Grace and Truth
2007-12-26 by Tom Steagald

I am thinking of preaching this Sunday on the Prologue, and especially the phrase, "full of grace and truth." I am not normally inclined to parse a phrase, but I have had some pretty painful confrontation of late with a church member, and a former LUTHERAN of all things, who really seems to believe that Law is stronger than Grace. She is full of truth, as it were, but not so full of grace. Of course, my encounter with her--my suggesting that her attitude was akin to the Pharisees after all--led me to a deeper introspection... I am wondering how often in my own life I am more a symbol of truth than of grace.

Of course, the other could be argued as well--that there are some who are so full of grace, so-called, that there is no concern with truth at all. I am reminded of NT Wright's dictum that when the God of biblical faith is, as it were, dethroned, the result is not that people do not believe in anyting but that in fact they will believe in anything.

But if Jesus is full of grace and truth--neither without the other--there must be some sort of call for us as his followers to be of the same, dare I say it, ousios as he. Of one substance with the Savior. Jesus was clear on the commandments, did not come to set them aside; he quoted the scriptures. But he was gracious. He made inclusive use of orthodoxy, as it were.

Anyway, that is how my thinking is working at this point. I do think that such ruminations are informed by textual and historical questions such as we have had tutorial on this week... but wonder how the grace/truth diad inform the questions.

Just wondering.





Post-postscript
2007-12-25 by Alan Meyers

Thank you for your kind words, Mr. von Schlichten! I have enjoyed being guest blogger.   -- Alan



Important postscript!
2007-12-24 by Alan Meyers

To all who read these posts, and especially to you who administer this blog:

I wish you a blessed Christmas, and a joyful 2008!

Sincerely,

Alan Meyers 

 





Christmas Presents This Week
2007-12-24 by David Howell

Do your last minute shopping in the Sermon Feedback Cafe. The Sermon Santa dropped off sacks of fresh Columbian coffee beans.

Seriously, there is some fine sermon reading in the Cafe. Dave von Schlichten and Stephen Schuette have posted their Christmas Eve sermons. And Brother Biddle has made his holiday appearance.

Thanks to Alan Meyers for his posts this week and watch the Cafe for his sermon on Matthew 2:13-23.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!

 

 

 





Alan Meyers and Matthew 2
2007-12-23 by David von Schlichten

IN HONOR OF CHRIST'S BIRTH, I WILL BE TAKING A BIT OF TIME OFF THIS WEEK. I HOPE YOU CAN, TOO. BASK IN THE HOLINESS.

Alan Meyers, our guest blogger this week, provides astute thoughts about Jesus' birth in Bethlehem, as well as about the murder of the Holy Innocents and the innocent children we humans slaughter every day through war.

Especially compelling is Meyers' understanding of the relationship between Christ's birth-place and his identity as Messiah. Be sure to scroll down to read his blog entries.

I don't have a clue where I will go on December 30. Perhaps I will preach about the Holy Innocents, but it is too early to say. For now I will ruminate on the readings, including by studying this week's articles in Lectionary Homiletics and the entries here in the hot tub.

Also ruminating on chocolate covered almonds and wrapping gifts for my wife while she is at work, I am

Yours in Christ,

David von Schlichten, Lectionary Blog Moderator





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