Category Archives: Devotions

Galileans, Fig Trees, “Illegals”, and You

God’s Judgment

Was Hurricane Katrina really God’s judgment on New Orleans? How about the 1906 earthquake that devastated San Francisco—was that a judgment on the Barbary Coast? When tragedy strikes people are quick to assign a moral cause. Luke 13:1-9 shows us pious judgments designed to explain away bad things. This reflex goes way back.

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Resisting Our Tendencies Toward Hypocrisy

hypocrisy

Nobody likes to think that they might have areas of hypocrisy in their life. That is an indictment we give to insincere Christians or money making charlatans. However, hypocrisy isn’t just unethical actions. Often, hypocrisy is mixed motives intertwined with good practices.

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The Greatest of These is Love

love chapter

In Paul’s famous love chapter, 1 Corinthians 13, he’s writing to a group of people who are having multiple disagreements and divisions. This snippet of Paul’s letter has become the focus of poems, cards, and wedding ceremonies, so the context can easily get lost in all the sentimentality. Although it’s often called “the love chapter” only a few verses in the middle get the focus.

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Nerve Damage in the Body of Christ

body of Christ

3rd Sunday after the Epiphany; 1 Cor. 12:12-31

 If there’s one word that describes the Christian church the least, it would be the noun “unity.” This unfortunate reality seems to stretch all the way back to the earliest iteration of the Christian church. This lack of unity is the basis for Paul’s well-known metaphor, that the church is like one body. He creates a picture in which everyone can relate because we all have bodies. He’s appealing to them to see their relatedness because the Corinthian church had a variety of divisions.

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An Abundance of Joy

abundance of joy

2nd Sunday after the Epiphany: John 2:1-11

The Gospel of John follows the miracles of Jesus that act as signs of his role as the Messiah. The other gospels record Jesus as saying he won’t give the people a sign. John is detailing the things Jesus did right under their noses that were signs.

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Baptism of Jesus

baptism of jesus

Baptism of the Lord: Luke 3:15-17, 21-22

Luke’s retelling of the baptism of Jesus is so succinct, it allows us to see something very basic. While John was proclaiming, prophesying, and leading the people to follow the will of God. Jesus was in line with all the ordinary people to obey and get baptized by John.

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