Archive for "November, 2010"
In September, the world watched nervously as a Florida pastor threatened to burn 200 copies of the Koran on the anniversary of 9/11. Pastor Terry Jones planned to do this in protest against the planned construction of a mosque near Ground Zero in New York City.
When I was a kid, I hated bedtime. If there was any parental rule that I would lobby to repeal, it was the rule about when I had to put away my toys, put on my jammies, and “get to bed, young man!” I now understand that it is important to get enough sleep.
The final verses of the section (3:23-25) add an additional metaphor for the law that helps to clarify further its proper function. The paidagogos (NRSV: “disciplinarian”) was usually a domestic slave, a member of Greco-Roman (and possibly Jewish) households, who had primary responsibility for a child until the child came of age, sometime after puberty.
In [Galatians] 3:1-5 Paul formulates a series of questions regarding the Spirit, the works of the law, and faith. These questions are designed to lead his readers to a conclusion in 3:5, where Paul brings his argument to a close with the words: “Therefore [omitted in most translations], does the one who sustains you with the Spirit and works wonders among you do so because of works of the law or because you heard (the gospel) and believed?” (author’s translation).
In October 2006 the world was stunned by the news that a lone gunman, Charles Carl Roberts, had shot ten Amish school girls, killing five of them. But what made this story even more attention-getting, was the way the Amish adults handled the situation. Instead of seeking revenge on the gunman’s family, they visited his widow and offered her their forgiveness.
Though he never became a Christian, Mohandas K. Gandhi was deeply influenced in his nonviolent resistance to English rule in India by Jesus’ teachings in the Sermon on the Mount. He also knew the story of Te Whiti o Rongomai, a Maori Christian who led a similar movement in New Zealand beginning in the late 1800s.
This section is nicely balanced. The short clauses each include an imperative, an object, and the second-person pronoun, always in the same order; the only breaks in the sequence are in the second one, where the adverb kaløs had to be added to the verb (otherwise, it would have been “do those who hate you,” which is something else entirely), and in the last one, where the beneficiary of “pray” must be identified by the preposition peri.
At the heart of Jesus’ proclamation of the Kingdom of God is the God of unconditional, uncalculating love who welcomes even “tax collectors and sinners” (Luke 15:1-32). Such love, designated agape in the NT, reconciles God to human beings and thereby heals the divisions within the self and establishes the possibility of genuine community by breaking down the barriers that separate human beings from each other.