19 Pentecost 2021

Some Pharisees came, and to test Jesus they asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?” Some subjects have been controversial, and yet unavoidable since the beginning of time.  What I would like to do this morning is put this text in context and also compare it with some other biblical passagesContinue reading “19 Pentecost 2021”

18 Pentecost 2021

This morning’s gospel reading may seem to you to be a bizarre and disconnected collection of sayings by Jesus and you wouldn’t be totally wrong.  I suspect Jesus did not say them randomly back-to-back as they are listed here, but Mark has chosen them to make a point and I hope we can tease thisContinue reading “18 Pentecost 2021”

17 Pentecost 2012

When my boys were young, we had boxes of superheroes and super villains, all sorted by story line: He-man, GI Joe, Star Wars, and Dick Tracy.  Even though there were a dozen characters in each box, there were sure to be arguments, especially if there were more than two children playing.  With 2, one couldContinue reading “17 Pentecost 2012”

16 Pentecost 2021

“No man is an island, entire of itself…any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.” (John Donne, Devotion XVII) We have lost the sense of community that once existed.  About the same time that John Donne wasContinue reading “16 Pentecost 2021”

14 Pentecost 2021

“The unexamined life is not worth living” Socrates as quoted by Plato in the Apology. Both our reading from the Gospel of Mark and our reading from James’ Letter call us to examine our lives.  What is our purpose? What are we trying to accomplish?  Are the things we are doing helping or hurting whatContinue reading “14 Pentecost 2021”

8 Pentecost 2021

Between Mark and our lectionary we have gotten the 6th chapter in what probably feels like a random selection.  Especially today when we have a bit from the middle and a bit from the end of the chapter, so let me give you a brief overview of this chapter. We began three weeks ago withContinue reading “8 Pentecost 2021”

6 Pentecost 2021

For the last several weeks, Mark has been demonstrating for us the authority and power Jesus possesses and Paul, in his 2nd letter to the Corinthians, has been defending his authority and power delegated to him through Jesus.  This can begin to sound like just so much office politics.  Why do we care?  What makesContinue reading “6 Pentecost 2021”

4 Pentecost 2021

Fear is one of those English words that has a broad range of meanings, especially when it comes to translating the Hebrew and Greek scriptures into English.  But perhaps that is not entirely the fault of the English.  It appears the Hebrews and the Greeks used their words rather broadly as well.  It can meanContinue reading “4 Pentecost 2021”