Most of us have heard the old expression, “Garbage in, garbage out.” It is an expression that most of us know intuitively to be true, but we don’t always closely watch what we put into our minds. In this reading, the Teacher exhorts us to listen to the words of the wise and to apply our heart to instruction. But the reason isn’t merely for us to be smarter and wiser.Read More
Knowing Jesus to Know God
The disciples had just experienced something incredible. Five thousand people fed with only a small lunch. I believe that miracle was more about showing the identity of Jesus than anything else. What the crowds and the disciples saw Jesus do began to inform their belief about who he really is.
It’s one thing to believe Jesus is from God. It’s another thing entirely to believe he is God.Read More understanding, miracle, Son of God
Loving the Blesser More Than the Blessing
The crowds thought they knew what they wanted and needed. Just like we so often do. We need money, food, a job.
What the crowds saw in Jesus was the deal of a lifetime. They thought he would provide for their needs, perhaps even run a government on miracles, and finally bring justice to the governing system. They saw the “little” miracles but the missed the “real” one.Read More Bread of life, blessings
At times Jesus buries truth in a familiar metaphor or situation, relying on the Holy Spirit to interpret for those who have ears to hear. Bread is a handy metaphor with an audience thoroughly familiar with the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Exodus 12:17), the tabernacle showbread (Exodus 25:30) and manna in the desert. Here Jesus appropriates the symbol of manna by claiming to be “the bread that had come down from heaven.”Read More identity, food, clothes
Jesus tells his brothers that he is not going to the festival but a few verses later we read “he went secretly, without telling anyone.” Jesus lied! This was the only conclusion I could see. Early in my Christianity this passage almost caused the undoing of my faith. Jesus had told a lie and if he had, than he had sinned and if he had sinned his death could not atone for my sin! It was a very emotional struggle. It was a wiser believer who finally brought clarity to my dilemma.Read More trust, yet, time
The Confounding Christ
Many of us have heard and tried to practise the proverb, “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” We like when things fit neatly and nicely in their place. We shy away from obscurity and ambiguity and so when Jesus enters a room, or a culture, a life or our world it can be unsettling. Jesus has a tendency to colour outside of the lines, to live, move and think outside of our categorical boxes. He won’t even stay buried when he’s been crucified!Read More confusion, understanding, ambiguity
A Matter of Focus
There is so much wickedness in our world that sometimes it can overwhelm us and we begin to worry. We see evil men succeed and wonder if God is aware of it. We watch terrible things happen to innocent people and we wonder why God does not act. All the “what ifs” build in our minds and create ulcers in our stomachs. Dwelling on all that is negative and evil will do that to you.Read More evil, peace, focus