Hark! The Herald Angels Sing has been my favorite Christmas hymn for most of my Christian life. It’s packed full of solid Biblical doctrine ranging from the Incarnation to regeneration, always bringing us back to His glory.
Singing this beloved hymn grows more meaningful each year as I notice new depths of theology in its familiar verses. As a result, I love it even more now than I loved it as a new Christian. I pray that you’ll discover truths about our wonderful Savior every time you sing it too.
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A friend of mine asked a question on Facebook, largely directing it to his friends who, like him, reject the authority of Scripture. I read through several responses, most of which revealed varying degrees of animosity toward what they call “traditional Christianity.”
I thought about the question for 24 hours. That’s probably a good rule of thumb for engaging on social media anyway, and I would most likely do well to implement that rule a lot more frequently than I do. Anyway, as I mulled it over, I realized that the best answer to the question was to ask what the Bible says about the matter.
That’s always the best response.
Predictably, someone immediately challenged my comment by saying that the Bible is difficult to define, and therefore an unreliable source. I sensed from his tone that he wanted to shame me for Continue reading
Somewhere in the 1960s, when evangelicals became enamored with psychology, teachings on forgiveness started emphasizing the benefits of forgiveness on the person doing the forgiving. If they had left the discussion at Matthew 6:14-15, that would have been fine.
To their shame, they didn’t leave it there. No, they elaborated that when someone refuses to forgive those who hurt her, she imprisons herself in bitterness. Therefore, they reason, she Continue reading
False teachers and false teaching should, by all the means, make Christians angry! If we love the Word of God, we will naturally hate anything that comes against it. And such animosity comes out of a pure love for Christ and His people.
Did you notice the clause, “and His people”? I didn’t put that there simply for rhetorical value. Loving the people of Christ encompasses many things, one of which is wanting them to reject false teaching in favor of doctrinal purity. It follows that we should approach victims of false teaching just that — victims.
Sometimes we forget that most of the people who fall victim to these theological aberrations honestly believe they follow the Lord. Some are even Continue reading
I feel no shame for needing a wheelchair, nor should I. Instead, I feel gratitude that I live in a time and place that allows me to have a power wheelchair. My wheelchair helps me get around the apartment, travel between Adult Sunday School and church services, and roam around downtown Boston. Crutches and wheelchairs provide marvelous freedom to people who would otherwise be bedridden.
So I can’t help laughing when someone accuses me of using Jesus as an emotional crutch. During my high school years, people hurled that line at me quite a bit, always with the implication that I should be ashamed of leaning on Him. Such people proudly imagine that they don’t need the Lord — that they have all the psychological resources necessary to get through life.
Maybe so. But that outlook assumes that this life only has a material dimension and that nothing exists after death. It seems to me that it also requires Continue reading
It’s been years since I’ve read Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice. Call me silly, legalistic, prudish or whatever, but the magic and the cross-dressing in his comedies bother me. So, although I understand why Portia dresses as a man during the courtroom scene, I feel uncomfortable with it.
Today, however, I’ve been thinking about Shylock’s demand for a pound of flesh when Antonio defaulted on his loan. Despite offers to pay him back double the debt, Shylock resolutely demands the pound of flesh. Nothing else will satisfy him.
Shylock’s unmerciful attitude shocks us, though it really ought to expose our own unwillingness to extend mercy and forgiveness when someone apologizes to us. I know that I secretly enjoy Continue reading
Let’s see. In the past few days, I’ve written an article with too harsh of a tone, yelled at nurses who treated me as if I’m intellectually disabled and gotten angry at a RIDE driver. All this while complaining about how rotten I feel from RSV.
It’s official, folks: Deborah Kespert is a wretched sinner.
Praise the Lord that Jesus paid for every one of my sins when He died on the cross! While His grace doesn’t give me license to sin (indeed, it calls me to repentance and holiness), that same grace wonderfully covers my sin, enabling me to stand before God without condemnation. I celebrate His grace precisely because I know I need it.
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