The Vices

Trinity 6 – Wrath and Giving

You have heard that it was said by them of old time, You shall not kill. [Matthew 5:21-22] We are continuing our spiritual ascent in Trinity Season – we’re looking at the flourishing of our souls in Christ.  Last week we began to think about “spiritedness” in the soul.  Spiritedness is that bounce, that zest for life, being ready for adventure – we see it in healthy animals, we know it in ourselves when we…

Lust or Love

[Click here to listen to a great sermon by Timothy Keller on this subject!] I say to you, everyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. [Matt 5:28] Lust, in its narrow definition as related to sexual desire, can get a lot of attention, in teaching about the moral life.  Rightly, we’ve left it to the last in this series!  When Dorothy Sayers decided to write on the…

Greed or Heavenly Avarice

We are the children of God. And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified with him. [Rom 8:16-17] Our souls are made to desire good things.  This desire or appetite is something we share with animals.  But our appetites can lead us astray, if we are not exercising our reason.  We can become fixated on a lesser…

Vainglory or True Glory?

The creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of Him who has subjected the same in hope.  [Rom 8:20] We have a desire for greatness built into our souls by God.  Vainglory, is a confusion about how to satisfy our desire for greatness. The desire for greatness is seen plainly in our society in its fascination with celebrities, with people in positions of power, or with other people of note –…

Sloth or Entering into God’s Rest

Owe no one anything but to love one another. Last year in the Student Bible Studies, the focus was on the virtues – four cardinal virtues, and the three theological virtues.  When they finished that series they started to look at the vices, and so I thought I would preach on Sloth, the last Bible study you had last year. (Next Tuesday students will decide about the coming year and I will be interested to…

Green

One of the better film dialogues I’ve ever seen is the one between the old composer Antonio Salieri and a priest who wants him to confess in the film Amadeus (1984).  In this film, where Salieri’s rivalry with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is a central theme, we see how the overambitious Salieri becomes more and more envious for Mozart’s superb musical talents.  Salieri is himself a famous composer in Vienna, but no matter how hard he…