Pilgrim Notes

Reflections along the way.

Month: April 2014

Change My Way of Thinking


way of thinking

“Gonna change my way of thinking
Make myself a different set of rules
Gonna change my way of thinking
Make myself a different set of rules
Gonna put my good foot forward
And stop being influenced by fools”

On his Slow Train Coming album, Bob Dylan sang, “Gonna change my way of thinking.” (See BobDylan.com). He is talking about a change rooted in “a different set of rules” that take shape in him putting his best foot forward. These lines sound like they could be informed by the psalmist who is meditating upon Torah. Continue reading

Richard Hooker on Scripture: Simplicity Not Simplistic

richard hookerRichard Hooker suggests that Scripture presents the Gospel with an Evangelical simplicity, but he cautions against simplistic approaches to Scriptural interpretation. According to Charles Miller in “Richard Hooker and the Vision of God,” Hooker warns against simplistic Scriptural study approaches that fail to grasp the rich history, complexity of content, and hierarchy of laws given in Scripture. Continue reading

“Deep in the Sunday
village, forlorn, the sound of swings
in the empty schoolyard
clinking against
their cold steels standards, like diminished
church bells…” – Sidney Lea

Learning How to Live Until We Die

learning how to live

We are learning how to live, how to walk, how to speak, how to love until we breathe our final breath. We continue growing up even as we are growing old. The way of life is also a way of continuous catechism.

Catechism might be understood as formalized instruction in the doctrines of the church for young people preparing to take communion or for new converts to the faith. On a very basic level, catechism is simply a manual of instruction that may include some forms of memorization that help a person entering into the life of a new community, a new field of work, a new language. Continue reading

Law, Order and Life in Torah


I’ve been studying Richard Hooker’s debate with Thomas Cartwright about the nature of Scripture, wisdom and creation, and I thought meditate upon their debate in relation to Torah. Here are a few thoughts about humanity, order and Torah.

The Ten Commandments are given to Israel immediately after the Lord leads them through the Red Sea and rescues them from the grasp of Egypt. The Ten Commandments are given again right before Israel crosses the Jordan and enters into the Promised Land. These words, the heart of Torah teach the children of Israel how to live in this world of time and space. These words instruct the people how to live in this world, whether crossing the wilderness, conquering the new land or settling in their new homes. By rehearsing the wisdom of God revealed in Scripture, the people learn how to orient their lives in relation to God, to other people and to the land (and the rest of creation). Continue reading

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