Mark 11: 1-11

Many of you have heard me speak before about my interest in science; and, in particular, my interest in the field of physics. No doubt, many of you have heard me describe what is, for me, one of the most fascinating discoveries of modern science: namely, the fact that light behaves as though it is particulate, as though it is composed of discrete “bits” of energy called “photons”; but that at one and the same time it also behaves as though it is a field of energy, spreading through space like a wave. This contradiction is known as the “particle-wave duality of light”; and it is one of a series of discoveries which, at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries, forced scientists to radically revise their models of the universe, and which ultimately led to the development of quantum physics. Continue reading “Mark 11: 1-11”

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John 12: 20-33 (indirectly Jeremiah 31:31-34)

In his book The Cost of Discipleship, the German theologian and martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer issues a blunt warning to those who would be disciples of Christ. Bonhoeffer writes:

The messengers of Jesus will be hated to the end of time. They will be blamed for all the divisions which rend cities and homes. Jesus and his disciples will be condemned on all sides for undermining family life, and for leading the nation astray; they will be called crazy fanatics and disturbers of the peace.[1]

Continue reading “John 12: 20-33 (indirectly Jeremiah 31:31-34)”

John 3: 14-21 (indirectly Numbers 21: 4-9)

I can’t exactly remember where or when I heard it said, but I do recall, some years ago now, overhearing someone suggest that a sub-plot was merely a devise used to disguise the fact that a story had no plot at all. I have subsequently wondered what the person who said this would make of the Gospel According to John, which is a text noted for the sub-plots that run through its main narrative. One of the most important of these subplots concerns those who can and cannot see, which culminates in Jesus healing the man born blind, and that man’s testimony before the Temple leadership as to who Jesus is. This sub-plot is about “true sight”: that is to say, those who recognise Jesus for who he is, and those who, blinded by their presumption of knowledge, literally cannot see the Messiah who stands among them. Continue reading “John 3: 14-21 (indirectly Numbers 21: 4-9)”

Mark 8: 31-38

No doubt, many of you have been following the news surrounding the release of a report by the Australian Human Rights Commission into the detention of children in offshore processing centres for refugees and asylum seekers. Entitled The Forgotten Children, the report has detailed serious allegations concerning the conditions under which children seeking asylum in Australia are detained; and as part of these allegations, has listed a shocking number of incidents in which detained children have suffered harm and abuse, ranging from sexual assault to serious physical and psychological injury[1]. Continue reading “Mark 8: 31-38”