The cross is the most pointed manifestation of the wrath of God in all the Bible. Sometimes we don’t grapple with this as much s we should. It is not uncommon to hear folks pitting the “God of the Old Testament” against the “God of the New Testament.” The God of the New Testament is a God of love, we are told, while the God of the Old Testament is a God of wrath. That false dichotomy crumbles, however, when we rightly gaze upon the cross. The cross is also the most pointed manifestation of God’s love. We tend to emphasize this more and, if we are ot careful, an be guilty of subtly embracing the aforementioned dichotomy. Of course this raises massive questions, questions, like “Are God’s wrath and love in conflict with one another?” This has been answered … Read More »
Tonight we are here to walk with Jesus through one of the darkest nights of the church calendar. This was Jesus’ last night, a night which was marked by betrayal—by Judas and Peter— his passionate prayer in Gethsemane, his arrest and the charge by the high priest that he was guilty of blasphemy.
The title “Maundy Thursday” is derived from the Latin Mandatum Novum which means “a new commandment.” Maundy Thursday was the day that Christ uttered those powerful words, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another” (John 13:34). He did not issue this commandment in word only, though. Just prior to giving this commandment he demonstrated it in symbolic action when he girded himself with towel and humbly approached the basin to … Read More »
A couple of weeks ago I re-published an article I wrote last year on the topic of Lent. I concluded with two points. Here is the first.
I know some folks are uneasy about Lent. Some of my closest friends and colleagues don’t think that reformed Christians should have anything to do with it whatsoever. But my response is two-fold. Number one: The church calendar is not a restaurant menu. That is, there are not a la carte items. You can’t pick and choose your favorites and leave the others out. You can’t have Easter without Lent. You can’t have Christmas without Advent. Like the five points of Calvinism, they all go together. In the church you eat what you have been served—all of it.
When I wrote that I had in my sights the inconsistency of those who like to pick … Read More »