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Showing posts from September 8, 2019

Sheep and Coins

Here some thoughts about this Sunday's gospel that were shared with the people of St. Timothy Lutheran Church. I'd like to hear from you. What are some of your thoughts?
Gospel: Luke 15:1-10 1Now all the tax collectors and sinners were coming near to listen to [Jesus.] 2And the Pharisees and the scribes were grumbling and saying, “This fellow welcomes sinners and eats with them.”
3So he told them this parable: 4“Which one of you, having a hundred sheep and losing one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one that is lost until he finds it? 5When he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders and rejoices. 6And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’ 7Just so, I tell you, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance.
8“Or what woman having ten silver coins, if she loses …
This is the sermon I preached last Sunday, 9/8 at St. Timothy Lutheran Church. The text was Luke 14:25-33.

Really Jesus? You can’t really be serious about what you say in today’s gospel reading, can you? Come on…let go of my relatives, carry the cross and kiss good-bye to what is dearest to me? You don’t want this passage taken literally, do you? You can’t mean what you say here. There must be contextual issues, hyperbole, overstatement, sarcasm or something in your words to take the sting out of this directive.”
Aren’t these the kind of things that come to mind as you hear today’s gospel? The gospel is supposed to be good news, but do you hear any in this passage?
The text begins and ends with an “all or nothing” decree about following Jesus, with two practical illustrations in between.
Jesus has some real eager beavers in the crowds that are following him. It wasn’t just one large group, but large groups—lots of people. And these were not disciples. These were people who were impres…