Hymn Review: “O World, See Here Suspended”

Christian hymnody takes us through a wide range of emotions. There are joyful hymns. There are contemplative hymns. There are triumphant hymns. There are peaceful hymns. And there are mournful hymns. During the season of Lent, we get more of the contemplative and mournful hymns. But they’re not devoid of joy. They might not sound… Read More ›

The Audacity of Confession

Recently, while we were confessing our sins together, this phrase caught my attention: “Grant us forgiveness of all our sins.” It’s not like I hadn’t noticed the phrase before. It’s the central phrase in the confession of sin. But it struck me how audacious that request is. Who do we think we are, that we… Read More ›

Who Were the Wise Men?

This part of the church year feels a little bit rushed. I’m specifically thinking of the Christmas season (Dec. 25 through Jan. 5) and the beginning of Epiphany (Jan. 6). There is so much biblical ground to cover that we would need to have church three or four times a week to cover it all…. Read More ›

God’s Law Is Good for Us

I was scrolling a certain social media platform recently when I saw a post that said, “Jesus doesn’t care how many Bible verses you have memorized. He cares about how you treat people.” The best construction is that someone is concerned that Christians would “Be doers of the word, and not hearers only” (James 1:22)…. Read More ›

What’s So Bad About Sin?

Christians still talk about sin. The world has moved on, or at least it’s trying to move on. But we still talk about sin. As the world tries to move on from sin, it preaches acceptance. But it’s acceptance without forgiveness, and so it gives no peace. Concerning those things that Scripture classifies as sins,… Read More ›

New Midweek Plan for this Fall

For the past several months, the deacons and the church council have been discussing a new Wednesday program to begin this fall. We will be joining forces with our sister church in East Grand Forks, Christ the King Free Lutheran Church. A steering committee between the two churches was set up to develop a plan…. Read More ›

The Purpose of the Sabbath

The word “Sabbath” means “rest.” In the Old Testament, it was the last day of the week, on which the Lord commanded the people of Israel to do no work, but to remember that he created all things (Ex. 20:9-11) and he delivered them from Egypt (Deut. 5:12-15). The Sabbath is not just about ceasing… Read More ›

Advent Hymn Preview

I really enjoy our church’s hymnody. Someone might say, “Well, yeah. You get to pick them.” And I suppose that’s part of it. I rarely pick hymns I don’t like. But I think the bigger part of it is that in order to pick them, I have to read them ahead of time. This gives… Read More ›


Sometimes I say something in a sermon where, on further reflection, I think to myself, I didn’t explain that very well. This happened recently in the sermon about blind Bartimaeus (Mark 10:46-52). Commenting on the simple fact that we know his name, his father’s name, where he was from, and where he used to sit… Read More ›