Showing posts from July, 2016

naked relationship

Just over a month ago, I spoke about trust being at the heart of our relationship with ourselves and with God.We spoke about the importance of seeing beyond someone’s role to the individual themselves, to see people as people, persons created by God in his own image, and we know what the Bible says quite explicitly about his creation.God saw it and he saw that it was good.
And then there was the referendum, and Oh so quickly the country forgot about all that trust stuff, and we have lined up in opposing camps looking distrustingly over at the other.On the day some people remembered the disgusting loss of human life that is called the Battle of the Somme, others found themselves in new trenches, looking over no man’s land in fear and shock and wondering what the other side would do.There has been a consequential rise in hate crime, a Pandora’s box has been opened and now people are trying to find ways of dealing with deeply felt beliefs and overcoming significant hurts.Not surprisingly,…

Don't be Afraid

Luke 12 : 1-35
Today is the last of our Bible Studies for a while and we find ourselves in the middle of Luke’s Gospel, with a sense of increasing danger.Jesus is among a crowd, so big that people are trampling on each other.This isn’t some sort of orderly Church procession. It’s more like the Hillsborough tragedy or some type of Beatlemania.It’s getting dark and dangerous.
Jesus and the Pharisees are at each other’s throats.How are we to interpret this.Don’t forget that by the time Luke wrote his Gospel, the relationship between the early church and the Judaic community was already strained and was breaking down.We see some of that here, in the way that Jesus’ relationship with them is portrayed.The pharisaical movement had a lot going for it, they were on the side of the poor and the oppressed.However it has sometimes been portrayed as a scheming giant by early Christian literature.We need to be careful not to inadvertently spread anti-semitism in the name of Jesus.
There follows a sec…

Prayer and the Devil

Luke Ch 11: 1-36

1. Teaching on Prayer.
Luke has just spoken of Jesus’ personal prayer and in the preceding verses we have just seen Jesus’ viewpoint showing the importance of choosing to listen to his word, in other words to seek a relationship with God.It therefore suits Luke to include his version of the Lord’s Prayer.It is NOT the same as Matthew’s but that is principally because we have two evangelists writing for two different audiences and they will therefore have constructed their argument(a) with that in mind and (b) depending on their own viewpoints.Much the same as when I sit down and write the notes for these Bible Studies.(Please note I am not equating myself with any of the Gospel writers here!)
Does that mean that scripture is not inspired?Well, it depends how you might define inspired.I don’t think it mans that an Angel of the Lord physically sat there at the side of the evangelist dictating the Gospels, but by a process of prayer, thinking, thinking again and immersing …