Each week we are challenged and encouraged to think through our faith in Christ and what it means to follow him each day.
Not Weary (David Gore • Isaiah 40:21-31)
The ups and downs of life can be wearing at times. Not only the continual changes in circumstances that life often brings, but also the combined overall mood of the culture around us that can lift us or pull us down.
Isaiah spoke to the people of Israel at a time when they had been wearied by their years in exile. The people were struggling to believe life could get better again for them.
The prophet reminds the people that from where they take their bearings, radically alters one’s sense of what is going on.
Look to the powerful people (and their regimes) and you will get a particular impression. Look past those people, to One who can extinguish their temporal power in the blink of an eye, and you will get a very different, and invigorating, impression.
Isaiah recommends the latter!
New teaching with authority (David Gore • Mark 1:21-28)
If we hear teaching with authority, there are a number of ways in which that authority might function.
The sense of authority in the teaching might be by virtue of the identity or position of the teacher. It might be the critical mass of the group who’s attention the teacher commands. It may be the teacher’s qualifications, experience and expertise in a given field.
Jesus’ teaching with authority addressed the heart of his audience. He managed to activate an innate sense of what is true and what is in accordance with love. Then he called for a response.
He called people to follow him as he lived his teaching in front of them.
It’s Time (David Gore • Mark 1:14-20)
Despite the sense that history keeps repeating, the story of humanity is going somewhere. There has been a steady development of the ways in which societies have structured themselves and cared for the most vulnerable.
There have been key moments in this process. Jesus’ entry into history is one of these key moments.
Jesus wants people to know of God’s grace shaped love for all. He lives it and embodies this love among them. Jesus calls disciples to join him in the task of living and sharing this love. The story of human history has been changed irrevocably as a consequence.
Thanks be to God.
The One (David Gore • John 1:43-51)
The process of being found by, and consequently finding Jesus, is one that changes the way we perceive everything.
We are brought up in an environment that tacitly indicates it is our responsibility to placate the divine powers. The reality is that the real threat is from within our own human survival instincts that will ultimately pit one against an other.
Jesus challenges this instinct and calls us to die to it. In its place we are instructed to give ourselves. A new approach that equips us to be for one another.
This is where divinity and humanity come together.
God in flesh (David Gore • John 1:10-18)
When we encounter paradox, it should alert us that our categories may be too small for the data we are observing.
Paradox is that moment when the way we have understood a thing (up to now) contradicts the way we have understood another thing (up to now).
This suggests there may be a way of understanding one or other (or both) things that we have not yet come to realise.
We may be hindered in perceiving in this new way due to the imprecision of our capacity for observation... or sometimes our unwillingness to see clearly(?!).
John’s prologue is full of paradox!
No longer slaves (David Gore • Galatians 4:4-7)
Not many of us would consider ourselves to be slaves. Yet, for how many of us is it the reality that we are driven?
The dynamic of God’s kingdom is that we are no longer slaves. We are no longer driven. We have been adopted as children. Called. Invited!
As children, we also inherit good things from our Heavenly Father. Not material stuff... eternally important stuff. The stuff that brings life to us and to the world.
Always worth hearing
These are always worth listening to. Not too long. But invariably a key thought or new take on the text.