One of the things often overlooked in many people’s understanding of Scripture is the difference between Christ and Jesus. Christ is not Jesus’ last name, as if His name could’ve just as easily been Jesus Smith, or Jesus Johnson. (If we're actually looking for His last name, it was likely ben Yosef.) The word Christ … Continue reading How is Jesus, God with us?
Let us begin with a question: Who is the person, or type of person, that is easiest for you to write off as unimportant...or perhaps dispensable? I cannot remember a cultural climate like the present where people and their perspectives are dismissed so easily. We apply a single label to describe someone which then grants us permission … Continue reading A Different Lens – The “Other”
One of the most significant challenges I face as a pastor and teacher – whether in church or in academic settings – is helping people to learn how to read the Bible through different lenses than those to which they are accustomed and to discuss divinity in often uncomfortable ways. Don’t get me wrong, I … Continue reading A Different Lens
In preparation for Palm Sunday, I shared A Devastating Work of Art for Holy Week. The painting I focused on is the central panel of the Isenheim Altarpiece, painted by Matthias Grunewald in France, in the year 1515. Grunewald was commissioned to depict Jesus in a way that was uniquely relatable to the patients of Isenheim, … Continue reading A Restorative Work of Art for Easter
The unexpected always seems to happen when you least expect it. Deep, huh? There I was, slogging (and whining) through my civic duty, when I met a new friend who just happened to be a curator for my favorite museum in Tulsa. I was fortunate to not only make a new art acquaintance, but also one … Continue reading A Devastating Work of Art for Holy Week
The word Advent means “arrival.” For centuries, Christians have used the weeks before the celebration of Christmas to prepare and anticipate the arrival of the Messiah, the Anointed One. When Jesus was born in Bethlehem, the Anointed One arrived. Advent is also a season to remember Jesus’ promise that He is coming back again. Christians most likely … Continue reading The Art of Advent
One of my favorite artists is the Belgian surrealist René Magritte. While many of his paintings are way too risque, his perspectives often challenge my thinking about reality. The painting below, Son of Man, is an interesting take on how sin and selfishness obscure our view of the real world God has for us. I … Continue reading What is Sin?