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Things We Wish Jesus Hadn't Said

The passage we are going to read today from Luke 12:49-56 is, according to New Testament scholar N. T. Wright, “high on the list of Things We Would Rather Jesus Hadn’t Said. It’s not gentle, it’s not meek and mild; it’s not even nice. Parents and children at loggerheads, in-laws getting across one another—what can Jesus have had in mind?”
Well, the only way to find out is to read the passage and explore it a bit. Listen for God’s word to you from Luke 12:49-56…
“I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! I have a baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed! Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division! From now on five in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three; they will be divided: father against son
    and son against father,
mother against daughter
    and daughter against mother,
mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law
    and daughte…
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How to Prepare for Jesus' Return

John Donne, the seventeenthcentury poet and Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, once asked in a poem: “What if this present were the world’s last night?” In other words: what if you knew that tonight the world was coming to an end? How would you live today if you knew that? In our passage for today from Luke 12:32-40, Jesus suggests how we should live in light of the fact that he is one day going to return to the earth. Listen for God’s word to you… “Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Sell your possessions and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near, and no moth destroys. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. “Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks.Blessed are those sla…

The Ladder of Life

Thomas Merton once said, “People may spend their whole lives climbing the ladder of success only to find, once they reach the top, that the ladder is leaning against the wrong wall.” 
Jesus often warned people about this very problem and he does so, once again, in our text for today. Listen for God’s word to you from Luke 12:13-21…
Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.” But he said to him, “Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?” And he said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” Then he told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly. And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have ample goo…