A new commandment, loving each other, and the people we lock out

Acts 11.1-18: Peter goes to Jerusalem and is critiqued for eating with uncircumcised men; he responds by telling the people about a vision in which he realises that nothing is profane, and about witnessing the Spirit given to gentiles. Revelation 21.1-6: A new heaven and a new earth are given, a new Jerusalem coming down from … More A new commandment, loving each other, and the people we lock out

Hope, a healing and a multitude, and great ordeals

Acts 9.36-43: Peter is called to Tabitha, who has become ill and died; he raises her from the dead, to the delight of everyone who loves her, especially the widows she has cared for. Revelation 7.9-17: The multitude praise and worship God before the throne, the ones who have come through the great ordeal. A promise … More Hope, a healing and a multitude, and great ordeals

Resurrection, a bit of a bleak time, and having reason to hope

Acts 9.1-6: Saul the persecutor of the church hears the voice of Jesus on the way to Damascus. Revelation 5.6-14: the four creatures and the elders worship the Lamb in front of the throne, and every creatures praises the Lamb. The people of God, bought with the Lamb’s blood, are made into a kingdom. John 21.1-19: the … More Resurrection, a bit of a bleak time, and having reason to hope

Resurrection, hope, and looking a gift horse in the mouth

Acts 5.27-32: Peter defies the Sanhedrin to preach that he and the disciples are witness to Jesus’ resurrection. Revelation 1.4-8: John greets the churches in Asia Minor in the name of Jesus, who loves them, frees them from sin, and makes them a kingdom1 – the Alpha and Omega, whom every eye will see and honour. John 20.19-31: … More Resurrection, hope, and looking a gift horse in the mouth

Holy Saturday, liminal space, and the end of the story

Acts 10.34-43: Peter preaches on the disciples’ witness to Jesus’ actions, death and resurrection, and on the forgiveness of sin for anyone who believes. 1 Corinthians 15.19-26: an argument against those who believe that there is no resurrection – Christ has been resurrected, and will reign until every enemy has been put under his feet, the … More Holy Saturday, liminal space, and the end of the story

Palm Sunday, singing the Gloria, and the knowledge of resurrection

Isaiah 50.4-9a: the Suffering Servant has set his face like flint, but shall not be put to shame because it is the Lord God who helps him.Philippians 2.5-11: the hymn of Christ humbled and exalted: although he was in the form of God, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, and was obedient, … More Palm Sunday, singing the Gloria, and the knowledge of resurrection

Tumult, water in the wilderness, and a possibly wild ride

Isaiah 43.16-21: God says, I am the Lord, Creator, King. Do not remember the former things; I am about to do a new thing, to make a way in the wilderness, bringing water to my people. Philippians 3.3-12: All of Paul’s reasons for being confident – his birth and status – are nothing compared to his … More Tumult, water in the wilderness, and a possibly wild ride

Being lost, being home, and claiming our identity

Joshua 5.2-12: Joshua circumcises all of the Israelites who were born in the wilderness. They celebrate Passover and from that day receive no more manna, eating the produce of the land. 2 Corinthians 5.16-21: Paul encourages the Corinthians to regard no one from a worldly point of view.  Luke 15.11-32: The parable of the prodigal son, told … More Being lost, being home, and claiming our identity

Tests, fig trees (or one fig tree, anyway), and the inevitability of bearing fruit

Isaiah 55.1-9: God’s invitation to replenishment for all, regardless of resources, and the promise of an everlasting covenant; a reminder to seek God.1 Corinthians10.1-13: Paul talks about the failure of the Corinthians’ ancestors, who had the same access to God as the Corinthians do; he reflects on testing and God’s guidance through this. Luke 13.1-9: Jesus … More Tests, fig trees (or one fig tree, anyway), and the inevitability of bearing fruit

Trust, control, and allowing ourselves to be loved

Genesis 15.1-12, 17-18: God promises an heir to Abram, and the giving of the land to his innumerable descendants1. Philippians 3.17-4.1: Many live as enemies of the cross of Christ – their god is their stomach and their glory is their shame. But our citizenship is in heaven, so we should stand firm in our faith. Luke … More Trust, control, and allowing ourselves to be loved