Psalm 66

February 16, 2015

Some people enjoy hearing testimonies. Others do not. As for the latter, their reasons vary.  Some testimonies appear superficial or lack discernment. Some believe testimonies are too subjective and individualistic. Some regard testimonies as private, a matter of personal interpretation rather than public proclamation. People should keep “testimonies,” according to some, to themselves, and they […]


The Closing Psalm (Psalm 150)

February 2, 2015

At some point Psalm 145:21 may have been the final doxology of Psalms. It makes a similar point to Psalm 150:6. Psalm 145:21 appears as the concluding doxology of Book V in the Psalter.  Books I-IV conclude with independent doxologies attached to the final psalms in those books. It is natural that Book V would […]


Job 9-10: Dissing Bildad, Confronting God

September 17, 2011

Who can contend with God?  No one, Job answers (9:3). But the problem is that God is contending with (prosecuting) Job (10:2). His response to Bildad is not direct. As I read him, he basically replies to Bildad’s first question.  It is enough to set Job on fire–”How long will you say such things? Your words […]


The Egyptian Hallel and the Lord’s Supper (Psalm 113-118)

March 14, 2010

The New Testament offers little liturgical help for conducting the Lord’s Supper. This is especially true regarding hymnology. No account of the Lord’s Supper, except the Last Supper itself, connects music and the Supper (Matthew 26:30). Other than the fact that the Jerusalem community praised God as they ate—and presumably this included songs as well […]


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 […]


Forgiving God: Processing the Movements of the Soul

December 9, 2008

Forgiving God is a controversial topic among many believers, especially Christians. Jewish believers, however, have a long history of talking about “forgiving God,” and it is present in the classic story of Job as my last post suggested. In the aftermath of the Holocaust, for example, one of the most significant questions in Jewish theology […]


Forgiving God: From Praise to Bitterness to Comfort

December 7, 2008

To forgive God is, for many–if not most, a necessary bridge to praising him.  But it is a difficult idea to grab hold of–how does one forgive God? What does that mean? And, indeed, it sounds blasphemous….as if God has done something wrong that needs forgiveness.  And who are we to forgive God anyway? We are […]


Stone-Campbell Theology — The Doctrine of God

May 12, 2008

As part of a pre-conference gathering entitled “Theology in the Service of the Church” in conjunction with the 1996 Christian Scholars Conference in Nashville, Tennessee, I presented a paper entitled “The Doctrine of God.”  The presentations at this pre-conference were published in Leaven 8.3 (2000). Some of these themes (providence, pneumatology, etc.) are pursued in my Kingdom […]


Additional Resources for Psalm Study

April 28, 2008

I tend to think of the Psalms in the broad category of “calling upon God”–they are situated responses to God’s own call toward us in creation and redemption. In dialogue believers call upon the creator and redeemer God in profession, prayer and praise; they respond to God’s divine acts in the world in confession, lament and thanksgiving […]


Psalm Lines That Comfort Me

April 25, 2008

As I mentioned in my previous post, I have spent the last week in a setting that helped me to relive, move through and more deeply heal some of the trauma of my life. The deaths of Sheila, Joshua and my marriage have left me with some deep scars. Only within the past eighteen months […]