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Jesus and the Hemorrhaging Woman

Today we look at yet another example of how Jesus presented the kingdom of God in a way that would have been very unexpected at the time. The Woman's Need The story of the hemorrhaging woman is well known.  It appears in all three of the synoptic gospels (Matthew,...

Jesus Heals at the Pools

Jesus was intentionally drawn to people that the religious establishment of his day neglected. Jesus remembered the forgotten people.  Let us discuss some examples. John's gospel gives us the story at the Bethesda Pool.  Beth Eshdthayin (Aramaic) means, "House of the...

The Kingdom of God Announced

How did Jesus announce the Kingdom of God? After his wilderness experience of the temptations, Jesus returned to Galilee. He began to teach in the synagogues and was developing a favorable reputation. (Luke 4:14-15)  Then he went to Nazareth. Nazareth was a daughter...

The Kingdom of God – Jesus Temptations

We have talked about the environment of the first century when Jesus was was teaching.  The concept of Messiah as a military conqueror or a king who would rule with power and control was prevalent.  John the Baptist, preaching about preparing for the Messiah, was well...

The Kingdom of God – John the Baptist

Last time we gave a brief history of the Qumran community and the priests of the temple in order to understand the environment of Jesus' time.  The notion of the Kingdom of God to the religious Jews to whom Jesus ministered was military.  The Essenes believed they...

The Kingdom of God – A Brief History of Qumran

There was no time of greater Messianic speculation in any period of Judaism than between 63 BCE and 70 CE.  We know this from the written materials found at Qumran.  Jews were anticipating God's kingdom would come quickly. First we will look at the expectations of the...

Memory as Meditation

For most of us in the West, memory is simply a visualization of something, it is rather abstract and conceptual; it might be fleeting or come and go.  But for the ancient mind, memory was a thing of active participation.  The customs and religious traditions are...

The Lord’s Prayer

On the slopes above the Sea of Galilee the disciples ask Jesus, "Teach us to pray as John taught his disciples to pray," and so we have the Lords Prayer which we say so often, sometimes without even thinking. In Matthew and Mark it was on the hills above the Sea of...

Praying in the Character of Jesus – Simon

Last time we talked about how Jacob's character changed as he wrestled with men and then wrestled with God.  We have another story of a character change in Simon who becomes Peter.  Simon's hometown is Bethsaida, "house of the fishermen," which was at the Jordan inlet...

Praying in the Character of Jesus – Jacob

There is a condition to answered prayer, although at first it appears to be open ended.  In John 14:14 Jesus says, "If you ask anything in my name, I will do it."  But in the next verse he says, "if you love me, you will keep my commandments."  In John 15:7 Jesus...