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Seeing Jesus with Clarity

Though it is quite clear that the gospel authors did not compose their works with a strict chronology in mind, this does not mean that they were arranged haphazardly. The gospels were assembled with careful forethought, often in order to draw out certain theological themes. For example, right smack in the middle of Mark 8, Mark juxtaposes several stories together, which at first glance may seem to have nothing to do with one another. First, there is a conversation between Jesus and his disciples in a boat on the way back after a testy exchange with the Pharisees. Jesus warns them, “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees…” (v. 15). The disciples are puzzled by this remark, assuming he is…

Have We Made Bible Study Too Simple?

I couldn’t believe my ears. I sat at the table with someone who was trying to explain their understanding of a few New Testament passages. They asked me how I understood them, and as I shared how I looked at…

From Mundane Ministry to the Presence of God

I’ve been in the church my entire life—35 years and counting—mostly within the particular subculture of American evangelicalism. I’ve come to realize that so many Western churches are fighting an uphill battle against the cultural catechesis of distraction that we’ll…
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