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Series: New Testament Eschatology

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From time to time, I hear a lot about the early church’s understanding of the “end of the world” or their belief that the “Second Coming of Jesus” would take place within their generation. And it’s usually not in a very good light. “They were obviously mistaken,” is often the remark I hear most. I know it’s hard to imagine but what if we’re mistaken? What if we’ve misunderstood what they meant? I’m hoping that this series on some of the major statements from the New Testament about the “end of the world” will show that they weren’t mistaken in their understanding of the “signs of the times.”
Before we begin, however, let’s look at some terms that will have to be used. As most of you know, I try to refrain from using big “church” words. My reason for this is because those words are like suitcases where ideas and thoughts and understandings are packed into them. To explain the words would mean a long time spent unpacking the suitcases and explaining their contents. While such a pilgrimag…

Vintage Gillette Adjustable Safety Razors

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When I first started shaving with a traditional, double-edge (DE), safety razor, I saw and heard great things about Gillette’s vintage adjustable razors. The common names for these razors are — “Fatboy,” “Slim,” and “Black Beauty.”[1]
For those of us who might not know about these razors, Gillette introduced adjustable razors in the 1950’s. These razors have a dial which allows the shaver to fine-tune the closeness of the shave. The dial ranges from 1 (least blade exposure) to 9 (most blade exposure) with a distinctive “click” locking the setting in place. There’s a knob on the bottom of the razor handle that the shaver twists to open the head (TTO) and load the blade. Once the head’s been closed, there’s an additional ¼ turn to lock the blade in place.

Another interesting thing about these razors (and a lot of vintage Gillettes) is they’re stamped with a “date code” on the bottom plate.[2] The date code is a letter indicating the year and a number identifying which quarter within that …

Proper 7 (12) (Year C)

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Luke 8.26-39 (CEB; adapted):[1] 26Jesus and his disciples sailed to the Gerasenes’ land, which is across the lake from Galilee. 27As soon as Jesus got out of the boat, a certain man met him. The man was from the city and was possessed by demons. For a long time, he’d lived among the tombs, naked and homeless. 28When he saw Jesus, he shrieked and fell down before him. Then he shouted, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don’t torture me!” 29He said this because Jesus had already commanded the unclean spirit to come out of the man. Many times it had taken possession of him, so he’d be bound with leg irons and chains and placed under guard. But he’d break his restraints and the demon would force him into the wilderness.
30Jesus asked him, “What’s your name?”
“Legion,” he replied, because many demons had entered him. 31They pleaded with him not to order them to go back into the abyss. 32A large herd of pigs was feeding on the hillside. The demons begged …

Trinity Sunday (Year C)

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John 16.12-15 (CEB; adapted):[1] 12“I have much more to say to you, but you can’t handle it now. 13However, when the Spirit of Truth comes, They’ll guide you in all truth. They won’t speak on Their own, but will say whatever They hear and will proclaim to you what’s to come. 14They’ll glorify me, because They’ll take what’s mine and proclaim it to you. 15Everything that the Father has is mine. That’s why I said that the Spirit takes what’s mine and will proclaim it to you.
Other readings: Proverbs 8.1-4, 22-31; Psalm 8; Romans 5.1-5
Prayer: All-Loving and everlasting God, you’ve given us grace, by the confession of a true faith, to acknowledge the glory of the eternal Trinity, and in the power of your divine Majesty to worship the Unity: Keep us steadfast in this faith and worship, and bring us at last to see you in your one and eternal glory, O Father; who with the Son and the Holy Spirit live and reign, one God, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages. Amen.



Before we get too far along, …