2 Corinthians 8:1-15 – Grace, Generosity, and Gospel

February 5, 2022

[This is copied from my book Searching for the Pattern, pp. 90-104. Due to a recent bout with COVID-19, I have not had the energy or time to do any original writing on 2 Corinthians 8-9. However, I think the following captures the essence of Paul’s theological interests in this section of the letter. Two […]

Amos 2:6-8 — The Sins of Israel

January 24, 2013

Israel is the climactic end to Amos’s address to the nations. Israel appears last in a list of eight nations. Israel is the focus. Moreover, Israel receives more attention. The rhetoric follows the same form–“Yahweh says” followed by proverbial statement, the reason for punishment, and the consequences–but the content is expanded. While the sins of […]

Malachi 3:6-12 — “I am Yahweh! Trust Me”

August 22, 2012

It is an amazing circumstance. Judah is unfaithful but God remains faithful. The whole story of Israel (“from the days of your fathers”) is a history of failed covenant-keeping.  Time and time again Israel failed to keep the Torah. In other words, the description of Judah’s systemic ethical problems in Malachi 3:5 is not exceptional […]

Zechariah 5:1-4 – A Curse on Economic Injustice

February 15, 2012

Standing in awe of God’s gracious Spirit empowering Israel’s relationship with Yahweh (Zechariah 4), something catches Zechariah’s eye. The first line of the sixth vision highlights the sudden appearance of a strange object. Literally, Zechariah turns around to see what caught his attention, looks up into the sky, “sees” something and “behold,” that is, astonishingly, […]

Fearless and Free During Economic Storms I

May 3, 2009

Note: This is the first of six small group studies that are coordinated with a sermon series by Dean Barham who is the preaching minister at the Woodmont Family of God. Eventually, his sermons will be available here.  “His Righteousness Endures Forever”: Two Hymns Psalms 111 & 112   Vers Psalm 111 Psalm 112   […]

Marx, Paul, and Obama? A Comment on “Spreading the Wealth”

October 28, 2008

“From each according to their ability, to each according to their need.”                  Karl Marx “At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. Then there will be equality [fair balance, NRSV; or, equity], as it is written ‘He who gathered much did […]