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About Todd Brewer

Phd in New Testament and Early Christianity from Durham University, England. I have a love for all things alt-rock, Pixar, football (American style), hockey (on ice), poetry, and good, short literature. On Twitter @toddbrewer_

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Author Archive
    

    On “Lawlessness” and Understanding: The Gospel for Jews and Greeks

    The counter-cultural, revolutionary nature of Christianity is en vogue at the moment, and understandably so. The world is not the Gospel; its claims and promises are, in the words of David Zahl, “seculosities” that we can’t help but uncritically accept. We swim amid an ocean of competing ideologies. Part of the appeal of Christianity is […]

    Another Week Ends: Alien Religion, Side Hustles, Jesus the Jew, Glossier/Carhartt, Friendship, Mr. Peanut, Mid-Life Crises, and Demi Lovato,

    1. The highlight of this past week for me comes from David Brooks’s deep dive into historical Jesus research. Much of who Jesus was is perfectly intelligible within his Jewish context: his miracles, his teachings, or his willful poverty. But Brooks, like Ernst Käsemann before him, still finds Jesus to be an entirely anomalous Jewish […]

    Netflix’s “Cheer”: Law and Grace in Action

    It took just three days to plow through the six episodes of Netflix’s latest docuseries Cheer, but it was well worth it. I’m not a cheerleading expert, or even a casual fan, but my initial skepticism was quickly won over by the show’s tear-jerking storytelling. Don’t get me wrong, the flips are as amazing to […]

    The Top Theology Books of 2019

    Farewell 2019! Lots to love about the books that came out this past year. Several of these are instant classics I’ll be paging through for years to come! As always, feel free to let me know in the comments if I’ve missed a deserving book! I’m always on the hunt for a good read… In […]

    “First Coming”, by Madeleine L’Engle

    From The Ordering of Love: The New and Collected Poems of Madeleine L’Engle:

    He did not wait till the world was ready,
    till men and nations were at peace.
    He came when the Heavens were unsteady,
    and prisoners cried out for release.

    He did not wait for the perfect time.
    He came when the need was deep and great.
    He dined with sinners in all their grime,
    turned water into wine.

    He did not wait till hearts were pure.
    In joy he cameto a tarnished world of sin and doubt.
    To a world like ours, of anguished shame
    he came, and his Light would not go out.

    He came to a world which did not mesh,
    to heal its tangles, shield its scorn.
    In the mystery of the Word made Flesh
    the Maker of the stars was born.

    We cannot wait till the world is sane
    to raise our songs with joyful voice,
    for to share our grief, to touch our pain,
    He came with Love: Rejoice! Rejoice!

    Stealing the Joy from the Gospel of Luke: Misadventures in the Christmas Story

    Mary, about to give birth, treks down with Joseph to the backwater town of Bethlehem to fulfill Caesar’s census decree. They arrive at Joseph’s hometown and are greeted by “no vacancy” signs at all hotels, and the Airbnb’s have just been banned by the municipal authorities. The snow begins to fall. They are jet-lagged from […]

    The Elusive Strangeness of Jesus

    People don’t say it often enough: Jesus was pretty weird. He cleared out the Temple with a butter knife (so to speak), he laughed off death threats from Herod, and he regularly insulted his dinner hosts. Jesus held a patent disregard for social graces and conventions. When given the chance, he did or said the […]

    Boys Will Be Boys (and Other Dodgy Excuses)

    I stood a few steps away from my young daughter at a playground, watching her wait patiently as all the boys dashed in front of her and repeatedly took her toys away. Sometimes they would ask, but usually not. I stood there feeling a little helpless, not sure if I should intervene, wondering whether any […]

    Another Week Ends: Religious Decline, Peloton, Halloween Righteousness, Reformation Day, and Kanye

    1a. This week featured a point-counter-point on the religious decline in America. Fewer people are going to church, particularly millennials. Accordingly, Christine Emba sees genuine cause for alarm. Millennials prefer low-cost, substitute religions (read: seculosities!), and the church may not be there as a fallback option in the future: Faith and practice can’t persevere through […]

    There Is a Shrink in Gilead: The Church and Mental Health

    When it comes to the treatment of mental health, many of the therapeutic approaches taken today tend to be highly individualized. The afflicted person goes (alone) to see a therapist, who provides a resources or insight to aid the patient. The broad successes of this approach speaks for itself. Mental health professionals so often see […]

    Paul and the Person: An Interview with Susan Grove Eastman

    Recently I had the privilege of sitting down to interview Susan Grove Eastman to talk about her recently published book, Paul and the Person. Dr. Eastman is the Associate Professor of New Testament at Duke Divinity School, and her book is a fascinating read. Paul and the Person breaks new ground on the complex issue […]

    Mining Netflix: “Father Brown”

    What do you get when you cross Sherlock Holmes with Pope Francis and Arthur Weasley? You get a slightly bumpling but brilliant Catholic priest who moonlights as a murder detective. “Father Brown” is the literary creation of G.K. Chesterton, and the BBC show based on him is now airing on Netflix in its entirety. I […]

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