Letters and Life: On Being a Writer, On Being a Christian by Bret Lott (Review)

Bret Lott is a writer, he’s a creative writer, and he’s a creative Christian writer. I don’t think he would write a normal review — summary, strengths, and interaction. That would be the easy route. That would, in terms of its category, “borrow from the vast steaming pile of clichés we always have ready at … More Letters and Life: On Being a Writer, On Being a Christian by Bret Lott (Review)

A Wedding Poem

WEDDING INVITATION POEM Gunner & Cindi Gundersen Fall 2001 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ … More A Wedding Poem

This Is Why

This is why. This is why you should beware of starting sentences with “this.” When you do this, your meaning will be somewhat vague. When you don’t do this, your meaning will be more clear. “But wait,” the grammar cop objects, “this is only unclear because you started the entire post with an antecedent-less ‘this.’” My … More This Is Why

A Word to the Would-Be Teacher (James 3:1-13)

James, some of us are interested in teaching — you know, preaching in church, teaching the Bible, writing good books, leading small groups, blogging biblical insights, posting instructive Facebook notes.  What do you think? Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers. Why not? There are two main reasons. What’s the first reason? We who teach will … More A Word to the Would-Be Teacher (James 3:1-13)

The Decline of the Greek Infinitive

Did you know that beginning in Greco-Roman times, the Greek infinitive began to decline in popular usage, and by the Byzantine period had all but disappeared in common communication?  There are a lot of little linguistic jewels in this description by Antonius Jannaris in his Historical Greek Grammar: Notwithstanding its convenience, the Greek infinitive, compared … More The Decline of the Greek Infinitive

The End of the Last Word

One interesting (and horrible) thing about the endless tidbit discussions encouraged by contemporary written media is that the wonderful concept of the last, striking, unanswerable word is virtually unattainable.  We’ve reached, at least in some settings, the end of the last word. You know that 15-comment Facebook discussion packed with lowercase one-liners where everyone’s channeling their inner debate team champion and … More The End of the Last Word

Imaginary Conversations

I’ve had several remarkable conversations recently.  I made incredible points with decleating rhetoric complete with magnetic emotion.  In each case my conversation partner was slow-witted and unimpressive, and more or less faded into the background.  I was oratorically indestructible, surprising even myself with my penetrating words and impeccable argumentation.  Propositions were concrete and immovable.  Illustrations … More Imaginary Conversations

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (15)

Here are some approximate quotes from John Hannah’s lecture on Jonathan Edwards’ 1757 work The Great Doctrine of Original Sin Defended.  The technical term for the doctrine of sin is “hamartiology,” from the Greek word hamartia).  If there’s one doctrine that we instinctively revile or at least ignore, it’s this one.  It devastates our perceived … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (15)

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (14)

Here are more loose, assorted quotes from John Hannah and his Winterim class that I took in January on the Life and Writings of Jonathan Edwards.  These are from his lectures on three separate topics: (1) Edwards’ History of the Work of Redemption; (2) the “Communion Controversy” (which ended in Edwards’ dismissal from his pastorate); and … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (14)

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (13)

I know — no one probably thought that I had more John Hannah quotes from my class on Jonathan Edwards seven months ago.  But I do.  And I’m not recycling them.  When taking classes from masterful professors, I lose all self-control in note-taking and basically end up with a partial transcript.  Actually, it’s a choice I made awhile back in my … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (13)

Isn’t There a Better Way to Say That? Scholarly Writing and the Need for Clarity

Over the weekend I read an article on Paul’s missionary endeavors.  The article was good but the writing was occasionally constipated.  I’m not wanting to embarrass or criticize anyone, but I think that some of the following examples illustrate the lack of verbal clarity that plagues a lot of scholarly writing.  Long words and complex … More Isn’t There a Better Way to Say That? Scholarly Writing and the Need for Clarity

Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (12)

These are loose quotes from two of John Hannah’s lectures on (1) Edwards’ preaching and (2) Edwards’ work entitled A Treatise on Grace.  The latter was tremendously helpful to me in understanding the nature and indwelling of the Holy Spirit.  But as you may suspect, not all of these quotes are just about preaching or just about the Holy … More Wit and Wisdom from John Hannah (12)