They call me Simon the Pharisee. “Simon” means “hearing.” In accordance with my name, I heard the call of Jesus and became a disciple after He healed me of leprosy. Candidly, the physical disease symbolized the deeper spiritual disease from which Jesus also delivered me. I was guilty of clergy sexual abuse, a practice that fed on my Phariseeism like crustaceans feed on sewage.
Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com
Clergy Sexual Abuse has been in the headlines for a few [...]
A family I know bought a huge home years ago, and their daughter invited her friends over for their first get-together at the new home. Unfortunately jealousy set it in with one of the daughter’s friends who made a comment about the home and her thinking she is “so rich.” The daughter was hurt because the money her family has had never crossed her mind. Her friend saw the house and only thought about how rich they must be. The [...]
Would Jesus hang out with homosexuals? Is there a way we can know?1
We know that Jesus associated with the outcasts of his day. Luke 15:1-2 is very clear that he not only associated with tax collectors and sinners, he ate with them. He went to their dinner parties (Matt 11: 19) to such an extent he was called a glutton and winebibber.
Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com
Not only that, but at one of the parties he accepted and defended [...]
He had told her he loved her. Said she was beautiful. Promised her she would be special. Next thing she knew she was being dragged out of bed by the friends of him who had dragged her into bed, and he who had praised and flattered her just stood and watched her being dragged away.
Now she was kneeling half naked, humiliated before a popular religious icon. Eyes closed not wanting to be confronted by this religious leader, and not wanting [...]
“And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity.” Acts 2:44-46 NLT
Image © Stan Myers from GoodSalt.com
As a very rich Bible Worker I would like to speak out today on a social issue. It seems by some news [...]
I was sitting at a funeral dinner with the grown children of a dear woman whose service I had just conducted. One of her sons was talking about adding a patio to the back of his house. Her daughter was talking about doing some work on her home. I thought to myself, “This mother has just died and her children are talking about everything but her! I don’t even have kids, just think how quickly I will be forgotten when [...]
Since this interesting question came up in our comments, I did a little research. And it leads me to conclude that the contemporaries of Christ were far more literate than we like to give them credit for.
Now I’m not an expert in history or biblical languages, nor a mathematician, but I’m thinking that we can draw a few deductions from the biblical story and other sources. The Bible demonstrates that Christ had an intimate knowledge of the Scriptures as early [...]
While flipping through the channels on my TV the other day, I ran across a “law and order” show in which a detective was saying how abusers always seek the trust of the person they want to abuse. I have heard similar things in pastor group meetings, and this has prompted me to share what little common sense I have on the matter.
If someone is trying to get you to trust them, be suspicious. Trustworthy people don’t need to ask [...]
The Sabbath School lesson on discipling children reminded me of a post someone shared with me on Facebook that really hit home.
Image © Darrel Tank from GoodSalt.com
The article, “Youth Groups Driving Christian Teens to Abandon Faith” mentions that many (not all) church youth groups help teens connect with each other, but fail to connect teens with the church or with God. When they outgrow the youth group, they leave the church and God, which they never were connected to anyway.
Some youth leaders [...]