Many Christians right now are preparing for Christmas. Jews, on the other hand, are in the middle of the 8-day celebration of Hanukkah. For most, the two holidays seem to have little in common. But this is actually a wonderful time of year to consider Jesus in his Hebraic context. During Hanukkah, Jews celebrate their […]
Right now many of us are doing our Christmas shopping, and it is easy to focus on new things we wish we could have. We live in a consumer culture that revolves around having more “stuff.” Our status is based on money, and we are expected to dedicate all our time to achieving financial success. […]
At this time of year, people everywhere are setting up nativity scenes. We’re used to having an odd mixture of characters around the manger — some scruffy shepherds, some glittering angels, a few animals, and of course a brand new little family. To many of us, the characters that are oddest are the magi, or […]
It’s hard to read very far in your Bible before bumping into shepherds. We find them in parables, psalms and Christmas stories. Many of our biblical heroes (both men and women) herded sheep, like Jacob, Rebecca, Moses and David. And Jesus even pictured the final judgment in shepherding terms — as separating the sheep from […]
Some people have rejected Christmas and Easter because of their origins. But the examples of the standing stone and bronze serpent shed light on whether a practice is “pagan” in God’s eyes.
During the Advent season, I’m reconsidered the harsh reality that Jesus entered two thousand years ago.