Showing posts from January, 2014

Called to ???

Readings: Hebrew Scripture:          Isa 9:1-4                                                Psalm:                             Psalm: 27:1, 4-9                                                 Epistle:                            1 Cor 1:10-18                       Gospel:                            Matt 4:12-23                                       What I want to say: Invite us to let go of some more theological assumptions and to explore the nature of call from a fresh perspective                 What I want to happen: People to reflect on their own calling and ministry in light of this story from Matthew The Sermon        1.        Introduction: how do you experience God’s call? what are we called to?                 2.        Matthew classic call story heard this morning comes after John arrested         Jesus does two things                         gets out – moves to another place                         carries on Johns ministry (althou

Epiphany's gift

Last week I talked about Epiphany being an opportunity to examine our theological assumptions and to put some of them aside so that we can read the gospels afresh. Our theological assumptions act like foggy glasses that blind us to so much of what the gospel writers offer us. It happens to us all. We will never entirely read them without assumption.   But it is important to try. Why? Because the gospel writers knew that God is unknowable, but believed that in the life, actions and teaching of Jesus we are offered a way to know God, a picture of who God is. As we come to know Jesus, we come to know the nature of God. What got Jesus and his early followers in trouble was that this picture was often at odds with what people assumed God was like. Most were looking for an all-powerful God who would vanquish those deemed not of God’s family, and would impose God’s will. Many, including Christians, are still looking for that God today. We can see this theological struggle in Paul’s lette

John Hebenton's Podcast

If the notes I posted seemed a little hard to understand, you can listen to the finished product right here.

Letting Go of our Theological Baggage

I am not as organised for Sunday as I would like. Here are my very rough thoughts  on the Gospel reading for Sunday. I hope a sermon emerges out of them. Epiphany 2, 2014   Gate Pa – Readings: Hebrew Scripture:                 First Reading:  Isa 49:1-7                    Psalm:                                      Psalm: 40:1-11                                    Epistle:                                     1 Cor 1:1-9              Gospel:                                    John 1:29-42                           What I want to say: I want to talk about the theological politics in John’s gospel, and how we play theological politics. I want to suggest that epiphany time us to be reawakened to what Jesus teaches us about nature of God, through life, ministry and teaching. Using “lamb of God” and Jesus is way, truth and life, want to explore how our theological glasses blind us to what Gospels teach us. What I want to happen: People to be freed from some t

Who are we looking for?

In the midst of hearing Matthew we have one Sunday reading from John, just to keep us on our toes. His version of Jesus‘ baptism is different from the other Gospel writers. It is written for a different community, using different sources and dealing with different issues. Can you spot the differences? Why do you think he wrote his version differently from the others? As I have said before, the gospels were written to help people answer the fundamental question of “who is Jesus?” In part they were answering this question because Jesus wasn’t the kind of person you would normally follow or attach any importance to. As one of the writers I read asks, “ Just exactly who is this guy from that dinky, remote, nowheresville hamlet - Nazareth? Is that what it's called? And did you say he was the bastard son of Mary? That Joseph must have been a real loser to hook up with her. No self-respecting man would marry a woman like that. So we don't even know who his real father i