20 November: The Feast of Christ the King.
But what sort of King? What sort of God?The gospel reading has been used and abused with the Social Gospellers focussing on the good deeds for the vulnerable and poor, and the Evangelical wing focussing on eternal punishment.
In developing this piece I depended on the work of the Linn’s in their book Good Goats which helps us re-image God.
The parable of the talents has come to be read in the light of our English word “talent”, that it is in some way about using our gifts.
After a colleague had provided a wonderfully challenging rewriting for modern times along the same lines I came across notes which I had which completely reinterprets the parable and points us in the direction of questioning our image of God.
The audience would have been expecting Jesus to praise the third man for doing one in the eye of such a “harsh” man, but the reading I’ve found points us in quite a different direction. “How did you know I was thus?”
What is the fundamental image of God that we live our lives by – both as a community and as individual Christians (if such a combination of words isn’t an oxymnoron!)
I had last week off preaching which was good as Denise had appointments with Palliative care and the District Nurse getting pain and wound care sorted out better.The theme of how we grieve in NZ society is constantly present in an older congregation as spouses and friends slip away in death.
The idea I proffered that the bridesmaids didn’t need to go away to get oil because surely it was more important to be there than to have the right stuff (a lit lamp) evoked some curiosity, especially as it is directed to the whole community being called to the Messianic banquet.
Lord, Lord… I do not know you.
October 23 – Labour Weekend
I titled the sermon as a play on the tense of the Greek Matthew used in giving us Jesus’ words “You shall love…”
It is not a construction that English easily relates to because it expresses a future state that is aimed at from the present.
I thought I’d posted this one, but it’s not there. I still have a range of books on my shelf written mainly by NZ Anglicans in the early to mid nineties gathering a lot of ideas about poverty and justice in New Zealand. The Closer Together Whakatata Mai web site gave me impetus to reopon them and see the link between the “greedies” of Jesus day and ours.