Luke 16: 1-13

It is recorded elsewhere in the Gospels[1] that Jesus taught the disciples and the crowds who followed him in parables precisely because they were not able to understand what it was he was trying to tell them. Jesus thus used parables in order to illustrate his message and provide for his audience a means toward understanding. However, this being the case, I must confess that in today’s reading from The Gospel According to Luke, we have a parable that probably requires another parable in order to make sense of it! Indeed, we are presented with a parable that is possibly one of the most obscure and difficult of all of Jesus’ teachings.    Moreover, the fact that you and I struggle with this reading is reflective of the fact that, for 2,000 years, Christians everywhere has found this passage problematic. Continue reading “Luke 16: 1-13”

1 Timothy 1: 12-17

In his book Heretic, the Scottish minister, Peter Cameron, observes that the text which is now known as Paul’s First Letter to Timothy is something of an oddity in the Scriptural canon. Cameron notes that in particular, two passages in First Timothy amplify this oddball status.  The first is 1Timothy 5:23, which declares: No longer drink only water, but also take a little wine for the sake of your stomach and many ailments – a passage which Cameron suggests has been a source of consolation to generations of ministers![1] (And on that note, might I say that last Friday was International Buy A Priest A Beer Day – and, alas, I was once again disappointed by the returns!) Continue reading “1 Timothy 1: 12-17”