We’ve got a couple of whopper topics from today’s lectionary. The biggie from John’s gospel (10:22-30) illustrates how Jesus ignited ongoing controversy. Then there is a provocative story in Acts (9:36-43) about Peter resurrecting Dorcas, a female tailor. We’ll jump first into John’s narrative, where Jesus was walking in the Jerusalem Temple amid critics who wanted him to plainly state his credentials. Then as now, there’s unceasing debate about Jesus. Jesus affirmed that he was the messiah and that his miracles supported his claim. But Jesus went much further. “I am God!” is what Jesus’ critics heard him declare. We can hedge things a bitRead More →

Heaven is calling. Just when you think all the drama is over with Easter, God gains our attention. This applies to the calling of Saul (Acts 9: 1-20) and the restoration of Peter (John 21: 1-19). The situation with Saul (later named Paul) reveals how this greatest of the early Christian writers was spiritually awakened. Before his conversion, Saul was a mercenary, hired by the Jewish bureaucracy to harass and arrest Christians. One day on a journey to Damascus Saul heard a voice from heaven that changed his life. Only Saul heard the heavenly words which brought-up the persecutions of Jesus’ followers. The gist wasRead More →