By Anthony Cook “If this man were a prophet, he would have known.” Simon’s statement implies that if Jesus were a true prophet he would know about the sinful lifestyle of the woman who was anointing him and refuse her expression of love. Simon was not only assuming how a prophet would respond, but also ..
By Anthony Cook The book of James is a collection of exhortations written to encourage Christians to live out their Christian identity in their daily lives until Christ returns. Due to the nature of the book, James feels more like a collection of proverbs than a narrative that flows from beginning to end. A common ..
By Tony Cook Isaiah 44:6–8 is nestled within a larger discourse of the chapter that glorifies the God of creation over the idols made by man, while reminding the reader that the Creator God is also a redeeming God. Below are three approaches to preaching this text. Each one utilizes the text and the surrounding context to explore different ..
I’ve been watching a documentary on PBS called The Calling. It follows “seven young religious students — Muslim, Catholic, Evangelical Christian, and Jewish — who are on a dramatic journey as they train to become the next generation of professional clergy.” While the documentary is focused on professional clergy, the concept has been expanded to ..
During the past week, there have been hundreds of articles written about the tragic faculty shooting in Alabama. One of the themes that is beginning to emerge is the mental stability of higher education faculty. Thomas Bartlett and Robin Wilson in a recent article in The Chronicle of Higher Education opened by stating that the ..
For all of us who struggle with living a life that is worthy of our calling, Luther succinctly summarizes the Christian Life in his 1520 work, “On Christian Freedom”. One could spend their whole life gleaning from this one sentence. “Here is the truly Christian life, here is faith really working by love, when a ..
By Anthony Cook, Textual Comments: Proper 9 presents a sobering reminder of the Christian’s constant struggle to walk in the newness of life. The reader can hear the anguish in Paul’s voice, “For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against ..
By Anthony Cook, Textual Comments: In the section of Romans preceding this text (6:12-23), Paul illustrates our relationship with God as both instruments and slaves of righteousness, but in this section, the opening illustration is that of marriage. In the same way that a bride is bound to her husband until death, so too we are ..
By Anthony Cook, Introduction to the Sixth-Eighth Sundays after Pentecost As I began to prepare homiletical helps for Propers 7-9,I realized that the three sequential texts comprise the central portion of a larger section of Romans normally identified as Romans 6:1-8:39. This section transitions from the previous section, Romans 5:12-21, which contrasts Adam’s disobedience and its ..