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Showing posts from August, 2010

Reflection: 08-10

‘God is love’.

With those words in 1John 4, St John emphatically ‘changed’ the ultimate attribute and nature of God. Perhaps not ‘changed’ but ‘solidified’ would be a better term for how we should understand God. We have heard it used time and time again. But I don’t think we actually know what it means. I recently had dinner with a friend and we were discussing God’s ‘ultimate’ attribute. He stated that it was holiness and that all other attributes of God came from that. I countered that God’s ‘ultimate’ attribute was Love and cited that verse (1John 4.8 - like one verse trumps another verse). We went back and forth for a while and finally had to agree to disagree. Unbeknownst to me, this theme would keep coming up again and again.

With the month of August being full of activity (my daughter moving off to college, my wife beginning to teach a yoga class, a number of birthdays including my own), I thought I would settle on some ‘light’ reading. So this month, I selected The Trinity and …

Collect for the Fourteenth Sunday After Pentecost

God of all power and love, the author and giver of all good things: Grant in our hearts the love of your Name; increase in us true religion; nourish us with all goodness; and bring forth in us the fruit of good works; through Jesus Christ our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Collect for the Twelfth Sunday After Pentecost

Loving God, you have given your only Child to be for us a sacrifice for sin, and also an example of godly life: Give us grace to receive thankfully the fruits of this redeeming work, and to follow daily in the blessed steps of a most holy life; through Jesus Christ your Child our Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.  Amen.

Suffering Love

We (or I should probably say 'I' but I think a lot of us do this too), for whatever reason, divide 'God' into different concepts.  That is, the one called 'Father-Mother' is seen as different or other than Jesus.  And the Spirit is different still.

But Jesus said, 'If you have seen me, you have seen the Father-Mother.' So, who was Jesus? Was he not the 'suffering servant'? Was he not the self-sacrificing Love? Was he not meek and humble? Was he not always putting others before himself? Yes to all of this. Likewise the Father-Mother and the Spirit.

If we think God as something other than this, then, at the very least, we have misunderstood. At the very worst, we have become idolaters for we have made an image of our own imagining and called it 'God'.

Importing and closing...

You might find some weird stuff on here soon.  I will be importing and closing my other blog site.  It make take some time and I'm not sure what will happen.  I just wanted those who venture here to know that what was happening.

In the Love of the Three in One,

Jack+, LC

Reflection: 07-10

This month’s reflection is on the book, Paul’s Idea of Community, by Robert J. Banks.  I found the book rather intriguing in that it wasn’t what I was expecting.  In each chapter, Banks set the stage by showing what the cultural setting was for Paul.  He compares the main influences – Jewish, Greek, Roman, Hellenistic (Jewish culture influenced by the Greco-Roman culture), and ‘mystery’ (pagan) cults – with those of the small communities that Paul was starting.  For example, in chapter 3, ‘Churches as Household Gatherings’, Banks wrote,
[The] Greek term for a Jewish community, sunagoge, is never used of a Christian gathering in the NT . . . The three usual terms that describe the Hellenistic cults (sunados, thiasos, and koinon) do not occur at all.  The reason for the absence of these terms is probably as follows: the synagogue was so centered around the Law and the mysteries so focused on a cult, that use of either word would have resulted in a misunderstanding of what ekklesia was al…