Passion Sunday Yr B
Mark’s stark, concise way of writing packs a lot into few words, and especially so here in his account of Christ’s crucifixion. I make three observations today on this Palm / Passion Sunday. God’s people are killing their rightful king, God’s king. But in truth the King stayed on the cross, which was in fact his throne, to save millions of women and men, including me. Finally at the moment of his death a Roman gentile applies to a crucified Jew the unique and supreme title his loyalties would require him to apply only to Caesar: the Son of God. We who confess Jesus today are his successors.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 20:36 — 2.4MB)
Presented with a paralysed man requiring healing, Jesus presents himself to the people and the religious leaders as the embodiment of God’s promised kingdom, where sins are forgiven and sickness healed. All you need is dependence on him.
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Do you know all too well that you’ve blown it big time, morally speaking? That you deserve nothing from God? Then Jesus is just the person to come to. When you do, you’ll find every one of your sins and failures forgiven.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 14:04 — 1.6MB)
The priorities of Jesus the Son of God continually confound his followers, and everyone else. Here Jesus demonstrates the first priority of communing with his Father in heaven in prayer, followed second by going ever further to make God’s Kingdom known among those who’ve not yet heard.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 14:03 — 1.6MB)
Jesus has been introduced by Mark and by John the Baptist. Now he’s introduced by God, before introducing himself as the one in whom God’s Kingdom has come. After that he calls four men, who on his word leave all their security to follow him. Anyone who reads this gospel is bound to come to terms with the claims made by Jesus, and about him, and then to ask whether saying, “No thanks, not interested” is even an option.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 23:27 — 2.7MB)
Beginning a series in the Gospel of Mark, honouring the spirit if not the letter of the Lectionary in the ‘Year of Mark’. Before Jesus Christ, the central character of history, steps onto the stage, he is introduced first by Mark and then by John the Baptist. The two witnesses combined let us know at the outset that following Jesus is a radical and possibly dangerous pursuit. Even insiders must be made clean in order to receive him. And following him means choosing him ahead of every other claim to supremacy – including the Emperor of Rome.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 20:43 — 2.4MB)
Jesus is the doctor whose word is the only cure for sin, and the bridegroom whose arrival changes everything. If you have a hunch that Jesus really is the only doctor whose word can cure the spiritual sickness that your sin is, then is there really any change that wouldn’t be worth it, to be made well spiritually, forever?
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 14:18 — 1.6MB)
The new year “proper” (when things start happening) is an apt time to make a conscious choice to serve the Lord only. Consider the Lord, consider your heart, and consider this moment. Then do what you’ve said you’ll do, in his service.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 21:10 — 2.4MB)
Ordinary Sunday 4, Yr B
What is God like and how should we humans most fittingly respond? That is the burden of Psalm 111. We are invited to come and see God’s magnificent character in his magnificent works, and to become like him through true awe-filled worship and adoration, joining in his eternal praise.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 19:03 — 2.2MB)
Ordinary Sunday 3, Yr B
If the chatter in your head is incessant, chances are you’re stressed. Your ‘soul’, your inner self, is not at rest in God. What that means is that your ‘soul’ doesn’t believe that God is enough. It’s only as the truth that God, his power and his love are enough properly sinks in, that we become able to say with David, “I will never be shaken”.
Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 17:33 — 2.0MB)