Showing posts from September, 2020

Generosity in a stingy time

Matthew is the only gospel that includes this story and it expands on helps explain the previous chapter in which a rich man walks away from Christ and the disciples, who had “left everything and followed” Christ asks, “What will we have?” v. 27 . Jesus tells them that they will judge Israel and that anything they have lost—houses, brother, sister, parents, children, or land “for my name's sake” will inherit eternal life and an overabundance of what has been lost. Jesus summarizes this teaching in 19:30 and 20:16. They aren’t exactly the same but their similarity tie them to one another; “ But many who are first will be last, and the last first” and “So the last will be first, and the first last” . The story that leads off chapter 20 is as normal to life in the first century as commuting is for us. A vineyard owner, quite possibly during harvest, makes repeated trips to a common area where people gathered for work. He offers to pay the going rate of a ‘denarius’ for each man’s

Count to 100

 Ernest Hemingway begins his story, “Capital of the World” by describing a joke in Madrid in which “A father who came to Madrid and inserted and advertisement in the personal columns of El Liberal which said: ‘PACO MEET ME AT HOTEL MONTATA NOON TUESDAY ALL IF FORGIVENG PAPA, and how a squadron of Guardia Civil had to be called out to disperse the eight hundred young men who answered the advertisement (Hemingway 44).” The legend may have struck Hemingway as funny but there may well be no greater need for everyone than to hear all is forgiven. That is the truth of following Jesus. I could not believe God loved me and there are times even today I cannot fathom that truth. But it is absolutely, 100%, true. And the release from our past mistakes, crimes, sins, and errors may be the number one need we all face in this life. Peter doesn’t ask his question about how many times in order to find a way to get back at someone. He knows that God graciously set up sacrifices that were the mea