Showing posts from September, 2014

On Grace and Truth

Just imagine for a moment that the Church hired people to help clean up the grounds and paid them the living wage, and then ended up paying those that had turned up for an hour so the same as those who had been at it all day.If you had turned up at 9am and worked until 5 in the afternoon, would you feel OK about it?
Somehow, I think the majority of us probably wouldn’t.
This story from Matthews Gospel would have been clearly understood by the audience.After all we are talking about people who lived day to day on a subsistence level.They knew how much they ought to be paid, how much they needed to be paid.Their continued existence would have depended on it.
Jesus wasn’t talking to the equivalent of City Millionaires here, he was talking to the working classes; even the Pharisees would not have been rich.Money in 1st Century Palestine was like today, held by the few; i.e. the rich and powerful.
So, there is something decidedly wrong with this parable from our perspective.Nick Page one of my…

Miracles, Heaven and Earth

One of the problematic questions that challenge the church intermittently surrounds the question of miraculous healing, particularly why it is that some people apparently experience the wonder of healing experiences and others do not.The argument that suggests that people who don’t experience healing lack sufficient faith is at the least unhelpful and at the worst harmful.Many people have given up on the church because of unfeeling comments by those who claim a Christian faith.Other arguments include a Christian version of the Insha'Allah  of Islam.Sadly we are left with an image of God who chooses capriciously who to heal and who to leave.
I have just finished reading “Simply Jesus” by N T Wright, a book that doesn’t focus on healing miracles specifically.My understanding of the book is that the author is suggesting that this thorny issue be set within the wider context of the rescue of the whole of creation.
With the fall, Heaven and Earth it is argued gradually experienced separa…