This is one of those more difficult stories of the humble Jesus isn't it. In Mark's gospel it comes immediately after another strange act of humility on the part of Jesus:
Friday, February 23, 2018
Monday, February 19, 2018
Friday, February 16, 2018
Over the last 2 months since Christmas we have looked at some of the milestones of Jesus’ life......His birth.....His presentation in the Temple when He realized in some unique way that God was His father.......Then His Baptism, when He heard the voice of God saying – ‘My Son’, and at the same time receiving the Holy Spirit.
I would hope that we’ve all had similar milestones:
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Wilderness: Renounce, Reject, Repent
At the start of Lent 2018, this is a question worth reflecting on: Can a Human Being Resist Temptation? This short reading from Mark's gospel has Jesus experiencing what must have been one of the spiritual highlights of His life, His baptism in water, followed by His baptism in the Holy Spirit, followed by His hearing the very voice of God ... it really doesn't get much better than that, does it? But the first thing this Spirit does in Him, is compel Him to go alone into the dangerous Judean wilderness for forty days. Mark implies that when Jesus came out of the
Almighty and everlasting God, you hate nothing you have made and forgive the sins of all who are penitent: Create and make in us new and contrite hearts, that we, worthily lamenting our sins and acknowledging our wretchedness, may obtain of you, the God of all mercy, perfect remission and forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
image sourced here
The cross, O the wonderful cross
What Glory, what victory, I've found
I'll come to the wonderful cross
And my whole life I lay down
These words from The Wonder of the Cross by Robin Mark (listen to it here) are a wonderful reminder of one of the reasons for the season of Lent: Over a period of 40 days, starting on Ash Wednesday, we undertake a spiritual journey deep into ourselves but with our eyes focussed on the Cross, and hopefully rediscover or perhaps even discover for the first time, the glory and the victory which are ours because of what Jesus did and then lay our whole lives down for Him again….or, perhaps, for the first time. I really hope that is what Lent 2018 will be for us all.
Saturday, February 10, 2018
In the first 5 weeks of this year you have journeyed through the highlights of Jesus' ministry: In the first week of the new year we looked at the baptism of our Lord, perhaps were reminded of our own baptism in obedience to the Scriptures which repeatedly command that believers be baptised; then we saw Jesus calling the first disciples and were reminded of our call to obedient discipleship; then we looked at the beginning of Jesus' teaching ministry and His description of the life of discipleship in the Beatitudes in the Sermon on the Mount; last week we continued through the Sermon on the Mount and heard Jesus reminding us that we are salt and light; this week, the week before the season of Lent begins, we find ourselves on the Mount of Transfiguration, where Matthew records:
Saturday, February 3, 2018
In the context of Jesus teaching that we are the light of the world, I love the line at the end of this video "And you were made to love (God's glory) and to reflect His glory"
Chris and I came across this sign on an electricity pylon in Tiberias in Israel a few years ago: Danger of Death. We live in a world where so much more seems to be dangerous than ever before; there are danger warnings on so many things: the sun is dangerous