What does it mean to be the Son of God?

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1st Sunday of Lent, Year C: Feb. 17, 2013
Deut 26:4-10; Ps 91:1-2, 10-15; Rom 10:8-13; Luke 4:1-13

Several years ago, while I was in seminary, I had a chance to watch Joel Osteen on television for the first time. I had heard of him, this Evangelical Protestant preacher with a growing following; but I hadn’t seen him. What would he be like? What would he say? Standing near a great, turning frame of a globe, he told his listeners that they were children of God; children of the King; royalty! And I thought: Great; good message! Because this is indeed what Christ has made us in baptism, adopting us into his Sonship, making us adopted sons and daughters of God. It’s an important message, and one that we need to be reminded of again and again.

And then he proceeded on to apply that message. Being a son or daughter of the King means—that you are a winner! What?, I thought. (more…)

¿Qué significa ser el Hijo de Dios?

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I Domingo de Cuaresma, Año C: 17 Febrero 2013
Dt 26, 4-10; Sal 90; Rom 10, 8-13; Lc 4, 1-13

Hace varios años, mientras que yo estaba en el seminario, tuve la oportunidad de ver a Joel Osteen en la televisión por primera vez. Yo había oído de él, de este predicador protestante evangélico mirado por un número creciente de personas, pero yo no lo había visto. ¿Cómo sería? ¿Qué diría? Vi al hombre, de pie cerca de la forma de un gran globo: le dijo a sus oyentes que eran hijos de Dios; hijos del Rey; ¡personas reales! Y yo pensé: ¡Muy bien; buen mensaje! Porque esto es de verdad lo que Cristo nos ha hecho en el bautismo, adoptándonos en su filiación, haciéndonos hijos e hijas adoptivos de Dios. Es un mensaje importante, y es uno que necesitamos recordar una y otra vez.

Y luego continuó a aplicar ese mensaje. Ser un hijo o una hija del Rey significa—¡que usted es un ganador! ¿Qué?, pensé. (more…)

Christ the King: If these are the rules of life, then play the game to win!

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Our Lord Jesus Christ the King, Year A: Nov. 20, 2011
Ezek 34:11-12, 15-17; Ps 23; 1 Cor 15:20-26, 28; Matt 25:31-46

Think for a moment of some examples of competitive games that are based upon life itself.

  • You might think of the board game The Game of Life, in which you drive your little plastic car around the board, spinning the wheel and making choices about education, career, family, and retirement.
  • Or you might think of computer strategy games like Civilization or Age of Empires, in which, on a much larger scale, you guide the development of an entire society, making choices about farming, industry, the military, and cultural development.
  • Or you might think of any of the plethora of reality television shows (more…)