Monthly Archives: October 2018
Seeing and not seeing, blindness and vision, are fairly common metaphors in the Bible, not only for physical changes (as in the Gospel story of Bartimaeus who is made to see), but for spiritual changes that happen, as when Saul of Tarsus, who persecuted the early church, became Paul the Apostle, its greatest early missionary. The whole story of his temporary blindness and recovery of sight is a metaphor for a complete transformation.
Often, on the day of our quarterly congregational meeting I turn to thoughts of planning, mission, and vision. These are times for “seeing” both where we’ve been… Continue reading
Almost every Sunday, no matter what other words I use to pronounce the benediction, I always repeat the words from the very end of 2 Corinthians: “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”
Some of you may have wondered why I can’t find a new tune to play or some new words to utter after all these 15+ years. One of my colleagues used to distribute a hand out of approximately five typewritten sheets on the front and back, in 10 point font, with different… Continue reading
Today’s Lectionary passages make it pretty tough on “rich people.” They seem to say that God takes the side of the poor and is even against those who are rich. This makes many of us uncomfortable, since we live in a culture that measures success in economic ways, and we always like to think that God is like we are. It isn’t possible that God would disqualify us just for being successful capitalists, is it?
I have said to you before that, in the times of both Amos and Jesus the overwhelming majority of people were poor, so that when… Continue reading
One of the reasons I love the Bible, especially the Old Testament, is because it makes so much room for, understands and underwrites being in places of sorrow, desolation, exile, and dislocation in life. There’s no phoney, “There, there, life’s not really so hard” here. The Bible is too honest and true to life. Many of the Psalms come from “out of the depths,” as Psalm 130 actually begins. The exile to Babylon in the 6th century BCE was a time when every institution God’s people valued was trampled in the dust. Their families, their worship and faith, their politics… Continue reading