Walking through a strange land home

Do you ever feel a longing for home, but a home not of this world? If so, there is a very good reason, and First Peter just might be what you need to see you through this day. Written originally to Christians in five Roman provinces, it is clearly a legacy for the church at large, consisting of individuals Peter describes as God's chosen ones but strangers in this world. That double (and … [Read more...]

DOCTOR IN THE HOUSE

A caller phones Asbury Theological Seminary in Kentucky and asks to speak to Dr. Ben Witherington III. "I'm afraid he can't talk right now," the receptionist says. He's writing a new book." Nonplussed, the caller replies, "Never mind. I'll just hold." With more than forty books to his credit, including socio-rhetorical commentaries on every book of the New Testament, one is tempted to suspect that … [Read more...]

SELFLESS EXAMPLE

After a period of busy silence, I emailed a minister friend to ask what is happening in his life. Among other things, he mentioned that he is now working a second job. He is sorry to lose some study time, but his loss means that the congregation he serves can now have multiple ministers. And that, he opines, helps the whole body function more fully. * * * Your second job reminds me of … [Read more...]

A DIVINE STEWARDSHIP

A recent gracEmail brought more than the usual number of responses, including the following comment from one reader about gracEmails in general. "I am so glad," she said, "you write these and send them." * * * Thank you, my friend! So am I. The first gracEmail (then still nameless) sailed into cyberspace seventeen years ago in 1996. My friend Rubel Shelly suggested that I shorten its length … [Read more...]

SEVEN BLESSINGS

Through the years, I have known many professional ministers who experienced sudden, involuntary occupational changes. On one occasion, instead of preaching and doing pastoral work, my friend found himself heralding the merits of a particular luxury motor-car company. Remembering a similar transition long ago in my own life and wishing to encourage my friend, I wrote him the following light-hearted … [Read more...]

NURSERY THEOLOGY

For those privileged to be born in Christian homes, good theology begins in the nursery, where it is communicated--one suspects--most often in song. What better introduction to truth as a whole and in all its aspects than this: Jesus loves me. This I know, For the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong; They are weak but He is strong. There we have it--“Truth” for all, Jews and … [Read more...]

TELLING THE BIG STORY

Christian theologians from all over are calling for a "big picture" story that takes the spotlight off us and shines it directly on God's enomous plan to redeem the whole world! In my book, THE DIVINE RESCUE, I tell what Max Lucado calls "'the sweetest of stories' -- God's relentless pursuit of his fallen people." With this book, says Max, "the drama is captured on paper." John Michael Talbot, the … [Read more...]

NOVEMBER 22, 1963

If you are an American and are 63 or older, you probably remember exactly where you were and what you were doing on November 22, 1963 when you learned that President John F. Kennedy had been fatally shot. Today's generation might think of the radical jihadist attack on New York and Washington D.C., since remembered as "9/11." November 1963 found me on leave from college and at work in my parents' … [Read more...]

TRIP TO PERU

TRIP TO PERU Edward Fudge Imagine three Californias and you visualize the size of Peru, where people already lived busy lives when Abraham left Ur of the Chaldees. The Incas were its best-known inhabitants, ruling and thriving from approximately 1,200 A.D. until the Spaniards slaughtered Tupac Amaru, the last Inca ruler, in 1572. This is the land of Machu Picchu ("ancient peak"), the lost … [Read more...]

REFLECTIONS FROM THE COCKPIT

REFLECTIONS FROM THE COCKPIT Edward Fudge I pull the seatbelt snugly in place and adjust the earphones. Spread before me are 30 gauges and dials, 50 toggle switches and a dozen other electrical controls. I am sitting in the co-pilot's seat of a nine-passenger Mitsubishi twin-engine turbo-prop on a business trip. My only job is to keep my arms and legs out of the way while Earl, the pilot, … [Read more...]