Showing posts from June, 2017

The Cliffs of Preaching

I wouldn't say I'm afraid of heights. I'd just say that I don't like being up high. This came into full view recently with my first visit to the Grand Canyon. Being in Gods nature has always been good for my soul, and this was no different. The glorious views remind me of Gods goodness, power, and glory.  But when I walked up to the edge the first time, I was torn between my desire to look over the edge and take in the view, and my overwhelming desire for personal safety and to step away from the edge. Sometimes there was a railing, which I made it a little better. I gripped with white knuckles, forcing myself to look out at the view and not look down. Other places there was no rail, just cliffs. I wanted to do it, to see it, to take in the view. We hiked a trail down the side of a cliff, with severe drop offs, and I loved every minute that I wasn't terrified.  Loving it when I'm not terrified also sums up the way I feel about preaching.  When I was c

Functional Jeffersons

Photo from the Smithsonian At the age of 77, Thomas Jefferson was already an established man in the newly formed America. By the year 1820 he already had enough accomplishments for two or three lifetimes of lesser men. As author of the Declaration of Independence, and President of the United States, Jefferson left many volumes of work for us to judge him by.  But in 1820 he published something that he had been working on for a long time.  What came to be known as “The Jefferson Bible” actually carried the title “The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth.”  Jefferson was a deist at best, and was called a “howling Atheist” by opponents in the 1800 presidential election.  So for him to publish a religious book might have been a surprise.  Jefferson pored over six copies of the New Testament, in Greek, Latin, French, and King James English.  Then, with careful precision, Jefferson cut out the pieces of the New Testament that he didn’t agree with. All references to the supernatural, to