The people in the synagogue were looking forward to some hometown privilege. They see themselves as special and they are ticked off when they realize that Jesus won’t play to their presumed privilege and that they are being passed over. That’s what enrages them. They are raging mad about being passed over.
And I can’t help but wonder if we might not be the hometown crowd, if we somehow see ourselves as Jesus’ favorites. I can’t help but wonder if we don’t also assume some privileged status when it comes to Jesus, as if he always chooses (or should choose) our side, our church, our party, our country. And I can’t help but wonder if we’re not also in danger of being passed over. Continue reading The One Thing We All Have In Common – A Sermon On Luke 4:21-30
Today’s gospel (Luke 4:21-30) needs to be heard and can really only be understood in the context of last week’s gospel (Luke 4:14-21). So let’s take a look at where we are. Jesus has been baptized, has overcome the temptations in the wilderness, and has returned to the synagogue of his childhood in Nazareth. He reads from the prophet Isaiah: “The Spirit of the Lord … Continue reading Borders and the Politics of Jesus – A Sermon on Luke 4:21-30
“What’s your plan for the day?” It’s a question I often ask my wife; usually on the weekend. But sometimes in the evenings after work I’ll say, “What’s your plan for this evening?” They seem like innocent enough questions and often they are. I’m really interested in what she wants to do and what’s going on in her life. Then there are those other times. I ask the question because I already have my own plans, my own agenda, and I’m just trying to figure out when and how what I want to do will be accomplished. Will she participate in and support my agenda? That’s the question behind my question.
When agendas come together amazing things can happen. Relationships deepen. Love flourishes. Energy and creativity flow. Life is abundant and rich. All is well. When, however, agendas collide conflict arises.
Whether spoken or unspoken we all have our agendas. We have that list of expectations, desires, things we want to do, and ways we want to be. At some level our agendas describe who we are and what we are about. The question is not whether we have agendas, we do. The question is whose agenda guides our life? Continue reading “Agendas in Nazareth, A Sermon on Luke 4:21-30”
The collect and readings for today, the Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany may be found here. The appointed gospel is Luke 4:21-30: 21Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” 23He said to … Continue reading How Wild Is Your Jesus?