Theodrama: Act I, Scene 2: God Creates a Good, but not Perfect, World

October 20, 2015

The earth was a chaotic void, and darkness covered the face of the deep, while the Spirit of God hovered over the face the waters. Then God saw everything made, and, Wow!, it was really good. Genesis 1:2, 31a (my translation) The title is a rather controversial one in the history of Christian theology. Many […]


Psalm 104

February 18, 2015

Psalm 104 is one of the great creation praise hymns of Israel. As worship, it blesses God as both creator and provider. As theology, it identifies creation in theocentric rather than anthropocentric ways. God is not only sovereign over the creation but is immanent within it. The creation is more about God than it is […]


Joel 2:1-11 — Eden Despoiled

April 9, 2014

The “day of Yahweh,” or the “day of the Lord,” reverses creation. Through creation God subdued the chaos and gave it boundaries, but divine judgment releases chaos. The “day of Yahweh” uncreates. Eden is despoiled. Or, more specifically in the context of Joel, Israel is threatened with the prospect that the land flowing with milk […]


Revelation 4 — Bowing Before the Throne

July 7, 2013

Revelation 4-16 gives us eyes to see the conflict between the kingdom of God and world powers with the eyes of God. We see the conflict between the kingdom of God and the kingdoms of this earth from a heavenly perspective; we see it from the throne room of God. John, “in the Spirit,” is […]


Mark 6:45-56 — Divine Presence

December 18, 2011

The Galilean hills were evangelized through heralding and enacting the kingdom. 5,000 males were fed with five loaves and two fish actualizing table fellowship within the kingdom. And now, apparently, the healded and fed expected something more. Perhaps they intended to crown Jesus king (cf. John 6:14-15) and inaugurate a rebellion against Roman authority. “Immediately,” signaling the critical nature […]


Mark 4:35-41 – “Who is this?”

November 8, 2011

Mark’s action-oriented story paused for a few kingdom parables. Those parables painted a dramatic picture of the kingdom of God. They offer some perspective on the ministry of Jesus. The kingdom ministry of Jesus is sowing seed of the kingdom for an assured future harvest. As Mark returns to the dramatic acts of Jesus and […]


Six Theses on Creation: A Theology for Heralding the Coming Kingdom of God

October 25, 2011

This week I am participating in a wonderful conference on preaching the paradigmatic texts of Scripture. The focus of this particular conference is creation.  Walter Brueggemann is the featured speaker and his presentation last night on Psalm 104 was excellent. Other speakers include Ken Durham, John York, David Fleer and Rhonda Lowry. Everyone has done […]


Job 40-41 — Yahweh’s Second Speech

October 12, 2011

Why a second speech? One might think that one speech from Yahweh would be enough. Perhaps it is a literary device.  The two speeches may reflect the two council scenes in the Prologue–a “prologue” (1:1-5) heads the two council scenes and an “epilogue” (42:7ff)  follows the two Yahweh speeches. That may be true, but it […]


Reverse the Curse II — The Beginning

August 19, 2008

“God saw all that he had made and it was very good” (Genesis 1:31a). “….Cursed are you above all the livestock….Cursed is the ground…” (Genesis 3:14a, 17b). God created order, life and light out of a chaotic, inanimate and dark earth.  By divine act, life emerged from nothingness, light appeared in the darkness, and order […]