There is never a time when one person has all the resources and the other person has all the needs. We need each other, and for those who think they have nothing to offer others, and for those who think they have nothing to gain from others (or at least from certain others), here is the truth Jesus modeled that day: Every human interaction involves both, on both sides.
It would be one of many unusual, unsettling, even unnerving experiences they would have with Jesus. Today, they would have to navigate the uncomfortable social situation of entering a potentially hostile environment.
Each contest included a cycle of three plagues. In this talk, originally delivered at New Hope Chapel, Arnold, MD, I pick up the series at the seventh plague, and show a pattern emerging of a progressive revelation of God.
What happens when God’s people lose touch with God’s values and God’s character? They do not stop being God’s people. But. They do experience a profound disconnection from God. Instead of experiencing and living out the exuberant joy of shalom, they create and participate in systems that harm.
In Genesis chapter 1, God’s word divided the light from the darkness. So now, Jesus, the Word and the Light, came into the world and divided those who love the Light from those who embrace the darkness.
The Lord sees the evil that mars God’s creation and destroys the people God loves, and the Lord intends to get rid of it. God’s wrath consumes evil and wickedness not as the opposite of God’s love, but as the expression of God’s love.
Jesus depicted himself in the bronze serpent Moses had lifted up to save people from the poisonous serpents that had overrun their camp.
And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, thus must the Son of Humanity be lifted up, in order that all who believe in him will have life eternal.
We usually think that we are at Point A and we intend to, or at least want to, get to Point B. Point B is our destination. Sometimes we get there, but more often, it feels like an obstacle course, and the map keeps changing. We end up way of course. Or, there’s a barrier that we just can’t seem to get through. But what if there were a B Prime, a destination we never thought of, but that’s what God had in mind the whole time?
They were to allow God’s core values of justice and righteousness to become their core values, which would be reflected in their compassion and care for the economically, politically, and socially disadvantaged