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Sunday, April 8, 2018

The Springtime Throwing Open of Windows

Matthew 16:5-12  NIV
5 When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. 6 “Be careful,” Jesus said to them. “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”

7 They discussed this among themselves and said, “It is because we didn’t bring any bread.”

8 Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, “You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9 Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 12 Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.


John 3:3-7  NIV
3 Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.

3 Jesus replied, “Very truly I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again.[a]”

4 “How can someone be born when they are old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely they cannot enter a second time into their mother’s womb to be born!”

5 Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit[b] gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You[c] must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”[d]


Sometimes I like to think of Emily Dickinson in correspondence with Lucy from the Peanuts cartoon.  I think it would only be a matter of time before one or the other or both committed suicide.  The above passages cannot help but elicit sympathy for Jesus—surely he must have occasionally sighed—“Come on fellows…give me a little help here.”

This past week I have been in several discussions about the story(s) of creation described in Genesis—people ask, do you think it is true?  In my view the original tellers of this story might change a word or two considering the endless enervating and bizarre discussions we now hear that seem to totally miss the point.  Maybe the author would settle for “first phase” rather than “first day" (anything to bring a little sanity and peace and, lo, a semblance of intelligence to a tiresome discussion recalling the endless chatter about how many angels can fit in a phone booth (or was it on the head of a pin?). 

But the whole point anyway is to affirm with no wiggle room whatever that God IS the Creator and humans ignore THIS FACT at the direst of personal and social peril.  Part of being real (Genesis makes clear) is that God is boss, and we are not.  (Considering the Omnipotence, Omniscience and Omnipresence of God, it seems absurdly unnecessary to make such a statement except for man’s ego IQ whose elevation falls pitifully below that of a sun-bleached cow patty.)

I too await a rebirth of wonder….punctuated often by laughter and joy.

(PS:  Some weeks ago I dismissed a friend’s sincere question regarding the Genesis creation account with an arrogant dismissal as if the question were stupid….rather than that of my splattering ego IQ.)

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