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The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Me: Ministry in Luke, part 2

Much has been made lately of a “king Jesus” gospel that turns the focus of the biblical drama to the kingdom of God, along with Jesus’ lordship over that kingdom. This makes saving faith for some commenters more a matter … Continue reading

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A eunuch rolls into a graduation ceremony on a chariot…

This sermon was preached by my colleague, Natalie Magnusson, at our graduation service for MRE graduates this past Saturday. Natalie is the Assistant Director of the MRE and has led our students in their pursuit of God-centered Identity through the … Continue reading

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The Spirit of the Lord is Upon Me: Ministry in Luke

In the opening scene of Jesus’ public ministry in Luke, he preaches in his hometown synagogue in Nazareth. There he receives the scroll opened to the prophet Isaiah 61 and proclaims the “year of the Lord’s favor.” In doing so, … Continue reading

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Scribes Trained for the Kingdom of Heaven: Ministry in Matthew, Part 3

One last bit of reflection on Matthew before I move on to Luke. I want to begin with an observation I made at the beginning of this “series” related to the gospels and churches. If you believe, as seems obvious, … Continue reading

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Scribes Trained for the Kingdom of Heaven: Ministry in Matthew, Part 2

One reader of my last blog post lamented that I left you hanging. I suggested that scribal communities are sometimes fairly insular or defensive when it comes to mission. They live deeply in the alternative world of Scripture as a … Continue reading

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Ministry in Matthew: Scribes Trained for the Kingdom of Heaven

At the very center of Matthew’s gospel we find parables on the kingdom of Heaven. It is the third of five sections of Jesus’ teaching which end with the phrase, “When Jesus had finished saying these things” (We will return … Continue reading

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Learning with others when we’re disoriented

In my previous post, I wrote about the possibility of adaptive change when our sense of normal has been disrupted, as has happened due to the pandemic. Paying attention to our circumstances in the right kinds of ways might very … Continue reading

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Asking the right questions of our season of disruption.

I know that being a church leader during this pandemic has been brutal. The smooth, well-worn ways of being a “church” have been disrupted and we are right to feel like things may never be the same. We have stepped … Continue reading

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In the power of the Spirit, A brief meditation on Jesus and what it means to be human

In Luke’s gospel, the Spirit descends upon Jesus at his baptism, and full of the Holy Spirit, he is led into the wilderness by the Spirit to be tempted by Satan. He then returns to Galilee “filled with the power … Continue reading

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Third Sunday of Advent—A sermon on joy

Isaiah 61 The spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me; he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and … Continue reading

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