The Thoughts and Opinions of a Disciples of Christ pastor and church historian.
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Ultimate Allegiance -- New Book on Lord's Prayer
I want to announce the forthcoming publication of my book on the Lord's Prayer. It is entitled Ultimate Allegiance: The Subversive Nature of the Lord's Prayer. The book is part of a series of books being published by Energion Publications that caries the title Areopagus: Critical Christian Issues and is edited by Allan Bevere and David Allan Black.
To give you a sense of the purpose of the book, here is the lead paragraph from the publisher's announcement:
"Prayer changes things." It's a common saying, and too often Christian discussion of prayer deals only with how we can change other things and other people through prayer. But what if prayer is much more that we imagine? What if it is also the means of correcting our relationship to the Creator and at the same time of changing our relationships with one another? Perhaps prayer can ultimately help transform our theology, what we believe about God, into character and action.
The book will be available in November, but you can pre-order now -- along with my bible study guide on the Book of Ephesians. Click here to find out more the book and about ordering copies. Although there are not study questions, it can easily be adapted for such a purpose.
Mark 11:1-11 (John 12:12-16) New Revised Standard Version 11 When they were approaching Jerusalem, at Bethphage and Bethany, near the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples 2 and said to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately as you enter it, you will find tied there a colt that has never been ridden; untie it and bring it. 3 If anyone says to you, ‘Why are you doing this?’ just say this, ‘The Lord needs it and will send it back here immediately.’” 4 They went away and found a colt tied near a door, outside in the street. As they were untying it, 5 some of the bystanders said to them, “What are you doing, untying the colt?” 6 They told them what Jesus had said; and they allowed them to take it. 7 Then they brought the colt to Jesus and threw their cloaks on it; and he sat on it. 8 Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut in the fields. 9 Then those who went ahead and those who followed were shouting, “Hosan…
John 15:9-17 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) 9 As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you; abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete. 12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 I do not call you servants[a] any longer, because the servant[b] does not know what the master is doing; but I have called you friends, because I have made known to you everything that I have heard from my Father. 16 You did not choose me but I chose you. And I appointed you to go and bear fruit, fruit that will last, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask him in my name. 17 I am giving you these commands so that you may love one …
We enter a new year (2017). I will complete my 59th cycle on the planet in a couple of months. I've seen a bit of life over the past six decades. I'm also a historian by training, so I think I have a good purview of where we stand in the grand scheme of things. I know that there is a lot of pessimism and fear going into the new year. I've written about it and thought about it and prayed about it. With Martin Marty, also a historian, I have been looking for signs of hope. They're out there, if we're willing to look for them. With this being the first week of the new year, I share Marty's reflections on the past and the future. I invite you to read and reflect on his message as we ponder the way forward.
Many Sightings of Hope By MARTIN E. MARTY January 2, 2017“We have hope” — actress Felicity Jones as Jyn Erso in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)For more than a year I engaged in the visual and oral analog to “fasting.” Fasters discipline th…