April 3, 2016
About 10 minutes after worship ends, we’ll gather together for Aftertalk. We hope you’ll join us! Bring your questions, stories, insights, doubts, musings, imaginings and whatever else you need . Join us for some food, fellowship, laughter and ample space for reflection and real questions to help us make the transition from worship to world.
Readings for this Sunday:
Acts 5:27-32 • Psalm 150 • Revelation 1:4-8 • John 20:19-31
We have entered into Easter, which is a season, not just a day. To be precise, it is a week of weeks--seven weeks, including Sundays, plus a great 50th day--Pentecost. Keep an eye on the artwork in the sanctuary as the Sundays build and a vision of God's salvation unfolds.
In today's gospel story of "Doubting Thomas" a number of translation issues come up. The "you" throughout is plural, as in "y'all," indicating that Jesus is talking about a community more than about individual belief, or faith. John further sets each scene a week apart. Can you guess which day? What might this indicate, given the gospel wasn't composed until near the turn of the first century, some 60 years after Jesus' life.
Perhaps the most significant is the choice of the word "doubt" for Jesus' injunction to Thomas in John 20:27: "Do not doubt but believe." The duality of doubt/belief as it is translated is problematic and not really true to the original language. Doubting in the text isn't about what we're thinking; it is about how we act, the way we believe. Faithfulness might be a closer parallel. We will talk more about the implications of this for our own life and practice as a church. Join us!
Themes - Doubt/Faith • Generations • Insiders/Outsiders • Witness
Ella Wheeler Wilcox, 19th century American poet
"There is no chance, no destiny, no fate, that can circumvent or hinder or control the firm resolve of a determined soul."
Desmond Tutu, 21st century
"I wish I could shut up, but I can't, and I won't."
Søren Kierkegaard, The Journals of Kierkegaard, 19th century
"The tyrant dies and his rule is over, the martyr dies and his rule begins."
Joan of Arc, 15th century national heroine of France
"Get up tomorrow early in the morning, and earlier than you did today, and do the best that you can. Always stay near me, for tomorrow I will have much to do and more than I ever had, and tomorrow blood will leave my body above the breast."
Harvey Fierstein, 21st century
"If you deny yourself commitment, what can you do with your life?"
M. Scott Peck, 20th century
"A life of total dedication to the truth also means a life of willingness to be personally challenged."
Anne Frank, The Diary of a Young Girl, 20th century
"I don't think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains."
Clarence Jordan, 20th century
"The proof that God raised Jesus from the dead is not the empty tomb, but the full hearts of his transformed disciples. The crowning evidence that he lives is not a vacant grave, but a spirit-filled fellowship. Not a rolled-away stone, but a carried-away church."
Irving Stone, The Agony and the Ecstasy, 20th century
"Talent is cheap; dedication is expensive. It will cost you your life."