Tag: Jesus Christ

Who Is This Jesus, Anyway?

 

I saw on Amazon a British sports-arena version of Jesus Christ Superstar.  The acting, singing, choreography, integration with giant video imaging, and the clever use of intentional anachronisms made for good entertainment for those who like drama.  The lyrics and movement showed a keen familiarity with the Biblical text even though the writers clearly spun the narrative in directions completely unintended by the original authors.  But then, since when had honoring the meaning and intent of the original authors meant anything to those in the art community?

While I enjoyed the entertainment, I did not find Webber-Rice’s version of an anguished, tormented, self-doubting, and annoyingly whiny Jesus to be very compelling.  (If only he had listened to Judas!)

The problem of who Jesus was is by no means a new one.  Pick up any book on church history and the first four hundred years or so seem dedicated to fighting to getting the story of Jesus right.  Was he Creator or created?  Was he human or God?  If both, how does that work?  And how do we reconcile this with Hebrew Scripture and monotheism?  The creeds such as the Apostolic and Nicene creeds were kind of statements that said, “We have looked at this from every possible angle and this is the best language we can use to answer these questions.”

Friday Was the Feast of the Baptizer

 

John first penetrated my awareness in the gospels. He was an Elijah, a Jeremiah, an Isaiah, in an age when the prophets had been silent for 400 years, and in an age when, to my young mind, no other prophets were needed. The Son had come. The demon Baal and his profits were now truly and utterly and forever defeated and cast out.

If the feet of the Son trods the mountaintops publishing peace, what is this mere prophet doing here? And the Son tells us, John is the greatest of all the prophets. Not that the Son isn’t a prophet and immeasurably greater than John, but the Son is something that is the epitome of so many titles. Prophet, priest, rabbi, king, shepherd, son … friend. He chides John to baptize Him despite the odd asymmetries of that moment, to fulfill all righteousness. I have read commentaries, but I am still convinced that the full and exact portent of those words will not be shown to me until the fulfillment of the promise of the resurrection of the body, when I ask Him to His face.

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This week I heard a priest deliver a sermon on the Road to Emmaus: 13 Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem.14And they talked together of all these things which had happened.15So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus […]

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Today is the Feast of the Martyrdom of Saint John the Baptist, and so today we will look at how John was portrayed in three movies of some renown. To introduce our subject, I provide the summary from the Gospel of Mark, chapter 6, all quotes from the ESV translation: 14 King Herod heard of […]

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Join Jim and Greg as they applaud Australia for ending its extradition agreement with Hong Kong and extending visas for Hong Kong residents in Australia over China’s crackdown on freedoms. They also discuss New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman urging Joe Biden to refuse debating President Trump unless Trump agrees to a couple of very unlikely demands. And they wince as CNN’s Don Lemon demonstrates just how little he knows about the most basic tenets of belief for tens of millions of Americans.

Focusing on the Personal

 

Last year, my church introduced a new at-home study program called “Come, Follow Me.” It included weekly reading assignments for studying the New Testament, including suggestions for how to adapt those assignments for different family situations. Probably a lot of you have followed similar programs on your own or with your families.

When I started the program, I decided to do something a little different. I made a goal to write at least one poem inspired by the reading assignment each week. The goal wasn’t necessarily to try to interpret the scriptures, but to deepen the spiritual and emotional experience I had during my study.

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19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the […]

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The Gospel According to Mark is, for me, the most interesting of the four Gospels.  A recurring theme in Mark is what is often called Mark’s Messianic Secret, where Jesus asks his followers and those he has healed to keep quiet about who Jesus is.  Perhaps the best example of this is in Mark 8:27-30 […]

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“Then one of the Twelve – the one called Judas Iscariot – went to the chief priests and asked, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” So they counted out for him thirty silver coins. From then on Judas watched for an opportunity to hand him over.” (Matthew […]

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The outcome of the November election is irrelevant and was already decided long before any of the presidential candidates declared for the primary races. It was decided before the current president took office.  The American people long ago decided to turn away from God and enter into evil on a scope and scale that insured […]

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