If you were forced to describe yourself in one sentence, what would you say? What would you say if you could only use one word? However you would describe yourself, it is certainly very unlike how Jesus describes himself. Instead of asserting his dominance and authority through coercion and force, Christ proclaims a gospel of the kingdom that is predicated on meekness.
Whenever I hear a speaker open with the words, “Turn to the Book of Revelation,” I tend to get a little uneasy. I get nervous because I never know how that speaker is going to handle the mysterious material in the book. Oftentimes, the comfort derived out of Revelation is from “knowing what’s going to happen.” But, very plainly, that’s not even close to the comfort Jesus gives.
Mooring refers to something permanent or fixed to which a ship is secured. It’s what keeps a vessel protected from the perilous waves that could otherwise leave it adrift. The mooring is absolutely essential to the life of any seafaring vessel. Similarly, unless we are moored and fastened to something (Someone) permanent, we, too, will be tossed about, to and fro, in this life.
Among the most revered of the Psalms is Psalm 18. Its lyrical marvel, brimming with magnificent language that desirous of one thing: God’s glory. As King David reflects on his life and the many deliverances throughout which came at his God’s hand, he’s inspired to pen this wondrous psalm. But David’s song of deliverance is our song too.
Nativity scenes are strange to me. They’re strange because we’ve decided, against all evidence to the contrary, that we have to have the wise men from the east in attendance at Jesus’s birth. And, as Matthew 2 tells us, our stubborn insistence to include them at the nativity exposes our lack of understanding why we remember the wise men in the first place.
All the uncanny glory of the gospel is found in the business of the Incarnation. All its majesty is there, too. For it’s not just that the Christ child was born where beasts dwell, it’s that after he was born he was placed where beasts feed. The manger where Jesus was laid is, in fact, a signpost heralding the wideness of God’s mercy
The Gospel of Mark is known for its rapid pace. The book moves quickly from scene to scene as the author strives to get to his main point, which is, Jesus is the heaven-sent servant. Mark’s endeavor to show Jesus as “one who serves” serves to underscore the entire theme of the Gospel, namely, that Jesus is the unexpected Lord who comes to serve, who comes to give himself to us.