Good News – Great Joy



I try to imagine what it must have been like for those shepherds who, we are told in Luke 2, were watching their sheep by night. I wonder how many uneventful times they had done this very thing. Watching sheep is what they do. Sheep must be protected….night after, boring, night. Occasionally, a wolf may come around, making for an eventful evening under the stars.


Continue reading Good News – Great Joy

The Cultural Yawn Of Christmas


The below is a bit of a repost and re-working of an article I wrote last year.

John 1:1-2
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.

John 1:14 
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…..

The Almighty God took on human flesh…

He was born miraculously of the virgin Mary….

Herod tried to have Him killed as a newborn….

Continue reading The Cultural Yawn Of Christmas

Welcome To The (Starbucks) Bandwagon


Ok, so I will jump on the bandwagon of being critical of the Christians, who have jumped on the bandwagon of being critical of secular society (in this case Starbucks), which creates reasons for secular society to jump on the bandwagon of being critical and dismissive of Christians in general.

How is that for a run on sentence?!?

Confused yet?  Well, hang in there…

Continue reading Welcome To The (Starbucks) Bandwagon


Away in a manger

Read:  GOD With Us And The Cultural Yawn


God WITH us

Who is in that manger means everything.

More than a baby and more than something cute.

More than a decoration for the front lawn.

This is Jesus the Son of the living God.

The creator of the universe has humbled himself and taken on human flesh.

Matthew 1:23
Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel (which means, God with us).

What does it mean that Jesus dwelt among us?

In Genesis 1,2, 3 we read about the creation and fall of man.

In the garden there was no separation between God and man. Man was without sin.  Hard to imagine, isn’t it?

In Genesis 3 Adam and Eve sinned and God drove them out of the garden.  Man, was then separated from God’s presence.

Fast forward to John chapter 1.  The whole chapter is great to read but let’s focus on one word in this one verse when John says:

John 1:14
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…

This word “dwelt” flies by us unnoticed.  But, we need to pause here because that one word packs quite a punch.

Here is what is interesting. John, had at his disposal other words that he could have used for “dwell”. But he uses the word skēnoō.

Who cares right?  Dwell means dwell…. doesn’t it?

Well, not exactly.

Here is what is amazing. John’s word for dwell is the word skēnoō. This word means tent and it is a verb.  Huh?  How is tent a verb?

I know…. you are thinking “big deal, so what?”  Hang with me!  

What does it mean to “tent” – verb?

It means that Christ came and took on human flesh, born of a virgin, in a manger to pitch His tent among us.

Now, that may sound really odd to us, but for John’s original hearers, they would have immediately made some connections.

An original hearer of John’s gospel would have heard the words: “pitch his tent among us” and would have immediately remembered the history of Israel.  The tabernacle was the place that God met with His people.

(Don’t forget about Adam and Eve and the garden and sin and separation from God.)

This tabernacle was covered by…… you guessed it….. a tent.  The tabernacle was also known as the “tent of meeting.”

And they shall know that I am the LORD their God, who brought them out of the land of Egypt that I might dwell among them. I am the LORD their God.

(Exodus 29:46 ESV)

So we have a garden and sin which brings about a separation between God and man and now, here in Exodus, we have God dwelling among His people…. again.

Now, He is NOT dwelling among His people because they are without sin, or because they have earned this, or anything else. We are to read Exodus and see God dwelling among His people and realize this happened by the mercy and grace of God!

Jump forward to Exodus 33 and it is here we see that it is in the Tabernacle that God had fellowship with His people, Israel.

In verse 8 we find Moses going into the Tabernacle / Tent of meeting and everyone stopped to watch.

Drop everything….“Moses is going into the tent of meeting!” They were in awe.

Why? Verse 9 says that whenever he went into the Tent of Meeting, a pillar of cloud would descend. (Wow!)

God came down to dwell with His people!

So here is what is happening. The Tabernacle was a reminder of what Adam and Eve had in the garden, but not fully…. It was the Lord’s presence in a cloud.  AND, it was a shadow of what was to come.  Remember John 1:14

God, after He delivered His people from Egypt would come and descend and dwell among His people in the Tent of Meeting / Tabernacle.

What an amazing scene!
God is declaring: “Despite your sinfulness – I am with My people! I will dwell among my people.”

Fast forward to King David.  David wants more than a tent / tabernacle.  He wants to build a temple, a permanent house for the Lord where God’s presence would exist.

God told David no. But, God did allow David’s son Solomon to build a temple for the Lord.

The tabernacle and the temple were reminders of what Adam and Eve had in the Garden and a shadow of God’s presence that is to come.

Jesus is coming – literally God himself is coming to pitch his tent among us!  That is what John is telling us. God is (verb) pitching His tent among us!  And, this is not because we deserve His presence. He comes and descends not in a cloud but in human flesh to dwell among us – even though we are sinful and undeserving!  By His mercy and grace He comes and dwells / pitches His tent among us!

God WITH us!

John is telling us that the way God descended and dwelt among His people in the Tabernacle, that very same thing – and more – is happening in Jesus Christ. Now, God has descended not in a cloud, but in the flesh! And, He is dwelling among us!

Jesus is pitching His tent to dwell among His people! Jesus, the Eternal God, creator of the universe, Light of the world, He became flesh and tabernacled among us.

Merry Christmas!!

God With Us And The Cultural Yawn


John 1:1-2
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.

John 1:14
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…..

When Almighty God takes on human flesh…

When He is born miraculously of the virgin Mary….

When Herod tries to have Him killed as a newborn….

I don’t know…. when the Creator of the universe moves heaven and earth and takes on human flesh, maybe that is supposed to get our attention? And, I don’t mean a little bit – I mean grab our wholehearted, lifelong, enduring, and collective attention.

Perhaps when God moves heaven and earth, is born of a virgin, and takes on human flesh that maybe His intent was bigger than a lawn decoration during the Christmas season?

Jesus, born in the manger is to be more than: “Awww look at the cute baby in the manger.”  More than a decoration we might put in the front yard next to Santa, snoopy and the Grinch.

How is Christmas more than just a nice holiday and a few extra days off of work? Is Christmas more than a tree, presents, carols and shopping?

Think about WHO is in that manger!

GOD with us. If we do not know who it is that is in that manger, Christmas will be nothing more than just another holiday….and the manger will be just another decoration.


God, Himself is in that manger!

The creator of the universe came!

The King of ALL kings has come!!!!!

Think about this:

200 years ago it was believed that there were some 6,000 stars in the universe. 200 years ago – 6,000 stars seemed like a lot of stars. Today astronomers believe there are more stars in the universe (that we know of) than there are grains of sand on all the beaches and deserts on the earth!

Uh…. wow!

The latest evidence shows us that there are between 100 and 200 BILLION galaxies in the universe each of them containing 100’s of billions of stars.


And the Bible just matter of factly states: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth….

But hold on a minute. Consider that this God who created all those stars (and everything else in the universe) has now come down and taken on human flesh.  God – in human flesh!!

As a culture we are easily impressed with actors, actresses, and athletes.

This past year George Clooney found himself in my small home town Titusville, Fl.  He was there to shoot scenes for the movie “Tomorrowland”.  As you might imagine, social media blew up in my hometown. Clooney sightings were being reported. Photos uploaded, rumors of sightings passed along, and on and on it goes.

“Did you hear Clooney is shooting scenes downtown?”

I just did a quick google search with the words: “george clooney filming in titusville fl”

My google search spit back at me 34,700 results! Wow!

My point? When George Clooney comes to small town Titusville it blows up.  Why? Well, it’s George Clooney! Duh!

What does it mean that the God of the universe, your Maker and mine, takes on human flesh, and is born as a baby in a manger, in the tiny town of Bethlehem?

For the most part, culture is indifferent to the manger. Some are blasphemous and many can be heard yawning. Can you hear the cultural yawn?

A long time ago – by the mercy of God – I traded the yawn in for worship!

Over these next few posts I hope you might read along and join with me to see the glory of that manger scene. Let’s trade the yawn in for worship!

Consider today:

It is GOD with us!

GOD came and took on human flesh

That cute baby in the manger….. it is GOD!

Praise Him!