Column Introductions The Penn Epistle has four main columns – Community, Truth, Worldview, Praise. Scroll down to explore and learn more… Community Introduction “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works,not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near” (Hebrews 10:24-25). Followers of Christ are called into community with one another in order to worship together (Psalm 34:3), pray for and encourage each other in our walks with the Lord (Hebrews 10:24-25), and work together to utilize our unique spiritual gifts for the glory of the Kingdom (1 Corinthians 12:6). United in our belief in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we are strengthened both individually and as a body. Gathering in community allows us to practice friendship, love, accountability, and bearing the attributes of Jesus Christ. In such an expansive community as Penn, the Penn Epistle Community section aims to break the barriers of unfamiliarity and connect believers to one other. We hope that through stories, testimonials, and event postings, believers will find strength and encouragement in community, as well as create edifying, fruitful relationships. Through community, we as brothers and sisters in Christ can begin to embody the love and grace that is offered by Jesus to all—Christians and non-Christians alike. Truth Introduction “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’” (John 14:6). Followers of Christ thirst for the Lord as sojourners in this foreign land (Psalm 42:2), and the truth of Jesus Christ’s saving work on the cross is living water (John 4:14). All other truth and theology emerges from the biblical narrative of salvation; each Scriptural story, command, and prophecy points to the Messiah. Therefore, the central ambition of the Penn Epistle’s Truth section is to glorify the Son of God through Scriptural analysis and interpretation, reflections on the historical Church, and meditations on the Bible’s original Greek and Hebrew text. We hope to inspire believers to love the Lord more through fellowship with Him, and to encourage those who do not know Jesus to consider the eternal implications of our time on earth. We pray that the Holy Spirit would move each reader to worship, experience conviction, and grow in their understanding of the Word of God upon visiting Truth. Worldview Introduction “We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5). The calling of God’s redeemed people in the world is to proclaim the gospel: the good news that the Lord Jesus Christ has decisively conquered sin and death by His own death and resurrection. By turning from sin and toward Christ in faith, sinners can be forgiven and enjoy the blessing of new life with Christ—today, tomorrow, and for all of eternity (Ephesians 2:1-10). As we rejoice in these sure promises, we are told by Scripture to “honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15). It is from this verse that believers derive the term apologetics—a reasoned, biblical defense of the Christian faith. The Penn Epistle’s Worldview section will seek to obey this evangelical charge. As we discuss topics related to apologetics, evangelism, and missions, we hope to encourage believers to defend and proclaim the truth of the gospel—on Penn’s campus, in the city of Philadelphia, and beyond. Praise Introduction “Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord, O my soul! I will praise the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being” (Psalm 146:1-2). There is no set formula for praising the Lord, but it is a calling for all followers of Christ. Praise is our response when the Lord reveals Himself. Praise is everything that pours out as the Lord fills us with His love, compassion, and grace. Praise is a fruit of intimacy with Jesus: “My heart overflows with a pleasing theme; I address my verses to the king; my tongue is like the pen of a ready scribe” (Psalm 45:1). The Holy Spirit stirs praises within our hearts, and they are often unique to each person; everyone’s love story with Jesus is new and precious. Praise can express itself as a poem, a letter, a song, an artwork, a dance, a garden—really anything! Whatever its form, praise is meant for His eyes before anyone else’s. The Penn Epistle’s Praise section does not seek to showcase worldly talent, but to glorify the Lord and magnify Him. The Lord calls us to enter His Kingdom like children (Mark 10:15), and praise is no exception to this humility. Our Father doesn’t value the technique behind a painting, but the passion that inspired it. True praise comes from being in love with Jesus, and draws all beholders’ eyes back to Him.