The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 3)

The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 3): As we saw in the first two essays, though the Prayer Book reflects the Reformation’s re-centering of the church’s faith and worship on Christ and his work of redemption, and the grace of God that is received through faith in him, the work of the Spirit is not […]

The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 2)

The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 2): As we saw last week, though the Prayer Book reflects the re-centering of the church’s faith on Christ and his work of redemption, and the grace of God that is received through faith in him, the person and work of the Spirit is not neglected, but is noticed […]

The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 1)

The Spirit in the Prayerbook (Part 1): The Prayer Book reflects the theological and pastoral priorities of the English reformers. In response to the over-emphasis of late medieval religion on works of human piety as meritorious means of obtaining God’s favor, the emphasis returns to the meritorious work of Christ on our behalf, and the […]

The Church and the World

The Church and the World: The old (1662) bidding to the intercession at Holy Communion invited prayer “for the whole state of Christ’s church militant here in earth”. (The 1928 omits “militant here in earth”). The bidding in the new liturgies is often “for the church and the world”. In those few words lurks a […]

Saint Philip & Saint James

Saint Philip & Saint James:  In the yearly commemoration of the Apostles, the feast of Philip and James falls in Eastertide, and like the Sundays of that season, the gospel lesson is drawn from St. John’s account of Jesus’ discourse at the last supper (14:1-14) – a passage whose opening verses are familiar to us […]

Gospel Truth

Gospel Truth:   There was a time in the 20th century when the higher critics argued that the gospels were the results of a long process of formation within the early Christian communities, and that they therefore had little to tell us about the historical Jesus but a lot to tell us about the evolving […]

Everything Old is New Again

Everything Old is New Again:   When it comes to language and doctrine in worship, the 1928 American Book of Common Prayer is the gold standard of excellence in the liturgy (in the USA). What makes the 1928 American Prayer Book excellent, however, is not what originated in 1928, but what originated long before, and […]

Joseph and Moses (Part 4)

Joseph and Moses (Part 4 of 4):  The greatest challenge Moses had to address was not the stubborn recalcitrance of Pharoah, but rather the rebelliousness of his own people, especially their great apostasy recounted in chapters 32-34 of Exodus. In the absence of Moses, Israel makes and worships a golden image of a young bull […]

Joseph and Moses (Part 3)

Joseph and Moses (Part 3 of 4)  Joseph’s achievement – as the rejected savior of his brethren – was to “save much folk alive” from a devastating famine, in accord with the providence of God. But what they were being saved for, that Joseph shows little sign of knowing or seeking to know. If Israel […]

Joseph and Moses (Part 2)

Joseph and Moses (Part 2 of 4) In the figure of Joseph, envied by his brothers, sold into slavery, given up for dead, and exalted to supreme power in Egypt, is the prophetic type of the “rejected savior” fulfilled in Christ. Perceiving God’s providential hand at work in these events, Joseph forgives his brothers, is […]