After Weeping and Ashes…Easter Joy

John 18:1-20                                                                            April 21, 2019 The earliest Easter artwork, in the 4th century of Christianity, shows two Roman soldiers keeping watch at the tomb, one is asleep and sees nothing, the other is awake and staring at the empty tomb.  I love the mystery in this artistic portrayal.  If you aren’t awake and aware, you … Continue reading After Weeping and Ashes…Easter Joy

Going Deeper

If you were a reporter covering this story, what would be your headline? “Preacher’s Fishing Miracle Has Better Ratings Than Super Bowl.”   Or- “Local Fishermen Retire, Leave Lucrative Business to Join Cult.”    We bring our perspectives to the story.  We might ask, “Is this story true?”  Did Jesus really create a fishing miracle? How did … Continue reading Going Deeper

Let’s Put Mary Back Into Christmas

Scripture:  Luke 1:39-57 When you think of Mary the Mother of Jesus, what is the first word that comes to your mind.  I’ll bet that many of you the word was “virgin.”  As Protestants we do not speak much of Mary, we feel awkward with all this blessed virgin language and she can seem lost … Continue reading Let’s Put Mary Back Into Christmas

Your Two Cents

You have likely heard the phrase, “Here’s my two cents.”   Some dictionaries say the usage began with the cost to send a letter, the “two penny” post.  Others say it comes from poker, where you place a two penny ante to play the round.  Both usages imply, “I’ve paid my price to have an opinion, … Continue reading Your Two Cents

The Last Shall be First (Mark 9:30-37)

The last shall be first, and the first shall be last. Service is the path to greatness. Welcome children, and people who are the most vulnerable and powerless.  It all makes you wonder what kind of hippie commune Jesus was raised in.  Do you really believe the last should be first, or do you just hope the … Continue reading The Last Shall be First (Mark 9:30-37)

Luke 21:5-19 “Not a Stone Left”

This week I was trying to get a feel for what the disciples were thinking and seeing as they walked through the great Temple in Jerusalem.  Through the power of the web I was able to find out a great deal about the size and layout of the Second Temple, which had been renovated by … Continue reading Luke 21:5-19 “Not a Stone Left”

The Wilderness Temptation

February 22, 2015 Mark 1:9-15 Wilderness, in the Bible, is a vast, empty space where life is harsh if not impossible.  We may think of wilderness where Lewis and Clark trekked, across forest, river and mountains of space with little human contact.  But the Sinai is more empty, bleak, with almost no visual changes to … Continue reading The Wilderness Temptation

Isaiah 11:1-10 “The Tree of Jesse”

 (This image is a German painting of the Tree of Jesse from Wurzberg from 1240 to 1250.)   When times get tough, people are inclined to hope in a greater power outside themselves to come and rescue them.  Some people hope that a good relationship with save them, that a knight in shining armor will … Continue reading Isaiah 11:1-10 “The Tree of Jesse”

How Evangelical Leaders Have Changed Since 9/11 | Christianity Today | A Magazine of Evangelical Conviction

I am not a pacifist; I believe that we must pursue justice. Yet a Christian history stained by anti-Semitism—holding an entire people responsible for the actions of a few—teaches us the terrible consequences of not following Jesus' way. We dare not do to Muslims what we have, to our shame, done to Jews. Philip Yancey, … Continue reading How Evangelical Leaders Have Changed Since 9/11 | Christianity Today | A Magazine of Evangelical Conviction

Jesus in Three Hymns – Mark 8:28-37

Jesus asked, “Who do you say that I am?”  It’s a question of utmost importance, but also elusive.  We are trying to understand an historical person, reading ancient texts, translated from a different language, and sorting through sedimentary layers of previous generation of thought and belief.  I enjoy reading great biographers who seek to encapsulate … Continue reading Jesus in Three Hymns – Mark 8:28-37