Jonah and the Surprising Grace of God

Jonah is a parable-like story referenced by Jesus to dramatically illustrate the Gospel. You can read this “minor prophet” in 10 minutes, but it challenges us to do the hard work of living the Good News everyday with everyone we meet, especially those (who perhaps like ourselves) seem unlikely to respond to the gift of grace. […]

The Bible in a Word – an essay on ‘Flourishing’

Yesterday, on the final day of my Biblical Thought class for the semester, I read this brief essay and then gave it to them along with suggestions for further study. I said,  “Here’s another way to describe what I long for all of you and myself as we’ve explored the drama of Scripture. It centers around the […]

God’s Grace: ‘Free, but not Cheap!’

The Return of the Prodigal Son was the last completed work of Rembrandt. The famous painter had always utilized biblical scenes, but after the death of his wife, his life took a serious and seeking turn. He began to focus on the central themes of Gospel, especially the cross. He painted characters with humanity and […]

If Jesus Came to Our Home

Our vision at Christ Church begins: “We will be a diverse community that lives the Good News of Jesus Christ for the flourishing of all people…” A right view of diversity comes from the very heart of God. Neil Botts, our Executive Pastor, preached a wonderfully challenging sermon from Luke 5, linked here. A summary and […]

If Jesus Came to Church

One thing is certain. Jesus’s Vision was crystal clear! It was embedded in the amazing prophecy of Isaiah (chpt 61 and 58) that Jesus read in his hometown synagogue in Nazareth. This sermon explores what is behind the vision and its implications for us today. (Due to a technical difficulty, this is a ‘studio’ recording, not the original.) “The […]

Is Jesus Vision really OUR vision?

Beginning at Advent, we are preaching through the Gospel of Luke this year at Christ Church. We are taking the first 3 weeks of the new year to explore the beginning of Jesus’ public ministry recorded in Luke, chapters 3-5. We’re asking the challenging question, “Is Jesus’ vision OUR vision?” Listen to the first sermon, […]

Mary’s Magnificat: Soundtrack for a Revolution

The “songs” of Luke’s Gospel are many and amazing. Zachariah, Simeon, the Angels’ Gloria, and of course Mary’s Magnificat! They are sung throughout the year: morning, evening, and late nite by Christians all around the world. In preaching on the Magnificat, I borrowed this title: “Soundtrack for a Revolution” from a documentary on the “Freedom Songs” […]

Living the Good News with Conviction, Civility, & Compassion

How do we engage the culture in which we find ourselves in a Christ-honoring way? This is a crucial and sometimes complex question for Christians everywhere. There are three essential ingredients from the Scriptures that put ‘flesh’ on being ‘salt and light’ in the culture. God calls us to be people of CONVICTION, CIVILITY, and COMPASSION.  The sermon from Oct. 4th is linked here. I’ve […]

Barabbas and the Great Exchange

We begin Holy Week. Sunday’s sermon dealt with a well-known but quickly dismissed character named Barabbas. A deeper kind of exchange takes place beyond the cry of the mob! Listen to the sermon here. Come to any or all of our three nights of the Easter Celebration of the Arts!  Each night opens at 6 with a special […]