On Sunday, July 24, 2011 Brian got us all thinking about the parables of Jesus in his sermon. We were invited to consider Jesus’ words more deeply, including the fact that his images may not be as neutral as one would think (or as you have been led to believe). While we wait for the podcast and posting of his sermon, here is another preacher, a Lutheran, raising the same issues for us in her own words:
… Today we heard Jesus say that The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that when it has grown becomes the greatest of all shrubs. Um, the greatest of all shrubs? What kind of off-brand kingdom is this? It’s like saying someone is the smartest of all the idiots or the mightiest of all baby dolls. Yet he says Heaven’s kingdom is like Shrubs, and nets and yeast – and the yeast part might be the worst when you realize that yeast is considered impure – we’re not talking little packets of Flieshman’s we find at King Soopers – we’re talking big lumps of mold which contaminate….and that in fact, Jews were required to rid their entire house of yeast before celebrating some Holy Days.
We mistakenly may think that the kingdom of God should follow our value system and also be powerful or impressive and shiny. But that’s not what Jesus brings. He brings a kingdom ruled by the crucified one – populated by the unclean, and suffused with mercy rather than power. And it’s always found in the unexpected.… Read the whole sermon
Share your thoughts about Brian’s sermon and Nadia’s sermon and the words of Jesus in Matthew 13. Keep the conversation going, leave a comment; two fine preachers have set us to thinking about the kingdom…