Returning to Eden (But Much More): Judgment, Renewal, and Cosmic Peace

May 31, 2023

Texts: Revelation 20:11-15; 21:1-7; 22:1-5 Days 78-80 in Around the Bible in Eighty Days. What will “heaven” be like? It is the place where God dwells within a renewed creation, filled with renewed relationships, and an ever deepening intimacy with God, each other, and the creation itself. It is a dynamic of loving intimacy that […]

Stepping into God’s Future (Joshua 3:1-17)

June 30, 2014

[An audio version of this is available here.] Contemporary visitors to Palestine rarely, if ever, find the Jordan River imposing. It seems relatively shallow, not very wide, and quite calm.  Wading across does not seem like much of a problem–except that it would take one from the modern state of Israel into the modern state […]

Revelation 14:1-5 — Firstfruits Offered to God and the Lamb

September 30, 2013

The church has heard some rather ominous words in the past two chapters. A powerful dragon is making war against God’s saints. The dragon has empowered two monsters (one from the sea and the other from the earth) to exercise his authority upon the earth. They are given the power to conquer or overcome the […]

From Lipscomb to Wallace on “New Creation” Theology

February 3, 2012

The Bible Banner, edited by Foy E. Wallace, Jr. with a masthead reading “Devoted to the Defense of the Church Against All Errors and Innovations,” had a profound impact on Churches of Christ in the 1930s-1940s. Whether it was for good or ill depends on whether one thinks the theological movements and consensus achieved in that era, […]

“Heaven on Earth” — A Stone-Campbell Tradition

January 27, 2012

David Lipscomb believed that eventually the “earth itself will become heaven” (Gospel Advocate, 1903, p. 328). I recently noticed that someone will be speaking at the Freed-Hardeman lectures on the topic “heaven on earth.” I do not know what he will say, but I think it is at least helpful to know that many of our Stone-Campbell forebearers believed that God […]

Salvation: Sector 6

January 16, 2010

What is salvation? In my first post in this series I proposed the below chart as a way of answering that important question. In this post I will comment on the sixth sector (6).   Past Justification Present Sanctification Future Glorification Personal Forgiveness of Sins and Relationship with God (1) Moral (Inner and Outer)  Transformation (2) […]

A Good Question

October 16, 2009

I have been joyfully engaged with a number of European Christians this week at Gemunden about an hour northwest of Frankfurt.  Beginning with creation, we have talked about the missio Dei as we are created as co-rulers, co-creators and partners with God in the emergence of creation. But we autonomously chose our own agenda and tumbled […]