Jesus Wept

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. –Matthew 9:36 

Jesus had a soft spot for people with a sad story. Even when he and the disciples were trying to get away from it all, he would sometimes stay behind and send the disciples ahead. Like Jeremiah, he wept over the city of Jerusalem: “And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, ‘Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.'” Luke 19:41-42 

And the shortest verse of the Bible? John 11:35: “Jesus wept.” His friend Lazarus was dead, and Mary and Martha whom he also loved were grieving. He was about to bring Lazarus back. Did he mourn for Lazarus, or weep out of empathy for the other family members?

A man moved to tears by his compassion and concern for others.

Perhaps not manly, but very godly.

Book Review: Nearing Home

Click image for more via Amazon.com

Click image for more via Amazon.com

Nearing Home: Life, Faith, and Finishing Well by Billy Graham 

When I write a book review, it’s usually because someone sent me a review copy and they are looking for bloggers to get their title out there in front of a larger audience. Neither Billy Graham nor Thomas Nelson Publishers need me to review this book; it is already a New York Times Best Seller. But I was given a copy by a friend in real life as a Christmas gift and since I enjoyed it will offer a review because you, my reader, may find you enjoy it as well. Continue reading

SCOTUS, Where the Rubber Meets the… Playground

 

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Baptist Press reports that the Supreme Court will hear an argument in March or April that may set precedents for future church/state decisions. From the article:

Missouri nonprofits can apply to the state for scrap tires to use for rubber playground surfaces. Trinity Lutheran Church in Columbia, Mo., which has a daycare called the Learning Center, applied to receive the ground-up tires for its playground. The state ranked the church’s application highly, but refused the grant based on a state constitutional provision that forbids state money going to support churches. About 35 states have similar provisions in their state constitutions.

The implications of the high court’s decision will go far beyond playground equipment. Continue reading Church-state case goes to Supreme Court via bpnews.net.

Did Judas Preach the Gospel?

Judas returns 30 pieces of silverThe spiritual condition of Judas is an age-old debate and not the one I mean to engage in today. I want to add a new wrinkle to the discussion; did Judas preach the Gospel? When the Apostles were sent out with the power to heal the sick and cast out demons (Matthew 10, Luke 9) did Judas do those things as well?