . . . . Continue Reading »

History of the Sentence

Ian Robinson’s The Establishment of Modern English Prose in the Reformation and the Enlightenment (Cambridge, 1998) is a fascinating discussion of the history of the sentence and of English punctuation, and, despite its heavy-handed title, is a delight to read. Does the sentence have a . . . . Continue Reading »

Postmodern Theology

Kevin Vanhoozer has done a great service by editing the Cambridge Companion to Postmodern Theology (2003). Though the authors of the various articles differ among themselves, they are all well-informed about postmodern thought and culture and are making an effort to respond from the stance of . . . . Continue Reading »

Images of God

In the Summa theologiae (1.1.9), Thomas argues that “it is more fitting that divine matters should be conveyed under the figure of lowly bodies than of noble bodies.” Rocks are better figures for God than ideal forms. Thomas gives three reasons for this preference: First, if . . . . Continue Reading »