An Open Notebook

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Tracing the Trinity


If you chop the Trinity, it’s tritheism. If you spread the Trinity it becomes pantheism or Gnoticism. If you collapse the Trinity into a shapeshifter, it’s Modalism recast. And, if you turn the Trinity into merely a will, it’s just Arianism again. All these are so easy to do, churches would do well to recite and refer to the Nicene Creed, lest we fail to represent our Lord well. People...

Love Like Lombard


We need more ‘Peter Lombards’ in the world. Though he is not among the oft-spoken theologians, Lombard likely stands of equal or greater importance to the kingdom of God — at least, in our limited vision of history. While the legacy of many theologians lives on in their ideas, or quotations, or rhetoric, Lombard’s lasting impression remains his frameworks. Many theologians are known for their...

Dark Forest Ivories


My favorite quote about chess, written quite some time ago, is as follows. It too can be applied to other sports, but aptly speaks to the complexity of the ivory game. 

“You must take your opponent into a deep dark forest where 2+2=5, and the path leading out is only wide enough for one.”

Man Shall Not Live on Melodies Alone


Classical music, though an endearing form to many, can be easily differentiated from ‘popular music,’ which plays on the radio. Yet, what’s the difference between the two? What makes the latter, ‘popular’ and the other ‘classical?’ Why isn’t classical music as popular as ‘pop’ music? Many differences could be discussed: length, instrumentation, harmonies, melodies, and other technicalities. But...

A Prayer of Catherine of Seina


Some suppose you can do better by razing and remaking, but I think it’d be better to revive and utilize the past. Eternal God, eternal Trinity, you have made the blood of Christ so precious through his sharing in your divine nature. You are a mystery as deep as the sea; the more I search, the more I find, and the more I find the more I search for you. But I can never be satisfied; what I...

What is the Church? And, Why Does it Matter?


What is the church? Should we say it’s a mere assembly, meant to alleviate congregants of existential worry, or a people who undertake similar hobbies, like a chess club? Ought we call this people a counseling voice, a community group, or a comforting body? No, the Christian must contest all of these. But the questions which pertain to the church’s identity are wrapped up in essa, ‘what it is’...

Praying the Ten Commandments


Written by Martin Luther. Almighty and Everlasting God: you alone are God, there is no other. You have revealed yourself to us in many ways, through your creation, scripture and the prophets, and through your Son Jesus Christ.You have also revealed yourself to us by name, so that we can call out to you in faith, hope, and love. Help us to always remember that you are with us.Help us to keep the...

A Fortiori Patterns


The Book of Judges appears to be largely based upon a fortiori typlogies drawn and governed by Genesis (with a select few from Exodus). Israel’s judges always seem to amplify (usually for the worse) something that happened in Genesis account, the historical folktales woven together as caricatures of biblical figures (mainly the Patriarchs, and those who revolve significantly around them), and are...

Is the Rule of Faith Scripture?


When they mention the ‘Rule of Faith,’ both Irenaeus and Tertullian clearly demonstrate they mean ‘faith in One, Triune God; the creation of his world; Christ’s incarnation, death, resurrection; and the return of the Lord, his second coming, which will result in eternal salvation and judgment.’ And, over the course of time, as Irenaeus relays, the Valentinians...

The Wild Duck of Denmark


A parable, by Søren Kierkegaard, in connection to the previous post on James 5. “A wild duck was flying northward with his mates across Europe during the springtime. En route, he happened to land in a barnyard in Denmark, where he quickly made friends with the tame ducks that lived there. The wild duck enjoyed the corn and fresh water. He decided to stay for an hour, then for a day, then for a...

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