Bible Note #52: James 2:5-7 & the Problem of Wealth

Photo by GAC I think I can safely say that James has a very low opinion of money and the accumulation of wealth.  Along with Paul, James gets his ideas about money and wealth from Jesus.  Jesus and all the New Testament writers are concerned about money and the accumulation of wealth because they believed … Continue reading Bible Note #52: James 2:5-7 & the Problem of Wealth

Bible Note #51: James 2:1-4 & Valuing What Jesus Values

I enjoy fishing.  I’m not very good at it, but I do enjoy going out to the water and trying to catch fish.  As I share this with you, we are a day away from the opening of trout season in Pennsylvania.  Opening day can be a pretty crowded time on the water around here.  … Continue reading Bible Note #51: James 2:1-4 & Valuing What Jesus Values

Bible Note #50: James 2:1 and “Us vs. Them” Thinking

There is no question that our Christian faith can become corrupted.  And, of course, one of the ways that our faith can become corrupted is when we adopt bad or wrong doctrines.  That’s why it’s important for us to learn our theology carefully and well. The base of an abandoned steel-making blast furnace; photo by … Continue reading Bible Note #50: James 2:1 and “Us vs. Them” Thinking

Bible Note #49: James 1:27 & Tolerating Stains

My wife and I currently have a four-year-old, ninety-pound golden retriever, Teddy.  We’ve had dogs, often more than one, for nearly twenty years.  Somewhere along the way, it occurred to us that vinyl flooring with a random pattern of brown dog paw prints on it would be a wonderful thing.  Anyone who has ever owned … Continue reading Bible Note #49: James 1:27 & Tolerating Stains

Bible Note #48: Justice for the Weak–Ezekiel 34:11-22

Here God proclaims his love.  God proclaims the bias of his heart.  God proclaims the direction of movement of his heart. photo by GAC Above all, he is for the weak.  Above all, he is for the vulnerable, the wounded, the broken, the lost.  (Does this sound familiar?  “For the Son of Man came to … Continue reading Bible Note #48: Justice for the Weak–Ezekiel 34:11-22

Bible Note #47: Mary Magdalene–A Holy Week Meditation

Mary Magdalene—A Narrative Meditation In an earlier time, the anguish and grief that she had endured on that Friday and Saturday would have unhinged her.  Yet in the midst of this agony, she discovered that the Teacher had so healed and restored her that even this crushing sorrow could not undo his work. photo by … Continue reading Bible Note #47: Mary Magdalene–A Holy Week Meditation

Bible Note #46: Simon of Cyrene–A Lenten Meditation

The old man stood among the group of worshipers, a part of the church at Rome.  He had moved to the imperial city years earlier, raised his family there.  He had joined others there in sharing the news of Jesus the Christ.  His two grown sons stood beside him, Alexander and Rufus, both now leaders … Continue reading Bible Note #46: Simon of Cyrene–A Lenten Meditation

Bible Note #45: Nicodemus & Joseph of Arimathea at the Cross–A Lenten Meditation

His old bones ached under the weight of his burden.  Still, he thought, his pain was nothing compared to the pain of dragging a cross through the streets especially in that appalling condition.  The weight of that rough wood grinding on the shredded flesh of the man’s back must have been near unbearable. Stained Glass … Continue reading Bible Note #45: Nicodemus & Joseph of Arimathea at the Cross–A Lenten Meditation

Bible Note #44: The Centurion at the Cross–A Lenten Meditation

The Centurion at the Cross--A Lenten MeditationRead Mark 15, especially verse 39 photo by GAC. The centurion had been summoned by the garrison commander.  There was nothing particularly unusual about that.  The centurion was one of the senior officers in the cohort that was stationed at the fortress in Jerusalem.  Of course, all the centurions … Continue reading Bible Note #44: The Centurion at the Cross–A Lenten Meditation

Bible Note #43: Peter’s Denial & Following Jesus–A Lenten Meditation

Peter’s Denial and Following JesusDrawn from Mark 14 Peter was standing by a fire in the middle of the courtyard of the high priest’s compound.  He was standing among a group of men.  He was trying to be inconspicuous, trying to sort of blend in.     He was chilled to the core, so that the … Continue reading Bible Note #43: Peter’s Denial & Following Jesus–A Lenten Meditation