Episodes: Masonry

Rambo’s First Blood? Nah, Merely a Flesh Wound

Who doesn’t take a selfie with blood running down their face?  It’s hard on a preacher to sweat. Jerry and Beth lived across the street from the parsonage on OK 5 in Gould, Oklahoma. We became fast friends in the short time we lived in southwest Oklahoma. Late-night card games and an occasional offer to...

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It’s an Op Ed!

Religion reporting is as fraught with peril as any other specialized field of journalism. Pastors, at least seminary-trained pastors, learn to discern the genre of the text under consideration. Reading the Psalms? It is helpful to be aware of how Hebrew Poetry works. If we simply say it is poetry, we Americans may look for...

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Pastoring, Lasso, and Grace

We do not lasso grace, grace lassos us. From my latest Can We Talk? Last month I was invited to do a breakout session for the Mockingbird Tulsa Conference. The theme was The Kindness of Grace. Father Everett told me the theme was an omage to Ted Lasso. Today’s post is the content of that...

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Museum Pieces

What are a couple of Southern Baptists doing among the Liberals? From my recent Substack, Can We Talk? Taken together, these two events, the question I received in Tulsa and Marty’s trolls, led me to reformulate Voltaire’s speculation regarding Southern Baptists. “One hundred years from my day, there will not be a Southern Baptist on...

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Too Many Claiming Christ Are Just Admirers

Following Jesus is different. From my latest Substack newsletter, Can We Talk? He gestures toward the images adorning the ceiling: “I paint all this suffering, but I do not suffer myself. I make a living of it.” Franz, too, looks up, knowingly, it seems, but says nothing. The painter continues, his face half in the...

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A Threat to Democracy?

From my latest Substack offering, Apply this to the claim that Christians owe no one anything despite the Apostle Paul’s ethical position. It should be easy to see that American Democracy defended by those who fail to read and employ Scriptural ethics imperil both our Country and Christian Witness.  Christian Witness cannot survive the failure...

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True Myth

From my recent Substack: Can We Talk? If you are like me, growing up in a Southern Baptist Fundamentalist version of the Christian Faith, any reference to anything in the Bible as myth raised a red flag. It was probably worse than that. For many, it still is. Recently a friend sent a version of...

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What is the obsession with Beth Moore?

From my latest Substack, We Are Our Own Rorschach Test. My friend Tim once served as a Southern Baptist Youth Minister. He is now an Episcopal Priest. I never once thought that anyone should take a picture of him in his vestments, reading Scripture and giving Communion only to post them to Twitter. It is...

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The Great Dane Takes Us on a Walk

From my recent Substack post . . . My friend Tripp Fuller and J Aaron Simmons have produced a six-session online course on Kierkegaard. Simmons just rotated off as President, or Grand Poo-bah, of a guild of Kierkegaardian scholars. That means that I am not like him. I have not read enough of SK to...

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What in the Mars Hill?

If you are not receiving my substack, you may have missed this . . . Anyone listening to RFMH who thought, “This could never happen to me,” is ripe for the taking. I recall the episode where Driscoll was told he should look for a mentor. When someone mentioned John Piper Driscoll scoffed, “I can’t...

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Hello Darkness My Old Friend

News broke last week of another school shooting. The list of these news reports grows longer and longer. My friend Ken Tanner, who is a pastor in Michigan, describes these particular events as one would a plague. His observation is that we are experiencing plagues of various kinds and yet we don’t even know it....

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What’s a Substack?

Over lunch today a friend described a loss of trust. That is, it was once taken for granted that neighbors would look out for each other. For this friend the recent/current pandemic ruptured that sense of trust. Before vaccines were widely available friends seemed more interested in their freedoms than in the well-being of their...

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