Monday, March 21, 2011

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


Today I watched Rob Bell's interview with Lisa Miller about his book, Love Wins (click here for the interview)

I also read Kevin DeYoung's thorough review of the book (click here).

What I haven't done is read Bell's book, which was released today. To be honest, I'm in the same place I was 8 years ago when everyone told me there were all these books I had to read, by a new wave of authors like Brian McClaren and Doug Pagitt, Rob Bell, etc... I read a couple, but in the end, it just seemed like rehashed liberal theology. I spoke in person with Pagitt, and after talking to him, I warned people not to follow what he taught (which was very hard to figure out- like nailing jello to the wall). I feel the same way now about Bell. I'm currently fighting my resistance to read Bell's book, because there are so many others on the shelf that I think would make me a better pastor and shepherd of God's people.

As a pastor, I would encourage the people of Veritas not to follow any teaching that denies the eternal nature of heaven and hell, and the eternal consequences of rejecting Jesus Christ in this life. We reject universalism, even in its rehashed state.

I'm sure there will be more to come on this topic. For now, I think it's hard to improve on DeYoung's response.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Jesus the "Drunk" and other random happenings

Yesterday at Veritas... Thune rocked Philippians 2:19-30. I never made the connection of how Paul uses Epaphroditus as another example of verse 4, "look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others."
We had two baptisms yesterday- 2 very cool testimonies and the visual of God's work among us. There is nothing better on earth than a changed life. All the world revolutions and the toppling of every evil empire in the history of the world cannot compare to the awakening of a single soul.
This was a little controversial...
We surveyed campus with the questions...
- If Jesus asked to go with you on your spring break trip, what would you tell him?
- In the Bible, why do you think they called Jesus a "drunk"?
- To you, who is Jesus and do you think his teachings are relevant to college students?

Going into this talk, I really wanted to get the pulse of the average U of I student on this issue. The results were interesting. Most people (even Christians) didn't know Jesus was called a drunk. A common response was, "I went to Catholic church growing up- I'm over the whole Jesus thing." or "He wouldn't want to be with us on spring break if he knew what we were doing."

This overwhelming response confirmed something I've thought a lot about in planting this church, "What exactly have people rejected- Jesus or Religion?" That's nothing revolutionary, but it is when you think about the stewardship we have of deconstructing past biases against Jesus, and incarnating the Jesus who came into the world to love and save sinners.

As to the flyer- the cheap photoshopped Jesus with a college T and bottle may be thought provoking or sacrilegious, I'm not sure. But our point was to confront the idea, "Who have you rejected? Who does the Bible say Jesus is and what he is like?"

For those of you who are wondering where and why Jesus is called a drunk... Matthew 11. In the text, he's called a drunk for 2 reasons: 1) He drank alcohol 2) He spent time with people who drank... a lot. I never really heard that in Sunday school. Jesus' point is that self-righteous people will never be happy, regardless of the lengths God goes to rescue people.

Back to earth... (below)

With the snow thawing, the kids pulled these (important) flags out of the yard. They must've been worried for my safety. You can never be too safe on the road. It's not just scooters that need flags...
I wonder how many times I've referred to myself as an "idiot" on this blog. Justifiably so. At least I remembered all the kids...
This week influenza is making its rounds. I've been sick for 4 days and still laid up. Cameron is being a trooper here, trying to keep Beck entertained with "Diary of a Wimpy Kid."
This is a very safe position. You just can't teach that in driver's ed.
Back to my movie watching... in the queue right now- The Pacific (disc 2)