mjkimpan  —  May 17, 2013 — 4 Comments



this week on a recent blog post, a regular reader went back and read my theological essentials i’d posted last year. in his response, he and i engaged in a little back-and-forth concerning the exclusivity of christ. in order to to preemptively avoid the john 14:6 conversation (in which we often misinterpret the verse to mean that jesus acts as the bouncer of heaven), i had suggested he take a look at the context of that passage.

in his reply, the reader asked ::

Does that make me a heretic, Michael, for believing that Jesus is the only way to salvation?

here’s part of my response ::

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mjkimpan  —  May 15, 2013 — 2 Comments

sometimes, i wish you could read some of my emails.

i recently received the following excerpt in a series of messages ::

‘The Bible warns us about people like you, thank God. You really should be ashamed of yourself the way you go on. It’s sad that there are genuine people out there who are called by God to SERVE others and give Him the glory. And then there are phonies who deceive others and give us a bad name by providing disgusting displays of false humility thinking only of themselves in vain and self interested ways. How do you live with yourself?

it continued,

‘I wasn’t even going to say anything because it won’t do any good – but I just get sick when I think of people in your position who have no business giving the church black eye after black eye.’

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mjkimpan  —  May 13, 2013 — 3 Comments

gear shift

this morning i was scrolling through my twitter feed, looking for nothing in particular – yet keeping my eyes open for interesting links or entertaining one-liners.

then i saw this.


as ed points out on his blog, in the wake of the boston marathon bombings, the connection between radical islam and terrorism is once again making headlines. the misconception that islam is somehow a particularly violent religion has again resurfaced.

unfortunately, it appears nearly half of protestant pastors agree.

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one of my more provocative posts previously explored the ramifications of one of the most under utilized passages in all of scripture ::

‘and the veil of the temple was torn in two – from top to bottom.

in this tearing of the veil which separated the holy of holies from the rest of the world, the barriers between what was holy and what was common – the sacred and the profane – were broken completely. this served as a culmination of the very act of the incarnation of jesus the word made flesh – God in the form of an infant again made intimate with his creation as he had intended from the beginning.

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mjkimpan  —  May 8, 2013 — 2 Comments

the following post comes is an excerpt of a response in the comment section of this blog post ::

one reason jesus had so much credibility with ‘regular’ people (and was simultaneously feared and despised by the religious elite) was that he didn’t spend all of his time cooped up in the temple and the synagogues; rather, he went out amongst the people – in proximity to and relationship with the very folks who were not allowed to be considered ‘in’ under jewish custom and religious law.

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no time.

mjkimpan  —  May 6, 2013 — 7 Comments

no time

living in the tension of building bridges between opposing world views often brings out the best – and the worst – in a lot of us. people from both sides of the cultural divide often lob labels and accusations in our direction in an effort to ‘figure out’ what The Marin Foundation is all about or to elicit a response of ‘yes’ or ‘no‘.

apparently for some, our efforts to live and love with the same, counter-cultural, unconditional love jesus would and does are confusing.

it seems to me that word – unconditional – should be pretty straight forward. whether gay, in a relationship or not, christian or not, whether people ‘change’ their perspectives or not – we are convinced that we’re simply called to love – and we will continue to press the church to do the same thing.

engaging in relationships where such an expression of unconditional love is possible takes time. many in the gay community are inherently skeptical of anyone or anything associated with ‘the church‘ based on their own personal experiences, hurts and pains. i’ve heard countless stories of rejection and a purely conditional love with damaging and even damning results. developing a trust that when we say ‘i love you‘ we mean it – regardless of personal conviction or belief, and regardless of one’s choices or behavior – doesn’t happen overnight.
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mjkimpan  —  May 3, 2013 — Leave a comment


‘for YHVH – your God – is a God of gods and the lord of lords :: the great, the mighty, and the awesome God – who has no ‘favorites’ and is not partial to bribes. he executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the alien, giving them food and clothing. love the alien, therefore, for you were aliens in the land of egypt.’
— deuteronomy 10

‘alien’ is not a word we use often – for obvious reasons. it’s a dehumanizing term, and is most often used of extra-terrestrials – not humans. in the passage above, instead many bible versions translate the word ‘sojourner’ or ‘stranger’ or ‘foreigner.’

that sounds better.

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the lifestyle.

mjkimpan  —  May 1, 2013 — 20 Comments


spoiler alert :: there isn’t one.

prior to coming to The Marin Foundation, i had the privilege of pastoring a college-aged group of a diverse and eclectic assortment of individuals that made up our best attempt at a christ-centered community.

our meetings served as a safe and sacred place to ask questions, challenge beliefs and explore what it looks like to follow the teachings of jesus in the context of an increasingly pluralistic and post-modern world – where many of their peers (and even many of them) had grown skeptical of the christian faith they’d inherited from their parents and were suspicious of institutionalized, organized religion.

and though they shared many things in common,

there was no ‘college lifestyle.’

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pizza face.

mjkimpan  —  April 29, 2013 — 4 Comments


the following post was originally written for The Marin Foundation blog at and can be read here.

i’m not crazy about baseball. i never have been.

yet living in chicago, just blocks away from wrigley field, means that i’m bound to become a cubs fan. working with andrew at The Marin Foundation makes this transition all the more likely, as his support of the cubbies borders on obsession.

in an effort to embrace my pending inevitable affection for america’s favorite pastime, i went with andrew to an opening series game against the milwaukee brewers. we sat in the bleachers out in left center field, hoping to catch anything that screamed past the wall.

‘all you need to know is if you catch a home run hit by the brewers, throw it back.‘ a friend said. easy enough.

i must admit the atmosphere was indeed incredible. smells of hot dogs, nachos and beer filled the nighttime air. the roar of the crowd at each crack of the bat was reminiscent of something out of baseball films like ‘The Natural’ or ‘Field of Dreams.‘ every play was analyzed by the faithful, desperate to snap a 104 year long championship drought.

maybe this year.

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what is that to you?

mjkimpan  —  April 26, 2013 — 2 Comments

there’s a story in the gospels that recounts a conversation between the resurrected jesus and his disciples.

the risen messiah had just cooked up breakfast on the beach for his followers who had turned back to a life of fishing in absence of direction from their rabbi.

it was his third appearance to the faithful since his crucifixion, and it seemed they were gradually becoming more comfortable with his concept of kingdom. with each encounter, the puzzle pieces of previous teaching fit together better.

things were beginning to make sense.

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