Monthly Archives: December 2015
(This sermon is indebted to William P. Brown, Sacred Sense (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2015): esp. 113-117 as well as his earlier volume The Seven Pillars of Creation (NY: Oxford, 2010), esp. 33-77).
Most of our time during Advent and Christmas have been spent on the very human birth of Jesus in a stable in Bethlehem in, as Matthew put it, “the days of Herod the King.” Most of our songs and carols of Advent and Christmas (including those we have sung and will sing today) focus on that same reality. We all know that the shepherds are in Luke’s Gospel… Continue reading
On This Sunday, the choir of First Baptist Church presented Joel Raney’s Christmas Musical “A Thrill of Hope.” There was no separate sermon.
The words I read to introduce our first hymn were taken from what is called the Song of Moses in Exodus 15, and are commonly agreed to be some of the oldest poetry in the Bible, and so, arguably, some of the earliest words to express faith in the God of the Bible. Here they are, again, from the pew Bible: “Who is like you O LORD, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in splendour, doing wonders?”
This is, I think, a pretty good translation until we get to the last two words “Doing wonders,”… Continue reading
This is the Sunday we light the second purple candle on the Advent Wreath – the Candle of Peace. Each year as this candle is lit, I think that it’s a good thing that this is the second candle and that it comes after the Candle of Hope because it seems every year that I can remember, that peace is only a hope. Today, we truly live in a world where religious intolerance and hatred is white hot. Indeed, in this country which we say is a country of laws, we suffer violence because it is commonplace to shoot and… Continue reading