Pious Nonsense: “The Ancient Name of God Is the Sound of Our Breathing”

Pious Nonsense: “The Ancient Name of God Is the Sound of Our Breathing”


Pious Nonsense: “The Ancient Name of God Is the Sound of Our Breathing”

I’m writing this post for two reasons. First and generally, it is simply not helpful when Christians pass along claims about what something in the Bible “really means” when those claims are based on faulty or inaccurate information. Truth matters, and good information is important. Christians should avoid saying things that are inaccurate, if for ..


Advent 3 • 1 Thessalonians 5:16–24 • December 14, 2014


Advent 3 • 1 Thessalonians 5:16–24 • December 14, 2014

By Jeff Gibbs It would be tempting to regard this text, a series of short imperative clauses, as a random series of “inspired one-liners” that exhort the Thessalonian believers (and us) to general Christian behaviors and attitudes. To be sure, there’s some truth in such a description, for there is no complex argument involved and the hardest structural ..

Enduring With the Saints

Enduring With the Saints


Enduring With the Saints

In some ways, it can be easy enough to be faithful.  Some people find it easy to be creative.  To bring the two together in worship, however, requires insight and skill that is hard to come by.  In daily chapel toward the end of Winter Term, I was edified by the worship service faithfully created by ..


Advent 3 • Isaiah 35:1–10 • December 15, 2013


Advent 3 • Isaiah 35:1–10 • December 15, 2013

Editor’s Note: The following homiletical help is adapted from Concordia Journal, October 1998. By Jeffrey A. Gibbs Textual observations: The historical situation at the time of Isaiah’s prophecy isimpossible to determine. Oppression by Assyria is one possible setting. These verses are matched with Isaiah 34 as oracles regarding Edom’s doom and Israel’s salvation; the present text is ..

Hands, Life, and Hope in Holy Week

Hands, Life, and Hope in Holy Week


Hands, Life, and Hope in Holy Week

This week, I’m thinking about his hands.  They were large, strong hands that loved to work with wood—strong hands that were “skilled at the plane and the lathe.”  Many of the items in his house were created by his labors on the lathe, at the saw—“dovetail” is a term that had a literal meaning for ..


Proper 24 • Ecclesiastes 5:10–20 (Mt 5:9–19) • October 21, 2012


Proper 24 • Ecclesiastes 5:10–20 (Mt 5:9–19) • October 21, 2012

By Jeffrey Gibbs Textual Notes (using English Bible versification) One of the challenging issues in translation occurs in verse 10, the first verse of the appointed reading. The second line reads, literally, “And whoever loves abundance, not revenue (or income)—also this is vanity.” James Bollhagen suggests that since the particle לֹא normally negates a verb, ..