Monthly Archives: March 2011

Pastoral Meditation

There is a sort of blindness that is all encompassing. It is vast and comprehensive. The Bible is full of such blindness. The Pharisees in John 9 embraced that form of darkness. Their vision lacked focus. Instead of seeing the … Continue reading

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Lenten Quote, Day 20

We don’t mark Advent and Christmas and Epiphany, Lent and Good Friday and Easter and Pentecost out of nostalgia. We mark these days in protest against the rationalisms and simplifications of modern time. We mark these seasons to declare the … Continue reading

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Sin as the Poisonous Snake; or, Jesus as our Substitute

Precisely out of his fathomless love the creator God sent his own Son not simply to share in the mess and muddle of our human existence, but to take upon himself the task of being the place where God would … Continue reading

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Saliva and Creation

Concerning John’s account of the healing of the blind man in John 9, my good friend Phil Walters observes that the “saliva is also from the tongue/mouth of God… words come from the mouth/tongue; the world was created by the … Continue reading

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Lenten Prayer

Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not … Continue reading

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The World as Doxology

John 9 is a perfect example of how God receives glory even in suffering. The disciples attempted to simplify the theology of sin, but Jesus broadens it. Even in suffering (blindness), God’s works are manifested and His glory shown.

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Clinging to the greater Joshua in baptism…

Peter Leithart observes brilliantly that the blind man in John 9 passes through the waters and gets attached to Jesus, Joshua.  In contrast, he writes: His parents are afraid of being kicked out of the old world, the world on … Continue reading

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Lectionary Connection

The Missouri Synod Lectionary Readings for this Sunday connect the Isaiah 42 with the narrative in John 9. Isaiah makes messianic-like prophecies that One would come to lead the blind and literally take them from darkness into light. Jesus is … Continue reading

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Lenten Quote, Day 19

Stretching out Thy divine hands upon the Cross, Thou hast joined together that which before was divided, and by Thy mediation Thou hast offered as a gift to the Father the nature of mortal man, that was under condemnation. Therefore … Continue reading

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A Point on the use of “sacramental” and “worldview”

A friend urged caution on the repetitive use of terms like “worldview” and “sacramental.” I concur that there is certainly an overuse of these terms. But is it possible that these words are still not familiar enough? In theo-speak circles … Continue reading

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Yann Tiersen’s La Chute

This beautiful piece serves as a kind of background to Genesis three. La Chute means “the fall.” I am not sure if there is any connection here with Albert Camus’ philosophical novel La Chute. Nevertheless, it is a masterpiece.

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How much music is in your home?

The Spirit is the music of the Trinity. It is the breath that gives melody to the Word of the Father. To ask the question “how spiritual are you?” implies “how often do you sing?” is your home filled with … Continue reading

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I am not quite sure of Ridderbos’ sacramental theology, yet in his commentary on John he remarks that the early church viewed John 9 as highly sacramental. He writes that the narrative of the blind man in the Pool of … Continue reading

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Every Baptism is Infant Baptism

Peter Leithart observes: The man born blind in John 9 is reborn by clay, spittle, and a bath in Siloam. He is so transformed that people don’t know if he’s the same man (v. 9). At this point, he barely … Continue reading

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Living Publicly

Ed Welch offers a beautiful vision of living publicly. He focuses mainly on addiction as a hindrance to living publicly. Welch observes: If there is one ecumenical feature of most theologies it is this: God sees and hears. He is … Continue reading

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John’s narrative in chapter nine is a clear case of oversimplification. The disciples asked a question about the correspondence between sin and suffering. Their answer was partially correct, but they failed to see the complexity of the issue; to put … Continue reading

Posted in John, Theological Thoughts | 3 Comments

Dignified Death?

David Mills at First Things offers powerful and sobering thoughts on what the death of his father taught him. He writes: “Death with dignity” seems to offer not only an escape from pain and humiliation but a rational and apparently … Continue reading

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Lenten Quote, Day 18

In the long and difficult effort of spiritual recovery, the Church does not separate the body from the soul. The whole man has fallen away from God; the whole man is to be restored, the whole man is to return. … Continue reading

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Little Children in Worship

I have been reading several parenting books in these last few months. Lately I have been working through Robbie Castleman’s delightful Parenting in the Pew (review to come). On a section dealing with how children belong, she quotes Stanley Hauerwas’s … Continue reading

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100th Goal from the Greatest Goalie Scorer in Soccer History

Rogerio Ceni’s 100th goal. …and one of my favorites in the year 2000 narrated by the inimitable Eder Luiz:

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Lenten Quote, Day 17

We must insist upon the positiveness of the divine life in us. The Christian spirit is a positive and aggressive force in the world. It is not on the defensive. It is not a mere shrinking from evil and abstinence … Continue reading

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Lenten Sermon; John 4:5-15: The Redemption of the Bride

Introduction: In our Gospel Lesson, the Samaritan woman is incorporated into a new community by the love of Christ, the great Bridegroom. Prayer: May the words of my mouth, and the meditations of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight, … Continue reading

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The Passion Week as a Second Creation Week by Kanaan Trotter

Note: I have the fortune of pastoring a congregation of mature young men. Men who love the Scriptures and who are deeply committed to making its beauty known. In this paper–presented at Trinitas Christian School–Mr. Kanaan Trotter provides a creational … Continue reading

Posted in Paper Presentation from my Parishioners, Typology/Symbolism/Biblical Parallels | 2 Comments

Exhortation: Dying in Christ

The Lenten Season causes us to consider that not everything is made right; that relationships are broken; that restoration is difficult. And this is why we live as walking dead. We walk in truth, but we walk knowing that we … Continue reading

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Communion Meditation: Living Water

In this supper, Jesus gives us Himself. He allows us to feed on Him and by feeding on Him by faith we become life to the world.  We become symbols to the world of what it means to die and … Continue reading

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Water Beats Blood

In light of my sermon tomorrow on John 4, I found my dear brother Mike Bull’s comments to be quite appropriate and fitting: The Bible beats blood and water into us over and over again. Blood is death. Water is … Continue reading

Posted in Typology/Symbolism/Biblical Parallels | 1 Comment

Lenten Quote, Day 16

EveryC Continue reading

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Saturday Psalter; Psalm 12, Genevan Psalter

Psalm 12 audio Help, LORD, Your law the godly cease to savor, The faithful fail among the sons of men. Men all speak vanity each to his neighbor, With flattering lips and double hearts they sin. The LORD will judge … Continue reading

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Jesus, the Seventh Husband

John’s account of the Samaritan woman is the scandal of the cross; that Christ would engage and touch the life of someone who is unclean, and not only that, but also clothe her with His husbandry. The woman at the … Continue reading

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Jesus’ Weakness

Concerning Jesus’ weariness in John 4, St. Augustine writes that Jesus “fashioned us by His strength, He sought us by His weakness.” Augustine is saying that Jesus sought us in his weakness, that is to say, in his humanity; in His … Continue reading

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