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Posts tagged "Job"

Five Golden...Themes! What We Loved Talking About in 2016

Five Golden…Themes! What We Loved Talking About in 2016

In lieu of a weekender, today we give you something of a year-ender, 2016’s five golden (or not so golden)…themes. By all means, tell us in the comments what themes you spied in the headlines throughout the past year.

1. Donald Trump. It goes without saying, but nothing frenzied the network television companies and newspaper writers and Twitter opinionators quite like Trump’s historic campaign ride this year. Well, nothing besides Trump’s actual victory. Opinions about his ascendance and eventual victory have been as diverse as it has been profuse. In all honesty, he could have his own five golden themes—and that would just begin…

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Religious Experts vs. the Cross: On Reading the Book of Job

Religious Experts vs. the Cross: On Reading the Book of Job

In the first chapter of Fleming Rutledge’s incredible book, The Crucifixion, she explains that modern Christianity shares the same widespread rival as early Christianity: gnosticism. She doesn’t mince words bringing the dusty historical term back down to the ground: “All the various forms of gnosticism are grounded in the belief that privileged spiritual knowledge is the way of salvation.” With one swoop of the vested arm, Rutledge knocks down the pawns of self-help, educated elitism, not to mention a massive percentage of the modern-day Christian church—in short, “religion”. To cherry-pick some of her key remarks on this subject:

Defining this philosophy is no…

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The Prosperous Gospel of Stage 4 Cancer

The Prosperous Gospel of Stage 4 Cancer

In church yesterday, we read the “Temptation in the Wilderness,” the passage where Jesus is tempted to turn stones to bread, to throw himself down from the Temple in a spectacle, to kneel to the devil in exchange for infinite power. Jesus has fasted forty days, but he does not waver.

The sermon at our church focused more on the form (and less the content) of the interchange, and distinguished the sentence structure of the devil’s temptations, versus the sentence structure of Christ’s replies. I had never noticed this before, but each of the tempter’s promises are conditional: “If…then…” If you just do X, you will have Y.

I suppose I…

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Willem Dafoe Plays Eliphaz (in The Fault in Our Stars)

Willem Dafoe Plays Eliphaz (in The Fault in Our Stars)

Disguised as a chick flick, The Fault in Our Stars woos floods of teenage girls while simultaneously offering a startlingly honest commentary on life and death. Sure, it’s a used plot (cancer-stricken teens fall in love) and an even more used conflict (inexplicable suffering), but The Fault in Our Stars strikes up a whirlwind of important questions, which, chances are, will challenge viewers beyond their expectations. These are important questions. Questions of Joban proportions.

Because let’s face it, all the characters are there: Job, Job’s family, Job’s friends. The Fault in Our Stars, based on John Green’s bestselling novel, addresses inexplicable…

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"More Comfortable with Death": J.C. Chandor on the Making of All Is Lost

“More Comfortable with Death”: J.C. Chandor on the Making of All Is Lost

An interesting interview with the writer and director of the new, verbally-spare shipwreck film, All Is Lost, starring Robert Redford. Chandor, whose first film happened to be 2011’s Margin Call, that I now feel I need to see, talks about the Everyman who Redford portrays, a man thrown into an awareness of his own finitude before a squall. He talks about Job, and he talks about death. The entirety of the interview is worth reading, but here are a few highlights (ht SZ):

The Atlantic: In another interview, you mentioned that this movie is about you—that it’s about your feelings about…

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Two Words in Job

Two Words in Job

Yesterday, while preparing for a sermon, I came across a beautiful description of both Law and Gospel in the Old Testament that I’d never noticed before. Job 33.14-28:

For God speaks in one way,
and in two, though man does not perceive it.
15 In a dream, in a vision of the night,
when deep sleep falls on men,
while they slumber on their beds,
16 then he opens the ears of men
and terrifies them with warnings,
17 that he may turn man aside from his deed
and conceal pride from a man;
18 he keeps back his soul from the pit,
his life from perishing by the sword…

26 …then man prays to God, and he accepts him;
    he sees his face with a shout of…

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Hopelessly Devoted: Job Chapter Twelve Verses Nine and Ten

Hopelessly Devoted: Job Chapter Twelve Verses Nine and Ten

This morning’s devotion, which brings near the heart of doubt in the places of suffering, comes from Sean Norris.

Who among all these does not know that the hand of the LORD has done this?  In his hand is the life of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.

My wife laid on the table as the doctor passed the transducer back and forth on her stomach.  We sat silently watching the screen and listening for the sound of hope, listening for that little fast-paced heart beat.  But there was nothing.  No blip on the screen and no evidence of…

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