Follow Christ, Lead the Way
Easter - the Extraordinary Found in the Ordinary image

By Rev. David Brown, Associate Professor, Religion & Ministry Department

It was during my trip to Israel that I realized the absurdity of it all.  I had read about the characters and events in scripture and seen many maps of the nation, in fact, I had even taught students how to draw maps of the Holy Land by folding a paper into four quadrants. But after we landed in Tel Aviv and were on the bus trip to Jerusalem, something I was completely unprepared for happened.  As the bus drove up the incline towards the city of Jerusalem, our guide pointed to a ravine next to the bus stating “Ladies and gentlemen, on the left side of the bus you can see a ravine that is probably like the valley that was between the army of Israel and the army of the Philistines when David fought Goliath.” The first thought that entered my mind was “there isn’t a lot of distance between those two hills, in fact this place is considerably smaller than I imagined that it would be.”  For the rest of the trip I was shocked by how insignificant each place seemed.  The Jordan river was unimpressive, the Garden of Gethsemane, the Mount of Olives, the Upper Room, the Temple Mount were all much less ostentatious that I had expected, much more ordinary. But isn’t that one of the surprising things about Easter? God takes the ordinary things and changes history through them.

Jesus seemed to be just an ordinary person. He was so ordinary that people in his hometown rejected him asking “Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon? And are not his sisters here with us?” He appeared just another hometown boy who had grown up among them, a carpenter whom they had seen working, doing commonplace things in conventional ways. But, contrary to appearances, this was not just an average man but the Son of God who invaded both time and space to not only change the course of history but change the destiny of millions.  A light has broken through the darkness that had ensnared and engulfed humanity, offering them forgiveness for their sins, redemption from their bondage, reconciliation with their Creator and a glorious hope for the future.

Easter poignantly demonstrates how absurd this salvation actually is. Who would expect that the God who created everything from nothing and formed man from the dust of the earth would choose to reconcile the world to himself by sending his only begotten Son into the world as someone who was just as ordinary as everyone else?  That’s absurd because that’s not how it’s supposed to be. It should be that the people who do wrong acts should be the ones who pay the penalty for their own actions, they are the ones who suffer the consequences of their sinfulness, they are the ones who are punished for their wrongdoing. But that’s not the way it is. Easter tells us that the one to whom the debt was due, the one who had been offended, the one whose trust had been broken, came to an inconspicuous place, lived a remarkably ordinary life and accomplished something truly unfathomable, incredible and extraordinary, the redemption of humanity. 

Articles of Interest

Dr. Caleb Friedeman Publishes Major Reference Work

Published: April 1, 2021

Ohio Christian University is pleased to announce that Dr. Caleb Friedeman, David A. Case Chair of Theology and Ministry and Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies, has published A Scripture Index to Rabbinic Literature(ASIRL) with Hendrickson Academic. This volume is a comprehensive Scripture index to classical rabbinic literature in English that contains approximately 90,000 entries and represents over 2,500 hours of work by a seven-person team over the course of two and a half years. In addition to the work of the editorial team, a group of OCU staff and students assisted in
Ohio Christian University is pleased to announce that Dr. Caleb Friedeman, David A. Case Chair of Theology and Ministry and Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies, has published A Scripture Index to Rabbinic Literature(ASIRL) with Hendrickson Academic. This volume is a comprehensive Scripture index to classical rabbinic literature in English that contains approximately 90,000 entries and
Ohio Christian University is pleased to announce that Dr. Caleb Friedeman, David A. Case Chair of Theology and Ministry and Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies, has published A Scripture Index

Archived Articles of Interest

Don’t Hold Back - Missions Chapel 2016  image

Don’t Hold Back - Missions Chapel 2016

Don’t Hold Back - Missions Chapel 2016  image

Published: February 3, 2016

Ohio Christian University’s Religion Department was pleased to host Carolyn Knight for the first Missions Chapel of 2016. In addition to Carolyn’s 10 years as a pioneer evangelist and church planter in East Africa, she served stateside as a college professor in Missions and Counseling. During her time of teaching, she felt the leading of God to be involved in making a difference in the arena of sexual exploitation and currently directs the ministry Light In Darkness — an anti-human trafficking, strip club ministry focused on witnessing to women trapped in that lifestyle. Carolyn’s
Ohio Christian University’s Religion Department was pleased to host Carolyn Knight for the first Missions Chapel of 2016. In addition to Carolyn’s 10 years as a pioneer evangelist and church planter in East Africa, she served stateside as a college professor in Missions and Counseling. During her time of teaching, she felt the leading of God to be involved in making a difference in the
Ohio Christian University’s Religion Department was pleased to host Carolyn Knight for the first Missions Chapel of 2016. In addition to Carolyn’s 10 years as a pioneer evangelist and church
Hundreds of Students Renew Faith Commitment at Spring Revival  image

Hundreds of Students Renew Faith Commitment at Spring Revival

Hundreds of Students Renew Faith Commitment at Spring Revival  image

Published: January 29, 2016

Ohio Christian University students, faculty, and staff gathered for the beginning of spring semester by starting off the new year with three days of spiritual challenge and growth. OCU was honored to have Dr. Jim Lo—current Indiana Wesleyan University professor, former IWU Dean of Chapel, and missionary—speak words of wisdom about seeking, prayer, and forgiveness. Hundreds of students made or renewed their commitments to the Lord throughout the services.  We are truly privileged to have had such an outstanding response and revival on our campus and among our students. and was
Ohio Christian University students, faculty, and staff gathered for the beginning of spring semester by starting off the new year with three days of spiritual challenge and growth. OCU was honored to have Dr. Jim Lo—current Indiana Wesleyan University professor, former IWU Dean of Chapel, and missionary—speak words of wisdom about seeking, prayer, and forgiveness. Hundreds of students
Ohio Christian University students, faculty, and staff gathered for the beginning of spring semester by starting off the new year with three days of spiritual challenge and growth. OCU was
Ohio Christian Online Ministry Degree Ranked in Nation’s Top 20

Ohio Christian Online Ministry Degree Ranked in Nation’s Top 20

Ohio Christian Online Ministry Degree Ranked in Nation’s Top 20

Published: January 14, 2016

Ohio Christian University’s Adult and Graduate Studies online Ministry degree ranked in the nation’s top 20, according to OnlineSchoolsCenter.com — an online, higher education resource. Students in Ohio Christian University’s online Bachelor of Leadership and Ministry program have many opportunities to direct the flow of their education through a concentration that is most suitable to their needs, and to work closely with a diverse group of peers and professors. Students have many baccalaureate program options: Biblical Studies, Church Planting, Organizational Leadership,
Ohio Christian University’s Adult and Graduate Studies online Ministry degree ranked in the nation’s top 20, according to OnlineSchoolsCenter.com — an online, higher education resource. Students in Ohio Christian University’s online Bachelor of Leadership and Ministry program have many opportunities to direct the flow of their education through a concentration that is most suitable to
Ohio Christian University’s Adult and Graduate Studies online Ministry degree ranked in the nation’s top 20, according to OnlineSchoolsCenter.com — an online, higher education resource.
University Recognized as a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree Program image

University Recognized as a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree Program

University Recognized as a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree Program image

Published: November 18, 2019

Press Release from OnlineSchoolsCenter.com: Ohio Christian University has been named a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree recipient for 2019.  Students in Ohio Christian University’s online Bachelor of Leadership and Ministry program have many opportunities to direct the flow of their education through a concentration that is most suitable to their needs, and to work closely with a diverse group of peers and professors. For those interested in earning the Master’s degree, OCU also offers an impressive Master of Arts in Ministry program, with its own concentration options, to
Press Release from OnlineSchoolsCenter.com: Ohio Christian University has been named a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree recipient for 2019.  Students in Ohio Christian University’s online Bachelor of Leadership and Ministry program have many opportunities to direct the flow of their education through a concentration that is most suitable to their needs, and to work closely with a
Press Release from OnlineSchoolsCenter.com: Ohio Christian University has been named a Top 20 Online Bachelor's of Ministry Degree recipient for 2019.  Students in Ohio Christian University’s
Religion Dept. Event Connects Students and Faculty   image

Religion Dept. Event Connects Students and Faculty

Religion Dept. Event Connects Students and Faculty   image

Published: December 14, 2015

Every fall, faculty and students from the Ohio Christian University Religion Department come together for Christian Ministry Connect (CM Connect). The interaction between the professors and students foster fellowship, encourage discipleship and provide an opportunity for everyone to catch the vision of ministering the grace of God through the good news of the gospel to a world broken by sin. This annual event provides the opportunity for ministry students to acquaint themselves with the different majors and activities offered by the department and to connect with professors and
Every fall, faculty and students from the Ohio Christian University Religion Department come together for Christian Ministry Connect (CM Connect). The interaction between the professors and students foster fellowship, encourage discipleship and provide an opportunity for everyone to catch the vision of ministering the grace of God through the good news of the gospel to a world broken by sin
Every fall, faculty and students from the Ohio Christian University Religion Department come together for Christian Ministry Connect (CM Connect). The interaction between the professors and