4 weeks ago
To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
“I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”
"Their fear of abandoning anti-gay interpretations of scripture is the same kind of fear that reared its head when theological “progressives” in prior generations argued in favor of the abolition of slavery, the teachings of Galileo and women’s rights. We’re talking about a fear of moving forward, a fear of the unknown and a fear of being wrong."
"It’s not about making more “It Gets Better” videos, or being out and proud role models (although I do think those things help, for sure). Instead it is about empowering youth to be their own change agents. Find out what they need and make sure they are able to do it. It certainly needs some adult push but only because our systems are so ageist as to think that youth don’t know what they need and can’t articulate it."
"This particular story about Z’s daughters shows us what God is like. And what we learn about God in this story is that God listens and God agrees with Mahlah and her sisters. The rules should be fair, they said, and God said yes, yes they should, that’s what they’re for.
If we want to talk about rules then, from this point of view, this story can be seen as giving us a rule about rules: If they are unjust, then they must be changed. 'The daughters of Zelophehad are right in what they are saying.'"
"Yes, the slippery slope brought doubts. Yes, the slippery slope brought change. Yes, the slippery slope brought danger and risk and unknowns. I am indeed more exposed to the elements out here, and at times it is hard to find my footing.
But when I decided I wanted to follow Jesus as myself, with both my head and heart intact, the slippery slope was the only place I could find him, the only place I could engage my faith honestly.
So down I went."
Probably one of the biggest disgraces of this 'one nation under God' is that the government has had to step in to help those the Church should’ve been helping, to do what the Church was called to do. The Church failed—and government stepped in. Perhaps the reason many now lean Libertarian is because they’d like the Church to take back—and take seriously—its calling to transform this world. It’s Jesus—not Uncle Sam—that people should see and know whenever blessings flow and mercy, justice and love roll.
“God revealed Himself in the Bible pervasively as king not queen; father not mother," Piper said. "The second person of the Trinity is revealed as the eternal Son not daughter; the Father and the Son create man and woman in His image and give them the name man, the name of the male...God appoints all the priests in the Old Testament to be men; the Son of God came into the world to be a man; He chose 12 men to be His apostles; the apostles appointed that the overseers of the Church be men; and when it came to marriage they taught that the husband should be the head."
“Now, from all of that I conclude that God has given Christianity a masculine feel,” Piper continued. “And being God, a God of love, He has done that for our maximum flourishing both male and female... He does not intend for women to languish or be frustrated or in any way suffer or fall short of full and lasting joy in this masculine Christianity. From which I infer that the fullest flourishing of women and men takes place in churches and families that have this masculine feel.”
"From all those various biblical examples---from Exodus and Deuteronomy to Proverbs and Sirach---I draw two very important conclusions. One is that despite its male-oriented prejudice, the biblical term 'father' is simply a shorthand term for 'father and mother.' In fact, unless context demands exclusive male emphasis, it is usually wiser to presume an inclusive intention.
Another is that 'father and mother' does not just intend 'parent' in charge of children, but rather 'householder' in charge of a home or extended family. The biblical concept of householder does not envisage the single-occupant or even nuclear-family household. It imagines the extended multigenerational household as in those Sabbath day commands. It contains brothers and sisters, unmarried sisters and married brothers, clients and dependents, male and female slaves, animals, lands and tools."