Easter 2

The lessons this week give us a range of reaction among Jesus’ “post-Easter” community of disciples. The first glimpse is a group of disciples gathered together in utter fear. They have good reason to be afraid. The “Doubting Thomas” text (John 20:19-29) take place in the evening of the first Easter day. So Jesus was…

Easter Sunday

In 25 years of Easter preaching I am sure I have never spent any considerable time or attention on the first lesson which is always this reading from the book of Acts. Maybe this year is the year to ask myself, why is this passage the only passage of Scripture (okay, Psalm 118 is also…

Palm/Passion Sunday

If you are reading the Surviving the Bible Devotional you will notice that the texts for Palm/Passion Sunday are not treated in favor of texts related to the Annunciation of Our Lord. You can’t see my quizzical smirk but trust me, it’s there! So is this Sunday Palm Sunday or Passion Sunday? Of course, it’s…

Lent 5

The Greeks, the Seed and the Glory 20 Now among those who went up to worship at the festival were some Greeks. 21They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, and said to him, ‘Sir, we wish to see Jesus.’ 22Philip went and told Andrew; then Andrew and Philip went and told Jesus. 23Jesus answered them, ‘The…

Lent 4

I think the devotional writer’s first thought about the readings are good enough to be simply quoted. “Taken at face value, this Numbers text (and lots of numbers texts, really) is weird and, frankly, makes God out to be a jerk. (Surviving the Bible, p. 111) The book of Numbers makes three appearances in the…

Lent 3

Me beside a scale model of first century Jerusalem and Herod’s Temple. Jerusalem: February 1998. John 2:13-22 13 The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.14In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money-changers seated at their tables. 15Making a whip of cords, he drove all of…

Lent 2

34 Jesus called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, ‘If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the…

Lent 1

I found the material in the devotional guide, Surviving the Bible very interesting this week. Particularly the section entitled, Digging Deeper (p. 90-91). In this section is the discussion of how God “weakens” Godself in order to relate to humanity. God does this by entering into a series of covenants by which God limits Godself…

Transfiguration

Even though I have been preaching about the Transfiguration of Jesus every year for almost 25 years I am still pretty perplexed by the whole thing. I think most people are. I wonder what folks think when they come into church and see that it is Transfiguration Sunday. Do you think, “Wow, this is a…

Epiphany 5

Mark 1:29-39 29 As soon as they left the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. 30Now Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once. 31He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left…