Kingdom Transformation

After Jesus instructed Matthew the tax-collector to follow him, Jesus went and ate at Matthew’s home with other tax-collectors. The Pharisees, who observed Jesus’ action, were offended by Jesus’ association with tax-collectors and sinners. The Pharisees lived according to a principle we have today: “Bad company corrupts good character.” However, Jesus hung around tax-collectors andContinue reading “Kingdom Transformation”

Overcoming Evil

Recently I was reminded of the age old question, if God is so loving, why doesn’t he stop evil in the world. This is both a concerning and personal question, but it also raises the problem that humanity faces. Adam, when he was confronted with his transgression of eating the fruit from the tree ofContinue reading “Overcoming Evil”

Walking in the Light

The story of Judas Iscariot, the disciple who betrayed Jesus, is an illustrative one to us. First we know from John’s gospel that he had a love for money. John revealed that as the group’s treasurer, he stole from the money bag. So it should not be surprising to us, that he offered his servicesContinue reading “Walking in the Light”

Skepticism

The healing of the paralytic was a sign to skeptics that Jesus and men had authority on earth to forgive sins. The scribes who questioned Jesus’ statement that the paralytic’s sins were forgiven, were said to have had evil thoughts. Jesus told the scribes that they would know that the Son of Man had authorityContinue reading “Skepticism”

True Religion

When the Pharisees pointed out the failure of Jesus’ disciples to follow the traditions of the elders, Jesus addressed their hypocrisy that had been previously addressed by Isaiah the prophet, through whom God declared that the people honor him with their lips, but their hearts are far from him. The Pharisees were those who livedContinue reading “True Religion”

Jesus’ Authority

How do we know that Jesus has the authority to forgive us our faults and infractions? Many consider Jesus to be a great teacher and prophet, but some of us go further and declare him to be the holy son of God and therefore divine. Why is there this difference of opinion? Jesus himself answeredContinue reading “Jesus’ Authority”

Addressing Apparent Truths

At times it is logical to form an impression or conclusion about someone that while partially true and based in fact can lead us to an inaccurate and destructive conclusion. A partial truth can be just as deceptive and dangerous as an outright lie. Jesus came to reveal not only outright lies, but partial truthsContinue reading “Addressing Apparent Truths”

Jesus Made A Way

When Jesus prayed, he consistently addressed God as “Father”, but in the Gospel of Mark, we find a couple of exceptions. When praying in the garden before his arrest, Jesus addressed God as “Abba,” which was a Chaldean term that meant “papa” or “daddy.” It is a term a young child would use (Mark 14:36).Continue reading “Jesus Made A Way”

Childlike Forgiveness

The topic of forgiveness reveals another example of Jesus’ teaching—that unless we become like children, we will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Children respond to hurt very differently than others who are older. When a small child gets hurt while playing with other children, he or she goes to a person in authority: mommy,Continue reading “Childlike Forgiveness”