“Behold, the handmaid of the Lord! Be it unto me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38, KJV) ... I daresay that when many read Luke 1:38 today, they immediately think of Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale, or at least Hulu’s acclaimed screen adaptation of it. With thirty-six nominations and thirty-three wins, including the Golden Globe for Best Drama Television Series, “handmaid” now evokes the chilling story of Offred in fundamentalist Gilead. The men in charge of this nation are, of course, not truly Christian, but in the age in which we live, we cannot really blame our neighbors unfamiliar with the Gospel for drawing connections.
The Center for Pastor Theologians, in partnership with the John Templeton Foundation, is pleased to announce two student paper contests. The paper topics correspond to the 2017 and 2018 conference themes. See below for details about the topics, rewards, and rules for submission.
Fan response has been very strong to the new Star Wars movie, positive and negative. At some point, I will put an entry on my own blog about the narrative and aesthetic complaints. But as I skimmed through some of the fan-rants-turned-think-pieces, I noticed patterns of complaints that made me think of American churches.
The formal study of theology often begins with defining theology. This inevitably includes some discussion on how theology is “the study of God.” This definition, though technically correct and beneficial in the context of academia and the science of theology, is an inadequate portrayal of the meaning and goal of theology as presented in Scripture. No doubt the study of God is an important component of theology, but it is not the whole story. A holistic understanding of theology considers the source, context, and goal of theology.
The most significant patristic source of the Protestant Reformation was Augustine of Hippo. In centuries preceding the sixteenth, interest in Augustine had flowered, spawning a widespread attraction to his theology and the order(s) that bore his name. It’s no accident that Martin Luther was an Augustinian, as was Peter Martyr Vermigli. Moreover, we find in John Calvin’s writing, particularly his Institutes, a steady stream of citations from the old Bishop.
Man that is born of a woman has but a short time to live and is full of misery. Like a flower, he blossoms and then withers. Like a shadow he flees and never stays.
Luke 3 records the ministry of John the Baptist, Jesus’ baptism, and the voice from heaven. With respect to Jesus’ early years, Matthew, Mark, and Luke all follow the same basic order of events: birth, baptism, voice from heaven, and then wilderness temptation.