1 Peter 1:6-9 — Joy in the Midst of Suffering

May 31, 2015

“Joy” and “suffering” are not two words that often belong in the same sentence, much less a blog title. Yet, this is exactly the case as Peter digresses from doxology (begun in 1 Peter 1:3) to commentary on his reader’s present circumstances (1 Peter 1:6-9). 1 Peter 1:3-12 is a single sentence in the Greek […]


Five Lectures on the Book of Job: Midwest Preachers’ Retreat (2014)

May 28, 2015

In September 2014, I was honored to present some material on the book of Job to a group of dedicated and devout servants in the church at the Midwest Preachers’ Retreat in Wisconsin.  Here are the audio links to those presentations. 1.  The Text of Job as Dramatic Lament: The Dialogical Structure of the Book […]


When Friends Try to Help….On the Death of My Son

May 21, 2015

May 21 is an anniversary date for me. Joshua died on that day in 2001. Many friends helped. Mark and Margo Black were there, Rubel and Myra Shelly were there, Mike Cope was there a few days before as well as John York, and we were surrounded by many others (including my Woodmont Hills Bible […]


The Empathetic God

December 27, 2014

God became flesh. God became human. Incarnation is the act through which the Creator experiences the creation as a creature. This is both the uniqueness and mystery of the Christian faith. The one who was with God in the beginning and was God from the beginning became human. The same one through whom the cosmos […]


Job 12-14 — “You’re Kidding, Right?”

September 15, 2014

Perhaps a good word to describe Job’s reaction is….incredulous. Did Zophar just say what he did? “Did I hear him right?” Job might have thought. Job cannot convince his own friends that the tables have been turned on him. While once he “called upon God and he answered” and “though righteous and blameless [integrity],” now […]


Yet Will I Trust Him: Trusting God in the Storms of Life

April 19, 2014

The College Hills Church of Christ in Lebanon, TN, invited me to teach a class on “Yet Will I Trust Him: Trusting God in the Storms of Life” throughout January and February 2014.  It was a good experience for me, though whether it was for everyone else is something I cannot judge. I am grateful […]


A Lament Homily

October 7, 2013

Last week Lipscomb grieved through a student’s death on campus. The University responded wonderfully and in every way. I was asked to speak in chapel last Tuesday. Here is the link if you wish to hear it. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMc39Go6d7Q


Micah 2 – Confronting Economic Greed and Injustice

October 3, 2013

While the first half of Micah’s first oracle assured Judah that God was serious in treating them much like he did their northern neighbor Israel. Yahweh, Micah warned Judah, is about to appear at the gates of Jerusalem with the Assyrian army after they devastate the cities of southwestern Judah. In response to the message, […]


Remembering Joshua: Life is Hebel

May 21, 2013

Hebel That is an important word for the writer of Ecclesiastes. It is a word that comes to mind on May 21 every year since 2001.  That was the day Joshua died. It was also the day John Robert died in 2008. Indeed, it is a day on which many people have died. Hebel You may […]


On Forgiving God

May 18, 2013

[My book Meeting God at the Shack, from which some of the following is derived, is now available on Kindle.] May 21-22 are significant anniversaries for me; I’ve learned to forgive God.  They are the death of my son Joshua and the anniversary of my first marriage to Sheila. “To forgive God” is a difficult expression and it […]