Essay / Theology

Event: Future of the Church, Sept. 9

Mark your calendar for an event Torrey Honors Institute is hosting at Biola University on Wednesday September 9 at 7pm (PST): The Future of the Church. It’s a follow-up to last year’s very popular Future of Protestantism discussion, and an attempt to go one step bigger

Essay / Theology

Christ and the Prophetic Mountain Range

This month I got to preach on Mark 13:1-27 at my church home, Grace Evangelical Free Church (La Mirada and Fullerton). We’re preaching through the gospel of Mark, and behold, the time had come for the Olivet Discourse. Though most of the commentaries I consulted

Essay / Theology

Pastoring with Gregory of Nazianzus

I recently read The Pastor as Public Theologian by Kevin Vanhoozer and Owen Strachan in which they rightly recognize that the role of the pastor-theologian has gone by the wayside, replaced, for example, by the pastor-CEO, pastor-therapist and/or pastor-social activist. Should pastors be all of

Essay / Theology

A Theology of Ice Cream

Americans eat more ice cream than any other country – a whopping four to five gallons a year per person! A good chunk of that is eaten by a much smaller portion of the population, present company included. I love ice cream and I eat

Essay / Theology

“Learn Again How to Discern” (Kavin Rowe)

In the Torrey Honors Institute, our students study the Bible (along with classic theology texts) and the great books (including literary, philosophical, and political texts). The two sides of this education are constantly informing each other. I was recently reminded of one of the ways

Essay / Literature

Basement of the Museum

On the second page of a long book about the plays of Aeschylus, critic Thomas Rosenmeyer explains how he intends to proceed. He wants to help modern non-specialists, readers who are getting their Aeschylus in English, by showing them how to avoid “some of the

Essay / Theology

The Story of Monasticism; or, What Monastics Can Teach Us

Why wouldn’t everyone want to be a monk or nun? These days you will get your own room, never have to overthink the daily “What will I wear?” debate, be allotted plenty of time with God and, if you choose wisely, be engaged during your

Essay / Theology

“The Holy Round of Creeds and Chants and Mysteries”

I spent much of the summer in England, and perhaps that prepared me to notice this poem when I happened across it. I found it in an issue of The Churchman’s Companion from 1858. CATECHISING A True Incident And can it be the holy round Of creeds

Essay / Theology

The Kingdom in Person

Origen of Alexandria (ca 184-254) apparently coined the word “autobasileia,” meaning something like “the kingdom in person.” It was in his commentary on Matthew 18, as he was discussing the parable that begins: “Therefore the kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who

Essay / Theology

The Very Atmosphere Mentally Absorbed

The age of the full-scale “hellenization” critique of early Christian doctrine seems to have passed, at least for now: anybody who wants to assert that the church’s early thinkers allowed the pure biblical message to be contaminated by Greek thought has to write so many

Essay / Theology

Theology of the Pastoral Epistles (Lecture)

Here is video of a lecture I gave last semester on the theology of the pastoral epistles. The time I spent studying Titus and 1 & 2 Timothy last year at Los Angeles Bible Training School was very productive theologically. It seems like there have

Essay / Theology

Witness to the Fittingness of the Atonement

Perhaps you have heard critiques of penal substitution based on the fact that it seems rooted in divine violence, which in turn supports violence within families and social structures. Perhaps you have heard debates between adherents of different views of Christ’s work, both of which