Matthew 5:17-20 (AD 28) Jesus, in condemning the persecution and murder of prophets from centuries past, condemning the Pharisees, talking about God blessing the Gentiles and causing a ruckus at the temple in Jerusalem, was accruing quite a reputation. It’s why three readings ago in Mark chapter three, we saw his mother and brothers trying … More Day 33: The Unchanging makes changes
Matthew 5:13-16 (AD 28) Salt is not limited to a single function, so there is no singular meaning. Rather, there are about ten uses, so if we are to be like salt, there should be many ways we make a positive impact Given the context, the are probably three uses of salt that are most … More Day 32: Be more like sodium chloride
Matthew 5:1-12 (AD 28) The Beatitudes are not a list of what you need to do to be saved. Jesus was teachings his disciples, not non-believers. They are commands, but they exist first as pronouncements of blessings upon Christians already exhibiting these traits, with an encouragement and challenge to exhibit those traits even more. They … More Day 31: Supremely blessed
Mark 3:7-35 (AD 28) Strange as it is to say, Jesus gets a bad rep with some people for what is perceived as a harsh treatment of his mother and brothers when they called for him in verse thirty-one. They just wanted to see him, people say, why does he have to dismiss them like … More Day 30: Jesus – mad, bad and dangerous to know?
Mark 3:1-6 (AD 28) You probably need to read these verses a couple of times to even begin to comprehend the level of wickedness of those who hated Jesus. Some Pharisees were watching him to see if he would heal someone on the Sabbath, which they thought would justify accusing him of being anti-God for … More Day 29: When good is called evil
Mark 2:18-28 (AD 28) “although regular weekly fasting was not part of the law of Moses, by the first century such fasting had become an important part of the practice of Judaism…To the orthodox Jew this one minor point of fasting raised the whole question of the attitude of Jesus to the whole ceremonial law.” … More Day 28: Mandatory fasting?
John 5:1-47 (AD 28) Note the difference between how Jesus presented himself to different groups. On the one hand, gentle and kind with the physically and spiritually needy who admitted they were needy. On the other hand, sometimes highly confrontational with the religious hypocrites. This incident was very early in his ministry but he was … More Day 27: Ditch the dumb rules
Mark 2:1-17 (AD 27) Jesus didn’t waste any time, once he started his public ministry, in forcing people to have an opinion about him. Here we have a pair of stories in which Jesus first acted in a way that could only have been justified if he was God himself. And then flouted and contradicted … More Day 26: Jesus – man of the (bad) people
Mark 1:21-45 (AD 27) In an era when lots of preachers will rebuke demons, or tell their congregations to rebuke demons…don’t even think about it. Becoming more like Jesus and being given the Holy Spirit doesn’t give you Jesus’ authority, and to behave otherwise is to betray an inflated view of our own status. Jude … More Day 25: The source of authority
Matthew 4:13-22 (AD 27) In the last reading Jesus walked through a crowd of people who were trying to throw him off a cliff…with them failing miserably to throw him off the cliff. That scene has always blown my mind. What did it look like? What did it sound like? Did God paralyse the would-be … More Day 24: Jesus flexes his authority