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In Genesis, it is said that God planned on making human beings in God’s image and likeness, and giving humanity dominion over all the creatures and beasts and cattle and creeping things on earth. And the word “dominion” has cause no end of debate.

Are we to dominate and subdue the whole earth, using all of it for our own purposes, to meet our own needs, wants and desires? Or are we designed to be God’s lieutenants, taking care of creation on behalf of God?
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This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.

Galilee is a long way from Jerusalem. Which means that Jesus and his disciples who have walked with him all this way, have the dust of so many places on them. Jesus has the dust of that northern province, up there where the troublemakers are, up by the pagan lands, past where the Samaritan heretics live.
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This morning I would like to share with you my process of discovery in preparing this sermon. My methodology can be attributed partly to my preaching professor, Dow Edgerton, and the rest to my Polish genes. Suffice it to say … Continue reading

Let’s go back to the beginning. A man who was born blind. And the disciples ask, “Who sinned? Who caused this? Who messed up so that God would punish this man, even as a child?”

This was the thinking back then. After all, various actions or inactions needed a sacrifice to atone for them in the Torah. So if someone suffers, surely it must be because some sin that was not atoned for, right? Continue reading

Our stories this morning are stories that mess with our sense of how things “ought to be.” They disrupt the idea that the rules are the rules.

A people are wandering the wilderness with no food, no water, no maps, no GPS. What is supposed to happen when people do this? People who do this die. But the ones wandering in the wilderness are fed by manna, are given water from the rock. God is the God of exceptions. Continue reading

Have you ever been in a classroom, as a student or a teacher, and you can tell that people do not yet understand the lesson, but no one wants to be the one to raise their hand? If the teacher keeps going, ignorance will pile on ignorance.

Certainty is a problem. Religious certainty is a problem. Continue reading

Whatever else fasting is, it is a reminder that we are contingent people. We rely on others, we rely on this earth, we rely on creation, we rely on God. How easy it is to believe we are alone, isolated, individuals, independent. We celebrate and praise independence and individualism. We mock people who need others. We are embarrassed by our needs. Continue reading

I believe this expanding love is echoed in how we are called to see one another. And it is supposed to expand how we see ourselves. Children of God. Beloved of Christ.

But this is a hard message. It is a self-fulfilling prophecy to say “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Because we can only love another as much as we love ourselves. Continue reading

The perfection of God is not perfectly harvesting every last bit of grain, every last vegetable, every single grape from the vineyard. It is leaving some for the poor and for the foreigner. It does not tell us whether or not the foreigner is here with legal status or not. The Bible does not make such distinctions. Continue reading