The “Parable of the Talents” (Matthew 25:14-30) is often one of the stories people who are disaffected with Christianity use to criticize our faith. And at a surface glance, that criticism is warranted. What kind of master gets mad when his servant attempts to save and preserve what is given to him?
But the parable is not about saving or … Read the rest
The past two weeks have been difficult for our country. It has opened up wounds and showcased the divisiveness of our politics. People on both sides of the fence demean and degrade the other side. Many of us surround ourselves in “echo chambers,” where we only hear opinions that support our own beliefs.
This runs counter to God’s call to … Read the rest
As Jesus and his disciples were heading to Jericho, a blind man stops Jesus and asks for healing. The disciples are frustrated with the man and “rebuke” him.
Why would the disciples be so upset? By this time, they should understand how Jesus operates, healing all who need healing. They are focused on the destination, but Jesus is focused on … Read the rest
As James and John were walking with Jesus, they asked him if they could sit at his left and right . At first glance, it appears selfish, but what their desires come from a natural human instinct — ambition.
We all have ambitions, especially in our professions. But there are two types of ambition. One type of ambition involves us … Read the rest
Jesus tells us to give up all our possessions and follow him.
It sounds severe, but what does it really mean? Are we really supposed to give up everything? Perhaps we are to use our talents to do good, not to make profit. Perhaps we are to use our money to do good, not to selfishly spoil ourselves. For … Read the rest
Jesus shows a different side of himself in Mark 9:42-50, talking about judgement and describing hell. His “fire and brimstone” words here often drive people away from the church. But why is Jesus so angry?
Prior to these events, Jesus talks about children being the most pure of heart, and the most holy. And anyone who gets in between a … Read the rest
When the disciples see Jesus for who he really is, God tells the disciples to listen to him.
That voice of God also encourages us that God will not leave us alone in the valley.
Down in the valley of the Twitter-verse, the 25-hour news cycle, there’s so much information, but very little truth and wisdom. If we don’t have … Read the rest
In an era of political tension, it’s easy to misuse the Bible for political gain. As the events at Willow Creek church demonstrate, you can preach Jesus Christ every Sunday morning and still use it for demonic purposes if your focus is on yourself, and not God. Jesus says anything that is standing in the way of salvation is demonic.… Read the rest
The few times Jesus gets mad in the Bible is when he is dealing with the Pharisees. In Mark 7, the Pharisees are criticizing the disciples for eating with unclean hands. Jesus fires right back to the Pharisees, mentioning their unclean minds. And he declares all food clean.
It’s not that Jesus is against religious traditions. But Jesus gets mad … Read the rest
As Jesus’ ministry grows, so do his crowds. In Mark 6:30-46, Jesus instructs his disciples to feed the massive crowd, but he doesn’t give further instructions.
Like the disciples, Jesus does not want us to limit ourselves and our ability to do good to our human potential. We are to unleash the power of God. Sometimes in progressive Christianity, … Read the rest