Jesus Christ

Peter’s Confession 09/16/18 (Proper 19B)

Peter’s Confession 09/16/18 (Proper 19B)

To us, more than 20 centuries later, Peter’s confession is spot-on. It makes perfect sense. But that is only because we know how the story turns out. Back then, however, Peter really had no reason to call Jesus Messiah, or Christ. It’s not a terrible stretch to argue that Jesus has demonstrated that he walks in the lines of the prophets, but he definitely hasn’t done anything that would suggest that he’s the long-awaited Messiah.

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Going the Distance 09/09/18 (Proper 18B)

Going the Distance 09/09/18 (Proper 18B)

We might expect Jesus to promptly consent to heal the woman’s daughter. After all, that’s what he’s been doing for the last 6 chapters – taking care of people in need! But no. Maybe he’s tired from that long walk. Or he’s grumpy from not getting enough to eat. Or he’s still worn out from all of the ministry he’d been doing before he got to Tyre and is frustrated that he still hasn’t had a moment of quiet all to himself. Maybe the disciples wouldn’t stop talking or arguing or singing as they walked all those miles and he has a headache. Or maybe he is, like Alexander in the children’s story, just having a “terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.” We don’t know why, we just know what: he says to her, “Let the children be fed first, for it is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.”

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Singing Their Song 10/01/17

Singing Their Song 10/01/17

That’s why we sing in church. The hymns aren’t just space-fillers. They are ways of teaching us and touching us. And they are meant to be participatory, not a form of passive entertainment. As the Philippians heard Paul’s letter read to them, their passive act of listening to the written words of a beloved friend and teacher became an act of worshipping the One of whom he wrote.

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