Showing posts from April, 2011

Scot McKnight on the meaning of Easter!

Scot McKnight, a new testament scholar, poses some great thoughts about Easter. I love the opening question and think every Christian and church should have to answer it:
We tend to be Good Friday in our gospel: Jesus died for us.
We tend to be Good Friday Christians too: my sins are forgiven.
What good is Easter? What difference does the resurrection make for life today?The church is decisively Good Friday... it is when the church can answer and live out the question at hand, then we will move beyond this rut we're in.

Happy reading and blessings!

Treatise on Easter: What the Resurrection is all about!

Today is Easter, the celebration of the anniversary of Jesus raising from the dead. I am not going to spend significant time trying to convince anyone that the resurrection happened. I am assuming either you believe it or you don't. Though, I do believe that any student of life should honestly seek the validity of the claim. There are a lot of reasons to believe that it happened and only one to believe it didn't and "It's too mind blowing" isn't a good enough reason to dismiss it.

Let's begin, rather, with what the Resurrection means.

Resurrection is an interesting idea in itself. First, we have little to no information about it in the Old Testament (before Jesus). In the Old Testament the death/ end times scenario was pretty basic. There was a place called Sheol. Every single person went there, good or bad. There were glimmers about being with God. The Psalms talk of it, Elijah was raptured to it, and a few other occurrences, but basically sheol was the …

Good Friday & Psalm 22

When I became a Christian, I read the New Testament immediately and all the way through. I couldn't get enough. Christ revealed himself to me in ways unimaginable. I was forever blessed.

I had a great mentor who allowed me to ask many questions. There were a few that stuck with me for a very long time. Good Friday has one of the biggest. It wasn't until 2 years ago I found my answer.

My question dealt with reconciling Jesus' words on the Cross with his mission. He predicted his own death, even death on a cross, yet when he was on the Cross he screams out, "Eloi, Eloi lema Sabachthani?!" Which translated means, "My God, My God why have you forsaken me?!"

How could Jesus decide the God had forsaken him? Jesus knew he was going to die like this? I could understand crying out in pain. I could even understand crying out for mercy or even to be released. But concluding that God had abandoned him, that seemed like he was calling the whole thing off.

Until I re…

The Continued explorations for good Christ-inspired music!

About once a month I stay up late to find music that I can fall in love with. My life can be altered by a great band. Most of the time... I am disappointed.

My quest is a ridiculous one, set before by my own high standard: to find Christian or Christ-inspired music that isn't awful. I know... but I assure you there is some out there. It is my firm belief that Christ followers, who have been revealed the mysteries of the deepest things of God, should be able to create some of the greatest art the world has ever seen. I refuse to give up this dream. And so, as some sort of fast-like-thing, I refuse to listen to completely secular music, even if it is fantastic. I do this not because my religion says so, but because of my own personal journey. I do not judge those who listen to secular music, I envy them for their lighter yoke. I want to be the biggest Mumford and Son's fanboy of all time, but I can't. I want to fall in love with the Freelance Whales, but I refrain. My missio…

Movie Review: Exit through the Gift Shop

I am a pretty susceptible person. I have an over-active empathy which allows me to see the validity of all sides and want to be a part of a lot of movements. When Matt and I watched "8 Mile" I wanted to battle rap. When I saw "The Parking Lot Movie" I wanted to work at a parking lot as an attendant. These things especially happen when I watch documentaries and see some sort of injustice or counter-cultural revolution going on.

Tonight, on a recommendation from Ryan Rayome (who has never steered me wrong), I watched "Exit Through the Gift Shop." First, let me say that this movie was fantastic. Second, let me say that I had no idea the direction it was going in the beginning. A total surprise for me, which could be my ignorance of the scene or just interesting film making. Third, I want to graffiti stuff now :).

The movie starts off introducing us to a frenchmen named Thierry. He lives in Los Angeles and is selling designer clothes. His one passion in life…

Palm Sunday Reflection!

I had an 'Aha!' moment, though explaining it so far has been difficult.

I have been reflecting on the problem of the Palm Sunday. The commemoration of Jesus riding into Jerusalem so many years ago. I know a ton of facts about the event: that the Jews would have been singing the Hallel Psalms on their way up to the Passover Feast, that Jesus was making a ton of statements with his donkey, the symbolism of the Palms especially in connection with the Maccabees, Jesus as the Solomonic figure (but better) (Witherington, Commentary on Matthew), etc... There was still one problem that plagued me.

We as Christians have used the praise of the people to symbolize our praise of the risen Lord. We have celebrated with them, as it seems. My problem is that those people didn't understand Jesus and his message. They thought he was making a move for the throne, or a land grab, or some other geo-political action. "This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee" the crowds sai…