Showing posts from January, 2009

From the "Jonah" Sermon...

"If God does not love everybody, then there can be no love for anybody. If God is not gracious toward all, there can be grace for none." Pastor John Jewell

Reading the Bible Again for the First Time....

I love to read and I read a lot. I just finished a book by Marcus Borg with the title (above). I should say that I thought it was a great book - though much of it was a review of things that were covered in seminary. To a large extent it was an introduction to Literary and Form criticism. The core of the book was to look at the Genesis creation stories, the Pentateuch, the prophets and wisdom literature in the Hebrew scriptures. And in the New Testament he looked at the Gospels, Paul and Revelation. I particularly enjoyed his chapters on wisdom literature and Paul. ***By way of introduction he uses the analogy of the "Finger Pointing At the Moon." The bible is like this - the question is do we see the moon, or do we focus on the finger. Too often Christians focus on the finger and not the moon. Too often we look at the bible as the focus rather than at the God to whom the bible points. ***In the epilogue he sums up much of what he has discussed through the book. There are man

Under the Sea

January 11 - The Baptism of Our Lord. This Sunday in my sermon I used an image from the wonderful Disney animated classic "The Little Mermaid." I suggested the image of Ariel bursting through the surface of the water and taking in her first breath as a human as a metaphor for baptism. In our baptism we too are buried with Christ and then are brought through the waters, and as we burst through the baptismal waters we take a breath of the sweet air of God's grace. If you want to see this clip it is on YouTube and happens at the very end of Ursula's big number "Poor Unfortunate Soul." Ursula is the devil character and the entire scene is somewhat reminiscent of the Faust legend. Here is the URL for "Poor Unfortunate Soul" - Ursula is played by the legendary Pat Carroll: (you will need to copy and paste the url into your brouser). While your at it you might want to check out two additional clips: 1. &qu