Monthly Archives: August 2014

8/26/2014 Matthew 3 (17)

This was an interesting reading today with lots of implications for us. We discussed John the Baptist. His father was the high priest and obviously well connected in political and religious life. But he appeared to be a righteous man and was a prophet of God. His son went out in the wilderness somewhere by the Jordan river in rough camel hide garments and a leather thong belt and preaching against the wealthy people in that era. He railed against the Sadducee and the Pharisees, and obviously, his father was possibly a Sadducee or a Pharisee. However, one rumor is that Zechariah refused to tell Herod where his son was when Herod was killing all 2 year old boys and was therefore killed. In the Quran, Zechariah, John the Baptist, and Jesus are seen as ushering in a new era of prophets — all of whom came from the priestly descent of Amram, the father of the prophet Aaron. We then got into a discussion of the wealth disparity in this country and where we were in the hierarchy. Are most of us in the 1%. Many of us probably are. Certainly compared to the rest of the world. Norm asked how we deal with the people that have less than us and bring them out of poverty. He mentioned that a homeless man he had met at Free Lunch said that he had been shooed away from Zion because he had been sleeping in the window wells. So he couldn’t go back. Is this what we want and are we so uncomfortable with the poor that we just want them to go away? Are we the Sadducees of today? Would we be uncomfortable to have Jesus around because he would make us rock the boat and take us out of comfortable lives?

It is also interesting to note the emergence of the concept of the trinity in verses 16-17. This may be the first indication of that and it is certainly a New Testament concept. There are Old Testament references like Isaiah 61:1 that talks about the spirit of God to dwell upon you, but I think they are a little far fetched. The form of the word Elohim is a plural word which could imply a trinity. But I think it is more of a New Testament concept as it appears in Matthew 3:16-17.

August 12, 2014 Matthew 1 (13)

Matthew wrote to Jewish Christians. Dated about 80-90. He supposedly wrote down sayings and observations collected and then ascribed with the name Matthew. Mark is the first one to write a gospel, but probably followed with oral traditions and some early writings. See verse 17. The prophet said his name would be Immanuel, but the angel said he should be Jesus. Martin Luther says Mary is great. The mystery of the faith is Christ died and rose again. Mark says he doesn’t know how Jesus got here but he is happy he did. Faith comes thru the word and this is the basis of our belief. Jesus comes as a vertical extension of God. We live out our faith in the horizontal but are not saved by these works but are saved by Jesus. Tom says our kids are embarrassed by the fact that they are made during sex. Was Mary’s pregnancy really an invitro birth from God.
Bill days that Jesus had been a terrible person until saved by God and began his teaching. The infancy gospels. The life of Brian is a movie where Jesus and Brian were born in a joining stalls.
This is the document that Mark gave to us all. synopticgospels004