A poem of Christ’s love for the children of Syria

The little ones By: Josh Valley They say that God has forsaken you. But Jesus is among you, in you, He is you Yahweh, who we see most clearly in Jesus, the suffering One, come to rescue the little ones Suffering, He is the Man upon the Tree, dying in solidarity with you and me The monsters who drop the barrels full of cowardly arrows, … Continue reading A poem of Christ’s love for the children of Syria

Believing in the God of eternal conscious love

The debate over hell has been renewed over the past decade in the Evangelical world due at least partially to celebrity pastor Rob Bell’s recent book Love Wins, in which he makes a compelling case for postmortem salvation—that people can choose Christ even after they die. Bell makes a case for universalism, the belief that all people, regardless of how they lived their lives or what they … Continue reading Believing in the God of eternal conscious love

The day Jesus washed ashore

The heart-breaking images that went viral a year ago this month of three-year-old Alan Kurdi—the Syrian boy who washed ashore after drowning off the coast of Turkey—totally shocked the world. In what has been deemed the greatest refugee crisis since the Second World War, hundreds of thousands of refugees, primarily from Iraq and Syria, have been arriving on Europe’s doorstep desperate for safety and shalom, … Continue reading The day Jesus washed ashore

Longing for Jesus when life’s a mess

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted” (Matt. 5:4). A blubbering mess It’s been happening a lot lately. I’ll be going about my day, minding my own business and all of a sudden I’m feeling like I’m about to cry. And I do. You know that familiar feeling when your heart drops to the pit of your soul, you feel like you’ve … Continue reading Longing for Jesus when life’s a mess

Finding shelter in the crucified God of the Cross

Turn to me and have mercy,     for I am alone and in deep distress. My problems go from bad to worse.     Oh, save me from them all! Feel my pain and see my trouble.     Forgive all my sins. – Psalm 25: 16-18 (NLT) “Feel my pain,” the Psalmist cries. “Turn to me and have mercy” — it’s the kind of prayer that vibrates with desperation. … Continue reading Finding shelter in the crucified God of the Cross

The God of the Bible is bound by one thing: merciful love

This is the final part of the 5-part series: Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible. Read part 1: Genocide is okay if it’s commanded by a holy God? Read part 2: The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic? Read part 3: Israel: conquest, culture and modern assumptions Read part 4: Rethinking the ‘warrior-God’ of Revelation Part 5 | The God of the Bible is bound … Continue reading The God of the Bible is bound by one thing: merciful love

Rethinking the ‘warrior-God’ of Revelation

This is part 4 of the 5-part series: Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible. Read part 1: Genocide is okay if it’s commanded by a holy God? Read part 2:  The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic? Read part 3: Israel: conquest, culture and modern assumptions  Part 4 | Rethinking the ‘warrior-God’ of Revelation In part 3, we saw how crucial it is to interpret the … Continue reading Rethinking the ‘warrior-God’ of Revelation

Israel: conquest, culture and modern assumptions

This is part 3 of the 5-part series: Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible. Read part 1: Genocide is okay if it’s commanded by a holy God? Read part 2: The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic?  Part 3 | Israel: conquest, culture and modern assumptions  Given our conclusion in part 2 that God did not literally command genocide and that Joshua/Israel did not literally commit … Continue reading Israel: conquest, culture and modern assumptions

The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic?

This is part 2 of the 5-part series Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible. Check out part 1: Genocide is okay if it’s commissioned by a holy God?  Part 2 | The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic? In his book, The Nonviolent God, J. Denny Weaver argues that the God of the Bible is not the vengeful and destructive character that many portray Him to … Continue reading The conquest narratives: hyper-terror or hyperbolic?

5-part series: Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible

Part 1 | Genocide is okay if it’s commanded by a holy God? There is a gruesome story about a Catholic priest who witnessed the atrocities of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. He recounts “a woman who spent a whole day on the river bank killing other women who were handed over to her with a hammer. She was neither drunk nor under the effect of drugs. … Continue reading 5-part series: Conquering the ‘violent God’ of the Bible

Book Review: The Mystic Way of Evangelism

In The Mystic Way of Evangelism: A Contemplative Vision for Christian Outreach, Elaine Heath takes a fresh look at the way God views and responds to human beings and sin. By default—it seems—the Church in the west has primarily grounded its theology of sin and redemption in human rebellion, the guilt of sinners, penal substitution and the violent wrath of Jesus in the End Times. … Continue reading Book Review: The Mystic Way of Evangelism

Being cross-shaped in a world bent out of shape

I think I was blessed to suffer early in life. Sexual abuse as a child, spiritual warfare and depression as a 20-something, followed by self-harm, anxiety attacks, insomnia—the pain of being a human being with a broken body in a broken world. The struggles still come without warning. Marriage breakdown and renewal, chronic sleep disorder, weight gain, minor addictive tendencies; it can be tough to … Continue reading Being cross-shaped in a world bent out of shape