Do You Know How Arius Died?

I’ve been preaching a Christmas sermon series based on Athanasius’s seminal work On the Incarnation, and this morning’s opening illustration was too good to pass up. For context, I’m preaching on Matthew 2:1-12 (the story of the wise men), but I’ve been in the habit of setting up the sermon with some fun tidbits fromContinue reading “Do You Know How Arius Died?”

Matthew & Luke: A Tale of Two Christmases

In most nativity sets, we blend the various Christmas stories together in one big, happy créche–shepherds, angels, wise men, Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, manger, and the rest. And rightly so. Each character adds a different flavor to the rich celebration of the coming of the Christ Child. Even the extras that crowd the scene likeContinue reading “Matthew & Luke: A Tale of Two Christmases”

1.8 — Christmas: Reformers, Unicorns, Grinches, and More!

Gifts, presents, and Christmas resources for all! In this episode, I share lots of fun seasonal articles, sermons, and resources for you to further explore! Read more about the Magi: “Seeing Ourselves in the Story of the Magi” at “Wise Men, Magi, or Kings? It’s Complicated.” at Christianity Today “We _______ Kings: How ManyContinue reading “1.8 — Christmas: Reformers, Unicorns, Grinches, and More!”

The Unexpected Joy of the Christmas

One of the first Christmas carols ever sung wasn’t written at Christmas at all–but six months earlier. And it wasn’t sung at the birth of Jesus, either. It was sung at the birth of his cousin John. When it comes to recounting the Christmas story, I suspect most of us begin in Luke chapter 2:Continue reading “The Unexpected Joy of the Christmas”

“We Three Kings”: How Many Wise Men Were There Really?

It’s another Advent season, and another round of articles poised to rob us of our Christmas joy. This is not one of those articles. Sufjan Stevens encourages us to embrace the inner Christmas unicorn each December. It’s a time of imagination, celebration, and mirth. So, as we come to the traditional Christmas carol “We ThreeContinue reading ““We Three Kings”: How Many Wise Men Were There Really?”

So Was It an Inn in Bethlehem, or Not?

(Originally published December 2015) Perhaps like me you were drawn in by several articles this Advent season claiming we have gotten several details wrong in the Christmas story. There was this article at TGC, this one at Answers in Genesis, and this chapter by Kenneth Bailey all taking issue with the phrase “because there was no room forContinue reading “So Was It an Inn in Bethlehem, or Not?”

“Joy to the World” Guitar Tabs (Sufjan Stevens)

If you own Songs for Christmas by Sufjan Stevens, then you know that when you bought the album, you got a whole lot more than just music. You received a box full of Christmas cheer, complete with a comic book, stickers, and a bizarre festive fold-out poster of Sufjan sitting in with someone else’s family.Continue reading ““Joy to the World” Guitar Tabs (Sufjan Stevens)”