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Category: Word of God

Gospel Wares

“[The word] will … not stoop to overcome resistance with bargain counter methods. Promoters’ successes are sham victories; their crowded churches and the breathlessness of their audiences have nothing in common with the word of God. Yes, indeed, the word of God has a particular message for every individual; it addresses men quite personally, quite directly. But when a man does not lend his ear to it of his own free choice, he shall not hear the word of God at all.” (Barth)

Watch How You Build

“Our grandfathers, after all, were right when they struggled so desperately in behalf of the truth that there is revelation in the Bible and not religion only, and when they would not allow facts to be turned upside down for them even by so pious and intelligent a man as Schleiermacher. And our fathers were right when they guarded warily against being drawn out upon the shaky scaffolding of religious self-expression.” (Barth)

Real Scandal

The scandal of believing is not this or that politics, or this or that plan for moral improvement. We honor these best by dethroning them and renouncing their claims to ultimacy. The Christian scandal of believing is precisely this — that, in Jesus Christ, the universal God is particular, and the particular Jesus Christ is the universal God, who dwells with us in the Holy Spirit. The earth grows dim, and yet more focused, when we cling to this: “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us …” God has named himself Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and forever. Amen.

Woo the Strumpet

  Those who would save the Church through achieving popularity with the world “woo an aging and decayed strumpet.” (Donne) The status before God of the world’s religions is an important consideration and we dare not make light of it, but the matter comes down to this: the only salvation that the Church knows is salvation in the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ. There is “no other name…” (Acts 4:12) Of the status before God of those who, through no fault of their own, have never had the opportunity to hear but have lived up to the best that they know, we remain agnostic. However, those who confound salvation in Christ with other salvations construct an evil peace by joining…