• Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms, Part 4

    Posted May 18th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Believe What We Believe With | Comments Off on Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms, Part 4

    The Council of Ephesus (AD 431) is recognized as the third of the seven ecumenical councils of the church. That’s the easy part. Equally easy is understanding what the council took up and concluded. The Nicene Creed was reaffirmed and Mary was declared to be theotokos, that is, the “bearer of God” or the “mother …

  • Know the Creeds, Confession and Catechisms, Part 3

    Posted Apr 23rd, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Believe What We Believe With | Comments Off on Know the Creeds, Confession and Catechisms, Part 3

    The Nicene Creed is arguably the most famous and important creed in all of Christendom. The fourth century was a tumultuous one, both politically and religiously. At the center of the religious upheaval was a man named Arius, a Presbyter from Alexandria, who taught that Jesus was something less than divine, something different than the …

  • Eastertide

    Posted Apr 16th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Do What We Do With | Comments Off on Eastertide

    By those within and outside the church, this Sunday is commonly designated Easter Sunday. While that designation is most certainly true it can also lead to an unfortunate reduction in the historic observance and celebration of Easter. Contemporary observances of Easter–both within and outside the church–often reductionistically focus on just one Sunday designated Easter. Like …

  • Sunday of the Passion

    Posted Apr 9th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog With | Comments Off on Sunday of the Passion

    This Sunday in Lent is often referred to as Palm Sunday. More commonly, however it is referred to as “Passion Sunday.” This is interesting and we will come back to that in a moment. Palm Sunday begins the most holy week for Christians, the week that will culminate in the resurrection of Jesus which we …

  • Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms – Part 2

    Posted Mar 26th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Believe What We Believe With | Comments Off on Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms – Part 2

    Last week we introduced creeds and confessions and catechisms generally. Today we begin to think about them more specifically. The logical place to start is, of course, the Apostles’ Creed, because of its historic pride of place. To say that the Apostles’ Creed is old is an understatement. Forms of it date back to the …

  • Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms, Part 1

    Posted Mar 19th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Believe What We Believe With | Comments Off on Know the Creeds, Confession, and Catechisms, Part 1

    This morning we use the Apostles’ Creed as a means of confessing (Creed comes from the Latin credo meaning “I believe”) our faith in Christ. Sometimes the use of creeds and confessions and catechisms gives some folks pause. Why not just use the Bible? A fair question, for sure. Originally used as baptismal professions and …

  • The Great Dialogue

    Posted Mar 12th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog With | Comments Off on The Great Dialogue

    Liturgies are like excuses: Everybody’s got one. Simply put, liturgy is what people do when they worship. So no matter how much a church may insist that there is no liturgy, one will inevitably emerge. It has to be this way because, as James K.A. Smith has noted, we are liturgical animals. This is how …

  • Why We Believe What We Believe- Lent

    Posted Mar 3rd, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Believe What We Believe With | Comments Off on Why We Believe What We Believe- Lent

    You probably noticed the bulletins changed colors again. That is not an attempt to be stylish or even to mix things up. Rather, it reflects the changing of the church calendar. Last Wednesday was Ash Wednesday, the day when millions of Christians attend church and were reminded of their mortality—the dust that marks their foreheads …

  • Infant Baptism IS Baptism

    Posted Feb 26th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Do What We Do With | Comments Off on Infant Baptism IS Baptism

    If I have heard it once I have heard it a thousand times: so-called reformed Christians tripping over themselves with apology after apology about how poorly the reformed church does evangelism. Related to this is the tried and true self-deprecation: we need to see more adult baptisms. Perhaps the one that turns my stomach the …

  • Prayer – Ecclesiastes 11:1 – 12:8

    Posted Feb 12th, 2017 By in Pastor Brian's Blog, Why We Do What We Do With | Comments Off on Prayer – Ecclesiastes 11:1 – 12:8

    Historically Christians have used set prayers to learn how to pray and to be guided in this most holy endeavor. Examples of this come from the Bible itself. Jesus famously gave the Lord’s prayer in response to the request of the disciples to teach them to pray. Christians have been following his lead ever since. …

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