Category Archives: Bible-Theology

Sermon: “I Am the Bread of Life” (John 6:25–71)

This is the audio (49:10, 38.0 MB) of a sermon preached at Center Presbyterian Church (EPC) of Grove City, PA, on September 18, 2022. The main text is John 6:25–71. You can also watch the service on YouTube. Continue reading

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Sermon: “We Are Members of One Another” (Ephesians 4)

This is the audio (37:24, 11.9 MB) of a sermon preached at Klaipėda Free Christian Church, on August 14, 2022. The main text is Ephesians 4. Continue reading

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Does the Old Testament Prescribe a ‘State’?

Genesis 47 is the part of the Joseph story that most people don’t remember, in which Joseph becomes a tyrant… Continue reading

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Sermon: “Those Who Sigh and Groan” (Ezekiel 8-9)

Our passage for today is one that has been rattling around in my head for the last two years, and I’m finally collecting my thoughts to say something about it. It’s kind of like an expose, a bit of “hidden camera footage” that shows what the religious leaders of Israel were doing in secret, in the Jerusalem temple, in its last days before it was destroyed. They thought that they could use their power to do whatever they wanted, and that no one would see—including God. We will see from this passage that God does act to stop those in power from abusing their power in secret. And there is a message for us who don’t always have “inside access”: how are we supposed to react to corruption? And, how can we look to Jesus as an example of how to live faithfully in a sinful world? Continue reading

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New Article in Journal of Media and Religion

I’m pleased to announce the publication of an essay, coauthored with Jon Radwan of Seton Hall University, in the Journal of Media and Religion: “YouTubing Eudaimoniae? Pachamama, Inspiration, and Manipulation in Platonic and Biblical Rhetorics.” Here is the abstract: Rhetorical … Continue reading

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Sermon: Sage Gibson on Mark 5:25-34

This is the audio (30:08, 26.9 MB) of a sermon preached at Klaipėda Free Christian Church, on April 3, 2022, by one of my students, Sage Gibson. The main text is Mark 5:25-34. Sage completed a course on the Book … Continue reading

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Sermon: “I Stretched Out My Hands All Day Long” (Isaiah 65–66)

Have you ever had an experience with a toddler that you knelt down, held out your arms, and waited for the child to run to you to be hugged—and instead the child runs past you to someone else? (This can also happen with dogs!) No one really takes this personally when it happens, because—children are children! But if, let’s say, you’re an uncle or an aunt, and a child ignores you like this, multiple times in a row—maybe you feel a bit hurt. Well, God felt this way with Israel. He didn’t just want them to conform to some rule or standard; he wanted to be close to them. He made himself available to them, he held out his arms all day long to them (65:2) but most ignored him….
In the Gospels, we see that Jesus’s arms were open wide, to those who would answer his call and take hold of him in faith. At the cross, with his arms stretched out all day long, in excruciating pain, he looked out at a rebellious and disobedient people—Jews and Gentiles—and took upon himself the punishment for their sins, the sins of anyone who would repent. Continue reading

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Sermon: “Hide the Fugitives!” (Isaiah 15:8–16:5)

The church is Jesus’s household, his kingdom on earth. We should absolutely be a place of refuge for refugees and those fleeing for their lives—just as the Davidic kings of ancient Judah could be a safe place for Moabites and others from all over the world. Continue reading

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Sermon: “Oh, That You Would Rend the Heavens!” (Isaiah 63:7-64:12)

The prayer in Isaiah 63–64 is a great example because the faithful prophet knows what his people need: they need God to change their hearts, and they need God to be near to them. It is passionate, and thoughtful, and based on God’s promises to his people. It’s also beautiful for us to think about how God answered this prayer: including in ways that his people did not expect. Continue reading

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Seminar: “Images of Healing, Healing Images”

This presentation explores the concept of the “image of God” found in the Hebrew Scriptures, and its value for understanding the task of the healing and caregiving professions. Against the backdrop of other ancient Near Eastern conceptions of cultic images—their fashioning, care and feeding, and function to mediate the deities’ presence—the Bible describes only human beings as adequate images to mediate the presence of YHWH, Israel’s deity, into the world. Treating human beings with care and dignity, and participating in their healing, is an act that allows both patient and caregiver to mediate the presence of God to one another and into the world. Continue reading

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