Essays

In the Beginning Was the Talk

Can a Reformed denomination interpret Scripture collectively to discern God’s will? A Reformed denomination such as the Reformed Church in America is fundamentally a network of churches holding each other accountable according to a shared interpretation of Scripture. We allow…
Essays

Siding with an Oppressor

If we must refer to Advent, then let us hear the Palestinian cry for deliverance from bondage. Both ideologically and municipally, Israel considers Jerusalem to encompass greater Jerusalem, which includes West Jerusalem, East Jerusalem (the Palestinian side, illegally annexed by…
Essays

Of Aliens and Embassies

American visitors to the Holy Land often “run where Jesus walked,” a Palestinian friend from Bethlehem likes to say. One need only watch the crush of tourists pouring out of buses at the Church of the Nativity to observe the…
Essays

Distance

1,284.5 miles: The distance from my front door to Charlottesville, Virginia. In the second weekend of August, I woke to the sound of a crop-duster plane zooming over our family’s tent in the middle of a Minnesota state park about…
Essays

Canada Geese and Gerasene Swine

I saw them across the water in the early morning, on our lake in Ontario, just beyond Paquin’s Point: a band of geese, maybe half a dozen. What I actually saw, just barely in the low-angled light, was a passing…