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EssayFeatured

A Sacramental Moment in Hebrew Class

I was deeply moved by this simple gesture. The students and Amanda thought nothing of it. They did it naturally, instinctively. I realized that we were learning much more than the meaning of the Hebrew verbs, a’lu and ridu; we were learning to be attentive to one another and to share in each other’s learning. It was a sacramental moment, a foreshadowing of the community that Jesus has called us to be, a community in which the barriers dividing people…
October 17, 2022
Featured

We Are Better Than This

Of all the work involved in interpreting the Bible, this heart-work is the most demanding and the most significant. It is relatively easy to accumulate factual knowledge about the context of the Bible; it is harder for us to understand the context of our own hearts, examine them, and open them to the Spirit’s influence.
July 4, 2022
Featured

The Voice of your Brother’s Blood

Watching and listening to Eitan Haber, I felt the past and the present collapsing into each other. We were reliving the drama of Cain and Abel. Yigal Amir had murdered Yitshak Rabin, his brother in the faith, and Rabin’s blood was crying out to us from the text of Shir L’Shalom. One drama was interpreting the other. Rabin’s blood was crying out for peace and reconciliation, and I began wondering what the blood of Abel might have been crying. What…
April 18, 2022
FeaturedOld Testament

Isaiah and Glorious and Vainglorious Leadership

A corrupt leader is a cancer cell in the body of a people. Corruption begins small, grows exponentially, saps the vital energy, and eventually kills the body. Isaiah saw this in himself when he said: “Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips and I dwell among a people of unclean lips.” God’s self-disclosure is chemotherapy, a consuming fire that burns clean.
February 28, 2022
ChurchFeaturedOld Testament

Whitewashed Images

In the Reformed tradition, worship is an encounter with the living God, who, through the power of the Holy Spirit, speaks to congregants through the preaching of the word and communes with them in the sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Without the location of God in a place or object, without encountering God in word and sacrament, how can a believer’s restless longing for communion with God ever be satisfied?
September 20, 2021
FeaturedOld Testament

Barefoot on Holy Ground

I have spent my life studying the Bible and trying to teach it in such a way that students could experience it as living and active in their lives. That is a high bar that more often than not I failed to clear; I was powerless to implement the deeper learning that I desired for my students. I could not make them love anything, or care for anyone, or open their hearts to the word of God. But I could…
July 26, 2021