Eschatology and Apocalyptic in Understanding Paul

Eschatology and Apocalyptic in Understanding Paul

I’m embedding this interview with Dr. Herold Weiss, author of Meditations on the Letters of Paul, as it provides some background for understanding some of the discussion of the terminology that I’m doing right now in working through Paul. I find it very helpful in clarifying the issues.

Perspectives on Paul: Some Comparisons between Galatians and Romans

Perspectives on Paul: Some Comparisons between Galatians and Romans

This will continue the discussion, dealing more with definitions. In the area of soteriology (the study of salvation) we frequently make the same statements in terms of words and structure, yet mean something quite different by it. “Jesus died on the cross to save us from our sins” means quite different things, depending on who is saying it.

Link: James and Programmatic Skepticism

Link: James and Programmatic Skepticism

With a tip of my hat to James McGrath, I would like to call attention to this post┬áby Jonathan Bernier. I think it brings up some rather important points. This is not an answer to your questions, but rather a bit of guidance in how one answers questions accurately. To quote: The critical historian is one who formulates a question, attends to the data relevant to answering that question, weighs possible answers, and then affirms that answer which handles the…

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When I Dream of Christian Unity

When I Dream of Christian Unity

Everybody, well almost, says they want Christian unity. It’s one of those Sunday School answers. It’s like saying, “Everybody who loves Jesus raise your hand” in a Sunday School class. But when you raise your hand for Christian unity, what do you mean? What is your vision? I’ve been thinking of this as I hear various people talk, and asking myself what I would hope for. We can easily be just as disunited about unity as we are about anything…

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High View of the Sacraments or Not?

High View of the Sacraments or Not?

I want to briefly reflect on the sacraments. This is not so much a general theological reflection as a personal comment, expressing my own position on this. As I said a couple of days ago┬áregarding hearing the voice of God, in a spiritual movement there is much listening, much hearing, and much creativity. Structure comes in to resolve this chaos into a tighter community, but structure also often works to kill it. Thus we have a closed canon. None of…

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Perfection and Maturity in Hebrews 6:1

Perfection and Maturity in Hebrews 6:1

Perfectionism is an interesting trait, and can be quite destructive. United Methodist pastors are still asked whether they are going on toward perfection, though I have found few who expressed great comfort with the required “yes” answer, and not a few who had their fingers crossed. The line comes from Hebrews 6:1, and the more I study Hebrews, the less I see this in terms of attaining a moral standard. John Wesley himself made it clear that “Christian perfection” would…

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A Note on Modern Prophecy and Prophets

A Note on Modern Prophecy and Prophets

I was given the title “liberal charismatic” (not as a compliment) because I believe that all the gifts of the Holy Spirit are potentially in operation today and that God speaks to people now as much as he has at any time in history. On occasion, this makes for trouble, as people expect me to accept a variety of professed prophets as somehow authoritative due to the office they claim or that is claimed for them. In other word I…

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Identifying Hatefulness

Identifying Hatefulness

There are many people concerned about hatefulness right now, and one might think that this concern came largely from opponents of the president-elect. I’ve found, however, that the concern comes from all sides. (“Both sides” is a very dangerous concept in a complex world.) Let me suggest a simple test. When you find a blog post, Facebook status, Tweet or something else in the form “Did you know that (derogatory term here) (name of person) did (disgusting thing) and is…

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