Archive for November, 2010

Holiness is not…

Posted: 23 November, 2010 in My stuff, Other people's stuff
Tags: ,

Don't let the image put you off; it was the best I could find on what holiness is not!

I posted a thin slice of this quote as a Facebook status some time ago.  I thought a  posting of the larger quote here might be helpful to some.

I am often surprised at the responses I get to Facebook updates.  Some times I post something that I think has something somewhat profound about it and there is not response by way of ‘likes’ or comments.  Then I will post up something about my laziness or my inability to fulfil a  commitment or the like and will get a  rush of hits on it, sometimes encouraging my laziness or reminding me in a  positive way of my failing humanity.   (more…)

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Thank you God for not making me a Gentile [dog], a woman or a slave. Talmud – Shabbath 86a-86b.

So in this daily prayer from the Jewish Talud of the early second century we see a reflection of the role and something of the status of women in the period of Jesus ministry.

Yet women are an integral part of the Gospel narrative.  From Mary the mother of Jesus to Mary Magdalene in the Garden, women feature in the story of Jesus.  It is not so much what they do or say it is more the fact that they are recorded as being there in the first place.    An argument could probably be put that if not for Jesus scandalous association with women and the early churches radical acceptance of women as equals in faith and life all the women here would probably be segregated from men other than their fathers and husbands, confined primarily to the home and wearing veils when in public. (more…)

Now we turn to the last of Jesus disciples; last not only in our order but last in all the lists of the Gospel record.  He is Judas Iscariot.  He is always mentioned in regard to his betrayal of Jesus.

Judas appears to be one of the twelve; one of Jesus regular band of learner-companions.  He is first mentioned in the Gospel stories in the Gospel of Mark with the same story appearing in Matthews Gospel almost word for word.

Jesus was at the home of Simon the Leper (not a name you would be very proud of) when a woman came and poured expensive perfumed oil on his head.  With the sweet fragrance of the oil same the stink of complaint: “Why wasn’t it sold and the money used to help the poor?”  These words are used to reflect the thinking and the muttering of the guests, the disciples and Judas in particular. John lets us into the secret that Judas, who managed the money of Jesus and his band of disciples, was dipping his fingers into the till and using for himself. (more…)

Like most of the Apostles, we know very little about Thomas.  What we do know about him is pretty much all fort the wrong reasons.  If we know him as Thomas we probably know him better as Doubting Thomas.

The question is, was his doubt from disbelief or from a sort of healthy scepticism?

In John’s gospel, chapter 11, Jesus is told of his friend Lazarus’ illness.  Jesus does not just drop everything and go buy delays for a couple of days.  It must be remembered that Lazarus lived at Bethany, only a   short distance from Jerusalem and on Jesus previous visit to Jerusalem he had come close to being stoned by the religious leaders for what they thought to be blasphemy or even demon possession .   Whit this in mind we make some sense of the passage that says, “Thomas, whose nickname was “Twin,” said to the other disciples, “Come on. Let’s go, so we can die with him.” (more…)

Today I want to introduce you to two of the somewhat lesser know of Jesus disciples; James and Judas.                          Like just about all the other disciples they have a number of names or nicknames by which they are known.

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It depends which side of the table you are on...

I was wanting very much to write something about the proposed changes to Australian tax law in regard to Islamic banks but I know I am not going to find the time the time this week.

Suffice to say that I heard an interview on our Local ABC with someone who was dead against it because ‘it is not part of our way of life.  It does not reflect Australia values’.  Mind you, I wanted to get the transcript so I could quote this bloke accurately but I couldn’t find it. They said it was available, unfortunately not though.

Anyway, he was on about the fact that an Islamic Bank did not charge interest and this was one of the things he said was ‘not reflective of Australian values’.   (more…)