Acts, Lesson 29: Paul Sets Sail to Rome

Model of Roman Ship (610x351)

After being under house arrest for two years in Caesarea, and after speaking before Herod Agrippa and Festus, Paul’s appeal to Caesar now begins to take place. They deliver Paul to be taken by ship to Rome. Luke records these events in a parallel structure:  A Paul journeys to Malta (Acts 27) .     B Paul […]

Understanding Five Bible Verses in a Better Way

Jeremiah 29.11 (610x351)

This is our pastor’s newsletter article for May, 2015.   We each have our favorite Bible verses, which we quote, which may even help us get through dark times. But, sometimes, the way we use a verse can cause us see God or events in ways that the original writer of that verse never meant. […]

Ezekiel 34: Jesus Feeds You

Jesus as Shepherd2 (610x352)

In our Old-Testament reading, we find God’s people in a time of duress.  They were a defeated nation, in exile.  But what made it worse was that Israel’s leaders, their shepherds, had failed in their callings.  They weren’t faithful.  They cared more about themselves than the flock that God had charged them to serve and […]

1 Corinthians, Lesson 16: Don’t Keep God from Coming to You with His Life and Salvation

Lords Supper2 (610x350)

Paul continues to deal with the issue of whether it’s okay to eat the meat that was earlier sacrificed to idols. To deal with this issue, he continues to use Old-Covenant Israel as an example of what not to do and how not to approach God, all within a chiastic structure. A 8:1-13 Dealing with […]

Acts, Lesson 28: Paul before Herod Agrippa, Bernice, and Festus

Paul before Herod Agrippa, Bernice, and Festus (610x351)

Before Lent, we learned (but may have forgotten by now) that Paul petitioned for the Roman legal system to hear his grievances. He could do that since he was a Roman citizen. Paul knew that the Jewish Sanhedrin would not give him an honest hearing for preaching and teaching “the Way.” But more than that, […]

1 John 5:4-10: The Spirit, the Water, and the Blood Still Testify to Us Today

Jesus on the cross, water and blood (610x351)

In the accounts of Jesus’ crucifixion, we find that each Gospel writer mentions different facts about what took place on the cross. Here’s how St. Mark describes Jesus’ death: “Jesus let out a loud cry and breathed His last” (Mark 15:37). But John and Matthew want you to know that Jesus “gave up His Spirit” […]

1 Corinthians, Lesson 15: Baal of Peor

Moses dealing with the Israelites who had joined in the worship of Baal (610x352)

In this lesson, we only covered 1 Corinthians 10:8.  A good discussion took place about the implications of Paul’s line of thinking on communion at the Lord’s Table. We’ll continue, Deo Volente!, with the rest of 1 Corinthians Chapter 10 net week.   Paul continues to deal with the issue of whether it’s okay to eat […]

John 20:1-18: Christ is Risen!

Mary Magdalene with Jesus at the Tomb (610x351)

Christos Anesti!  Christ is risen!  He is risen, indeed!  Alleluia! Our Gospel reading for today follows the story of Mary Magdalene, Mary from the town of Magdala. The Apostle John only mentions that Mary as she approached the tomb of Christ. The other Evangelists, Matthew, Mark, and Luke, clearly tell us that other women were […]

Good Friday Sermon: It All Came Down to This

Jesus on the cross about to be pierced with a spear (610x352)

Comparing the Old Covenant with the New, the book of Hebrews tells us: Unlike the [Jewish] high priests, Jesus doesn’t need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his sins, and then for the sins of the people. No, he did this, once for all, when he sacrificed himself. [Hebrews 7:27] It all came […]

John 6:51-58: Unless…

Pelican representing Jesus

According to legend, in a time of starvation, a mother pelican may dig into the side of her chest until it bleeds to feed her chicks. And so starting from the 2nd century, the Church has adopted the pelican as a symbol for Christ. The pelican represents Christ on the cross because, like a pelican, […]