Category Archives: Theology

Individual vs. Collective

Listening to Peter Harrison’s fifth Gifford Lecture as I drove to Marshall today, I heard his description of a shift from natural philosophy to science in the early modern period. Under the old paradigm (and I use Kuhn’s term intentionally), … Continue reading

Posted in church growth, Discipleship, Leadership, Spirituality, Theology, United Methodism, Will Willimon | Leave a comment

A Baptism of Repentance

John the Baptist is described in the Gospels as preaching a “baptism of repentance.” In the descriptions of his ministry in the Gospels we see people coming to him, confessing their sins. Matthew tells us that when Jesus comes to … Continue reading

Posted in Bible, Ecclesiology, Ministry, Theology | Leave a comment

“Liberal” & “Conservative”

Our special speaker at Annual Conference this year was Adam Hamilton, pastor of Church of the Resurrection in Overland Park, Kansas. In more than three hours of teaching he shared leadership strategies and tactics that have helped him grow his … Continue reading

Posted in Texas Annual Conference, Theology, United Methodism | 2 Comments

Set Talk

I don’t remember when I first ran into Paul Hiebert’s idea of contrasting bounded sets and centered sets in our understanding of evangelism. It was either shortly before I finished seminary or shortly after, making sometime in the late 1980s. … Continue reading

Posted in Dave Schmelzer, Evangelism, Theology | 3 Comments

New Appointment Methodology

We (pastors and lay leaders from across the North District) met with Bishop Huie and a couple of cabinet members this morning in Ore City to hear about the new philosophy of appointing pastors to churches. They had intended to … Continue reading

Posted in Ministry, Texas Annual Conference, Theology, Uncategorized, United Methodism | 3 Comments

Another, older, NCLB

Charles Taylor (in A Secular Age) considers the depth of Reform in the middle ages to be much greater than the line from Wycliffe, to Huss, to Luther and beyond, connecting it to the rise of the modern preoccupation with … Continue reading

Posted in Charles Taylor, Education, Public Schools, Spirituality, Theology | 2 Comments

Joining the Big Story

One of the books I’m reading now (having a short attention span, I usually read several at a time) is Dave Schmelzer’s Not the Religious Type: Confessions of a Turncoat Atheist. On p. 105 Schmelzer says, This [he’s been talking … Continue reading

Posted in Charles Taylor, Dave Schmelzer, Metanarratives, Spirituality, Theology | 8 Comments

Short term friendships

Back in my seminary days I did my supervised ministry at a nursing home in Lexington, Kentucky. In the course of a couple of years (I kept visiting there after my coursework was completed) I made many friends. Pearl was … Continue reading

Posted in Friendship, Theology | 5 Comments

The Great Enemy

“God needed him more than we did.” Have you heard that before? Sometimes it’s modified, “God needed another lawyer, doctor, plumber, nurse, good person, angel” – the list goes on. I’ve read the Bible several times and I still can’t … Continue reading

Posted in Death, Theology | 5 Comments

Thinking about Justification

One of the books I’m reading now is John Piper’s The Future of Justification: A Response to N.T. Wright. I’ve enjoyed Tom Wright’s teaching since reading his New Testament and the People of God about 15 years ago. Piper interacts … Continue reading

Posted in John Piper, Justification, N.T. Wright, Theology | 3 Comments