Sermon notes

INTRODUCTION Jesus is the “son of David” (Matthew 1:1), and therefore “King of the Jews” (2:2). Inevitably, His advent provokes fear and rage from other pretenders to the throne, like Herod. THE TEXT “Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod . . . . Continue Reading »

Democratized celebrity?

With YouTube, American Idol , blogs, and a host of other new outlets for “talent,” it appears that celebrity is being democratized. Appearances are deceiving, according to a new book by Jake Halpern, Fame Junkies . Halpern points out that, though American Idol and similar shows make new . . . . Continue Reading »

Eucharistic meditation

John 16:7: I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper shall not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. We’ve seen in the sermon that the ascension means that Jesus is truly absent from us. He has been glorified and exalted into . . . . Continue Reading »

Exhortation, Sunday before Ascension

Revelation 12 is a symbolic vision of Jesus’ ascension, which we celebrate this Thursday, the fortieth day after Easter. In that vision, John sees a woman clothed with the sun and wearing a crown of stars, who gives birth to a child. At that same moment, a dragon appears and attacks the . . . . Continue Reading »

Wilson debate

Doug Wilson is carrying on a debate with polymath and militant atheist Christopher Hitchens at the Christianity Today web site, here: . . . . Continue Reading »

The meaning of “Literature”

Michael Hattaway writes, in an introduction to Early Modern English literature (Blackwell, 2005), “A primary difference between Renaissance and modern concepts of writing involves meanings for ‘literature’ and for ‘fiction.’ As surviving library catalogues reveal, . . . . Continue Reading »

Anointed with clay

It’s significant that Jesus is said to “anoint” the blind man’s eyes with the clay-and-spittle (John 9:11). We wouldn’t normally think of clay as a promising material to “anoint” someone with, but this is the way that the man describes Jesus’ action. . . . . Continue Reading »

Let there be light

In John 9, Jesus makes an allusion to the creation story when He explains to His disciples the reasons for the blind man’s blindness. The man is not blind because of his own sin, or his parents’ sins, but instead so that the work of God might be displayed in Him. Jesus describes this . . . . Continue Reading »

Rites Controversy

During the seventeenth century, the church grew rapidly in China. According to Chan Kei Thong, “In 1640, three decades after [Matteo] Ricci died, there were 60,000 to 70,000 Catholic converts; by 1651, their numbers had more than doubled to 150,000. By 1664, the figure had ballooned to at . . . . Continue Reading »