Signs, searching for God, and staying awake

Isaiah 64.1-9 – Isaiah longs for God’s presence in the darkness of his society, but still trusts God. 1 Corinthians 1.1-9 – Paul reminds the people of God’s grace and faithfulness.Mark 13.24-37 – Jesus talks about the signs to be watchful for (spoiler alert – the sun will go dark), and tells the people to stay … More Signs, searching for God, and staying awake

Sheep, goats, and comfort – and everything will be alright

Exekiel 34: 11-16, 20-24 – the sheep will be protected and cared for. Ephesians 1:15-23 – the Ephesians are reminded of the inheritance they are promised and called to be hopeful. Matthew: 25:31-46 – another Kingdom parable in which the King separates the sheep and the goats.  It’s finally almost come to an end: the Kingdom readings, … More Sheep, goats, and comfort – and everything will be alright

Fear, giving, and a parable which may or may not be about God

Judges 4:1-10 – Deborah sets up a military ambush.1 Thessalonians 5:1-11 – Paul reassures the Thessalonians again. Matthew 25:14-30 – the parable of the talents and the man who buries his. Another week in this build-up to Advent; another pointed, sting-in-the-tail parable from a teacher who seems set on the path of his own destruction. Another … More Fear, giving, and a parable which may or may not be about God

Depletion, searching, and being welcome at the party

Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25 – Joshua gives the people a choice, and they choose God.1 Thessalonians 4:9-18 – Paul reminds the Thessalonians of the resurrection and their eternal life with God.Matthew: 25:1-13 – some of the bridesmaids run out of oil for their lamps.  This week’s readings, at first glance, seem to raise more questions than … More Depletion, searching, and being welcome at the party

Saints, comfort, and a story which encompasses us

Revelation: 7:9-17 – a great multitude comforted. 1 John 3:1-3 – the great love which the father lavishes on us.Matthew 5:1-12 – the beatitudes. Blessed are those that mourn – that’s what this week’s gospel tells us. As we approach the end of this year, we look back on all that it has brought us – … More Saints, comfort, and a story which encompasses us

Faith, identity, and the edge of a promised land

Deuteronomy 34:1-12 – the death of Moses. 1 Thessalonians 2:1-13 – more about the Thessalonians’ faith. Matthew 22:34-46 – Jesus finally finishes the argument that the Pharisees started.  Moses journey comes to an end in this week’s readings, and it’s a bit of a brick wall for him: so far and no further. He’s led the people … More Faith, identity, and the edge of a promised land

Fear, keeping the faith, and singing once more

Exodus 33:12-23 – Moses freaks out and asks God for reassurance1 Thessalonians 1:1-10 – Paul talks about the Thessalonians’ faithMatthew 22:15:33 – the religious authorities don’t know when to concede an argument While the cathedral acknowledges and celebrates St Luke this weekend, the lectionary readings1 show the story marching on for both Moses and Jesus, and … More Fear, keeping the faith, and singing once more

An(other) inconvenient reading, questions, and what wins in the end

Matthew 22:1-14 – the parable of the wedding guestPhilippians 4:1-9 – rejoice in the Lord always (and again, I say rejoice)1 It’s tempting with this week’s reading to focus on only the first half of Jesus’ very difficult parable: the powerful rejecting, at times violently, the king’s gracious invitation; the invitation then being extended to … More An(other) inconvenient reading, questions, and what wins in the end

Love, rejecting love, and an incorrectly-applied law of physics

Matthew 21:33-46 – the parable of the wicked tenants For every action there is an equal1 and opposite reaction. Yes, this is one of the laws of motion2. But it applies equally to life in this world of light and darkness, of suffering and compassion, of love and its opposite.  This week’s reading brings us another … More Love, rejecting love, and an incorrectly-applied law of physics

Thirst, fear, honesty, and the rule against being a jerk

Exodus 17:1-7 – the water from the rockMatthew 21:23-32 – the parable of the two brothers There are two rules the chief priests and elders should have followed in this week’s gospel. The first is this: don’t try to outsmart someone smarter than you. The second: don’t be a jerk.  The chief priests’ question about … More Thirst, fear, honesty, and the rule against being a jerk