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Announcing a Jubilee

Nehemiah 8:1-3, 5-6, 8-10     Psalm 19         1 Corinthians 12:12-31a         Luke 4:14-21 The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good [men] to do nothing.   Edmund Burke (1729–1797) On February 6th this year, Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, will celebrate her platinum jubilee, marking 70 years of service to the people of the United Kingdom and theContinue reading “Announcing a Jubilee”

Luxury Miracle

Isaiah 62:1-5    Psalm 36:5-10           1 Corinthians 12:1-11             John 2:1-11 I’m not sure who coined the phrase ‘luxury miracle’ for the Wedding in Cana, but is it really apt: not a leper in sight, no one to release from demon-oppression, no storms to quell, no hungry masses to feed.  Just the sheer joy of God’s giving! It is completelyContinue reading “Luxury Miracle”

Baptismal identity

Isaiah 43:1-7   Psalm 29         Acts 8:14-17    Luke 3:15-17, 21-22 Introduction Depending on your church tradition, some may remember your baptism, but many I suspect others were very young when it took place.  Whenever and where ever it was, it is a sacrament about identity; we are called into the community of faith and into a relationship with God throughContinue reading “Baptismal identity”

Seeing hope – when hope is missing

Micah 5:2-5a Psalm 80:1-7 Hebrews 10:5-10 Luke 1:39-45 Last week’s prophet Zephaniah was part of the establishment, a direct descendent of King Hezekiah.  This week we move about 25 miles south-west of Jerusalem to a very rural spot ‘out in the sticks’, where most of the population were involved in subsistence farming.  However, ripples spread outwards fromContinue reading “Seeing hope – when hope is missing”

God will soothe you with divine love

Advent 3         Zephaniah 3:14-20 Isaiah 12:2-6 Philippians 4:4-7 Luke 3:7-18 Zephaniah observes idolatry, corruption and injustice I heard it said that the God of the Old Testament is full of wrath, whist the image of God in the New Testament is one of love.  I don’t think that the speaker could have read today’s readings, where bothContinue reading “God will soothe you with divine love”

Dirty hands or defiled hearts?

Lectionary Readings: Song of Solomon 2:8-13    James 1:17-27     Mark 7:1-23 … Christ urges us to examine our own defiled hearts  rather than our neighbours’ dirty hands. Dawn Ottoni Wilhelm, Feasting on the Word; year B vol.4  (Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2009) Introduction: When I was a student, I managed to try several different types of work, some more interestingContinue reading “Dirty hands or defiled hearts?”


Lectionary readings: Joshua 24:1-2a, 14-18            Psalm 34:15-22           Ephesians 6:10-20       John 6:56-69 Choose this day whom you will serve… Joshua 24: 15 We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God.   John 6:69 Unconscious bias. Whether we like it or not, and whether we are aware of it or not, we receive andContinue reading “Choices”

Bring back the manna and quails.

1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14           Psalm 111       Ephesians 5:15-20       John 6:51-58 For the past few weeks, we have been working through John ‘s Gospel chapter six, and the focus this week is on Holy Communion.  You’ve probably noticed that the three synoptic Gospels all offer an account of the Last Supper which includes the disciples sharing the Passover Meal together,Continue reading “Bring back the manna and quails.”