A giant, a storm, and an awesome / terrible pun

1 Samuel 17.32-49: The boy David kills the giant.2 Corinthians 6.1-13: Paul talks to the Corinthians about living well despite everything, as they are already in the day of salvation.Mark 4.35-41: Jesus stills the storm. If we close our eyes, we can probably still see the pictures in an old children’s bible: David and Goliath1, … More A giant, a storm, and an awesome / terrible pun

The kingdom of heaven, a botanical mystery, and what we are called to.

1 Samuel 15.34-16.13: Saul is rejected as king and Samuel is directed to visit Jesse where he will find the new king for anointing.2 Corinthians 5.6-171: Paul talks to the Corinthians about how they live for Christ, as Christ died for all, and they regard no one through worldly eyes. Mark 4.26-34: Jesus talks about what … More The kingdom of heaven, a botanical mystery, and what we are called to.

God’s way, worldly wisdom, and a list of names

1 Samuel 8.4-111, 16-20; 11.14-152: the people demand a king; God acquiesces and so the Saul is appointed. 2 Corinthians 4.13-5.1: Paul encourages the Corinthians not to lose heart, to keep their minds on what is unseen and eternal. Mark 3.2-35: Jesus heals on the sabbath and defeats the Pharisees in reasoned argument about this; everyone wants … More God’s way, worldly wisdom, and a list of names

Trinity, visions of God, and changing the world

Isaiah 6.1-8: Isaiah sees a vision of God, and offers himself as God’s prophet.Romans 8.12-17: Paul tells the Romans about the Spirit through which we are all God’s children. John 3.1-17: Nicodemus comes to Jesus secretly to ask his questions.  This week’s readings seem to run the full gamut: a magnificent image of God in glory; … More Trinity, visions of God, and changing the world

A promise, a challenge, and a footnote with a footnote

Acts 2.1-21: the day of Pentecost. Romans 8.22-27: the nature of the Spirit we have been given. John 15.26-27; 16.4b-15: Jesus promising the Spirit despite the disciples’ coming grief.  Pentecost: the sound of the wind blowing, tongues of fire, being filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in the languages of all the known world. People being … More A promise, a challenge, and a footnote with a footnote

Ascension, an instruction from a friend, and what love really is

Acts 10.44-48: The Holy Spirit is poured out on everyone, which surprises Peter just slightly. 1 John 5.1-12: More about love, and loving God, and God’s love for us. John 15.9-17: Jesus calls his disciples friends, and gives a commandment to love one another. Also Ascension: Jesus is taken up through the clouds and into Heaven1.  This … More Ascension, an instruction from a friend, and what love really is

Simple love, life in the vine, and what happens when we don’t bear fruit*

Acts 8.26-40: Philip meets a wealthy Ethiopian on the road and interprets the Scriptures for him; the Ethiopian is baptised. 1 John 4.7-21: God is shown in our love, and we know this because of the Holy Spirit1. John 15.1-8: Jesus is the vine, we are the branches, and branches not bearing fruit are cut off and … More Simple love, life in the vine, and what happens when we don’t bear fruit*

Giving our lives, identity, and the obligatory picture of a sheep

Acts 4.5-12: Peter and John are quizzed by the religious authorities for healing a man (the same one from last week).1 John 3.16-24: More about the love of God. John 10.11-18: Jesus the Good Shepherd.  It’s a lot of hassle, apparently, healing a man. In last week’s reading, Peter and John are questioned by the crowds; … More Giving our lives, identity, and the obligatory picture of a sheep

Healing, reassurance, and being a resurrection people

Acts 3.12-20: Peter heals a man1, accuses the crowds of killing Jesus, and then reflects on the refreshing that will come through Jesus. 1 John 2.15-17, 3.1-6: The transience of the world; the fact that we are lavishly loved by God. Luke 24.36b-48: The risen Jesus reassures the terrified disciples.  You handed Jesus over to be killed. … More Healing, reassurance, and being a resurrection people