Yearly Archives: 2019

43 posts

Why “It is better to go to the house of mourning.”

This quote comes from Ecclesiastes which I have been working with (as I strive to finish my book by the August 1 deadline!). For the first time I noticed the rest of the verse. It is better to go to the house of mourningthan to go to the house of feasting;for this is the end of everyone,and the living will lay it to heart. Ecclesiastes: 7:2  “For this is the end of everyone and the […]

“Declare what God has done for you.”

Audio is available at The Episcopal Church of the Good Shepherd site. Proper 7 (12) (June 23, 2019) 1 Kings 19:1-4, (5-7), 8-15a Psalm 42 and 43 Galatians 3:23-29 Luke 8:26-39 19:11 [God] said [to Elijah], “Go out and stand on the mountain before the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.” Now there was a great wind, so strong that it was splitting mountains and breaking rocks in pieces before the LORD, […]

Pentecost – A Holy Fire

Pentecost – Whitsunday 2019 Good Shepherd, LEXYear CRCLAudio @GoodShepherdLEX Acts 2:1-21 Psalm 104:24-35, 37 Romans 8:14-17 John 14:8-17, (25-27) “Suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, […]

Billy Graham Warned Us: “The hard right has no interest In rellglon except to manipulate It.”

Billy Graham was a great man, by any estimation. It is often assumed that he was very conservative politically and his son Franklin certainly takes that position. But in many things in life Franklin has not listened to his father. As Franklin calls for his followers to align themselves with the political agenda of the President, many are sharing a “meme” with the above quote from his father Billy. As Abraham Lincoln once famously said, […]

W. H. Auden, the Psalms, and the Book of Common Prayer Revisions

I have recently been invited to serve on our local Liturgical Commission and be allowed into a lovely Facebook group dealing with Prayer Book Revision. I had always been a bit mystified by the translation of the Psalms in the Book of Common Prayer (BCP), a state fostered by the fact that the BCP itself offers no explanation of the current version’s origins. I knew it was based upon the Coverdale version (the 1928 BCP […]

The Color Green

Green is not life It is not verdant, growth, eternal It is not a leaf or a clover It is nothing but Green is a color, a slice of spectrum Green is not those other things It is color, frequency, not even universal Some see gray, some see nothing at all Still they know life, growth, eternal Green is just a color Green is a memory Blue is bluer with green It is promise, hope, […]

How to Read Ancient Texts

I am reading the proofs of my contribution to The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries. The following quotes from Daniel Boyarin are true not only for dealing with what the Talmud has to say about Jesus but for any time we are engaging ancient texts. The effort must be made to read the texts in their own context and resist the temptation to ask of the texts the questions we have, but […]

Why “Shepherd”?

This past Sunday was “Good Shepherd Sunday,” so-called because of the reading from John 10. The entire chapter is full of sheep and shepherd imagery and, for many of us, it is a reminder of how far away from that agrarian experience we are. A colleague on Facebook asked, “So what’s a good 21st C equivalent of a Good Shepherd? Good Librarian? Good Trash Collector? Good Barista?” I think it is an excellent question, a […]

SBL Bible Odyssey & Cruise!

Many who read this blog are members of the Society of Biblical Literature or familiar with it, but many are not aware of the NEH-supported project “Bible Odyssey.” BO was developed to help address the fact that while the Bible has tremendous impact on history, literature, popular culture, and politics, it is more often than not misunderstood, misrepresented, and misused. It was to address such concerns that the Society of Biblical Literature launched the website […]