56 episodes

Phillips Theological Seminary is providing you, our gracious donors and supporters, with a daily Advent Devotional podcast. Phillips is grateful that we can offer you this resource. You may also read the devotional on the Phillips website.
This year has been difficult and strange in so many ways. But we have the hope, peace, joy and love that Advent brings. I personally hope and pray that each devotion speaks to your life and is a balm in this weary time.
The devotional is an important part of our goal to support and educate the whole church. We value your contribution to the seminary and consider you a part of our community.
We have hope in the unchanging, sacrificial love of God, love of each other, our congregations and the love that brings equality and justice into the world through the birth of Jesus. We hope that as you read this booklet you are inspired to deepen your faith and you renew your hope.
Peace and Blessings,
Malisa Pierce
Senior Director of Stewardship and Alumnae/i Relations

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

Daily Advent Devotional Phillips Seminary

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Phillips Theological Seminary is providing you, our gracious donors and supporters, with a daily Advent Devotional podcast. Phillips is grateful that we can offer you this resource. You may also read the devotional on the Phillips website.
This year has been difficult and strange in so many ways. But we have the hope, peace, joy and love that Advent brings. I personally hope and pray that each devotion speaks to your life and is a balm in this weary time.
The devotional is an important part of our goal to support and educate the whole church. We value your contribution to the seminary and consider you a part of our community.
We have hope in the unchanging, sacrificial love of God, love of each other, our congregations and the love that brings equality and justice into the world through the birth of Jesus. We hope that as you read this booklet you are inspired to deepen your faith and you renew your hope.
Peace and Blessings,
Malisa Pierce
Senior Director of Stewardship and Alumnae/i Relations

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    Christmas Day: Life

    Christmas Day: Life

    Week Four
    December 25, 2021
    Christmas Day: Life 
    John 1:1-14
    What has come into being through him was life… the light for all people. John 1:4
    John’s Gospel opens its presentation of Jesus with a communication metaphor, the Word. And it employs the Hebrew Bible paradigm of Wisdom the communicator. 
    The Hebrew Bible, notably Proverbs chapter 8, presents Wisdom as a female figure who exists “in the beginning” with God. She comes from God to communicate divine presence and purposes among humans. She seeks to draw people into relationship with God as God’s friends. Among people she experiences acceptance and rejection. 
    John’s Gospel borrows this paradigm. It presents Jesus as the definitive word who reveals or communicates divine presence and purposes among people. 
    What does Jesus communicate? “What has come into being through him was life…the light for all people” (John 1:4). Jesus manifests the life-giving, liberating, and loving purposes of God. The word becomes flesh and lives among us (John 1:14). Jesus lives in solidarity with victims of dominating and life-depleting power. He opposes the damage caused by indiscriminate and self-serving power. He pursues justice that honors the dignity of all people and their access to just societal structures and requisite resources for good life.
    Communication, though, can be ambiguous. A long tradition has preferred to spiritualize and individualize this “life.” Some interpretations emphasize life that “saves souls” but ignores bodies, that focuses on the future but not the present, that concerns individuals but not societal structures and practices. Such claims ignore that the Word becomes flesh, lives among us, and offers life to all. 
    Dr. Warren Carter
    LaDonna Kramer Meinders Professor of New Testament

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min
    Good News for the Working Class

    Good News for the Working Class

    Week Four
    December 24, 2021
    Good News for the Working Class
    Luke 2:1-20
    When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let us go now to Bethlehem and see this thing that has taken place, which the Lord has made known to us.” Luke 2:15
    Sheep are very dependent animals and require all of their daily needs to be provided. Since they don’t have a strong survival mechanism, they are easy prey for predators. When sheep are in an open, hostile environment, they require a protector, a shepherd who guards and guides the sheep. Without a shepherd, death of the sheep is certain.
    Although being a shepherd was a common profession, it was not a very well respected profession. The shepherd was not seen as noble. Instead, the shepherd was regarded as dirty, low class, and unprincipled. The shepherd, who worked outdoors all the time, had to combat the weather as well as combat carnivorous animals like wolves, bears, and lions. On occasion, a shepherd also battled thieves who sought to steal the sheep. Without a shepherd, the sheep might wander away and perish. The shepherd was required to be alert, watchful, fearless, and attentive.
    On that holy night, the skies became the backdrop of a magnificent drama that invited the ordinary to participate in an extraordinary event. The night became as day as the good news was proclaimed to the socially impoverished. God calls everyone to experience saving grace. The shepherds did not question, “What is this?” or “What does this mean?” Rather, being inspired by their fidelity, they chose to collectively travel to witness what had been declared to them. Their faith made them a part of the sacred scene that we cherish during this season. Once they arrived at the manger, they kept watch over the Lamb of God who also became the Good Shepherd!
    Dr. Lee H. Butler, Jr.
    Vice-President of Academic Affairs and Academic Dean and
    William Tabbernee Professor of the History of Religions and Africana Pastoral Theology

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min
    Mary’s Song in Troubled Times

    Mary’s Song in Troubled Times

    Week Four
    December 23, 2021
    Mary’s Song in Troubled Times
    Luke 1:46b–55
    [G*d] has come to the aid of Israel, his child, a reminder of mercy. Luke 1:54 (Common English Bible)
    Life can bring about uncertain times when it is difficult to recognize G*d’s love. The pressures of life can bombard our senses as we anticipate end-moments, those times when pain ends, and dominance is achieved. Interpretations of Mary’s song often assume this posture: eyes forward we see pre-emptive praise for Christ-mediated end-moments of salvation and victory. 
    I pose an alternate posture. Mary, a betrothed yet unmarried Galilean woman, was an expectant mother. Imagine her not as mother of G*d but as a young woman in a hostile, patriarchal world holding on to a promise. Imagine this vulnerable woman aware of her condition while not yet showing. Imagine Mary, living daily in ever-present awareness of being discovered and castigated. Have you ever felt vulnerable? To society? To the economy? To a virus? Amidst her danger, Mary held Gabriel’s promise that the Holy Spirit would move on her behalf, and it did. Despite cultural norms and stereotypes Mary found safety with Elizabeth. It was in Mary’s service (to Elizabeth) that she was extolled. Elizabeth’s words fell upon Mary’s ears creating a profound moment of love and affirmation, a moment prompted by the spirit. Might Mary’s song be euphoric praise for the steadfast love of G*d, articulated in the unexpected outpouring and transformational relationship fostered by Elizabeth?
    Covid-19 has wreaked havoc on the world. So many of us grapple with how to live safely and authentically in times of vulnerability. I do not know what Sars-CoV2 will be like by Christmas. I’m uncertain if the delta, lambda, or nu variants will shutter church doors, national boundaries, or claim millions more lives. Yet, advent calls us to be reminded of G*d’s love, a promise embodied in Christ’s birth. May we, in our most vulnerable moments, be reminded that G*d’s love is with us, now and tomorrow.
    Dr. Arthur F. Carter, Jr.
    Assistant Professor of New Testament

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min
    An Inclusive Faith

    An Inclusive Faith

    Week Four
    December 22, 2021
    An Inclusive Faith
    Ephesians 2:11-22
    He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near…. Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household. Ephesians 2:17, 19
    As we near the culmination of the celebration of Advent, the juxtaposition of today’s Hebrew and Christian lectionary texts provide an interesting meditation on the journey and transformation this Advent makes possible. Indeed, the incarnation demonstrates for us what Willie James Jennings in The Christian Imagination calls an “intimate joining” we are called to manifest in our own lives. 
    As those who have been grafted into another’s story, made fellow citizens and also members of God’s household, one would think by now that Christians would be better witnesses to learning from others’ varied experiences, reconciling and loving across differences. Instead, we too often use religion—whether Christianity broadly or denominations more specifically—to exclude. 
    By contrast, today’s Hebrew text from Micah reflects a monotheism, to be sure, but not a closed monotheism. Even in “the last days,” it allows that “all the nations may walk in the name of their gods.” Likewise, Revelation 21 surprises us with the mention of “nations” and “kings of the earth” in the New Jerusalem. Both Micah (4:2) and Revelation (21:24) speak to the nations seeking God’s wisdom and coming to walk in God’s paths.
    May this Advent season’s example of humility and emptying inspire us anew to empty ourselves and open our hearts, eschewing our own “wisdom” that we may seek God’s alone and walk in the ways set before us.
    Kaaryn McCall
    Alumna (2020)

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min
    Life in the Darkness

    Life in the Darkness

    Week Four
    December 21, 2021
    Life in the Darkness
    Romans 8:18-30
    For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen? Romans 8:24
    Today is the Winter Solstice. In the northern hemisphere it’s the darkest day of the year. Sometimes I think darkness gets a bad rap. The fact that the church picked this time of the year as Jesus’ birth is not a coincidence. Christianity baptized many traditions and claimed them as ours. My favorite carol is “In the Bleak Midwinter”—which fills my soul. Today I want to celebrate darkness.
    In 1986 I moved to the San Luis Valley in Colorado. My 11 years in that mystical place gave me many gifts. Our home was on an acreage away from the town. Sometimes I would go outside at night just to breath the alpine air. The stars always put on a show. I had been doing this for a while when I realized that what I thought was a collection of clouds, was actually the Milky Way galaxy. 
    One summer we hosted an international exchange student from Japan. I will never forget walking outside with him on one of his first nights with us. He stopped and pointed to the sky, “Beautiful,” was his only word. He explained that in Tokyo you can never see the stars because “we have too much light” (light pollution).
    The eighth chapter of Romans ranks up there with my favorite Christmas carol. It reminds me that at the core of our faith is the truth of hope. That hope is grounded in the reality that “the Spirit helps us in our weakness” (vs 26). In the supposed darkness of these times, whether in our communities or our beings, the forces of light and hope are present. 
    Rev. Dr. Mark W. Pumphrey
    President of the Phillips Alumni Association
    Senior Pastor at First Christian Church in Greeley, Colorado

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min
    Praise the LORD

    Praise the LORD

    Week Four
    December 20, 2021
    Praise the LORD
    Psalm 113
    Praise the LORD! Praise, O servents of the LORD; praise the name of the LORD. Blessed be the name of the LORD from this time on and forevermore. From the rising of the sun to its setting the name of the LORD is to be praised. The LORD is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. Who is like the LORD our God, who is seated on high, who looks far down on the heavens and the earth? He raises the poor from the dust, and lifts the needy from the ash heap, to make them sit with princes, with the princes of his people. He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyous mother of children. Praise the LORD! Psalm 113:1-9 
    As I reflect on 2021, I can only pull together thoughts of hope and promise. Hope stands as the foundational breath we need as humans to push from day to day. Promise is the key to a home that reminds all of us of the bountiful blessings bestowed by God to God’s people. It’s the promise that evokes a movement capable of illuminating the power and might to change lives, heal the sick, and save souls. Many lives have seen and felt much pain over the past years. 
    Psalm 113 is an example of the hope and promise we receive through the public and private practice of praise and worship. This is a psalm for the community to unite and build a strong tower of support. As I envision the imagery of Psalm 113, I can envision people of all races, religions, and walks of life coming together to offer affirmation of praise and gratefulness. Psalm 113 provides us with a picture of a LORD who wants to love and protect us. The LORD is in the blessing business of elevating the poor and needy to a place of importance, royalty! 
    During this Advent season, please remember the importance of praising the LORD! Praise the LORD who provides for you and your family. The LORD who takes away your troubled pain and gives you the power to strive to greater accomplishments. Praise the LORD who never loses a battle or faces defeat. Please remember to share with your community, family, and friends the sincere benevolence of love, peace, and joy. Praise the name of the LORD! This advent season is your season of glorifed praise. Praise the LORD!
    Rev. Ulysses D. Allen
    Interim Director of Recruitment and Retention 

    See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    • 3 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
1 Rating

1 Rating

Top Podcasts In Religion & Spirituality

Ascension Catholic Faith Formation
D-Group
AccessMore
Hank Smith & John Bytheway
Christianity Today
Sadie Robertson

You Might Also Like

She Reads Truth
with Emily P. Freeman
John Paul Thomas
Ascension Catholic Faith Formation
Living Hope Church Memphis
Sadie Robertson