Archives for July 2010

Because We Ate Our Fill of the Loaves

Sometimes when I read (especially) the Gospel of John, I notice with discomfort that Jesus often does not answer the questions asked of him.  In John 6:26, he responds to the question, “Rabbi, when did you come here?” (to the other side of the Sea of Galilee) with the answer, “Very truly I tell you, […]

The Problem of Mixed Motives

I’ve been talking to people lately about a roadblock that I think I see in spiritual growth.  It looks like a two-step process: (1) “get” (understand) the principle and then (2) “apply” it, which means to incorporate it into our, attitudes and practices, to make it part of who we are.  Knowledge and application are […]

The Bane of Religion: Evil Speaking

From John Wesley’s Journal – “November 5, 1747: I began examining the classes, and every person severally, touching that bane of religion, evil speaking; as well as touching their manner of life before they heard this preaching; and by comparing what they were with what they are now (emphasis added), we found more abundant cause […]

What My “Crazy” Charismatic Friends Always Teach Me

Over the past weekend, I made a quick trip to Kentucky to spend some time with dear friends who work together in a mission organization.  For many years I worked with them until I felt like my new job at SMU necessitated resigning from the board of trustees.  But these friends and Gospel co-workers are […]

Perhaps to Clear Some Confusion: Sanctification, Christian Perfection, Legalism and Perfectionism

I am having a blast teaching United Methodist Doctrine to a group of theology school students.  I’ve been out of the classroom for a year, so it feels good to get back in there. Yesterday, we covered that part of United Methodist doctrine that John Wesley called “‘the grand depositum’ for which Methodists were chiefly […]