And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). This is a difficult verse. If we read it as a proclamation of tit-for-tat justice on earth, or even with the expectation that we can always discern the purposes … Continue reading All Things Work Together for Good?
In Brothers Karamazov, Father Zosima recounts being moved in his youth by the story of Job. I have entered in italics some commentary of my own: In the land of Uz, there lived a man, righteous and God-fearing, and he had great wealth, so many camels, so many sheep and asses, and his children feasted, … Continue reading Hast thou Seen my Servant? On the Lost Children of Job
Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit (epigraph of Brothers Karamazov from John 12:24)ˆ Early in Brothers Karamazov, we meet a mother who has journeyed a long way to visit Zosima, a monk of wisdom and holiness. … Continue reading The Iconography of Sorrow in a Brothers Karamazov
There two schools of Christian anthropology. The first school I will call the Noetic. It advocates the transforming power of knowing God. To know God’s love is to be transformed by that love. The second is the school of Praxis and Discipline. We needs to press on and take hold of what Christ has secured for us, thereby … Continue reading Noetic Transformation vs. Discipline and Praxis
When Nathan confronts David concerning his sin with Bathsheba, the Scriptures present us with a model of divine restoration. God mercifully restores the fallen king through His prophet, Nathan. Nathan does this by re-contextualizing the law within a framework of affections and relationships. He does this in order to help David reestablish himself within such a framework. In this scriptural … Continue reading Logocentric Restoration: The Cosmic Gift of Repentance
“Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.” 2nd Corinthians 7:10 Saul fails to carry out the Lord’s command, and so Samuel communicates God’s decision to remove him from the throne. Though he affects repentance, and indeed does regret his loss, we can see that he is … Continue reading Not to Presume upon Grace: Beware the Way of the Double-minded