Exhortation, Fifth Sunday after Epiphany

In the gospel of John, Jesus says that the Father bears witness by giving Jesus works to do (5:36). The Father also bears witness through declaring Jesus His Son at Jesus’ baptism. Finally, the Father bears witness of Jesus by raising Him from the dead. If you saw Jesus perform a miracle, you . . . . Continue Reading »

The Faith of Jesus

Did Jesus exercise faith? Yes. That is inexplicably controversial today. Among many other indications that Jesus exercised surpassing faith, the account of Jesus’ temptation in the wilderness stands out. Eat bread, Satan says. Man lives by the Word of God, not by bread alone, Jesus answers, . . . . Continue Reading »

Democratized sociology

Sociologists have known for a long time about the social constraints on knowledge, ethics, beliefs. It’s the sociologist’s stock in trade. What we have witnessed in the past couple of decades is the democratization of sociology. Now everyone’s a sociologist, and even, unlike some . . . . Continue Reading »

Three into the one

Brown makes the interesting observation that the phrase at the end of 1 John 5:8 is not “the three are one” but “the three are into one” (Greek, eis to hen ). Spirit, water, and blood are not quite a united witness but three witnesses tending toward one end, one conclusion. . . . . Continue Reading »

Outpoured Spirit

Raymond Brown helpfully observes, “For the Christian the life-giving moment of the Spirit was not simply the descent of the Spirit upon Jesus in the form of a dove, but the Spirit flowing from within Jesus after his death. And the flowing blood, the sign of the sacrificial victim, showed that . . . . Continue Reading »

New Creation

Spirit and water are the agents of the first creation. Jesus doesn’t come that way. He doesn’t come by water only. Neither did renewal under the law. Cleansing came by water baths and also by shedding and distributing blood. Neither does the church. It doesn’t grow by water only, . . . . Continue Reading »

Three witnesses

John appeals to three witnesses in 1 John 5:6-8: Spirit, water, blood. These are all witnesses at the Exodus - the Spirit-cloud that leads Israel through the wilderness, the water of the sea, the blood of Passover. Among other things, these three witnesses testify that Jesus is the greater Moses, . . . . Continue Reading »

World, Nature, Physis

An addendum to an earlier post on Rosenstock-Huessy’s essay, “The Metabolism of Science.” Though he sees world, nature, and physis as identical in some ways, he also distinguishes them. We have different experiences of the external world, and there are summarized in the . . . . Continue Reading »