Lenten Reflection: Luke 4:5-8

February 27, 2013

The Slanderer (Diabolos) knows his target well. He has some understanding of the mission to which Jesus has been called. He knows why Jesus is here. The key terms are kingdoms, authority and glory. The Slanderer offers Jesus what he seeks; he offers Jesus a similar vision but a different mission. The price? A new […]

Lenten Reflection: Luke 4:3-4

February 26, 2013

God tests Jesus in the wilderness and Satan tempts him to satisfy his desires by inappropriate means. One need is hunger. It would seem that satisfying hunger should not be characterized as inappropriate. Food is a created good to be enjoyed. The Slanderer (Diabolos) suggests that Jesus should create his own food. If he really […]

Lenten Reflection: Luke 4:1-2

February 22, 2013

Only Luke says that Jesus “returned” to the wilderness. Returned? That is something about which I would like to know more. Perhaps Jesus went into the wilderness to contemplate his future, to reflect on his decision to be baptized, or to decide whether to embrace the mission into which God had called him. The wilderness, […]

Lenten Reflection: Luke 3:21-22

February 21, 2013

In obedience to the Father, Jesus went down into the water to pray. Jesus followed sinners into the water as they repented and confessed their sins. Jesus identified with sinners by sharing this water ritual with them. He underwent a ritual designed for sinners! In response the Father anointed the Messiah with the Holy Spirit, […]

Luke 13:10-17 — Who are we most like in this story?

January 28, 2013

At least two theological themes emerge from this pericope. On the one hand, the kingdom of God breaks into the life of a woman who had been bound by her disability for eighteen years. She is healed and experiences redemption. On the other hand, opposition to the kingdom of God arises in response to her […]

The Baptism of Jesus–Fuller Picture

September 8, 2009

[For those interested, a video of my 2007 sermon on the baptism of Jesus at Sycamore View Church of Christ in Memphis, TN, is available here (October 21, 2007) and my 9/6/09 sermon on the baptism of Jesus at Woodmont Hills Family of God will be available here soon.] Luke’s description of the baptism of […]

The Baptism of Jesus: Our Apprentice in Discipleship

September 4, 2009

The baptism of Jesus is the first Christian baptism. Jesus identifies with sinners as he undergoes a ritual designed for sinners. He publicly declares his faith in God and joins the story of God’s people in the anticipation of restoration. He anticipates and foreshadows his own death and resurrection in a ritual through which future believers […]

Fearless and Free during Economic Storms IV

May 20, 2009

Note: This is the second of six small group studies that are coordinated with a sermon series by Dean Barham, the preaching minister at the Woodmont Family of God. Eventually, his sermons will be available here. The first small group study lesson is here. John Mark presented the oral lesson on this topic, “Living in Community,” Woodmont Hills […]

Fearless and Free During Economic Storms III

May 14, 2009

Note: This is the second of six small group studies that are coordinated with a sermon series by Dean Barham, the preaching minister at the Woodmont Family of God. Eventually, his sermons will be available here. The first small group study lesson is here and the full series is available on my Serial page. Let Go, […]

The Mother Of Jesus Praises The Lord

May 7, 2009

The Magnificat “My Soul Magnifies the Lord” Luke 1:46-55 This song has been used by the church, almost daily, since the late fourth century. It has been sung, prayed and preached for centuries. In the text of Luke, it is one of three songs. The other two are by Elizabeth (1:42-45) and Zechariah (1:68-79). Mary’s […]