The Incarnation and the New Law of Grace

In sacred scripture we read that man was created he had a perfect relationship with God.  Man is the pinnacle of creation, and God gave man everything.  In return the Lord asked man not to each of one tree in the garden.  Man did not listen, rebelled, and had to face the consequences of sin for the first time.  The sin of our first parents also applies to us.  We all have sinned, and the penalty for that sin is death.  Saint Paul had the same opinion in Romans 6:23 which states, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (NRSV).  However, the second person of the blessed Trinity, Jesus himself became incarnate to atone and redeem us from our sin.

The incarnation was needed because we could not atone for our sin on our own.  Only someone who was perfect, and without sin could do that.  This perfect sacrifice, Jesus, would also show us the new law of grace.  A way of living, or new law of grace, shows us a deeper understanding of the law.  It shows us how it was supposed to be lived from the beginning, and the divine Son of God, showed us how to live it.  The new law is an interior, infused reality consisting in the grace of the Holy Spirit, received through faith in Jesus Christ and operating through charity.  These virtues, which are also taught in 1 Corinthians 13, are faith, hope, and charity.

Since becoming a catholic these three virtues have been instrumental in my life.  Faith is at the forefront, and the will of Christ is sought in everything that I do.  Faith is the starting point for the New Law, and “the starting point for Christian morality” (Pinckaers 85).  As a father of four, a husband, and one income life throws many curve balls.  Things have not been easy, but my wife and I maintain our hope in Christ.  It is this hope, through faith, that help us persevere and see the good even in the roughest circumstance.  No matter how tight things are we see that there are those who are having much larger problems than ourselves.  We strive to be good disciples, by not only having faith in Christ, but by also having charity.  We trust God for our needs but realize that we are commanded to love our neighbor as ourselves and strive to help whenever possible.  We have found that the practice of the infused virtues has deepened our faith and love for our fellow man.

Image result for incarnation

Works Cited

Pinckaers, Servais.  Morality:  The Catholic View.  St. Augustine’s Press.  South Bend, IN:  2001.  Print.


Go and Bear Fruit

I chose you from the world,
to go and bear fruit that will last, says the Lord.-John 15:16

Today’s gospel reflection is taken from the antiphon before today’s Gospel reading.  Jesus makes a very direct point and simply says “Go and bear fruit that will last”.  It seems so easy, and yet so complicated at the same time.  To bear fruit you have to start with a seed.  In its journey to become fruit the seed go through various stages.  As a seedling it pushes through the dirt towards the sun, it relies on the rain and the sun to nourish it to maturing, and when the time is right it brings forth fruit to bring nourishment to the recipient.

In the Christian life we look to the Son, Jesus, and he provides nourishment through his scripture and the church.  Scripture says that all of us have a gift that can help with the mission of the church.  Some are given the gift of teaching, administration, leadership, mercy, etc.  Each gift is vital and needed to fulfill the mission of the church.  Are we being faithful in this mission?  Using this gift is fruit that will last.  It lasts because it spreads the Gospel and helps teach the next generation that will pass it on.


He who climbs never stops going from beginning to beginning, through beginnings that have no end. He never stops desiring what he already knows. –St. Gregory of Nissa


Gospel Reflection: We all Need a Helper

Jesus said to his disciples:
“When the Advocate comes whom I will send you from the Father,
the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father,
he will testify to me.
And you also testify,
because you have been with me from the beginning.

“I have told you this so that you may not fall away.
They will expel you from the synagogues;
in fact, the hour is coming when everyone who kills you
will think he is offering worship to God.
They will do this because they have not known either the Father or me.
I have told you this so that when their hour comes
you may remember that I told you.”- John 15:26-16:4A

We all need a helper.  From the beginning of creation God said that it was not good for man to be alone (Genesis 2:18).  In today’s Gospel passage Jesus is telling the disciples that the world will hate them because they hated Christ.  Sometimes we tend to forget that the disciples were Jews, and because they followed and proclaimed Christ they were excommunicated from the fellowship of Israel.  They were not able to go into the synagogue and worship as they had always done.  This was serious business, and it becomes even more serious when one looks at the Rabbinic interpretation of Numbers 25:1-13 in the Talmud.  The rabbinic tradition says that apostates were to be killed as a sacrifice to God.  Yikes!

What does all this have to do with us today?  Just like the disciples we are in need of a helper.  Christ has not left us as orphans, but loves and cares for us.  The Holy Spirit was sent from the Father and the Son to be of advocate and comforter.  Just as with the disciples the Holy Spirit will give us courage to live in a world that has a growing hatred for Christ and his Church.  Take heart and have faith.  Christ is with us until the end of the age.  The Holy Spirit will help us testify to the person of Christ, and stand up for what is right.  Go forth today in the peace of Christ, and ask the Holy Spirit to guide your steps.

Image result for holy spirit


Enrich your soul in the great goodness of God: The Father is your table, the Son is your food, and the Holy Spirit waits on you and then makes His dwelling in you. — St. Catherine of Siena

Episode 7: Does discipleship matter? How do I make time to pray? Does God work even if one has no faith?

Listen to this week’s episode here

In this week’s episode I answer listener questions that came in during the week.  The first question asked if discipleship was really necessary, and isn’t getting to Christ what is most important?  The second question was in regard to prayer.  This listener asked with time so limited is prayer really necessary?  The third question, which will be answered more fully next time (I ran out of time) was if God can work even if someone doesn’t have faith?  Great questions!  Keep them coming in.  You can send your questions to or you can send them through my website

Episode 1 of the Hope Within Radio Program

Importance of the Small Group

Aubrey Malphurs says “Disciple making does not end with a person’s conversion, however.  It’s an ongoing process that encourages the believer to follow Christ and become more like Him[1].”  With this taken into account we need to ask ourselves a question.  What is the most effective way to make disciples?  Do we get as many people in one room, and immerse them in biblical knowledge and theological thought?  This has its place, but new believers run the risk of getting lost in the shuffle in this environment.  Dr. Dempsey, states “Christianity is more caught than taught, and to make progress in the disciple-making process, we need good examples good example of people who the Apostle Paul’s paradigm[2].”  Coincidently the Apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ[3].”

To effectively do this in our churches we need to change the way we are doing things.  The Sunday sermon is very important, but it is not the way in which disciples are built.  There are some ministries in our churches that have turned into social clubs instead of ministry. It is time to rethink what we are doing, and align everything to the commandment of making disciples.  According to Dr. Dempsey “The best context for cultivating this kind of environment is a small group within a local church.  With the exception of the first three hundred years of the church, we have not done a good job of creating that structure[4].”

The small group allows for an intimate setting where the scriptures are taught.  The people of the group grow together, encourage each other, and learn from each other.  They hold each other accountable and check up on those members that they have not seen in a while.  It is a different dynamic from the traditional way that the church has operated.  From an evangelization standpoint it is less intimidating for the non-believer who may attend the group.

Dr. Putnam, states “Making disciples is the main reason why the church exists, so everything in a corporate body needs to be funnel people toward a relational small group in which discipleship can best happen[5].”  It has been said many times, and it bears repeating.  A small group is the primary means of making disciples who make disciples.  There are three components to a successful small group and they are the following:  Shepherding, teaching, and authenticity and accountability.

Throughout the scriptures we read of the Lord being a shepherd, and His followers as sheep.  In a small group the leader attempts to create an environment where members are helping each other.  We are people who deal with many stressors in our lives.  In our small groups a member may be overwhelmed with something, or everything, that is going on in their lives.  The leader will offer group prayer for this hurting member, and someone in the group may share an experience to help the member through.  The member of the group is treated like a family member, and listening is key.  In regard to this David Horton states, “Strong groups are led by those who build a strong sense of synergy, community, and solidarity[6].”  Without this sense of community the shepherding process will not be effective.  People will not share their experiences, or what is going on in their lives.  At that point the whole disciple making process halts.

The second aspect of a small group it that of teaching.  This is an environment where real teaching takes place.  People are just not given a sermon and sent home.  Teaching in the small group is also relational.  The members are encouraged to ask questions, and the Bible is central for teaching.  In short it is not just another Bible study.  There is plenty of Bible study happening, but it goes deeper than that.  When people think of a Bible study they think of one person doing most of the talking while everyone else sits back and listens[7].

In a small group the teacher is more of a facilitator.  The leader helps the group participate in biblical discussions, ask questions, and share their own experiences.  This is key for the leader to understand if the text is being understood.  If it is not being understood then the goal of making disciples took a step backward.  Always point back to Bible to show them where the answers are.

Lastly other keys to a small group are authenticity and accountability.  Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, states “Two are better than one because they have good return on their labor.  For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion.  But woe to the one who falls where there is not another to lift him up.[8]”  The KJV Biblical Commentary says about these verses, “A man alone who is about to be overcome by any onslaught may be kept from ruin through the helpful hand of his friend.  Such companionship is of inestimable value and is certainly a profit to all those who possess it[9].”  There are no free agents in Christianity.  We are unable to go through this journey of faith alone.  When we do the enemy sees us as lost sheep, and since we do not have the protection of the group, we will be easy prey for him.  It is important for the leader to espouse empathy to the group, and let the group know that listening is best.  It is human nature to want to fix another’s problems, but it is important to listen and share.

When struggles are brought up there is most likely someone in the group who has had a similar struggle.  Leaders need to foster an environment of authentic sharing where hearts are being transformed.  It is also an environment where accountability is fostered.  How will the group help a member who is struggling with a particular sin?  We cannot create disciples if there is a lingering sin that a person is dealing with.  We need to help our members get over those.

In conclusion the small group is vital to the believer and the church.  It is an environment where relationships are forged, lives are changed, disciples are made, and disciples are sent out.  They are sent out to change the world with the Gospel of Christ.  What else is there?  The world around us is hurting, and morals are in decay.  The small group exists to create disciples to be light to the world.





1 Corinthians 11:1 (New American Standard Version).

Earley, Dave, and Rod Dempsey. Disciple Making Is…How to live the Great Commission with Passion and Confidence. Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing Group, 2013.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (New American Standard Bible).

Horton, David. The Portable Seminary. Bloomington, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2006.

King James Version Bible Commentary. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, Inc, 2005.

Malphurs, Aubrey. Strategic Disciple Making. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2009.

Putnam, Jim, and Bobby Harrington with Robert Coleman. Discipleshift. Grand Rapids, MICHIGAN: Zondervan, 2013.



[1] Aubrey Malphurs, Strategic Disciple Making (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2009), 34.

[2] Dave Earley and Rod Dempsey, Disciple Making Is…How to live the Great Commission with Passion and Confidence (Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing Group, 2013), 276.

[3] 1 Corinthians 11:1 (New American Standard Bible).

[4] Dave Earley and Rod Dempsey, Disciple Making Is…How to live the Great Commission with Passion and Confidence (Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing Group, 2013), 59.

[5] Jim Putnam and Bobby Harrington with Robert Coleman, Discipleshift (Grand Rapids, MICHIGAN: Zondervan, 2013), 184.

[6] David Horton, The Portable Seminary (Bloomington, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 2006), 597.

[7] Jim Putnam and Bobby Harrington with Robert Coleman, Discipleshift (Grand Rapids, MICHIGAN: Zondervan, 2013), 190.

[8] Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 (New American Standard Bible).

[9] King James Version Bible Commentary (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, Inc, 2005), 742.


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Stuck on Stage One

Everything we do is done in stages.  As an example we learn to crawl before walking, and walking before running.  The point of a stage is to prepare for something more difficult in the future.  It is the same with discipleship.  In discipleship, there are three stages which are evangelize, disciple, and train.  These three steps, and following them to their fruition, help build on fire disciples that set the church ablaze.

The first step is evangelizing because we are unable to disciple someone if they have not yet accepted Christ.  Dr. Earley states “Having such information does others no good unless, or until, we share it.  We have to proclaim the good news [1]”.  This can be a time consuming step, and we will do well while remaining patient.  Not everyone accepts the Gospel the first time they hear it, in fact it may take several times.  We must remain obedient and plant seeds even though someone may be doing the watering.  Keep that person in prayer and pray for them by name.  This is very powerful and will keep the Holy Spirit moving in their life.  Remember that Satan is always trying to keep them from conversion. 

The second stage is that training disciples.  Jesus states in Luke 9:23 “If anyone wishes to come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.”  Jesus is saying here that we must die to ourselves and pursue him.  Kyle Idleman writes “When Jesus says ‘Come after,’ he is describing a passionate pursuit of someone you love.  So the best way to understand what Jesus is wanting from us as followers is to compare how we pursue him to how we would pursue someone with whom we want to have a romantic relationship [2].”  I have a question for those of us that are married.  Are we pursuing Jesus the same way we pursued our spouses?  We are willing to pay the ultimate prices for our spouses, support them in everything they do, we tell them our inner most secrets, and listen for ways to make our own lives better.  We should do the same in following Jesus, and also do the same as we train disciples.  Making disciples was also the last command that Jesus commanded of us in the Great Commission.

The third and final stage is training disciples to go out into the world to make more disciples.  The Apostle Paul is a great example of what it means to train disciples.  This great man of God evangelized almost everywhere in the known world, established churches, taught new believers the faith, and trained those newly trained disciples to go out into the world and do the same things he did for them.  Paul writes to Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:2 “And the things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses. These entrust to faithful men, who will be able to teach other also.”  The Apostle Paul “serves as a paradigm for the third and final goal of a disciple maker:  to multiply disciples to be disciple makers [3].”  To do this we must know the teachings of Jesus, select our own faithful people from among those being disciples, have a regular time to meet with them and mentor them, show them how to do ministry, let them do ministry on their own after proper instruction, and keep them focused.  My pastor is bold and will call people out during his sermons to tell them what ministry he thinks they will be good in.  I asked him why he does this and he said “The Holy Spirit has been asking them already.  I am just doing his bidding.”  Some respond and some do not, but for those that do he coaches them personally.  He studies with them, meets with them, and goes to the group meetings so the people do not feel that they are in it alone.  When he feels they are ready he releases them to do the same thing.


I think a problem with the church as whole is that we are stuck on stage one.



Works Cited

1.        Earley, Dave, and Rod Dempsey. Disciple Making Is…: How to Live the Great Commission with Passion and Confidence. Nashville: B&H Publishing Group, 2013, 130.  

2.       Idleman, Kyle.  Not a Fan.  Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2011, 130.

3.       Earley, Dave, and Rod Dempsey. Disciple Making Is…: How to Live the Great Commission with Passion and Confidence. Nashville: B&H Publishing Group, 2013, 157.

The Word

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”- John 1:1

John 1:1, in my opinion, is one of the most beautiful passages in scripture.  Jesus is described as “the Word” who became incarnate and dwelt among us.  In referring to Jesus as the “Word” John is drawing a parallel to the creation account in Genesis.  As D.A. Carson explains, “The ‘Word’ in the Old Testament is his powerful self-expression in creation, revelation and salvation [1].”  In doing so John is saying that Jesus existed before all creation, and even had a hand in creation.  There are many sources that show this depiction of Christ, and some are even extra-biblical.  The Greek word that underlies this is the word logos.  The stoics used the word to describe the principle by which everything exists [2].  There are also many places in the Old Testament which describe “the Word” as God’s act in creation.  These verses include such passages as Genesis 1:3, Psalm 33:6, and the “word of the Lord” in Isaiah 38:4, Jeremiah 1:4, and Ezekiel 1:6 [3].


The topic in question is the “Word” and it has huge implications on John’s gospel.  It lays the very foundation for his Christology, and describes just who Jesus is and what he has already done.  In stating that “the Word was with God and the Word was God” John is giving us a crucial understanding of the Godhead.  He is saying that the “Word” is pre-existent before all creation, is with God, and is God.  So how is John relatable to the modern reader?  The message that he wrote were is still very applicable to us today.  We live in a increasingly postmodern society who says that things like Jesus and scripture do not matter.  Some will go so far as to say that Jesus never existed despite historical evidence to the contrary.  To the modern reader I would say that using John 1 we can see that Jesus was around before creation, was not a created being, was creator of everything that was made, and through him is grace.  This grace through faith in him allows us to become the children of God.  He calls us to follow him.

Works Cited

1.  Carson, D.A.  The Gospel According to John.  (Grand Rapids, MI:  Eerdmans Publishing, 1991), 116.

2.  Ibid, 114.

3.  Ibid, 115.

Image result for apostle John

Guest Post: Separated at Rebirth

Special thanks go out to Tyler Alexander for submitting this post as a Guest Blogger.  Please check out Tyler’s blog at  Thanks again Tyler, and God bless you!


1:Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

2:(Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)

3:Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;

4:And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

5:By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:

6:Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

Romans 1:1-6 KJV

Paul, a servant of Christ called, separated unto the Gospel of God.
That verse, that powerful statement, stopped me dead in my tracks early in the reading of Romans. There are  a few things I want to touch base with on how Paul is introduced in this greetings to the Roman Church.  I was moved on the delivery of Paul’s spiritual resume or background, this description of who he has been made into through Jesus Christ. Though, I think to really be able to appreciate the dynamics of this formal introduction of who Paul is, you really have to fully grasp who and what he was before his conversion to Christ.

If there’s any pedigree, if there’s anyone who had anything to benefit or offer the world in a self righteous way of saying so, it was Paul. Paul says in Philippians chapter 3 “Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:” Paul says “If anyone thinks he has reason for confidence in flesh, I have more”.  That’s a bold statement, some would even say condescending. I believe it to be true. Given the settings and timeline Paul was the prototype. That is, if you’re looking from a carnal perspective at least. He goes on to say that he was circumcised, born of Israel, from the tribe of Benjamin, and a ” Hebrew of Hebrews”. Such an emphasis on the ending as in a modern way of saying a man’s man, an alpha male of the Israelites if you will. Those traits almost just build up as a checklist marking the blocks of why Paul was more than “good enough”.  He follows with as to being found righteous in the law and early commandments he was “blameless”. As to zeal, a ” persecutor of the church”.  This guy was like the Gladiator of the Pharisees.
I enjoy how he looks back on it a few verses after this building himself so highly and considers it all as dung. Now, I haven’t done a big biblical background search on this whole meaning of dung but I’m fairly certain in where Paul is leading the reader here.

But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.
Philippians 3:7

Looking back into the  greeting again I want to magnify what message has been put on me to share on his spiritual identity in Christ.
Separated unto
To be set apart
Paul has been separated from the tribe of Benjamin, separated from the safe zone of legalisms in circumcisions, separated from the idea of being born in Israel and of the Hebrews.
Paul had been clamped unto the Gospel of God. He was attached and clinging to Christ. Assigned as a bondservant of Jesus.

The more we become separated into the ambitions that are outside of the will of God, the more focused we are on the world, and the more we become stapled onto it.

Once he had been separated from God in being of a tribe, a culture, a religion. Being one of the world and all it had to offer. Here he is set apart and called, a servant, separated to the gospel of God.

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, 2 Corinthians 6:17


I believe after the meeting with Jesus on Damascus road Paul ran from the idea of fulfilling the law because at one point he literally had beaten it into so many people. Paul’s new life becomes specific in which he was called to in this gospel of God in verse 3.

“Concerning his son, Jesus Christ, our Lord”.

If we are to turn an eye to our own resume, how we would be introduced before a holy God, what would it say? Would it be highly decorated with the things of this world, fulfilling the criteria of the modern society requirements? Would it be ironically familiar with the chapters of Ecclesiastes filled with vanity?

Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:
Romans 1:6 KJV

Have we been separated, according to our calling, concerning His son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ?

A Life of Devotion

What would Jesus Do?  This phrase became very popular in the 1990’s and had the power of merchandising behind it.  Christian Rock bands made songs by the title, T-shirts were made, and a bracelet that simply read “WWJD” was all the rage.  Jesus is our ultimate example and this is echoed by Klaus Issler who writes, “By refining our understanding of Jesus Christ we can benefit from the Bible’s teaching that Jesus is our genuine example[1].”  In imitating Christ we are just not imitating a man, but the incarnate Son of God who was our perfect substitute for our sin[2].  Medieval writer and theologian Thomas Kempis puts it this way, “By these words of Christ we are advised to imitate His life and habits, if we wish to be truly enlightened and free from all blindness of heart. Let our chief effort, therefore, be to study the life of Jesus Christ[3].”

Many writers have discussed imitating Christ, but there are several passages in scripture that do just that.  Some of them even record Jesus saying those very words.  The Lord said in John 13:15, “I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you[4].”  Paul also wrote about Christ being our example in Philippians 2:4-11, the writer of the epistle to the Hebrews echoes this in Hebrews 12:1-6, and Peter writes about it in 1 Peter 2:21-23.  The passage in 1 Peter is especially clear as Peter writes in 1 Peter 2:21, “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps[5].  If one truly accepts Christ, repents, and makes a confession of faith then it is expected that he will seek to imitate Christ[6].

During the 19th century, and into the 20th, liberal theology had started to gain a foothold within Christianity.  Liberal theologians believed that Christianity had to adapt or die, and in doing so several key doctrines were denied.  According to theologian Roger Olson, “It may be identified with denial of biblical inspiration and rejection of dogmas such as the Trinity or the Deity of Christ[7].”  In 1897 Charles Sheldon wrote a novel titled In His Steps, and it challenged the very foundations of the liberalism that was running rampant.  This was very appealing before World War I as it was easy to read and cut to the heart of Liberalism.  Charles Sheldon writes, “giving illustrations from the life and teachings of Jesus to show how faith in the Christ helped to save men because of the pattern or character He displayed for their imitation[8].  Charles Sheldon also describes the deity of Christ, the Trinity, and the atonement in his novel.  This is also why Bible-believing evangelicals found the work so appealing.  Not only was it readable, but it was a great devotion that reinforced the foundations of Christian dogma.

What are the values or dangers in the What Would Jesus Do Movement?  The value is that one has the potential to become a better disciple of Christ.  Jesus gives us the ultimate example of how to live the Christian life.  We will have setbacks, but we can go to him for anything as he knows how we are tempted since he himself was tempted.  We can learn from his character, his study, his quiet time, and his prayer life.  So are there really any dangers?  If we are looking to how Jesus lived then there is the very real possibility of turning Jesus into a good moral teacher.  If this happens then the point was missed, especially if we are no longer looking at him as the perfect savior[9].

In conclusion imitating Christ is a practice with biblical merit, and it is something that Christ told us to do.  It does not mean that we will be sinless, but it does mean that our perfect savior expects us to live godly lives.  These godly and loving lives will be seen by non-believers and will be helpful in evangelization.





“In His Steps By Charles Sheldon,” Christian Classics Ethereal Library, accessed July 5, 2016,

1 Peter 2:21 (New International Version).

John 13:15 (New International Version).

Kempis, Thomas A. Imitation of Christ. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 1996.

Newton, Gary C. Growing Toward Spiritual Maturity. Wheaton, IL: Good News Publishers, 2004.

Olson, Roger E. The Story of Christian Theology. Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 1999.

Sanders, Fred, and Klaus Issler, eds. Jesus in Trinitarian Perspective. Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing, 2007.

Yarnell, Malcolm B. The Formation of Christian Doctrine. Nashville, TN: B&h Academic, 2007.



[1] Fred Sanders and Klaus Issler, eds., Jesus in Trinitarian Perspective (Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing, 2007), 192.

[2] Gary C Newton, Growing Toward Spiritual Maturity (Wheaton, IL: Good News Publishers, 2004), 88.

[3] Thomas A Kempis, Imitation of Christ (Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software, 1996), 1.

[4] John 13:15 (New International Version).

[5] 1 Peter 2:21 (New International Version).

[6] Malcolm B Yarnell, The Formation of Christian Doctrine (Nashville, TN: B&h Academic, 2007), 191.

[7] Roger E. Olson, The Story of Christian Theology (Downers Grove, IL: IVP Academic, 1999), 538.

[8] “In His Steps by Charles Sheldon,” Christian Classics Ethereal Library, accessed July 5, 2016,

[9] Fred Sanders and Klaus Issler, eds., Jesus in Trinitarian Perspective (Nashville, TN: B&h Publishing, 2007), 197.

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