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Showing posts from January, 2021

Good news for a cynic. John 1.43-51

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John 1.43-51 I wonder whether you believe that this world is all that there is. The world of sense: of sight, touch, smell, taste and sound – or if you believe that there is something more, an invisible world that is behind this world – but which occasionally becomes obvious in this world. It is as if the curtain that separates heaven from earth is drawn back and we see clearly. There is a story in the Old Testament about a man called Jacob. He is the grandson of Abraham. So we are talking about a story that comes from 4000 years ago. He has deceived his father and cheated his older brother, and his brother wants to kill him. So his mum gives him a packed lunch and tells him to get out fast and go to stay with his uncle Laban who lives far far away. Jacob leaves, and sets up camp for the first night. He falls asleep and he has a dream. He sees a ladder going up into heaven, and angels are going up and down the ladder. And God speaks to him and tells him that he will be with him, protec

Baptism and a new start. Mark 1.4-11

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Mark 1.4-11 A new year offers us the promise of new beginnings, of fresh starts. We can press the reset button - so long as it is reset and not overload! Today our reading is about a new beginning, a fresh start. We read about Jesus baptism, and the promise that Jesus baptism has for each of us. And we also celebrate Anna’s baptism and as we do that, we remember our own baptisms. Because baptism is about a new beginning, a fresh start. 1. Baptism is about living under a new Lord, under the true Lord. John the Baptist was a bit of a celebrity. He had a name. People looked to him as a spiritual leader. And yet John recognises the authority of Jesus. He says, ‘He is more powerful than me’, ‘I am not worthy to even bow down and untie his shoelaces’. In many Orthodox churches, in the dome as you look up, there is an image of Christ the ruler of all. That is the Christ who John speaks of here. One of the questions that I am about to ask Anna - and of course Ben and Tatiana and John, her