Two weeks ago, I was diagnosed with lung cancer. Fortunately, we appear to have caught it early, and it doesn’t seem to have metastasized so far.
But I need time to treat the cancer. At some point in the near future, the surgeons will operate and remove the cancerous portions of my left lung.… Read more >
During this COVID-19 pandemic, my wife and I stayed isolated. The good news is that this gave me the opportunity to do a lot of reading, writing, and creating blog posts.
I recently read one book that referred to the institutional church’s need to enforce behavior control. That triggered a blog post idea and reminded me of a joke.… Read more >
I recently spoke with a friend who asked, “Why do you always say that Paul’s conception of Jesus’s resurrection was different than that of the Gospel?”
Good question. Basically, gentiles understand the Bible in a vastly different way from the Jewish people. (Remember, the Bible was written by Jewish authors.) Gentiles almost always interpret it literally.… Read more >
In 2 Corinthians 12:7, Paul said, “To keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan.” What was that thorn, other than painful?
Early in my ministry, I was told that Paul might have had epilepsy, an eye disease, or some other physical impairment.… Read more >
While working on a sermon recently, I reread Romans 8:30: “And those whom [God] predestined he also called.” Much to my surprise, I became annoyed. Wonder why?
Intellectually, I know that predestination has run its course. Modern science has shown that no Master Puppeteer is UpThere pulling everybody’s strings.
Realistically, I know that the theology of predestination is alive and well.… Read more >
I have been a docent at the Mission San Juan Capistrano in California since 1991. I conduct walking tours for fourth graders studying Californian history and adults who want to see this well-preserved historic landmark, which was built in 1776. I also give special tours explaining the mission’s collection of religious art.… Read more >
I met Sister Helen Prejean at Irvine United Congregational Church in 2010. She was a petite woman with a giant message about the death penalty. I bought a copy of her book, Dead Man Walking: The Eyewitness Account of the Death Penalty That Sparked a National Debate, which was written in 1994 and made into a movie.… Read more >
The word hijacked is often used as a synonym for steal or seize control. In this blog post, I’m using it in reference to specific groups commandeering ideas.
For the past few months, I tried very hard not to disparage people of the fundamentalist persuasion who call themselves Christians. However, I recently read a letter to the editor in the Los Angeles Times entitled “God’s man in the White House.”… Read more >
My family had a summer home in Stone Harbor, New Jersey, that was one block from the beach. I spent vacations there from the age of six (1938) until I left to join the Marine Corps in 1954. Some of my favorite memories were made at that wonderful resort.
Stone Harbor had a building called a comfort station close to the center of town.… Read more >
I think every human being is racist to some degree. Racism consumes some people. Others don’t realize they are racist and deny it to the bitter end.
I believe racism stems from many factors (upbringing, family, judgments, religion, peer pressure, and negative experiences), but the primary cause is ignorance. For instance, I notice the ways that people are different from me and quickly form judgments, often built on stereotypes.… Read more >